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> Strain Corrections Via Dna Testing, Which strains have been corrected?
post Jul 1 2008, 01:35 PM
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Good Morning Everyone,

In the age of DNA technology, what strain names have been corrected, officially? I am aware of the Kuhaylan Jellabi being corrected as Seqlawi Jedran Ibn Sudan via the family of *MAAROUFA. Are there any others?

Thanking you all for your input. biggrin.gif

Kind Regards,

Liz Dieter
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Kimberli Nelson
post Jul 1 2008, 02:05 PM
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Recently we did a mtDNA test on the SO SE Hadbans. I showed that Venus and Rodania were the same line.
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post Jul 1 2008, 02:10 PM
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Dear Liz and Kimberly

it still puzzles me how one can detect a strain through DNA. What is the explanation? How can a layman with DNa verify?

Hansi biggrin.gif
Sernity Arabian Farms
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post Jul 1 2008, 02:14 PM
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Simply put, a strain cannot be proven but a relationship can be demonstrated, like paternity testing in humans.....(just an example)
Thus Kimberly said that they are of the same line.......thus related...
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post Jul 1 2008, 02:15 PM
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Kimberly what do you mean Venus and rodania are the same line please?
Rodania is a Kuhaylah and Venus a Hadbah

Please explain
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Kimberli Nelson
post Jul 1 2008, 02:15 PM
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Hansi, you don't actually identify the strain, you identify a marker. The marker is either the same as other horses or different. In the case of Venus, it was found that she had the same marker as Rodania so both mares have a common ancestor on the tailfemale line.

I know there is more to this than what I have stated but this is how I understand it.
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post Jul 1 2008, 02:15 PM
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WOW! Interesting news. Who or where would one go to have a test like this done on a mare line to see what it is?
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Kimberli Nelson
post Jul 1 2008, 02:24 PM
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I was asked if I would be willing to participate in a mtDNA test to see if the Venus Egyptians and the Hadba Davenports were related. Of course I was VERY interested. I sent two samples of hair to Michael Bowling and Anita sent two samples of Davenport hair for testing.

The results were very interesting. Venus and Hadba were NOT related, not by a long shot. Even though they were preported to be from the same tribe, the same location and about 10 years apart. Venus and Rodania AND Wadduda share the same common ancestor and are the same tail-female.

The Davenport Hadbans were very much un-related to Venus and Rodania.
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Kimberli Nelson
post Jul 1 2008, 02:33 PM
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Here is the article that was published by the Desert Institute of the Arabian Horse in the Al Majlis News - Volume 4 Number 2 - Spring/Summer 2007.

Science and Strains – A New Mystery

One sure way to stimulate a conversation
among conservation breeders is to raise the
subject of strains. Since the late 1990s, any
such conversations have been influenced by
research into mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA),
which is passed along the maternal line and
serves as a marker for tracing matrilinear
descent. Research by Dr. Anne Bowling, A. Del
Valle, and Michael Bowling contributed
significantly to this discussion with their
publication in 2000 of the haplotypes of material
from 34 source mares represented in Arabian
breeding (1). A recent addition to that research
presents a new mystery for breeders.
At the time of publication, several findings were
of interest to breeders of Desert Arabian
horses. Material from two females lines
descending from Bint Yamama (granddaughters
Roda and Mahroussa) matched material from
the line descending from Ghazieh (through Bint
Helwa) rather than the line from Jellabiet Feysul
(results from lines of granddaughters Hazna,
Gulnare, and Jamila). This supports the
connection of the Bint Yamama horses to the
dam of Mesaoud, a conclusion reached from
records of Lady Anne Blunt (2) by several
researchers (3 and 4), and has caused many
breeders to ascribe the strain Saqlawi Jidran to
the Bint Yamama horses.
A second finding was that material from the
lines Domow and *Wadduda shared the same
haplotype. Because there is a coat-color
incompatability of Domow (bay) with her
registered parents (both chestnut), researchers
have postulated that Domow’s registration could
have been somehow switched with another foal.
The haplotype for Domow and *Wadduda was
different from the other possible mare lines
(dams of the other foals), thus supporting the
record of *Wadduda as dam of Domow (3).
While the 2000 publication offered scientific
insight into these historic questions, it raised
new questions. One surprise was the discovery
that material from recorded descendents of
*Urfah showed different haplotypes, leading to
the later-developed hypothesis that identities of
*Urfah’s daughter Saleefy and the mare Freda
(descended from Hamadie imports) were
inadvertently reversed after both bay mares
were transported to a new owner in Southern
California (5).
Another was that the dam lines of different
reported strains showed the same haplotypes.
For example, the *Reshan line (Koheilan Haifi)
showed the same haplotype as Basilisk
(Saqlawi Jidran). *Wadduda (Saqlawi Al Abd)
showed the same haplotype as Rodania
(Koheilan Rodan).
Now a new piece has been added to the puzzle,
and a new mystery lies before us. The 2000
article by Bowling et al reported a distinct
haplotype for the mare line of *Hadba, imported
in 1906 by Homer Davenport, with the recorded
strain Hadban Enzahi. However, no material
from the mare line of the Egyptian mare Venus
(also recorded as Hadban Enzahi) was included
in that study. Breeders of these two lines have
wondered if the two mares, born about 10 years
apart, were related. The Institute was recently
able to obtain samples from two extant
branches of the Venus family, documented
through her great-grandaughters at the RAS,
Bint Rustem and Samiha (6), for testing by the
same laboratory that did the earlier work
(Veterinary Genetics Laboratory, University of
California at Davis). The purpose was to
determine if the two source mares (*Hadba and
Venus) were of the same maternal line.
The laboratory results show that the two
samples submitted in 2007 share the same
haplotype (affirming the maternal relationship of
Bint Rustem and Samiha lines), but it is not the
same haplotype previously reported for *Hadba.
Rather, it is the same haplotype previously
reported for Rodania and *Wadduda. Thus, we
have mtDNA for three well-known desert lines –
Rodania, *Wadduda, and Venus – of three
different recorded strains – Koheilan Rodan,
Saqlawi Al Abd, and Hadban Enzahi – that
share a common maternal-line ancestor.
Some scholars and breeders will find that
the relationship between the Rodania and Hadba
(Venus) lines is consistent with the history of
the Hadban detailed in the shaded box below.
Nothing in the mtDNA findings alters the
horses, or calls into question their quality or
authenticity, or alters the historic record of the
strains of these mares as assigned by their
Bedouin breeders. The story of how these lines
acquired different strain names, given the
conventional western understanding of Bedouin
strain tradition, lies somewhere in the past,
perhaps awaiting further investigation, or
perhaps lost in the sands of time.
(1) A. T. Bowling, A. Del Valle, and M. Bowling,
“A Pedigree-based Study of Mitochondrial Dloop
DNA Sequence Variation among Arabian
Horses,” Animal Genetics, 31 (2000): 1-7.
(2) Rosemary Archer and James Fleming, ed.,
Lady Anne Blunt, Journals & Correspondence
1878-1917, 1986, p. 333.
(3) Michael Bowling, “What’s In A Name?
Counting Doves a Century After They Hatch,”
Arabian Visions, 15: 2 (October 1998); reprinted
in Khamsat, 22: 1 (2005). Available on-line at
(4) Kees Mol, “A Note on Bint Yamama,” in:
The Arabian Horse Families of Egypt 1979-
1987, 1995, pp. xi-xiv (also cited in Judith
Forbis, Authentic Arabian Bloodstock II, 2003,
pp. 310-316). See also Joan L. Schleicher, “Out
of the Mists: Tracing the Taproots of Heirloom,”
in: John W. Fippen, et al, Heirloom Egyptian
Arabian Horses, 1840-2000, 2004, pp. 45, 57-
62; and “Kafifan,” in: Heirloom…, p. 499.
(5) Davenport Arabian Horse Conservancy,
“What is a Davenport Arabian Horse?” http://
(6) Royal Agricultural Society (Dr. Abdel Alim
Ashoub, ed.), History of the Royal Agricultural
Society’s Stud of Authentic Arabian Horses,
1948, pp. 63-64.
(7) Gülson Sherif and Judith Forbis, The Abbas
Pasha Manuscript, 1993.

