ASSOCIATION BETWEEN NINE IMMUNE SYSTEM GENE POLYMORPHISMS AND TOLERANCE TO ALEUTIAN MINK DISEASE VIRUS INFECTION
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Aleutian mink disease virus (AMDV) causes a major health concern for the mink industry worldwide. There is no vaccine or treatment for this disease and the only control measure is regular testing of mink for antibodies against AMDV and removal of seropositive animals. This strategy has not been effective in controlling the virus. Selecting mink that can tolerate AMDV and do not succumb to the disease would be useful for the mink industry. Allele frequency changes in 16 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in nine immune system genes (IL-6, LEP, FcεR1G, TLR2, TLR3, TLR4, TLR7, TLR9 and TGF-β1) were determined in two black mink herds naturally exposed to AMDV and selected for tolerance and four control herds. There was evidence that TLR2, TLR4 and TLR7 genes were possibly under selection in one of the tolerant herds. SNPs in these genes may serve as putative molecular markers for tolerance to AMDV infection.