Genetic diversity of Booroola gene in Northeast Bulgarian Merino sheep breed

  • Milena Bozhilova-Sakova Institute of Animal Science, Kostinbrod
  • Ivona Dimitrova University of Forestry, Faculty of Agronomy, Sofia
  • Maya Ignatova Institute of Animal Science, Kostinbrod
Keywords: sheep, Northeast Bulgarian Merino breed, BMPR-1B/FecB gene, PCR-RFLP analysis


The BMPR-1B/FecB or Booroola gene is the first major fecundity gene identified in sheep. The present investigation was carried out to study polymorphism by PCR-RFLP of FecB gene in 30 ewes belonging to Northeast Bulgarian Merino sheep breed. Genomic DNA was extracted from whole blood. PCR amplification of FecB gene revealed fragments with length 190 bp using specific primer set. After PCR-RFLP analysis it was found the wild allele “+” and the mutant allele “B” with frequencies 0.97 and 0.03, respectively. This is the first study in Bulgarian sheep breeds, where was found the presence of Booroola mutation. According to the results the genotype frequencies were as followed: wild homozygous genotype “++” 0.93 and heterozygous genotype “B+” 0.07, respectively. The observed (Ho) and expected heterozygosity (He) were 0.066 and 0.058, respectively. It can be concluded that the studied herd was in Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. PCR-RFLP technique can be used to detect and genotype FecB gene clearly.

Animal Sciences