Genetic diversity of indigenous goats in Namibia using microsatellite markers: preliminary results

Author: J.F. Els, A. Kotze and H. Swart
Year: 2004
Issue: 6
Volume: 34
Page: 65 - 67

Four different goat ecotypes are recognized in Namibia. These ecotypes represent a unique genetic resource due to their adaptation to the different environmental conditions. Sufficient phenotypic characteristics exist that distinguish between the ecotypes. This study is a first attempt to genetically characterize the different ecotypes for the efficient conservation and management of this resource. In this study we report on preliminary results on the genetic diversity and relationships of the four goat ecotypes of Namibia using 18 microsatellite loci. Within-breed genetic diversity was estimated by the average number of alleles per locus (ranged from 4.67 to 6.00) and the average observed heterozygosity, ranged from 60 (Kunene) to 71% (Kavango). Genetic differences between the ecotypes were estimated by Nei’s (1978) standard genetic distance, which ranged between 0.12 (Kunene and Ovambo) to 0.44 (Caprivi and Kalahari Red). The four ecotypes cluster in two groups (Kalahari Red, Kavango and Ovambo, Kunene and Caprivi). The relationships among the ecotypes reflect partly the morphological classification.

Keywords: genetic differentiation, genetic variability, goats, microsatellites, Namibia
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