Archives Animal Breeding | 2021

Genetic diversity and phylogenetic relationship of nine sheep populations based on microsatellite markers



Abstract The objective of this study was to assess the genetic diversity and phylogenetic relationship of nine sheep populations, including two famous high prolific populations and seven popular mutton populations raised in China. Overall, these sheep populations in this study exhibited a rich genetic diversity. Both the expected heterozygosity and Nei s unbiased gene diversity ranged from 0.64 to 0.75, with the lowest value found in Dorset sheep (DST) and the highest in Hu sheep (HUS) and Ba Han sheep (BAS). The polymorphic information content (PIC) varied between 0.59 in DST and 0.71 in HUS and BAS. Specifically, for individual breeds, the small-tail Han sheep (STH) and the four introduced populations did not display the expected diversity; therefore more attention should be paid to the maintenance of diversity during management of these populations. The results of un-weighted pair-group method (UPGMA) phylogenetic tree and structure analysis indicated that the nine investigated populations can be divided into two groups. Suffolk (SUF) and DST were clustered in one group, and the other group can be further divided into three clusters: German Mutton Merino (GMM)–BAS–Bamei Mutton sheep (BAM), HUS–STH and Du Han (DOS)–Dorper (DOP). This clustering result is consistent with sheep breeding history. TreeMix analysis also hinted at the possible gene flow from GMM to SUF. Together, an in-depth view of genetic diversity and genetic relationship will have important implications for breed-specific management.

Volume 64
Pages 7 - 16
DOI 10.5194/aab-64-7-2021
Language English
Journal Archives Animal Breeding

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