Inbreeding, Microsatellite Heterozygosity, and Morphological Traits in Lipizzan Horses

Curik, I.; Zechner, P.; Sölkner, J.; Achmann, R.; Bodo, I.; Dovc, P.; Kavar, T.; Marti, E.; Brem, G. (2003). Inbreeding, Microsatellite Heterozygosity, and Morphological Traits in Lipizzan Horses. Journal of heredity, 94(2), pp. 125-132. Oxford University Press 10.1093/jhered/esg029

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While the negative effects of inbreeding and reduced heterozygosity on fecundity and survival are well established, only a few investigations have been carried out concerning their influence on morphological traits. This topic is of particular interest for a small and closed population such as the Lipizzan horse. Thus, 27 morphological traits were measured in 360 Lipizzan mares and were regressed on the individual inbreeding coefficients, as well as on the individual heterozygosity and mean squared distances (mean d2) between microsatellite alleles within an individual. Both individual heterozygosity and mean d2 were based on 17 microsatellite loci dispersed over 14 chromosomes. The results obtained by multivariate analysis reveal significant effects of stud (P <.0001), age at measurement (P <.0001), and mean d2 (P =.0143). In univariate analyses, significant associations were obtained between length of pastern-hindlimbs and inbreeding coefficient (P <.01), length of cannons-hindlimb and mean d2 (P <.01), and length of neck and mean d2 (P <.001). After adjustment of single-test P values for multiple tests (Hochberg's step-up Bonferroni method), only the association of the length of neck and mean d2 remained significant (P =.0213). Thus, no overall large effects of inbreeding, microsatellite heterozygosity, and mean d2 on morphological traits were observed in the Lipizzan horse.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Clinical Research and Veterinary Public Health (DCR-VPH) > Experimental Clinical Research

UniBE Contributor:

Marti, Eliane Isabelle




Oxford University Press




Marceline Brodmann

Date Deposited:

03 Sep 2020 15:50

Last Modified:

03 Sep 2020 15:50

Publisher DOI:





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