Partial-genome evaluation of postweaning feed intake and efficiency of crossbred beef cattle

W. M. Snelling, M. F. Allan, J. W. Keele, L. A. Kuehn, R. M. Thallman, G. L. Bennett, C. L. Ferrell, T. G. Jenkins, H. C. Freetly, M. K. Nielsen, K. M. Rolfe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


The effects of individual SNP and the variation explained by sets of SNP associated with DMI, metabolic midtest BW, BW gain, and feed efficiency, expressed as phenotypic and genetic residual feed intake, were estimated from BW and the individual feed intake of 1,159 steers on dry lot offered a 3.0 Mcal/kg ration for at least 119 d before slaughter. Parents of these F 1 × F 1 (F 1 2) steers were AI-sired F 1 progeny of Angus, Charolais, Gelbvieh, Hereford, Limousin, Red Angus, and Simmental bulls mated to US Meat Animal Research Center Angus, Hereford, and MARC III composite females. Steers were genotyped with the BovineSNP50 BeadChip assay (Illumina Inc., San Diego, CA). Effects of 44,163 SNP having minor allele frequencies >0.05 in the F 1 2 generation were estimated with a mixed model that included genotype, breed composition, heterosis, age of dam, and slaughter date contemporary groups as fixed effects, and a random additive genetic effect with recorded pedigree relationships among animals. Variance in this population attributable to sets of SNP was estimated with models that partitioned the additive genetic effect into a polygenic component attributable to pedigree relationships and a genotypic component attributable to genotypic relationships. The sets of SNP evaluated were the full set of 44,163 SNP and subsets containing 6 to 40,000 SNP selected according to association with phenotype. Ninety SNP were strongly associated (P < 0.0001) with at least 1 efficiency or component trait; these 90 accounted for 28 to 46% of the total additive genetic variance of each trait. Trait-specific sets containing 96 SNP having the strongest associations with each trait explained 50 to 87% of additive variance for that trait. Expected accuracy of steer breeding values predicted with pedigree and genotypic relationships exceeded the accuracy of their sires predicted without genotypic information, although gains in accuracy were not sufficient to encourage that performance testing be replaced by genotyping and genomic evaluations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1731-1741
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of animal science
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Cattle
  • Feed efficiency
  • Genetic parameter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics


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