The genomic architecture of mastitis resistance in dairy sheep

Banos, G and Bramis, G and Bush, S J and Clark, E L and McCulloch, M E B and Smith, J and Schulze, G and Arsenos, G and Hume, D A and Psifidi, A (2017) The genomic architecture of mastitis resistance in dairy sheep. BMC Genomics, 18. p. 624.

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Abstract

Mastitis is the most prevalent disease in dairy sheep with major economic, hygienic and welfare implications. The disease persists in all dairy sheep production systems despite the implementation of improved management practises. Selective breeding for enhanced mastitis resistance may provide the means to further control the disease. In the present study, we investigated the genetic architecture of four mastitis traits in dairy sheep. Individual animal records for clinical mastitis occurrence and three mastitis indicator traits (milk somatic cell count, total viable bacterial count in milk and the California mastitis test) were collected monthly throughout lactation for 609 ewes of the Greek Chios breed. All animals were genotyped with a custom-made 960-single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) DNA array based on markers located in quantitative trait loci (QTL) regions for mastitis resistance previously detected in three other distinct dairy sheep populations.