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Open AccessArticle

The LCORL Locus is under Selection in Large-Sized Pakistani Goat Breeds

1
Institute of Genetics, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Bern, 3001 Bern, Switzerland
2
Institute of Biotechnology, Gulab Devi Educational Complex, Lahore 54000, Pakistan
3
School of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, Bern University of Applied Sciences, 3052 Zollikofen, Switzerland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Genes 2020, 11(2), 168; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes11020168
Received: 2 December 2019 / Revised: 29 January 2020 / Accepted: 29 January 2020 / Published: 5 February 2020
Goat domestication and human selection for valued traits have formed diverse breeds with characteristic phenotypes. This process led to the fixation of causative genetic variants controlling breed-specific traits within regions of reduced genetic diversity—so-called “selection signatures”. We previously reported an analysis of selection signatures based on pooled whole-genome sequencing data of 20 goat breeds and bezoar goats. In the present study, we reanalyzed the data and focused on a subset of eight Pakistani goat breeds (Angora, Barbari, Beetal, Dera Din Panah, Kamori, Nachi, Pahari, Teddy). We identified 749 selection signatures based on reduced heterozygosity in these breeds. A search for signatures that are shared across large-sized goat breeds revealed that five medium-to-large-sized Pakistani goat breeds had a common selection signature on chromosome 6 in a region harboring the LCORL gene, which has been shown to modulate height or body size in several mammalian species. Fine-mapping of the region confirmed that all five goat breeds with the selection signature were nearly fixed for the same haplotype in a ~191 kb region spanning positions 37,747,447–37,938,449. From the pool sequencing data, we identified a frame-shifting single base insertion into an isoform-specific exon of LCORL as a potential candidate causal variant mediating the size-increasing effect. If this preliminary result can be confirmed in independent replication studies, genotyping of this variant might be used to improve breeding programs and the selection for stature in goats.
Keywords: Capra hircus; whole-genome sequence; body size; height; stature; QTL; selection signature; animal breeding; meat production Capra hircus; whole-genome sequence; body size; height; stature; QTL; selection signature; animal breeding; meat production
MDPI and ACS Style

Saif, R.; Henkel, J.; Jagannathan, V.; Drögemüller, C.; Flury, C.; Leeb, T. The LCORL Locus is under Selection in Large-Sized Pakistani Goat Breeds. Genes 2020, 11, 168.

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