Selection for litter size components: a critical review
Perez Enciso, Miguel
Bidanel, J. P.
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The measurement of component variables such as the number of ova shed (OR) and its inclusion in a linear index with litter size (LS) or prenatal survival has been suggested in order to accelerate genetic progress for LS. Despite optimistic theoretical predictions, however, in no selection experiment has the advantage of including OR in an index as compared to direct selection for LS been convincingly demonstrated. A literature survey shows no clear evidence of changes in genetic parameters with selection. By contrast, genetic drift may suffice to explain the less than expected usefulness of measuring OR, although it is not necessarily the sole cause. It is shown that an approximate figure of how much can be gained by measuring OR relative to direct selection for LS is given by (1+(J!Ls/(J!oR)1/2 with mass selection, where y is the phenotypic variance. Nonetheless, the size of the experiment needed to test this prediction is likely to be very large.
Is part ofGenetics Selection Evolution, 1997, vol. 29, núm. 5, p. 483-496
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