Search tips
Search criteria

Results 1-11 (11)

Clipboard (0)
Year of Publication
Document Types
1.  A medium density genetic map and QTL for behavioral and production traits in Japanese quail 
BMC Genomics  2015;16(1):10.
Behavioral traits such as sociability, emotional reactivity and aggressiveness are major factors in animal adaptation to breeding conditions. In order to investigate the genetic control of these traits as well as their relationships with production traits, a study was undertaken on a large second generation cross (F2) between two lines of Japanese Quail divergently selected on their social reinstatement behavior. All the birds were measured for several social behaviors (social reinstatement, response to social isolation, sexual motivation, aggression), behaviors measuring the emotional reactivity of the birds (reaction to an unknown object, tonic immobility reaction), and production traits (body weight and egg production).
We report the results of the first genome-wide QTL detection based on a medium density SNP panel obtained from whole genome sequencing of a pool of individuals from each divergent line. A genetic map was constructed using 2145 markers among which 1479 could be positioned on 28 different linkage groups. The sex-averaged linkage map spanned a total of 3057 cM with an average marker spacing of 2.1 cM. With the exception of a few regions, the marker order was the same in Japanese Quail and the chicken, which confirmed a well conserved synteny between the two species. The linkage analyses performed using QTLMAP software revealed a total of 45 QTLs related either to behavioral (23) or production (22) traits. The most numerous QTLs (15) concerned social motivation traits. Interestingly, our results pinpointed putative pleiotropic regions which controlled emotional reactivity and body-weight of birds (on CJA5 and CJA8) or their social motivation and the onset of egg laying (on CJA19).
This study identified several QTL regions for social and emotional behaviors in the Quail. Further research will be needed to refine the QTL and confirm or refute the role of candidate genes, which were suggested by bioinformatics analysis. It can be hoped that the identification of genes and polymorphisms related to behavioral traits in the quail will have further applications for other poultry species (especially the chicken) and will contribute to solving animal welfare issues in poultry production.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12864-014-1210-9) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4307178  PMID: 25609057
2.  Fine mapping of complex traits in non-model species: using next generation sequencing and advanced intercross lines in Japanese quail 
BMC Genomics  2012;13:551.
As for other non-model species, genetic analyses in quail will benefit greatly from a higher marker density, now attainable thanks to the evolution of sequencing and genotyping technologies. Our objective was to obtain the first genome wide panel of Japanese quail SNP (Single Nucleotide Polymorphism) and to use it for the fine mapping of a QTL for a fear-related behaviour, namely tonic immobility, previously localized on Coturnix japonica chromosome 1. To this aim, two reduced representations of the genome were analysed through high-throughput 454 sequencing: AFLP (Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism) fragments as representatives of genomic DNA, and EST (Expressed Sequence Tag) as representatives of the transcriptome.
The sequencing runs produced 399,189 and 1,106,762 sequence reads from cDNA and genomic fragments, respectively. They covered over 434 Mb of sequence in total and allowed us to detect 17,433 putative SNP. Among them, 384 were used to genotype two Advanced Intercross Lines (AIL) obtained from three quail lines differing for duration of tonic immobility. Despite the absence of genotyping for founder individuals in the analysis, the previously identified candidate region on chromosome 1 was refined and led to the identification of a candidate gene.
These data confirm the efficiency of transcript and AFLP-sequencing for SNP discovery in a non-model species, and its application to the fine mapping of a complex trait. Our results reveal a significant association of duration of tonic immobility with a genomic region comprising the DMD (dystrophin) gene. Further characterization of this candidate gene is needed to decipher its putative role in tonic immobility in Coturnix.
PMCID: PMC3534603  PMID: 23066875
Quail; Tonic immobility; Sequencing; AFLP; Transcripts; SNP; AIL
3.  Integrative mapping analysis of chicken microchromosome 16 organization 
BMC Genomics  2010;11:616.
