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Inheritance of equine sarcoid disease in Franches-Montagnes horses
- Christen, Garance, Gerber, Vinzenz, Dolf, Gaudenz, Burger, Dominique, Koch, Christoph
- The veterinary journal 2014 v.199 no.1 pp. 68-71
- alleles, antigens, breeding value, heritability, horses, inheritance (genetics), leukocytes, major genes, models, phenotype, questionnaires, sarcoid
- The mode of inheritance for susceptibility to equine sarcoid disease (ES) remains unknown. The objectives of this study were to analyse a large sample of the Franches-Montagnes (FM) horse population and investigate the heritability and mode of inheritance for susceptibility to ES. Horses were clinically examined for the presence of sarcoid tumours. A standardized examination protocol and client questionnaire were used and a pedigree- and subsequent segregation-analysis for the ES trait performed. To investigate the mode of inheritance, five models were evaluated and compared in a hierarchical way.The analyses reveal that variation in susceptibility to ES is best explained by a model incorporating polygenic variation. The possible effect of a major gene, such as specific equine leukocyte antigen alleles, is unlikely, but cannot be ruled-out entirely. The heritability of the phenotype on the observation scale for the trait ‘affected with ES’ was estimated to be 8%. A corrected value for the heritability on a liability scale was estimated at 21% and it is therefore possible to estimate breeding values for ES. The arguments against the practical implementation of an estimated breeding value in a multifactorial condition like ES are discussed.