U.S. Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, Nebraska


Date of this Version


Document Type



Published in Animal Genetics (1996) 27: 157-162.


Seventy-seven polymorphic microsatellites were analysed in offspring of three elite sires that were part of the foundation of an experimental population selected for twinning rate at the US Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, Nebraska. All females were assessed for ovulation rate by rectal palpation of corpora htea over 8-10 consecutive oestrous cycles from approximately 12 to 18 months of age, and associations between ovulation rate and sire allele were examined in each of the three sire groups. A preliminary analysis was performed using selectively genotyped daughters of each sire. Markers found significant or approaching significance were also genotyped in all daughters, sons and granddaughters of these sires. A . test of marker associations limited to the granddaughter data provided an independent confirmation of marker effect and significance relative to the initial test with daughter data. Putative ovulation rate quantitative trait loci were detected on chromosomes 7 and 23. Marker UWCA20 on chromosome 7 was associated with an effect in excess of one phenotypic standard deviation and accounted for approximately 10% of phenotypic variation ovulation rate. Marker CYP21 (steroid 21-hydroxylase) on chromosome 23 was associated with an effect of slightly less than half a phenotypic standard deviation and accounted for approximately 4% of phenotypic variation.