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Optimization of a crossing system using mate selection

Genetics Selection Evolution200638:147

  • Received: 4 May 2005
  • Accepted: 21 October 2005
  • Published:


A simple model based on one single identified quantitative trait locus (QTL) in a two-way crossing system was used to demonstrate the power of mate selection algorithms as a natural means of opportunistic line development for optimization of crossbreeding programs over multiple generations. Mate selection automatically invokes divergent selection in two parental lines for an over-dominant QTL and increased frequency of the favorable allele toward fixation in the sire-line for a fully-dominant QTL. It was concluded that an optimal strategy of line development could be found by mate selection algorithms for a given set of parameters such as genetic model of QTL, breeding objective and initial frequency of the favorable allele in the base populations, etc. The same framework could be used in other scenarios, such as programs involving crossing to exploit breed effects and heterosis. In contrast to classical index selection, this approach to mate selection can optimize long-term responses.


  • quantitative trait locus
  • optimal utilization
  • two-way crossing system
  • mate selection

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Authors’ Affiliations

School of Rural Science and Agriculture, University of New England, Armidale, NSW, 2351, Australia
Institute of Animal Science, Jilin Agricultural University, Changchun, 130118, PR China
Sygen Chair of Genetic Information Systems, the Institute of Genetic and Bioinformatics, University of New England, Armidale, NSW, 2351, Australia
Statistical Animal Genetics Group, Institute of Animal Science, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, ETH Zentrum (UNS D 5), 8092 Zurich, Switzerland


© INRA, EDP Sciences 2006