Quantitative trait loci for chemical body composition traits in pigs and their positional associations with body tissues, growth and feed intake
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In this study, quantitative trait loci (QTL) for chemical and physical body composition, growth and feed intake in pigs were identified in a three-generation full-sib population, developed by crossing Pietrain sires with a commercial dam line. Phenotypic data from 315 F2 animals were available for protein and lipid deposition measured in live animals by the deuterium dilution technique at 30-, 60-, 90-, 120- and 140-kg body weight. At 140-kg body weight, carcass characteristics were measured by the AutoFOM grading system and after dissection. Three hundred and eighty-six animals from 49 families were genotyped for 51 molecular markers covering chromosomes SSC2, SSC4, SSC8, SSC9, SSC10 and SSC14. Novel QTL for protein (lipid) content at 60-kg body weight and protein (lipid) accretion from 120 to 140 kg were detected on SSC9 near several previously detected QTL for lean and fat tissue in neck, shoulder and ham cuts. Another QTL for lipid accretion was found on SSC8, closely associated with a QTL for intramuscular fat content. QTL for daily feed intake were detected on SSC2 and SSC10. The favourable allele of a QTL for food conversion ratio (FCR) on SSC2 was associated with alleles for increased lean tissue and decreased fat tissue. Because no QTL for growth rate were found in the region, the QTL for FCR is most likely due to a change in body composition. These QTL provide insights into the genomic regulation of chemical or physical body composition and its association with feed intake, feed efficiency and growth.
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