The chicken karyotype is composed of 39 chromosome pairs, of which 9 still remain totally absent from the current genome sequence assembly, despite international efforts towards complete coverage. Some others are only very partially sequenced, amongst which microchromosome 16 (GGA16), particularly under-represented, with only 433 kb assembled for a full estimated size of 9 to 11 Mb. Besides the obvious need of full genome coverage with genetic markers for QTL (Quantitative Trait Loci) mapping and major genes identification studies, there is a major interest in the detailed study of this chromosome because it carries the two genetically independent MHC complexes B and Y. In addition, GGA16 carries the ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes cluster, also known as the NOR (nucleolus organizer region). The purpose of the present study is to construct and present high resolution integrated maps of GGA16 to refine its organization and improve its coverage with genetic markers.
We developed 79 STS (Sequence Tagged Site) markers to build a physical RH (radiation hybrid) map and 34 genetic markers to extend the genetic map of GGA16. We screened a BAC (Bacterial Artificial Chromosome) library with markers for the MHC-B, MHC-Y and rRNA complexes. Selected clones were used to perform high resolution FISH (Fluorescent In Situ Hybridization) mapping on giant meiotic lampbrush chromosomes, allowing meiotic mapping in addition to the confirmation of the order of the three clusters along the chromosome. A region with high recombination rates and containing PO41 repeated elements separates the two MHC complexes.
The three complementary mapping strategies used refine greatly our knowledge of chicken microchromosome 16 organisation. The characterisation of the recombination hotspots separating the two MHC complexes demonstrates the presence of PO41 repetitive sequences both in tandem and inverted orientation. However, this region still needs to be studied in more detail.
PMCID: PMC3091757  PMID: 21050458
4.  Mapping main, epistatic and sex-specific QTL for body composition in a chicken population divergently selected for low or high growth rate 
BMC Genomics  2010;11:107.
Delineating the genetic basis of body composition is important to agriculture and medicine. In addition, the incorporation of gene-gene interactions in the statistical model provides further insight into the genetic factors that underlie body composition traits. We used Bayesian model selection to comprehensively map main, epistatic and sex-specific QTL in an F2 reciprocal intercross between two chicken lines divergently selected for high or low growth rate.
We identified 17 QTL with main effects across 13 chromosomes and several sex-specific and sex-antagonistic QTL for breast meat yield, thigh + drumstick yield and abdominal fatness. Different sets of QTL were found for both breast muscles [Pectoralis (P) major and P. minor], which suggests that they could be controlled by different regulatory mechanisms. Significant interactions of QTL by sex allowed detection of sex-specific and sex-antagonistic QTL for body composition and abdominal fat. We found several female-specific P. major QTL and sex-antagonistic P. minor and abdominal fatness QTL. Also, several QTL on different chromosomes interact with each other to affect body composition and abdominal fatness.
The detection of main effects, epistasis and sex-dimorphic QTL suggest complex genetic regulation of somatic growth. An understanding of such regulatory mechanisms is key to mapping specific genes that underlie QTL controlling somatic growth in an avian model.
PMCID: PMC2830984  PMID: 20149241
5.  Using transcriptome profiling to characterize QTL regions on chicken chromosome 5 
BMC Genomics  2009;10:575.
Although many QTL for various traits have been mapped in livestock, location confidence intervals remain wide that makes difficult the identification of causative mutations. The aim of this study was to test the contribution of microarray data to QTL detection in livestock species. Three different but complementary approaches are proposed to improve characterization of a chicken QTL region for abdominal fatness (AF) previously detected on chromosome 5 (GGA5).
