Free Access
Genet. Sel. Evol.
Volume 33, Number 1, January-February 2001
Page(s) 3 - 16
DOI: 10.1051/gse:2001107

Genet. Sel. Evol. 33 (2001) 3-16

Hypothesis testing for the genetic background of quantitative traits

Luis Alberto García-Cortésa, Carlos Cabrillob, Carlos Morenoa and Luis Varonac

a  Departamento de Genética, Facultad de Veterinaria, c/ Miguel Servet, 177, 50013 Zaragoza, Spain
b  Instituto de Óptica "Daza de Valdés", CSIC, Serrano 121, 28006 Madrid, Spain
c  Área de Producción Animal, Centro UdL-IRTA, Lleida, Spain

(Received 8 November 1999; accepted 29 September 2000)

The testing of Bayesian point null hypotheses on variance component models have resulted in a tough assignment for which no clear and generally accepted method exists. In this work we present what we believe is a succeeding approach to such a task. It is based on a simple reparameterization of the model in terms of the total variance and the proportion of the additive genetic variance with respect to it, as well as on the explicit inclusion on the prior probability of a discrete component at origin. The reparameterization was used to bypass an arbitrariness related to the impropriety of uninformative priors onto unbounded variables while the discrete component was necessary to overcome the zero probability assigned to sets of null measure by the usual continuous variable models. The method was tested against computer simulations with appealing results.

Key words: animal breeding / prior distribution / Bayes factor / hypothesis testing / heritability

Correspondence and reprints: Luis Alberto García-Cortés

© INRA, EDP Sciences 2001