Genome variability in European and American bison detected using the BovineSNP50 BeadChip

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  • C. Pertoldi
  • Jan M Wójcik, Mammal Research Institute, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland
  • Małgorzata Tokarska, Mammal Research Institute, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland
  • Agata Kawałko, Mammal Research Institute, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland
  • Torsten N Kristensen
  • Volker Loeschcke
  • Vivi R Gregersen, Denmark
  • David Coltman, Department of Biological Science, University of Alberta, Canada
  • Gregory A Wilson, Department of Biological Science, University of Alberta, Canada
  • Ettore Randi, Istituto Superiore per la Protezione e la Ricerca Ambientale, Italy
  • Mark Henryon, Denmark
  • Christian Bendixen
  • Department of Genetics and Biotechnology
  • Department of Biological Sciences, Genetics and Ecology
  • Populationsgenetik og Embryologi
  • Molekylær Genetik og Systembiologi
 The remaining wild populations of bison have all been through severe bottlenecks. The genomic consequences of these bottlenecks present an interesting area to study. Using a very large panel of SNPs developed in Bos taurus we have carried out a genome-wide screening on the European bison (Bison bonasus; EB) and on two subspecies of American bison: the plains bison (B. bison bison; PB) and the wood bison (B. bison athabascae; WB). One hundred bison samples were genotyped for 52,978 SNPs along with seven breeds of domestic bovine Bos taurus. Only 2,209 of the SNPs were polymorphic in the bison when EB, PB and WB were pooled and only 929 SNPs were polymorphic in EB. Larger numbers of polymorphic SNPs were found in PB (1,403 SNPs) and WB (1,524 SNPs). Also the expected heterozygosity was lower in EB (H E = 0.135) than in WB (H E = 0.197) and PB (H E = 0.199). The polymorphic SNPs were not randomly distributed in the bison, but were aggregated and separated from each other by regions with low haplotype diversity (haplotype blocks). Based on our results we suggest that the utilization of genome-wide screening technologies holds large potential to radically change the breeding practices in captive or managed populations of threatened populations and advocate for developing marker assisted selected strategies in such populations. Electronic supplementary material  The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s10592-009-9977-y) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users
Original languageEnglish
JournalConservation Genetics
Pages (from-to)627-634
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2010

    Research areas

  • Bottleneck, Founder effect, Marker assisted selection, Genome wide screening, Genetic variation, Inbreeding

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