Poultry are the most widely distributed type of livestock in Nigeria. Indigenous chickens are extremely common throughout the country. Indeed, approximately 83 million chickens are raised in extensive systems and 60 million in semi-intensive systems. To provide the first comprehensive overview of the maternal lineages in Southwest Nigeria, we analyzed 96 mitochondrial DNA control region sequences from 2 indigenous chicken ecotypes: Fulani and Yoruba. All samples belonged to the most frequent haplogroup (E) in Africa and Europe and showed noticeably low haplotype diversity. Although only 11 different haplotypes were detected, with 2 of them never found before in Nigeria, the presence of unique sequences among our indigenous samples testified to their status as an important genetic resource to be preserved. Furthermore, a total of 7,868 published sequences were included in the comparative analysis, which revealed an east-west geographic pattern of haplogroup distribution and led to the conclusion that the gene flow from Southeastern Asia mainly involved one mitochondrial clade. Moreover, owing to the extensive genetic intermixing among Nigerian chickens, conservation efforts are required to safeguard the extant mitochondrial variability in these indigenous ecotypes and establish future improvement and selection programs.
Mitochondrial diversity of Yoruba and Fulani chickens: A biodiversity reservoir in Nigeria / Lasagna, E.; Ceccobelli, S.; Cardinali, I.; Perini, F.; Bhadra, U.; Thangaraj, K.; Dababani, R. C.; Rai, N.; Sarti, F. M.; Lancioni, H.; Ige, A. O.. - In: POULTRY SCIENCE. - ISSN 0032-5791. - ELETTRONICO. - 99:6(2020), pp. 2852-2860. [10.1016/j.psj.2019.12.066]