Our objective was to assess genetic diversity among breeds of beef cattle in the U.S. Breeds sampled are ancestrally rooted in the British Isles, Iberian Peninsula, and West-Central Europe. DNA was extracted from semen and blood samples from animals of several breeds originating from west-central Europe (Charolais, Limousin, Salers, Simmental, and Tarentaise), the British Isles (Angus, Hereford, Highland, Red Angus, Shorthorn), and the Iberian Peninsula (Pineywoods, Florida Cracker, Texas Longhorn, and Criollo cattle recently imported from Mexico). Each sample was characterized genetically using a panel of 34 microsatellite loci and genetic distances between breeds were calculated. All breeds were highly polymorphic. Across all loci, observed heterozygosity was consistent with theoretical expectation. Intra-group genetic distances between breeds originating from West-Central Europe, the Iberian Peninsula, and the British Isles were 0.19, 0.22, and 0.31, respectively. Genetic distance between the groups from West-Central Europe and the Iberian Peninsula was 0.25; whereas, genetic distances between each of these two groups and the group from the British Isles were both 0.32.

M. D MacNeil, M. A Cronin, Harvey D Blackburn, L. J Alexander

Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume , , 32.02, 2006
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