RMH GENETIC MARKERS
This is a D Blood Group marker where the dek is an alphabetic
designation of antigen sites. This variant is often found in horses of
Spanish origin (Also seen in some Saddlebreds).
|GPI variant F (Glucose Phosphate Isomerase)|
GPI-F variant is found
in most breeds of the North American Gaited breeds group. These are the
breeds most closely related to the Rocky. Its presence in these breeds
probably is a reflection of common ancestry. The variant also occurs in
Iberian breeds and in cold blood horses. The source of the variant in the
North American breeds is probably from the Iberian breeds.
|TF (F3) (Transferrin)|
This marker is also more prevalent in Spanish
It should be emphasized that the presence of common genetic markers is
not necessary in order to define a breed. The Thoroughbred horse has only
one marker that is seen in just thirty percent of the breed. The Saddlebred
has only one distinguishing marker (Protease Inhibitor J). Every horse in a
breed does not carry the same markers even though they may carry most of the
same traits (conformation, temperament, gait, color, etc.). Additionally,
there is not any governing body that certifies breed status for a group of
animals. The process is more informal than many people would suspect.
Markers that are unusual or that are seen in higher frequency lend credence
to the common heritage of a group of horses. Future advances in genetics may
someday be sufficient to revisit this issue once the horse genome is more
completely mapped. Some day there may be a certifying body, but for now the
main course for legitimizing a breed is through public acceptance.
In summary, a breed is born when a group of horses meets the above breed
definition and efforts are made to sustain those characteristics by
regulating (selecting) future breeding policies to preserve those desirable
characteristics that distinguish one group of animals from others in the
same species. The establishment of a breed takes not only the presence of
animals with common characteristics, but also the active process of
selection and preservation of those traits by people. It is through these
means that the Rocky Mountain Horse became a breed.
This site was last updated 12/16/06