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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: ENHANCING GENETIC MERIT OF RUMINANTS THROUGH GENOME SELECTION AND ANALYSIS

Location: Animal Genomics and Improvement Laboratory

Title: The JH1 Haplotype-a newly discovered marker for infertility in the jersy breed

Authors
item Buchanan, Kelly -
item Hansen, Peter -
item SONSTEGARD, TAD

Submitted to: Progressive Dairyman
Publication Type: Popular Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: June 18, 2014
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: The focus on production traits in genetic selection programs with little consideration for traits associated with reproduction has contributed to the decline in reproductive function. Moreover, there is a negative genetic correlation between milk yield and reproduction so that selection for yield can result in selection of genes that compromise fertility. The development of genomics is leading to discovery of specific genes responsible for dairy cattle infertility. This article briefly describes the discovery of a mutation (stop codon in CWC15 gene) underlying a portion of the genome (called JH1) causing infertility in Jerseys. An embryo that inherits a defective version of CWC15 from both its sire and dam is not able to complete development but instead dies at some point in gestation. As a result, there are no living animals with two copies of the defective gene. Fortunately, the JH1 locus can be detected through genetic testing with the Illumina 50K or 6K genotype chip. Findings like these will continue to provide dairy cattle breeders with tools that can reverse some of the historical decline in fertility in dairy cattle that is attributable to inbreeding.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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