Prediction of breeding values for group-recorded traits including genomic information and an individually recorded correlated trait

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  • Xiang Ma, Zhejiang Agriculture and Forest Universiry, Nanjing Agricultural University
  • ,
  • Ole F Christensen
  • Hongding Gao
  • Ruihua Huang, Department of Plant Protection, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing 210095, China
  • ,
  • Bjarne Nielsen, SEGES
  • ,
  • Per Madsen
  • Just Jensen
  • Tage Ostersen, SEGES Pig Research Centre
  • ,
  • Pinghua Li, Nanjing Agricultural University
  • ,
  • Mahmoud Shirali
  • ,
  • Guosheng Su

Records on groups of individuals could be valuable for predicting breeding values when a trait is difficult or costly to measure on single individuals, such as feed intake and egg production. Adding genomic information has shown improvement in the accuracy of genetic evaluation of quantitative traits with individual records. Here, we investigated the value of genomic information for traits with group records. Besides, we investigated the improvement in accuracy of genetic evaluation for group-recorded traits when including information on a correlated trait with individual records. The study was based on a simulated pig population, including three scenarios of group structure and size. The results showed that both the genomic information and a correlated trait increased the accuracy of estimated breeding values (EBVs) for traits with group records. The accuracies of EBV obtained from group records with a size 24 were much lower than those with a size 12. Random assignment of animals to pens led to lower accuracy due to the weaker relationship between individuals within each group. It suggests that group records are valuable for genetic evaluation of a trait that is difficult to record on individuals, and the accuracy of genetic evaluation can be considerably increased using genomic information. Moreover, the genetic evaluation for a trait with group records can be greatly improved using a bivariate model, including correlated traits that are recorded individually. For efficient use of group records in genetic evaluation, relatively small group size and close relationships between individuals within one group are recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)206-217
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021

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