Quantitative trait loci associated with the humoral innate immune response in chickens were confirmed in a cross between Green-Legged Partridgelike and White Leghorn
Natural antibodies (NA) create a crucial barrier at the initial steps of the innate humoral im- mune response. The main role of NA in the defense sys- tem is to bind the pathogens at early stages of infection. Different pathogens are recognized by the presence of highly conserved antigen determinant [e.g., lipopolysac- charide (LPS) in gram-negative bacteria or lipoteichoic acid (LTA) in gram-positive bacteria]. In chickens, a different genetic background of NA binds LPS and LTA antigens, encoded by different QTL. The main objective of this work was to confirm known QTL associated with LPS and LTA NA. For this purpose a chicken reference population was created by crossing 2 breeds: a com- mercial layer, White Leghorn, and a Polish indigenous chicken, Green-Legged Partridgelike. The chromosomal regions analyzed harbored to GGA3, GGA5, GGA6, GGA8, GGA9, GGA10, GGA14, GGA15, GGA18, and GGAZ. The data collected consisted of the NA titers binding LPS and LTA (determined by ELISA at 12 wk of age) as well as the genotypes (30 short tandem repeat markers; average of 3 markers/chromosome, col- lected for generations F0, F1, and F2). The analyses were performed with 3 statistical models (paternal and maternal half-sib, line cross, and linkage analysis and linkage disequilibrium) implemented in GridQTL soft- ware (http://www.gridqtl.org.uk/). The QTL study of humoral innate immune response traits resulted in the confirmation of 3 QTL associated with NA titers bind- ing LPS (located on GGA9, GGA18, and GGAZ) and 2 QTL associated with NA titers binding LTA (located on GGA5 and GGA14). A set of candidate genes within the regions of the validated QTL has been proposed.