New insights on the genetic origins of lighter horse coats
Equine genetics reveals otherwise invisible traits linked to your horse’s appearance
Several dilution genes—which lighten pigments in skin, eyes and hair—have been identified
The SLC45A2 gene affects red and black pigments, creating cream and pearl coats
But there are still gaps in the genetic story behind these coat colors
Now, researchers have identified two new SLC45A2 variants
One originated in medieval times and gives rise to the well-known pearl dilution
The other—whose origin is unknown— produces a similar but entirely new dilution dubbed "sun"
This research suggests that there’s much more to learn in equine genetics and the results can empower breeders and owners to provide the best care for their horses
Holl et al. "A candidate gene approach identifies variants in SLC45A2 that explain dilute phenotypes, pearl and sunshine, in compound heterozygote horses." Anim Genet. (2019)
Comments can take the form of short reviews, notes or questions to the author. Comments will be posted immediately. If reported by the community, we will temporarily hide the comment to determine if the comment is spam or harassment. If it is not, it will be unhidden, and it cannot be reported again. If you think a comment has been hidden or unhidden mistakenly, please contact us at [email protected].