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Journal of Applied Genetics 49(1), 2008, pp. 69-74

Associations between 2 paternal casein haplotypes and milk yield traits of Swiss Fleckvieh cattle

Martin H. Braunschweig


Abstract: Associations between casein haplotypes and milk yield traits of offspring from 5 Swiss Fleckvieh AI test bulls were investigated. The analysis was performed by using a daughter design, where each daughter inherited either paternal haplotype B-A1-A-A or B-A2-A-A for alleles of as1-, β-, αs2- and κ-casein genes. The substitution effects of paternal CSN2 A1 versus A2 on protein yield deviations (YDs) were significant (P < 0.05), whereas their effects on milk and fat YDs were not. The paternal substitution effects of the CSN2 A1 versus the A2 allele on protein YDs within the 5 sires did not reach the significance level. This is due to the contrary allele substitution effect of a sire compared to the other 4 sires. The effects of maternal haplotypes on milk, protein and fat YDs were not significant. However, it is noteworthy that the effects of haplotypes with a low frequency in the population deviate largely from the most frequent haplotype B-A2-A-A. The effects of β-lactoglobulin (BLG) genotypes were significant for protein YDs but not for milk and fat YDs. The association between the paternal CSN2 A1 and A2 alleles and milk protein YDs within sires but not milk and fat YDs indicate an interaction, which might be a consequence of CSN2 heterogeneity or a closely linked gene that is contributing to the estimated effects.

Key words: casein haplotype, daughter design, genetic variant, milk yield trait, Swiss Fleckvieh cattle.

Correspondence: M. Braunschweig, Institute of Genetics, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Berne, CH-3001 Berne, Switzerland; e-mail: martin.braunschweig@itz.unibe.ch

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