CategoryAnimal Science - Animal Science
Date Full Report Received05/17/2008
Date Abstract Report Received06/24/2009
Funded ByNational Pork Board
Sow longevity is a key contributor to the pork producer’s profitability. Proper gilt development and selection are important means to improve sow productive life (SPL). Breeding for more structurally sound females is an imperative prerequisite to achieve greater SPL. Lameness issues also influence the reproductive life of sows. In fact, it has been reported that up to 44% of sows have locomotive problems in the breeding stocks. In general, soundness traits are low to moderately heritable and could be improved by marker assisted selection (MAS).
Hence, in the present work, 2066 commercial females were scored for 17 traits describing body conformation and foot and leg structure (FL). Candidate genes (n = 214) that may affect leg and body conformation traits were selected for investigation and SNP discovery. These genes were found in chromosomal regions affecting leg development of a number of different species and these genes are involved in skeletal pattern development, bone matrix biosynthesis, osteoclast and osteoblast differentiation, mineral metabolism, and bone related signaling pathways.