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Research article2018Peer reviewedOpen access

Validated quantitative trait loci for eggshell quality in experimental and commercial laying hens

Tuiskula-Haavisto, M.; Honkatukia, M.; Dunn, I. C.; Bain, M. M.; De Koning, D. J.; Preisinger, R.; Schmutz, M.; Arango, J.; Fischer, D.; Vilkki, J.


Compromised eggshell quality causes considerable economic losses for the egg industry. Breeding for improved eggshell quality has been very challenging. Eggshell quality is a trait that would greatly benefit from marker-assisted selection, which would allow the selection of sires for their direct contribution to the trait and would also allow implementation of measurements integrating a number of shell parameters that are difficult to measure. In this study, we selected the most promising autosomal quantitative trait loci (QTL) affecting eggshell quality on chromosomes 2, 3, 6 and 14 from earlier experiments and we extended the F-2 population to include 1599 F-2 females. The study was repeated on two commercial populations: Lohmann Tierzucht Rhode Island Red line (n=692 females) and a Hy-Line White Plymouth Rock line (n=290 progeny tested males). We analyzed the selected autosomal QTL regions on the three populations with SNP markers at 4-13 SNPs/Mb density. QTL for eggshell quality were replicated on all studied regions in the F-2 population. New QTL were detected for eggshell color on chromosomes 3 and 6. Marker associations with eggshell quality traits were validated in the tested commercial lines on chromosomes 2, 3 and 6, thus paving the way for marker-assisted selection for improved eggshell quality.


association; breaking strength; chicken; selection; SNP marker

Published in

Animal Genetics
2018, Volume: 49, number: 4, pages: 329-333
Publisher: WILEY

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Animal and Dairy Science

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