Hepatic transcriptome profiles for 45 offspring of a sire known to be heterozygous for the distal GGA5 AF QTL were obtained using a 20 K chicken oligochip. mRNA levels of 660 genes were correlated with the AF trait. The first approach was to dissect the AF phenotype by identifying animal subgroups according to their 660 transcript profiles. Linkage analysis using some of these subgroups revealed another QTL in the middle of GGA5 and increased the significance of the distal GGA5 AF QTL, thereby refining its localization. The second approach targeted the genes correlated with the AF trait and regulated by the GGA5 AF QTL region. Five of the 660 genes were considered as being controlled either by the AF QTL mutation itself or by a mutation close to it; one having a function related to lipid metabolism (HMGCS1). In addition, a QTL analysis with a multiple trait model combining this 5 gene-set and AF allowed us to refine the QTL region. The third approach was to use these 5 transcriptome profiles to predict the paternal Q versus q AF QTL mutation for each recombinant offspring and then refine the localization of the QTL from 31 cM (100 genes) at a most probable location confidence interval of 7 cM (12 genes) after determining the recombination breakpoints, an interval consistent with the reductions obtained by the two other approaches.
The results showed the feasibility and efficacy of the three strategies used, the first revealing a QTL undetected using the whole population, the second providing functional information about a QTL region through genes related to the trait and controlled by this region (HMGCS1), the third could drastically refine a QTL region.
PMCID: PMC2792231  PMID: 19954542
6.  Microsatellite mapping of QTLs affecting resistance to coccidiosis (Eimeria tenella) in a Fayoumi × White Leghorn cross 
BMC Genomics  2009;10:31.
Avian coccidiosis is a major parasitic disease of poultry, causing severe economical loss to poultry production by affecting growth and feed efficiency of infected birds. Current control strategies using mainly drugs and more recently vaccination are showing drawbacks and alternative strategies are needed. Using genetic resistance that would limit the negative and very costly effects of the disease would be highly relevant. The purpose of this work was to detect for the first time QTL for disease resistance traits to Eimeria tenella in chicken by performing a genome scan in an F2 cross issued from a resistant Fayoumi line and a susceptible Leghorn line.
The QTL analysis detected 21 chromosome-wide significant QTL for the different traits related to disease resistance (body weight growth, plasma coloration, hematocrit, rectal temperature and lesion) on 6 chromosomes. Out of these, a genome-wide very significant QTL for body weight growth was found on GGA1, five genome-wide significant QTL for body weight growth, plasma coloration and hematocrit and one for plasma coloration were found on GGA1 and GGA6, respectively. Two genome-wide suggestive QTL for plasma coloration and rectal temperature were found on GGA1 and GGA2, respectively. Other chromosme-wide significant QTL were identified on GGA2, GGA3, GGA6, GGA15 and GGA23. Parent-of-origin effects were found for QTL for body weight growth and plasma coloration on GGA1 and GGA3. Several QTL for different resistance phenotypes were identified as co-localized on the same location.
Using an F2 cross from resistant and susceptible chicken lines proved to be a successful strategy to identify QTL for different resistance traits to Eimeria tenella, opening the way for further gene identification and underlying mechanisms and hopefully possibilities for new breeding strategies for resistance to coccidiosis in the chicken. From the QTL regions identified, several candidate genes and relevant pathways linked to innate immune and inflammatory responses were suggested. These results will be combined with functional genomics approaches on the same lines to provide positional candidate genes for resistance loci for coccidiosis. Results suggested also for further analysis, models tackling the complexity of the genetic architecture of these correlated disease resistance traits including potential epistatic effects.
PMCID: PMC2633352  PMID: 19154572
7.  Addition of the microchromosome GGA25 to the chicken genome sequence assembly through radiation hybrid and genetic mapping 
BMC Genomics  2008;9:129.
The publication of the first draft chicken sequence assembly became available in 2004 and was updated in 2006. However, this does not constitute a definitive and complete sequence of the chicken genome, since the microchromosomes are notably under-represented. In an effort to develop maps for the microchromosomes absent from the chicken genome assembly, we developed radiation hybrid (RH) and genetic maps with markers isolated from sequence currently assigned to "chromosome Unknown" (chrUn). The chrUn is composed of sequence contigs not assigned to named chromosomes. To identify and map sequence belonging to the microchromosomes we used a comparative mapping strategy, and we focused on the small linkage group E26C13.
