Register for an account

X

Enter your name and email address below.

Your email address is used to log in and will not be shared or sold. Read our privacy policy.

X

Website access code

Enter your access code into the form field below.

If you are a Zinio, Nook, Kindle, Apple, or Google Play subscriber, you can enter your website access code to gain subscriber access. Your website access code is located in the upper right corner of the Table of Contents page of your digital edition.

Health

What domestication changes

Gene ExpressionBy Razib KhanApril 13, 2009 7:37 PM

Newsletter

Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

Over at Gene Expression Classicp-ter points to an interesting paper, Genetic Architecture of Tameness in a Rat Model of Animal Domestication:

A common feature of domestic animals is tameness - i.e. they tolerate and are unafraid of human presence and handling. To gain insight into the genetic basis of tameness and aggression, we studied an intercross between two lines of rats (Rattus norvegicus) selected over more than 60 generations for increased tameness and increased aggression against humans, respectively. We measured 45 traits, including tameness and aggression, anxiety-related traits, organ weights, and levels of serum components in more than 700 rats from an intercross population. Using 201 genetic markers, we identified two significant quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for tameness. These loci overlap with QTLs for adrenal gland weight and for anxiety-related traits, and are part of a five-locus epistatic network influencing tameness. An additional QTL influences the occurrence of white coat spots, but shows no significant effect on tameness. The loci described here are important starting points for finding the genes that cause tameness in these rats, and potentially in domestic animals in general.

Remember that domestication and agricultural research were critical in Charles Darwin's own conception of evolutionary process. Related:The G matrix, pleiotropy and quantitative traits.

    2 Free Articles Left

    Want it all? Get unlimited access when you subscribe.

    Subscribe

    Already a subscriber? Register or Log In

    Want unlimited access?

    Subscribe today and save 70%

    Subscribe

    Already a subscriber? Register or Log In