Population structure and genetic diversity in Colombian Simmental cattle
Amaya, Alejandro | 2020
A vital requirement to design and implement a breeding program is to know the structure and genetic diversity of a population. The aim of this study was to characterize population structure and genetic diversity of the Colombian Simmental cattle. The pedigree file included 27,985 animals born from 1975 to 2017. The level of genetic diversity and breed structure was evaluated through probabilities of gene origin expressed via effective number of founders, ancestors and founders genomes. The inbreeding rates and the degree of genetic connectivity were estimated using a regression analysis and a genetic drift variance analysis, respectively. The lowest effective number of founders and ancestors were 50 and 38 by year, respectively. The average inbreeding by year of birth decreased from 5.06% in 1980 to 2.25% in 2017. The dairy line genetic contributions in the overall population increased significantly in the last 37 years, and the beef line contribution decreased. Regarding the genetic connectivity, Colombian regions (administrative divisions) with the largest cattle population had higher values. The results indicate that the availability of European and North American bulls contributes to genetic diversity by increasing the effective number of founders over time in the Colombian Simmental cattle population. However, the intensive use of relatively few founders causes an unbalanced genetic contribution and the loss of genetic diversity by gene pool erosion.