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      Genome-wide association study of the backfat thickness trait in two pig populations

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          Backfat thickness is a good predictor of carcass lean content, an economically important trait, and a main breeding target in pig improvement. In this study, the candidate genes and genomic regions associated with the tenth rib backfat thickness trait were identified in two independent pig populations, using a genome-wide association study of porcine 60K SNP genotype data applying the compressed mixed linear model (CMLM) statistical method. For each population, 30 most significant single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were selected and SNP annotation implemented using Sus scrofa Build 10.2. In the first population, 25 significant SNPs were distributed on seven chromosomes, and SNPs on SSC1 and SSC7 showed great significance for fat deposition. The most significant SNP (ALGA0006623) was located on SSC1, upstream of the MC4R gene. In the second population, 27 significant SNPs were recognized by annotation, and 12 SNPs on SSC12 were related to fat deposition. Two haplotype blocks, M1GA0016251-MARC0075799 and ALGA0065251-MARC0014203-M1GA0016298-ALGA0065308, were detected in significant regions where the PIPNC1 and GH1 genes were identified as contributing to fat metabolism. The results indicated that genetic mechanism regulating backfat thickness is complex, and that genome-wide associations can be affected by populations with different genetic backgrounds.

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          Most cited references 15

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          PLINK: a tool set for whole-genome association and population-based linkage analyses.

          Whole-genome association studies (WGAS) bring new computational, as well as analytic, challenges to researchers. Many existing genetic-analysis tools are not designed to handle such large data sets in a convenient manner and do not necessarily exploit the new opportunities that whole-genome data bring. To address these issues, we developed PLINK, an open-source C/C++ WGAS tool set. With PLINK, large data sets comprising hundreds of thousands of markers genotyped for thousands of individuals can be rapidly manipulated and analyzed in their entirety. As well as providing tools to make the basic analytic steps computationally efficient, PLINK also supports some novel approaches to whole-genome data that take advantage of whole-genome coverage. We introduce PLINK and describe the five main domains of function: data management, summary statistics, population stratification, association analysis, and identity-by-descent estimation. In particular, we focus on the estimation and use of identity-by-state and identity-by-descent information in the context of population-based whole-genome studies. This information can be used to detect and correct for population stratification and to identify extended chromosomal segments that are shared identical by descent between very distantly related individuals. Analysis of the patterns of segmental sharing has the potential to map disease loci that contain multiple rare variants in a population-based linkage analysis.
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            Haploview: analysis and visualization of LD and haplotype maps.

            Research over the last few years has revealed significant haplotype structure in the human genome. The characterization of these patterns, particularly in the context of medical genetic association studies, is becoming a routine research activity. Haploview is a software package that provides computation of linkage disequilibrium statistics and population haplotype patterns from primary genotype data in a visually appealing and interactive interface.
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              Mixed linear model approach adapted for genome-wide association studies.

              Mixed linear model (MLM) methods have proven useful in controlling for population structure and relatedness within genome-wide association studies. However, MLM-based methods can be computationally challenging for large datasets. We report a compression approach, called 'compressed MLM', that decreases the effective sample size of such datasets by clustering individuals into groups. We also present a complementary approach, 'population parameters previously determined' (P3D), that eliminates the need to re-compute variance components. We applied these two methods both independently and combined in selected genetic association datasets from human, dog and maize. The joint implementation of these two methods markedly reduced computing time and either maintained or improved statistical power. We used simulations to demonstrate the usefulness in controlling for substructure in genetic association datasets for a range of species and genetic architectures. We have made these methods available within an implementation of the software program TASSEL.

                Author and article information

                Front. Agr. Sci. Eng.
                Frontiers of Agricultural Science and Engineering
                Higher Education Press (4 Huixin Dongjie, Chaoyang District, Beijing 100029, China )
                : 1
                : 2
                : 91-95
                1. Laboratory of Agricultural Animal Genetics, Breeding and Reproduction of Ministry of Education, College of Animal Science and Technology, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, China
                2. Department of Animal Science, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
                3. Institute for Genomic Diversity, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA
                Author notes

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.



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