Development and Validation of 58K SNP-Array and High-Density Linkage Map in Nile Tilapia (O. niloticus)

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Rajesh Joshi, Mariann Árnyasi, Sigbjørn Lien, Hans Magnus Gjøen, Alejandro Tola Alvarez, Matthew Kent

Front. Genet., 15 October 2018


Despite being the second most important aquaculture species in the world accounting for 7.4% of global production in 2015, tilapia aquaculture has lacked genomic tools like SNP-arrays and high-density linkage maps to improve selection accuracy and accelerate genetic progress. In this paper, we describe the development of a genotyping array containing more than 58,000 SNPs for Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus).

SNPs were identified from whole genome resequencing of 32 individuals from the commercial population of the Genomar strain, and were selected for the SNP-array based on polymorphic information content and physical distribution across the genome using the Orenil1.1 genome assembly as reference sequence. SNP-performance was evaluated by genotyping 4991 individuals, including 689 offspring belonging to 41 full-sib families, which revealed high-quality genotype data for 43,588 SNPs.

A preliminary genetic linkage map was constructed using Lepmap2 which in turn was integrated with information from the O_niloticus_UMD1 genome assembly to produce an integrated physical and genetic linkage map comprising 40,186 SNPs distributed across 22 linkage groups (LGs). Around one-third of the LGs showed a different recombination rate between sexes, with the female being greater than the male map by a factor of 1.2 (1632.9 to 1359.6 cM, respectively), with most LGs displaying a sigmoid recombination profile. Finally, the sex-determining locus was mapped to position 40.53 cM on LG23, in the vicinity of the anti-Müllerian hormone (amh) gene.

These new resources has the potential to greatly influence and improve the genetic gain when applying genomic selection and surpass the difficulties of efficient selection for invasively measured traits in Nile tilapia.

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