Journal of Fishery Sciences of China (中国水产科学) 2013/20:6 PP.1182-1187
The pearl oyster Pinctada fucata is an economically important oyster that is used for pearl production. There is considerable focus on improving selective breeding procedures for certain traits. We used the specimens of P. fucata from two geographic populations in Xuwen, Guangdong and Sanya, Hainan as the parents to construct 33 full-sibs families by artificial fertilization. We estimated the genetic parameters of growth traits in juvenile P. fucata. Fifty 162-day-old individuals were randomly sampled from each family. Shell length, shell height, shell width, and body weight were measured, and used for genetic analysis using a maximum likelihood algorithm based on an animal model. The total phenotypic means of the four growth traits were (16.28 ± 4.46) mm, (14.85 ± 4.39) mm, (4.58 ± 1.52) mm, and (0.66 ± 0.67) g, respectively. There was a significant difference between different traits in different families, indicating that family has a significant (P<0.01) influence on growth traits in juvenile P. fucata. The heritability of these four traits are 0.202 ± 0.020, 0.203 ± 0.020, 0.200 ± 0.021, and 0.204 ± 0.020, respectively, suggesting that there was some degree of selective potential by family selection. The pairwise phenotypic and genetic correlations between growth traits were 0.6670.698 and 0.6850.959, respectively. Based on our results, we predict that if one trait is improved genetically, the others will also be improved as the phenotypic and genetic correlations between the four traits were highly positive. The genetic correlation between shell width and body weight was highest (0.959), suggesting that the best way to improve body weight is by selection for shell width.