The aim of this study was to estimate the variance components and the crossbreeding effects on prolificacy in a full diallelic cross between three Iberian pig lines with the aim of developing appropriate breeding strategies. We used phenotypes (total number of piglets born – TNB- and number born alive –NBA-) from 2.771 sows (10,936 parities) representing a 3 × 3 full diallelic experiment involving Retinto (RR), Torbiscal (TT) and Entrepelado (EE) populations. Data were analyzed with a Bayesian repeatability multi-breed animal model that include the crossbreeding parameters of the Dickerson model (direct and maternal line effects and heterosis between line pairs) and used a pedigree of 3158 individuals. The expected performance of each combination was calculated as the sum of direct, maternal and the heterosis effects. The results indicated that heritability was heterogeneous between populations, ranging from 0.04 to 0.14 for TNB and 0.02 to 0.12 for NBA. In addition, the crossbreeding parameters showed relevant differences between lines. The direct effects for the RR line for TNB and NBA were higher than for the E and T lines, whereas maternal effects were very heterogeneous, ranging between -0.32 for TNB and -0.28 for NBA (RR population) to + 0.31 for TNB and + 0.25 for NBA (EE population). The results for heterosis were clearly positive and they range between 0.26 (E × R) to 0.80 (E × T) piglets for TNB and between 0.24 (E × R) to 0.76 (E × T). Given the crossbreeding parameters, the R (paternal line) x E (maternal line) was the best cross for both TNB and NBA with a posterior probability 0.74 for TNB and 0.73 for NBA. Keywords: prolificacy, diallelic cross, genetic parameters, crossbreeding, Iberian pig
Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume Species - Porcine 1, , 238, 2018
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