Molecular Genetics

Great advances have been made in recent years with respect to incorporation of information from molecular genetics. Genes for a number of equine diseases have been discovered, and tests are now available to breeders to determine an animal's genotype for such conditions as hyperkalemic periodic paralysis, severe combined immunodeficiency syndrome, and lethal white overo syndrome. Further, many coat color genes have now been mapped to the equine genome. Discovery of major genes for performance traits in horses has been slow, however, so advancements in these traits are currently accomplished by employing quantitative breeding principles.

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