A Consensus Linkage Map of the Chicken Genome

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Groenen, Martien
Cheng, Hans
Bumstead, Nat
Benkel, Bernard
Briles, W. Elwood
Burke, Terry
Burt, Dave
Crittenden, Lyman
Hillel, Jossi
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Lamont, Susan
Distinguished Professor
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Animal Science

The Department of Animal Science originally concerned itself with teaching the selection, breeding, feeding and care of livestock. Today it continues this study of the symbiotic relationship between animals and humans, with practical focuses on agribusiness, science, and animal management.

The Department of Animal Husbandry was established in 1898. The name of the department was changed to the Department of Animal Science in 1962. The Department of Poultry Science was merged into the department in 1971.

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A consensus linkage map has been developed in the chicken that combines all of the genotyping data from the three available chicken mapping populations. Genotyping data were contributed by the laboratories that have been using the East Lansing and Compton reference populations and from the Animal Breeding and Genetics Group of the Wageningen University using the Wageningen/Euribrid population. The resulting linkage map of the chicken genome contains 1889 loci. A framework map is presented that contains 480 loci ordered on 50 linkage groups. Framework loci are defined as loci whose order relative to one another is supported by odds greater then 3. The possible positions of the remaining 1409 loci are indicated relative to these framework loci. The total map spans 3800 cM, which is considerably larger than previous estimates for the chicken genome. Furthermore, although the physical size of the chicken genome is threefold smaller then that of mammals, its genetic map is comparable in size to that of most mammals. The map contains 350 markers within expressed sequences, 235 of which represent identified genes or sequences that have significant sequence identity to known genes. This improves the contribution of the chicken linkage map to comparative gene mapping considerably and clearly shows the conservation of large syntenic regions between the human and chicken genomes. The compact physical size of the chicken genome, combined with the large size of its genetic map and the observed degree of conserved synteny, makes the chicken a valuable model organism in the genomics as well as the postgenomics era. The linkage maps, the two-point lod scores, and additional information about the loci are available at web sites in Wageningen (http://www.zod.wau.nl/vf/research/chicken/frame_chicken.html) and East Lansing (http://poultry.mph.msu.edu/).


This article is from Genome Research 10 (2000): 137.