In total, 139 markers were analysed with the chickRH6 panel, of which 120 were effectively assigned to the E26C13 linkage group, the remainder mapping elsewhere in the genome. The final RH map is composed of 22 framework markers extending over a 245.6 cR distance. A corresponding genetic map was developed, whose length is 103 cM in the East Lansing reference population. The E26C13 group was assigned to GGA25 (Gallus gallus chromosome 25) by FISH (fluorescence in situ hybridisation) mapping.
The high-resolution RH framework map obtained here covers the entire chicken chromosome 25 and reveals the existence of a high number of intrachromosomal rearrangements when compared to the human genome. The strategy used here for the characterization of GGA25 could be used to improve knowledge on the other uncharacterized small, yet gene-rich microchromosomes.
PMCID: PMC2275740  PMID: 18366813
8.  Identification of QTL controlling meat quality traits in an F2 cross between two chicken lines selected for either low or high growth rate 
BMC Genomics  2007;8:155.
Meat technological traits (i.e. meat pH, water retention and color) are important considerations for improving further processing of chicken meat. These quality traits were originally characterized in experimental lines selected for high (HG) and low (LG) growth. Presently, quantitative trait loci (QTL) for these traits were analyzed in an F2 population issued from the HG × LG cross. A total of 698 animals in 50 full-sib families were genotyped for 108 microsatellite markers covering 21 linkage groups.
The HG and LG birds exhibit large differences in body weight and abdominal fat content. Several meat quality traits [pH at 15 min post-slaughter (pH15) and ultimate pH (pHu), breast color-redness (BCo-R) and breast color-yellowness (BCo-Y)] were lower in HG chickens. In contrast, meat color-lightness (BCo-L) was higher in HG chickens, whereas meat drip loss (DL) was similar in both lines. HG birds were more active on the shackle line. Association analyses were performed using maximum-likelihood interval mapping in QTLMAP. Five genome-wide significant QTLs were revealed: two for pH15 on GGA1 and GGA2, one for DL on GGA1, one for BCo-R and one for BCo-Y both on GGA11. In addition, four suggestive QTLs were identified by QTLMAP for BCo-Y, pHu, pH15 and DL on GGA1, GGA4, GGA12 and GGA14, respectively. The QTL effects, averaged on heterozygous families, ranged from 12 to 31% of the phenotypic variance. Further analyses with QTLExpress confirmed the two genome-wide QTLs for meat color on GGA11, failed to identify the genome-wide QTL for pH15 on GGA2, and revealed only suggestive QTLs for pH15 and DL on GGA1. However, QTLExpress qualified the QTL for pHu on GGA4 as genome-wide.
The present study identified genome-wide significant QTLs for all meat technological traits presently assessed in these chickens, except for meat lightness. This study highlights the effects of divergent selection for growth rate on some behavioral traits, muscle biochemistry and ultimately meat quality traits. Several QTL regions were identified that are worthy of further characterization. Some QTLs may in fact co-localize, suggesting pleiotropic effects for some chromosomal regions.
PMCID: PMC1899504  PMID: 17559654
9.  Integrated maps in quail (Coturnix japonica) confirm the high degree of synteny conservation with chicken (Gallus gallus) despite 35 million years of divergence 
BMC Genomics  2006;7:101.
By comparing the quail genome with that of chicken, chromosome rearrangements that have occurred in these two galliform species over 35 million years of evolution can be detected. From a more practical point of view, the definition of conserved syntenies helps to predict the position of genes in quail, based on information taken from the chicken sequence, thus enhancing the utility of this species in biological studies through a better knowledge of its genome structure. A microsatellite and an Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism (AFLP) genetic map were previously published for quail, as well as comparative cytogenetic data with chicken for macrochromosomes. Quail genomics will benefit from the extension and the integration of these maps.
