Tracking footprints of artificial selection in the dog genome

Joshua M. Akey, Alison L. Ruhe, Dayna T. Akey, Aaron K. Wong, Caitlin F. Connelly, Jennifer Madeoy, Thomas J. Nicholas, Mark W. Neff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

263 Scopus citations


The size, shape, and behavior of the modern domesticated dog has been sculpted by artificial selection for at least 14,000 years. The genetic substrates of selective breeding, however, remain largely unknown. Here, we describe a genome-wide scan for selection in 275 dogs from 10 phenotypically diverse breeds that were genotyped for over 21,000 autosomal SNPs. We identified 155 genomic regions that possess strong signatures of recent selection and contain candidate genes for phenotypes that vary most conspicuouslyamongbreeds, includingsize, coat colorandtexture, behavior, skeletalmorphology,andphysiology. In addition,wedemonstrate a significant association between HAS2 and skin wrinkling in the Shar-Pei, and provide evidence that regulatory evolution has played a prominent role in the phenotypic diversification of modern dog breeds. Our results provide a first-generationmapof selection in the dog, illustratehowsuchmaps can rapidly inform the genetic basis of canine phenotypic variation, and provide a framework for delineating the mechanistic basis of how artificial selection promotes rapid and pronounced phenotypic evolution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1160-1165
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 19 2010
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


  • Canis lupis
  • Evolution


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