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Genetic Resistance Against Scrapie Disease Related to Lamb Growth Performance Traits

Ptáček, M., Ducháček, J.
Scientia Agriculturae Bohemica 2019 v.50 no.1 pp. 8-14
Texel, alleles, backfat, body weight, computer software, genetic resistance, growth performance, heterozygosity, homozygosity, lambs, longissimus muscle, scrapie
The objective of the study was to identify the impact of selection on genetic resistance against scrapie disease related to lamb growth performance attributes for Suffolk, Kent, Charollais, and Texel lambs.The allelic genotypes were grouped according to the presence of scrapie resistant allele (ARR): ARR homozygotes, ARR heterozygotes, no presence of ARR allele. The influence of these groups on lamb live weight (LW), musculus longissimus lumborum et thoracis depth (MLLT), and back-fat thickness at 100 days of age was investigated using SAS software. No significant differences for Suffolk and Charollais breeds were detected. Significantly highest LW (34.41 kg) and MLLT (27.80 mm) were noticed for Kent ARR homozygotes lambs, while significantly lowest values were estimated at lambs with absent ARR allele (LW = 33.42 kg, MLLT = 26.68 mm). Significantly lower muscle depth (–0.69 mm) was detected for Texel ARR homozygote compared to ARR heterozygote lambs. As a result, we were unable to detect a consistent evidence for reduced growth performance traits in relation to genetic resistance against scrapie disease. However, the number of animals in some groups caused as a limiting factor. This can be a potential reason of opposed trends in Texel and Kent lambs.