The objectives of this study were to 1) compare four models for breeding value prediction using genomic or pedigree information and 2) evaluate the impact of fixed effects that account for family structure. Comparisons were made in a Nellore-Angus population comprising F2, F3 and half-siblings to embryo transfer F2 calves with records for overall temperament at weaning (TEMP; n = 769) and Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF; n = 387). After quality control, there were 34,913 whole genome SNP markers remaining. Bayesian methods employed were BayesB ( π = 0.995 or 0.997 for WBSF or TEMP, respectively) and BayesC (π = 0 and π), where π is the ideal proportion of markers not included. Direct genomic values (DGV) from single trait Bayesian analyses were compared to conventional pedigree-based animal model breeding values. Numerically, BayesC procedures (using π) had the highest accuracy of all models for WBSF and TEMP ( ρgg = 0.843 and 0.923, respectively), but BayesB had the least bias (regression of performance on prediction closest to 1, βy,x = 2.886 and 1.755, respectively). Accounting for family structure decreased accuracy and increased bias in prediction of DGV indicating a detrimental impact when used in these prediction methods that simultaneously fit many markers.
Gestation length, birth weight, and weaning weight of F2 Nelore-Angus calves (n = 737) with designed extensive full-sibling and half-sibling relatedness were evaluated for association with 34,957 SNP markers. In analyses of birth weight, random relatedness was modeled three ways: 1) none, 2) random animal, pedigree-based relationship matrix, or 3) random animal, genomic relationship matrix. Detected birth weight-SNP associations were 1,200, 735, and 31 for those parameterizations respectively; each additional model refinement removed associations that apparently were a result of the built-in stratification by relatedness. Subsequent analyses of gestation length and weaning weight modeled genomic relatedness; there were 40 and 26 trait-marker associations detected for those traits, respectively. Birth weight associations were on BTA14 except for a single marker on BTA5. Gestation length associations included 37 SNP on BTA21, 2 on BTA27 and one on BTA3. Weaning weight associations were on BTA14 except for a single marker on BTA10. Twenty-one SNP markers on BTA14 were detected in both birth and weaning weight analyses.