Skip to main content Accessibility help

Strong heterozygote deficit in Tibetan Mastiff of China based on microsatellite loci

  • D. R. Ren (a1), Q. Y. Yang (a2), J. H. Ye (a1), L. Xu (a1), H. A. Zhao (a3) and X. P. Wu (a4)...


Tibetan Mastiff is one of the most archaic, ferocious and the largest dogs in the world. A total of 140 individuals from four geographically separated populations in China (Tibet, Gansu, Qinghai and Beijing) were sampled and genetic diversity was assessed using 10 microsatellite loci on eight different chromosomes. The mean number of alleles per locus ranged from 6 to 13. The mean observed and expected heterozygosities, polymorphism information content and allelic richness were 0.69, 0.79, 0.76 and 7.59, respectively, indicating relatively high genetic diversity in Tibetan Mastiff. However, a highly significant deficiency in heterozygote was observed within populations (mean FIS = 0.11, bootstrap 95% confidence interval (0.06, 0.17)) and total inbreeding (mean FIT = 0.12, bootstrap 95% confidence interval (0.06, 0.18)), along with strong inbreeding coefficients within populations (Fis > 0.09), all of which suggested that intense inbreeding practices occurred in Tibetan Mastiff. Therefore, effective and appropriate breeding management projects in present Tibetan Mastiff will be desirable and urgent. Low genetic differentiation was obtained with a mean FST of 0.01 (bootstrap 95% confidence interval (0.007, 0.019)). Additionally, the four Tibetan Mastiff populations showed close relationships in the neighbor-joining polygenetic tree based on the coancestral genetic distances. Tibetan Mastiff was investigated by using microsatellite loci at the first time, which could facilitate the better understanding of present situation at the molecular level, breed conservation and utilization in Tibetan Mastiff.


Corresponding author


Hide All

Both authors contributed equally to this work and should be therefore considered as first coauthors.



Hide All
Botstein, D, White, RL, Skolnick, M, Davis, RW 1980. Construction of a genetic linkage map in man using restriction fragment length polymorphisms. The American Journal Human Genetics 32, 314331.
DeNise, S, Johnston, E, Halverson, J, Marshall, K, Rosenfeld, D, McKenna, S, Sharp, T, Edwards, J 2004. Power of exclusion for parentage verification and probability of match for identity in American Kennel Club breeds using 17 canine microsatellite markers. Animal Genetics 35, 1417.
Li, QF, Liu, ZS, Li, YX, Zhao, XB, Dong, LY, Pan, ZX, Sun, YR, Li, N, Xu, YX, Xie, Z 2008. Origin and phylogenetic analysis of Tibetan Mastiff based on the mitochondrial DNA sequence. Journal of Genetics and Genomics 35, 335340.
Marshall, TC, Slate, J, Kruuk, L, Pemberton, JM 1998. Statistical confidence for likelihood-based paternity inference in natural populations. Molecular Ecology 7, 639655.
Ni, Z 2004. Tibetan Mastiff. China Youth Press, Beijing (in Chinese).
Rousset, F 2008. Genepop’007: a complete reimplementation of the Genepop software for Windows and Linux. Molecular Ecology Notes 8, 103106.
Wang, YQ, Shi, LY, Yu, DY, Feng, BM, Song, L 2003. Textual research on Tibetan Mastiff. Journal of Dalian University 24, 108112.
Weir, BS 1996. Genetic data analysis II. Sinauer Associates, Inc. Publishers, Sunderland, MA, USA.
Weir, BS, Cockerham, CC 1984. Estimating F-statistics for the analysis of population structure. Evolution 38, 13581370.



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed