Open Access

Analysis of rabbit doe longevity using a semiparametric log-Normal animal frailty model with time-dependent covariates

  • Juan Pablo Sánchez1, 3Email author,
  • Inge Riis Korsgaard2, 3,
  • Lars Holm Damgaard3 and
  • Manuel Baselga2, 3
Genetics Selection Evolution200638:281

Received: 27 May 2005

Accepted: 4 January 2006

Published: 26 April 2006


Data on doe longevity in a rabbit population were analysed using a semiparametric log-Normal animal frailty model. Longevity was defined as the time from the first positive pregnancy test to death or culling due to pathological problems. Does culled for other reasons had right censored records of longevity. The model included time dependent covariates associated with year by season, the interaction between physiological state and the number of young born alive, and between order of positive pregnancy test and physiological state. The model also included an additive genetic effect and a residual in log frailty. Properties of marginal posterior distributions of specific parameters were inferred from a full Bayesian analysis using Gibbs sampling. All of the fully conditional posterior distributions defining a Gibbs sampler were easy to sample from, either directly or using adaptive rejection sampling. The marginal posterior mean estimates of the additive genetic variance and of the residual variance in log frailty were 0.247 and 0.690.


longevity in rabbit does semiparametric log-Normal frailty model survival analysis time dependent covariates

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Authors’ Affiliations

Departamento de Ciencia Animal, Universidad Politécnica de Valencia
Department of Genetics and Biotechnology, Research Centre Foulum, Danish Institute of Agricultural Sciences
Departamento de Producción Animal I, Universidad de León


© INRA, EDP Sciences 2006