The integrated linkage map presented here is based on segregation analysis of both anonymous markers and functional gene loci in 1,050 quail from three independent F2 populations. Ninety-two loci are resolved into 14 autosomal linkage groups and a Z chromosome-specific linkage group, aligned with the quail AFLP map. The size of linkage groups ranges from 7.8 cM to 274.8 cM. The total map distance covers 904.3 cM with an average spacing of 9.7 cM between loci. The coverage is not complete, as macrochromosome CJA08, the gonosome CJAW and 23 microchromosomes have no marker assigned yet. Significant sequence identities of quail markers with chicken enabled the alignment of the quail linkage groups on the chicken genome sequence assembly. This, together with interspecific Fluorescence In Situ Hybridization (FISH), revealed very high similarities in marker order between the two species for the eight macrochromosomes and the 14 microchromosomes studied.
Integrating the two microsatellite and the AFLP quail genetic maps greatly enhances the quality of the resulting information and will thus facilitate the identification of Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL). The alignment with the chicken chromosomes confirms the high conservation of gene order that was expected between the two species for macrochromosomes. By extending the comparative study to the microchromosomes, we suggest that a wealth of information can be mined in chicken, to be used for genome analyses in quail.
PMCID: PMC1534036  PMID: 16669996
10.  Construction of a radiation hybrid map of chicken chromosome 2 and alignment to the chicken draft sequence 
BMC Genomics  2005;6:12.
The ChickRH6 whole chicken genome radiation hybrid (RH) panel recently produced has already been used to build radiation hybrid maps for several chromosomes, generating comparative maps with the human and mouse genomes and suggesting improvements to the chicken draft sequence assembly. Here we present the construction of a RH map of chicken chromosome 2. Markers from the genetic map were used for alignment to the existing GGA2 (Gallus gallus chromosome 2) linkage group and EST were used to provide valuable comparative mapping information. Finally, all markers from the RH map were localised on the chicken draft sequence assembly to check for eventual discordances.
Eighty eight microsatellite markers, 10 genes and 219 EST were selected from the genetic map or on the basis of available comparative mapping information. Out of these 317 markers, 270 gave reliable amplifications on the radiation hybrid panel and 198 were effectively assigned to GGA2. The final RH map is 2794 cR6000 long and is composed of 86 framework markers distributed in 5 groups. Conservation of synteny was found between GGA2 and eight human chromosomes, with segments of conserved gene order of varying lengths.
We obtained a radiation hybrid map of chicken chromosome 2. Comparison to the human genome indicated that most of the 8 groups of conserved synteny studied underwent internal rearrangements. The alignment of our RH map to the first draft of the chicken genome sequence assembly revealed a good agreement between both sets of data, indicative of a low error rate.
PMCID: PMC548691  PMID: 15693999
11.  A high-resolution radiation hybrid map of chicken chromosome 5 and comparison with human chromosomes 
BMC Genomics  2004;5:66.
The resolution of radiation hybrid (RH) maps is intermediate between that of the genetic and BAC (Bacterial Artificial Chromosome) contig maps. Moreover, once framework RH maps of a genome have been constructed, a quick location of markers by simple PCR on the RH panel is possible. The chicken ChickRH6 panel recently produced was used here to construct a high resolution RH map of chicken GGA5. To confirm the validity of the map and to provide valuable comparative mapping information, both markers from the genetic map and a high number of ESTs (Expressed Sequence Tags) were used. Finally, this RH map was used for testing the accuracy of the chicken genome assembly for chromosome 5.
A total of 169 markers (21 microsatellites and 148 ESTs) were typed on the ChickRH6 RH panel, of which 134 were assigned to GGA5. The final map is composed of 73 framework markers extending over a 1315.6 cR distance. The remaining 61 markers were placed alongside the framework markers within confidence intervals.
The high resolution framework map obtained in this study has markers covering the entire chicken chromosome 5 and reveals the existence of a high number of rearrangements when compared to the human genome. Only two discrepancies were observed in relation to the sequence assembly recently reported for this chromosome.
PMCID: PMC521070  PMID: 15369602

Results 1-11 (11)