Optimum genetic contribution applied to the selection of Santa Ines sheep
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The objective of this work was to evaluate strategies of simulated selection by optimum contribution for the genetic gain, with restriction on coancestry, for the weight trait of 84-day old Santa Ines sheep. The analyses were performed using a differential evolution algorithm, which optimized an objective function accounting for average coancestry of the candidate animals for reproduction and genetic merit. The optimal selection strategy indicated the use of 19 rams, which would result in an expected average gain of 1.1259 units of standard deviation, and coancestry equal to 0.0249 (strategy 5). Compared to the selection based only on breeding values, the optimum strategy reduced the coancestry by 12%, and the genetic gain by only 3%. The selection of sheep by the optimum contribution offers different levels of genetic gain, which are achievable from restrictions on the coancestry. Therefore, it is possible to minimize the coancestry, or restrict it to a predefined value, and maximize the genetic gain while using the optimum contribution.