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Reproductive efficiency and associated traits are of major economic importance to the swine industry and have been more difficult to improve genetically than other production traits. Integration of phenotypical data with gene mapping and expression studies provides a powerful approach for dissection of the genetic basis regulating complex traits. We developed a total of 101 polymerase chain reaction-based markers, representing 91 unique genes, for expressed sequence tags previously reported to be putatively differentially expressed in the porcine ovarian transcriptome of a swine line selected on an index of high ovulation rate and embryonic survival. These were subsequently used in physical mapping experiments with a porcine radiation hybrid and somatic cell hybrid panels. Our results increased the information content of the porcine physical map useful for comparative mapping by c. 10%. Moreover, the mapped genes are likely to be biologically relevant to the molecular mechanisms that control ovulation rate in the pig. A total of 12 differentially expressed genes were mapped to regions previously reported to contain quantitative trait loci affecting swine ovulation rate.