Impact factor'2009=1.324


Journal of Applied Genetics 50(4), 2009, pp. 375-377

Horse breed discrimination using machine learning methods

M. Burocziova, J. Riha

Abstract: Genetic relationships and population structure of 8 horse breeds in the Czech and Slovak Republics were investigated using classification methods for breed discrimination. To demonstrate genetic differences among these breeds, we used genetic information - genotype data of microsatellite markers and classification algorithms - to perform a probabilistic prediction of an individual's breed. In total, 932 unrelated animals were genotyped for 17 microsatellite markers recommended by the ISAG for parentage testing (AHT4, AHT5, ASB2, HMS3, HMS6, HMS7, HTG4, HTG10, VHL20, HTG6, HMS2, HTG7, ASB17, ASB23, CA425, HMS1, LEX3). Algorithms of classification methods - J48 (decision trees); Naive Bayes, Bayes Net (probability predictors); IB1, IB5 (instance-based machine learning methods); and JRip (decision rules) - were used for analysis of their classification performance and of results of classification on this genotype dataset. Selected classification methods (Naive Bayes, Bayes Net, IB1), based on machine learning and principles of artificial intelligence, appear usable for these tasks.

Key words: breed discrimination, genetic diversity, horse breeds, machine learning algorithms, microsatellite

Correspondence: M. Burocziova, Institute of Animal Physiology and Genetics, AS CR, v.v.i, Rumburska 89, 277 21 Libechov, Czech Republic; e-mail:

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