Epistasis and the release of genetic variation during long-term selection

Nat Genet. 2006 Apr;38(4):418-20. doi: 10.1038/ng1761. Epub 2006 Mar 12.


It is an enigma how long-term selection in model organisms and agricultural species can lead to marked phenotypic changes without exhausting genetic variation for the selected trait. Here, we show that the genetic architecture of an apparently major locus for growth in chicken dissects into a genetic network of four interacting loci. The interactions in this radial network mediate a considerably larger selection response than predicted by a single-locus model.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Weight / genetics
  • Chickens / genetics
  • Epistasis, Genetic*
  • Genetic Variation*
  • Quantitative Trait Loci
  • Selection, Genetic*