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Genetic analysis of growth traits in Iranian Makuie sheep breed

Author(s): Shoja Jafari | Ali Hashemi | Ghader Manafiazar | Reza Darvishzadeh | Sarrain Razzagzadeh | Mohammad Farhadian

Journal: Italian Journal of Animal Science
ISSN 1594-4077

Volume: 11;
Issue: 1;
Start page: e18;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: Derivate-free algorithm | Direct heritability | Genetic correlation | Maternal heritability | Restricted maximum likelihood

The Makuie sheep is a fat-tailed sheep breed which can be found in the Azerbaijan province of Iran. In 1986, a Makuie sheep breeding station was established in the city of Maku in order to breed, protect and purify this breed. The genetic parameters for birth weight, weaning weight (3 months), 6-month, 9-month and yearling weight, and average daily gain from birth to weaning traits were estimated based on 25 years of data using DFREML software. Six different models were applied and a likelihood ratio test (LRT) was used to select the appropriate model. Bivariate analysis was used to define the genetic correlation between studied traits. Based on the LRT, model II was selected as an appropriate model for all studied traits. Direct heritability estimates of birth, weaning, 6-month, 9-month and yearling weights and average daily gain from birth to weaning were 0.36, 0.41, 0.48, 0.42, 0.36 and 0.37, respectively. Estimates of direct genetic correlation between birth and weaning weights, birth and 6-month weights, birth and 9-month weights, as well as between birth and yearling weights were 0.57, 0.49, 0.46 and 0.32, respectively. The results suggest there is a substantial additive genetic variability for studied traits in the Makuie sheep breed population, and the direct additive effect and maternal permanent environment variance are the main source of phenotypic variance.
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