Background: Because very large numbers of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are now available throughout the genome, they are particularly suitable for the detection of genomic regions where a reduction in heterozygosity has occurred and they offer new opportunities to improve the accuracy of inbreeding (F F) estimates. Runs of homozygosity (ROH) are contiguous lengths of homozygous segments of the genome where the two haplotypes inherited from the parents are identical. Here, we investigated the occurrence and distribution of ROH using a medium-dense SNP panel to characterize autozygosity in 516 Valle del Belice sheep and to identify the genomic regions with high ROH frequencies. Results: We identified 11,629 ROH and all individuals displayed at least one ROH longer than 1 Mb. The mean value of F F estimated from ROH longer than1 Mb was 0.084 Â± 0.061. ROH that were shorter than 10 Mb predominated. The highest and lowest coverages of Ovis aries chromosomes (OAR) by ROH were on OAR24 and OAR1, respectively. The number of ROH per chromosome length displayed a specific pattern, with higher values for the first three chromosomes. Both number of ROH and length of the genome covered by ROH varied considerably between animals. Two hundred and thirty-nine SNPs were considered as candidate markers that may be under directional selection and we identified 107 potential candidate genes. Six genomic regions located on six chromosomes, corresponding to ROH islands, are presented as hotspots of autozygosity, which frequently coincided with regions of medium recombination rate. According to the KEGG database, most of these genes were involved in multiple signaling and signal transduction pathways in a wide variety of cellular and biochemical processes. A genome scan revealed the presence of ROH islands in genomic regions that harbor candidate genes for selection in response to environmental stress and which underlie local adaptation. Conclusions: These results suggest that natural selection has, at least partially, a role in shaping the genome of Valle del Belice sheep and that ROH in the ovine genome may help to detect genomic regions involved in the determinism of traits under selection.
|Numero di pagine||10|
|Rivista||Genetics Selection Evolution|
|Stato di pubblicazione||Published - 2017|
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