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Journal of Applied Genetics 48(4), 2007, pp. 375-377

Effectiveness of a program aimed at the elimination of BLAD-carrier bulls from Polish Holstein-Friesian cattle

Urszula Czarnik, Grzegorz Grzybowski, Stanislaw Kaminski, Beata Prusak, Tadeusz Zabolewicz


Abstract: The molecular basis of BLAD is the D128G mutation of the gene coding for the CD18 subunit of beta-2 integrin. This mutation is lethal, since homozygous (BL/BL) animals die before they reach sexual maturity. In the 1990s, BLAD was the most widespread genetic disease in HF cattle worldwide. The aim of the present study was to determine the frequency of BLAD carriers among 4645 young breeding bulls in Poland in 1995-2006. The frequency of carriers of the mutated allele showed a clear decreasing trend. The highest frequency (7.9%) was recorded while implementing the BLAD control program (1995-1997). Regular monitoring has enabled a great reduction of this threat to the tested population. Today only sporadic cases of BL/TL heterozygotes are reported (ca. 0.8% in 2004-2006).

Key words: BLAD, Holstein-Friesian cattle, Polish cattle.

Correspondence: U. Czarnik, Department of Animal Genetics, University of Warmia and Mazury, Oczapowskiego 5, 10-957 Olsztyn, Poland; e-mail:czar@uwm.edu.pl

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