Genetic diversity among Sawakni, Berberi and Najdi sheep breeds in Saudi Arabia using microsatellites markers

Journal Article
Mohammed, Ahmed Hossam Mahmoud, Ayman swelum, Mohammad Abul Farah, Khalid. Alanazi, Ahmed Rady, Mahmoud Salah, Nabil Amor and Osama . 2017
Publication Work Type: 
KSU Research Work
DNA, genetics, microsatellite, Saudi sheep
Magazine \ Newspaper: 
African Journal of Biotechnology
Issue Number: 
Volume Number: 
Publication Abstract: 

The present study was conducted to assess the genetic diversity and population genetic structure of
three sheep populations namely; Sawakni (SW), Berberi (BR) and Najdi (NJ), in Saudi Arabia, utilizing
45, 18 and 31 individual blood DNA extractions, respectively. Seventeen microsatellite markers were
used to genotype these 94 sheep individuals. There were 195 alleles generated employing the 17
microsatellites loci with a mean of 11.47 alleles per locus, with a range of observed and expected
heterozygosity from 0.651 to 0.989 and 0.590 to 0.816, respectively. The total number of alleles of 169,
127 and 111, and their means of effective number of alleles of 4.983, 4.192 and 3.781 were observed in
SW, BR and NJ populations, respectively. Thirteen of the microsatellites loci studied in SW, seven loci
in BR and five loci in NJ were found to be deviated from Hardy-Weinberg Equilibrium. The fixation
genetic indices (FST) among the three populations were very low, ranging from 0.029 (between SW and
BR) to 0.038 (between NJ and BR), indicating low population differentiation among the three sheep
populations. The present study showed that the microsatellite markers are powerful tools in breeding
programs, however more microsatellites may be needed for a broad judgment on the genetic status of
the sheep populations in Saudi Arabia.