Mitochondrial DNA diversity of the Sardinian local cattle stock

Elena Petretto, Maria Luisa Dettori*, Michele Pazzola, Fabio Manca, Marcel Amills, Giuseppe Massimo Vacca

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this research was to characterize the genetic diversity of the Sarda (Sa, n = 131), Sardo Bruna (SB, n = 44) and Sardo Modicana (SM, n = 26) cattle breeds, reared in the island of Sardinia (Italy). A portion of the mitochondrial DNA hypervariable region was sequenced, in order to identify a potential signature of African introgression. The FST coefficients among populations ranged between 0.056 for Sa vs SB and 0.167 for SB vs SM. AMOVA analysis indicated there was a significant differentiation of the three breeds, although most of diversity was gathered at the within-breed level. The Median Joining Network of the Sardinian sequences showed a potential founder effect signature. A MJ network including Sardinian cattle plus African, Italian, Iberian and Asian sequences, revealed the presence of haplogroup T3, already detected in Sa cattle, and the presence of Hg T1 and Hg T1′2′3, in Sa and SB. The presence of a private haplotype belonging to haplogroup T1, which is characteristic of African taurine breeds, may be due to the introgression of Sardinian breeds with African cattle, either directly (most probable source: North African cattle) or indirectly (through a Mediterranean intermediary already introgressed with African blood).

Original languageEnglish
Article number2486
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


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