Application of molecular markers and genomics for diversity, growth and meat quality in Malaysian cattle
The overall aims of this present work were to investigate the genetic variation underlying economically important traits in the Malaysian cattle breed Brakmas, and to link identified genetic polymorphisms in growth and meat quality genes using a series of DNA-based markers. Brakmas display a high microsatellite polymorphism but within the range of other studies of less intensively bred cattle. Brakmas do not display evidence for a genetic bottleneck, a decrease in genetic diversity, or loss of alleles, and this indicates that the Brakmas herd is rich reservoir of genetic diversity. This is a strong justification for preservation of the breed apart from others, because of the productivity as well capability of adaptation in the local tropical climates. Sequence polymorphisms were identified in different growth-related genes in the Brakmas population. The polymorphisms identified offer potential markers for growth rate and meat quality. Given the large numbers of polymorphisms between subspecies, verification on effect of associated production traits with the molecular markers has to be established in Brakmas as the effect might be different between breeds. Knowledge of amount and consequences of polymorphisms in livestock is important for the manipulation of meat production in livestock. Understanding of the function of these genes will lead to the development of new genetic markers. It is hoped that knowledge and understanding of nature and polymorphism will provide the basis for future selection to enhance beef production performance as well as for conservation purposes.