Optimisation of the core subset for the APY approximation of genomic relationships

Ivan Pocrnic, Finn Lindgren, Daniel Tolhurst, WO Herring, Gregor Gorjanc

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

BACKGROUND: By entering the era of mega-scale genomics, we are facing many computational issues with standard genomic evaluation models due to their dense data structure and cubic computational complexity. Several scalable approaches have been proposed to address this challenge, such as the Algorithm for Proven and Young (APY). In APY, genotyped animals are partitioned into core and non-core subsets, which induces a sparser inverse of the genomic relationship matrix. This partitioning is often done at random. While APY is a good approximation of the full model, random partitioning can make results unstable, possibly affecting accuracy or even reranking animals. Here we present a stable optimisation of the core subset by choosing animals with the most informative genotype data.

METHODS: We derived a novel algorithm for optimising the core subset based on a conditional genomic relationship matrix or a conditional single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) genotype matrix. We compared the accuracy of genomic predictions with different core subsets for simulated and real pig data sets. The core subsets were constructed (1) at random, (2) based on the diagonal of the genomic relationship matrix, (3) at random with weights from (2), or (4) based on the novel conditional algorithm. To understand the different core subset constructions, we visualise the population structure of the genotyped animals with linear Principal Component Analysis and non-linear Uniform Manifold Approximation and Projection.

RESULTS: All core subset constructions performed equally well when the number of core animals captured most of the variation in the genomic relationships, both in simulated and real data sets. When the number of core animals was not sufficiently large, there was substantial variability in the results with the random construction but no variability with the conditional construction. Visualisation of the population structure and chosen core animals showed that the conditional construction spreads core animals across the whole domain of genotyped animals in a repeatable manner.

CONCLUSIONS: Our results confirm that the size of the core subset in APY is critical. Furthermore, the results show that the core subset can be optimised with the conditional algorithm that achieves an optimal and repeatable spread of core animals across the domain of genotyped animals.

Original languageEnglish
Article number76 (2022)
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalGenetics Selection Evolution
Issue number76
Early online date22 Nov 2022
Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Algorithms
  • Animals
  • Genome
  • Genomics/methods
  • Genotype
  • Models, Genetic
  • Swine


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