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The identification of a sex-specific DNA marker in the ostrich using a random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) assay

Authors

  • N. Bello,

    1. Unitat de Genètica i Millora, Departament de Patología i Producció Animals, Facultat de Veterinària, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, 08193 Bellaterra, Spain,,
    2. GEN-ES Genètica de l’Estruç, Carrer Rutlla num. 35, 17600 Figueres, Spain
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  • A. Sánchez

    1. Unitat de Genètica i Millora, Departament de Patología i Producció Animals, Facultat de Veterinària, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, 08193 Bellaterra, Spain,,
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  • This work has been the result of a collaboration between the Universitat Autónoma de Barcelona and the company GEN-ES S.L. and is devoted to the development of molecular markers and DNA-based diagnosis tests useful for the genetical improvement of the ostrich. Natalia Bello is currently working on her PhD thesis concerning the molecular genetics of the ostrich. Armand Sánchez is Professor of Animal Genetics and has been in charge of the Molecular Genetics Laboratory in the Veterinary Faculty since it's foundation in 1987. His principal field of activity is the characterization of relevant genes and molecular markers in domestic animals.

Armand Sánchez Bonastre Fax: +34–935812006; E-mail: ivge1@cc.uab.es

Abstract

PCR-based techniques described to date for sex diagnosis in birds are not useful in ratites. We report here the identification of a W-linked marker in the ostrich (Struthio camelus) which allows gender diagnosis in chicks or juvenile birds. DNA from 10 females and 11 males was used to prepare two pools for each sex. Two-hundred different 10-mer primers of arbitrary sequence were used to screen those pools using a random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) assay. One primer (D 10) generated a female-specific band. Sex specificity was confirmed by testing the 21 animals individually. The candidate DNA fragment was cloned and sequenced. Longer primers were designed to optimize a sex-specific PCR which will be useful in diagnosis.

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