Characterization of the PRNP gene locus in Chios dairy sheep and its association with milk production and reproduction traits

A. Psifidi*, Z. Basdagianni, C. I. Dovas, G. Arsenos, E. Sinapis, M. Papanastassopoulou, G. Banos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The objective of this study was to examine the prion protein gene locus (PRNP) in Chios sheep. PRNP is linked with scrapie resistance in small ruminants. Here, its impact on milk production (test-day and total lactation yield) and reproduction (age at first lambing, conception rate at first service, and prolificacy) was assessed. Genotyping at codons 136, 154 and 171 (classical scrapie) and 141 (atypical scrapie) was performed using DNA from milk somatic cells and PCR-RFLP analysis. A total of 1013 Chios ewes raised in 23 flocks were used. This constituted a random sample of the national breeding population. A total of 15 genotypes and 6 alleles linked to codons 136, 154 and 171 were detected. All animals were homozygous for the leucine allele at codon 141. Linear mixed models were used to assess the impact of PRNP genotypes and alleles on milk production and reproduction traits. The TRQ allele, whose association with such traits was assessed for the first time, had an adverse effect on age at first lambing. All other PRNP alleles, including ARR, which is associated with increased resistance to classical scrapie, had no significant effect on the traits studied. No significant associations of the PRNP genotypes with production and reproduction traits were observed. It was concluded that selection for scrapie-resistant sheep is not expected to affect the ongoing breeding programme that aims to enhance the milk yield and reproduction of the Chios breed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)406-414
Number of pages9
JournalAnimal Genetics
Volume42
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011

Keywords

  • dairy sheep
  • BREEDS
  • PRION PROTEIN GENOTYPE
  • prion protein
  • PRP GENOTYPES
  • reproduction
  • milk production
  • WEIGHT
  • GOATS
  • SCRAPIE-AFFECTED SHEEP
  • GREECE
  • RESISTANCE
  • NATURAL SCRAPIE
  • POLYMORPHISMS
  • scrapie

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