Background: Haemoglobin (Hb) and pantophysin (Pan I) markers have been used intensively in population studies of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) and in the analysis of traits such as temperature tolerance, growth characteristics and sexual maturation. We used an Illumina GoldenGate panel and the KASPar SNP genotyping system to analyse SNPs in three Atlantic cod families, one of which was polymorphic at the Hb β1 locus, and to generate a genetic linkage map integrating Pan I and multiple Hb loci.
Findings: Data generated allowed the mapping of nine Hb loci, the Pan I locus, and other 122 SNPs onto an existing linkage genetic map for Atlantic cod. Four Hb genes (i.e. α1, α4, β1 and β5) have been mapped on linkage group (LG) 2 while the other five (i.e. α2, α3, β2, β3 and β4) were placed on LG18. Pan I was mapped on LG 1 using a newly developed KASPar assay for a SNP variable only in Pan IA allelic variants. The new linkage genetic map presented here comprises 1046 SNPs distributed between 23 linkage groups, with a length of 1145.6 cM. A map produced by forcing additional loci, resulting in a reduced goodness-of-fit for mapped markers, allowed the mapping of a total of 1300 SNPs. Finally, we compared our genetic linkage map data with the genetic linkage map data produced by a different group and identified 29 shared SNPs distributed on 10 different linkage groups.
Conclusions: The genetic linkage map presented here incorporates the marker Pan I, together with multiple Hb loci, and integrates genetic linkage data produced by two different research groups. This represents a useful resource to further explore if Pan I and Hbs or other genes underlie quantitative trait loci (QTL) for temperature sensitivity/tolerance or other phenotypes.