European abalone Haliotis tuberculata is of economical importance in
Europe, and recently in France where most of the consumed abalones remained wild animals fished on the
coast. Recently, the creation of hatcheries allowed the production of cultured
animals, and aquaculture is in progress. To optimize selective breeding
programs, different studies were performed on adults and on their progenies.
First, ten adult families, assumed to be bi-parental and produced in 2007 were
analyzed. As these families were developed at the beginning of the hatchery
production, the parentage of the individual necessitated to be tested. The
progenies parentage assignment was done by using eight microsatellite DNA
loci. In fine, the heritability was estimated from the analysis of variance
of seven full-sib families which include from 23 to 27 progenies. Heritability
estimate was the higher for length, width and weight (0.37, 0.29 and 0.40
respectively). A high correlation was also shown between these heritable traits
which can be useful during animal breeding. Shell color traits were also
analyzed, using image treatment procedure. Two traits were selected according
to the global color of the shell: red color and hue. The distribution of these
traits evidenced a polygenic genetic control of shell color and measure of
heritability evidenced a high to medium value for red color (Cr) and Hue(H) (0.33 and 0.20
respectively). No correlation was shown between growth and this parameter. In
a second time, juveniles families produced in 2010 were studied from parents
issued of the first selection. A correlation between size and density at
juvenile stage was established but a statistical analysis demonstrated, by using density as co-variable a significant effect of family on size. In these conditions, growth is highly
heritable (0.74). This study is a first step toward the use of genetic
markers for selection, but also a step toward the breeding improvement of
Cite this paper
Roussel, V. , Charreyron, J. , Labarre, S. , Wormhoudt, A. and Huchette, S. (2013) First steps on technological and genetic improvement of European abalone (Haliotis tuberculata) based on investigations in full-sib families. Open Journal of Genetics, 3, 224-233. doi: 10.4236/ojgen.2013.33025.
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