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Investigating the role of genetic factors in predisposing cattle to BNP

K. Krappmann, R. Weikard, S. Gerst, C. Wolf, Ch. Kühn

AS genetic defects resulting in coagulation disorders have been described in cattle, this study examined the hypothesis that genetic factors might be involved in bovine neonatal pancytopenia (BNP). In particular, the F11 gene was sequenced to determine whether coagulation factor XI deficiency might be responsible for the disease.

To identify factors contributing to BNP, a comprehensive investigation of putative genetic and non-genetic factors was performed within a well-characterised experimental herd. Between May 2007 and November 2009, 37 purebred German Holstein calves and 366 Charolais cross German Holstein calves were born. Of these, nine calves developed clinical signs consistent with BNP. A full four-generation pedigree analysis, available for all calves, was used to assess whether there was any concordance between affected and unaffected animals. Exon 12 of the F11 gene was sequenced in three calves with BNP, six unaffected relatives and seven unaffected, unrelated animals. Genomic DNA for PCR amplification was extracted from either blood or tissue samples.

All affected calves were shown to be descendants of a single F1 sire in a specific F …

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