Assessment of genetic diversity in main local sheep breeds from Romania using microsatellite markers

Dudu, Andreea; Popa, Gina-Oana; Ghiță, Elena; Pelmuș, Rodica; Lazăr, Cristina; Costache, Marieta; Georgescu, Sergiu E.

The state of the local breeds of farm animals is increasingly precarious worldwide because of the aggressive introduction of breeds with improved economical traits. The preference of the breeders for local breeds is due to their higher adaptability to the particular climate and relief conditions of the mountain areas, to the high rate of assimilation of the feeds from these regions and to their increased resistance to diseases. This study analyzes the genetic variation of the main four local Romanian sheep breeds (Tsurcana, Tsigai, Ratska and Teleorman Blackhead) in terms of stock and economic importance, using 18 microsatellite markers. The mean number of alleles per locus was of 9.764. The values of genetic diversity parameters exhibited a high degree of polymorphism for the analyzed breeds, although inbreeding was highlighted particularly in Tsurcana and Tsigai. These breeds also showed an intense gene flow among them and were less differentiated in comparison with Ratska and Teleorman Blackhead. The results of this study may be useful for breeding programs and conservation plans since the genetic resources of the local breeds must be preserved so as to maintain an adequate level of biodiversity in animal husbandry.

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Dudu, Andreea / Popa, Gina-Oana / Ghiță, Elena / et al: Assessment of genetic diversity in main local sheep breeds from Romania using microsatellite markers. 2020. Copernicus Publications.

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