Case study of a Hungarian breeding program using imported Booroola rams

M. Árnyasi, A. Zsolnai, I. Komlósi, L. Fésüs, A. Jávor
2004 Archives Animal Breeding  
The first major gene for prolificacy identified in sheep was the Booroola (FecB) gene. Since the recognition of its existence, the Booroola Merino has spread all over the world. In Hungary, a new breed – called Hungarian Prolific Merino – had been established based on the crossing of Hungarian Merino ewes and Booroola Merino rams, and was acknowledged in 1992. The only way to determine the FecB genotypes has been the measurement of the ovulation rate over a long period. In 2001, the
more » ... iod. In 2001, the Booroola mutation was identified. Mutation on the bone morphogenetic protein receptor – 1B gene was found to be associated with the increased ovulation rate in the Booroola Merino ewes. 138 ewes and 46 rams in the Hungarian Prolific Merino population were tested for this mutation by PCR-RFLP and their FecB genotypes were determined. One copy of the Fec<sup>B</sup> allele increased (P < 0,05) the ovulation rate by 0.89 ova and two copies increased by an average of 2.27 ova. Effectiveness of the FecB genotype estimation based on phenotype measurement was also compared to the results of direct DNA testing, and was found to have up to 80% accuracy.
doi:10.5194/aab-47-359-2004 fatcat:l345gvwfxjd43b3yvtq3no7vt4