Shabat al Mani' of al Suwayt, and he is advanced in age, and Ali Mani', the son of the
brother of Shabat, who attended the gathering, were questioned in the presence of Sultan
ibn Suwayt and a large number of people.
"Tell us about their origin and what their strain was and from whom they came."
The above-mentioned replied, "Mani' was at the time of Beni Lam, who is from our
grandfathers...and she is Kuhayla om Maarif, and the reason for calling her Hadba at
Mani's was because he had a mare with a profusely long mane which covered her
forehead completely [hadba salifa], and for that reason she was called hadba. And she
passed from Mani' to Nazhi of al Fudul the day they forced them at the hillside of Massel.
And she was blessed at al Nazhi's, and she became hadban Nazhi from al Nazhi.
From al Nazhi her blood spread through the tribes, and we can recognize [claim] them
from the time of our fathers to this day.
And the people who were connected with our fathers and our first white-haired men
have told us and assured us that they are Hadb."
—From The Abbas Pasha Manuscript (7)
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An American Bree...
post Jul 1 2008, 02:36 PM
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I personally suspect the next thing will be there is only one strain of Arabian horse since probably way, way back whenever all of them descended from one mare.

So? My Jellabi's are far different than my Kuhaylan. I will still keep the strains.

Did not any of you ever suspect this is a marketing ploy as well? No, not you Kimberli or the other lady. If you want to market your horses in a hideous market let's just say they are all from the same family? No such thing as strains? Something to mull over in your brain.
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Kimberli Nelson
post Jul 1 2008, 02:44 PM
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Liz, nobody said that there were no strains or that there is only one original mare. And no, this was not a marketing ploy. I think that they have identified about 17 or so different haplotypes in the Arabian breed.

The strain naming system used by the Bedouin is not something that we will ever understand. The strains we have today would be totally different if we had not made them static when the West acquired the horses.

Identifying the haplotype and the common ancestor for me, is an indicator of how these horses breed and that is all. I studied the Rodan and the Hadban strains and found that even though they were different strains they bred the same way, unlike the Saklawis and Dahmans. What the testing did for me was re-affirm what I had suspected all along, and that was that the two strains were the same family.
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post Jul 1 2008, 03:01 PM
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One of the interesting things I picked up
hearing Michael Bowling talk about this subject
is that it is believed that many of the "marker" mares
identified by mtDNA testing may have existed before

This would explain why some findings show
say Rodania and Venus to have the same root
mare in their tail-female.

Fascinating stuff!!

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Pete Hiatt
post Jul 1 2008, 03:27 PM
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In humans, we have 4 "strains". We broke off from Homo Heidelbergensis almost exactly 200,000 years ago in So or Easten Africa. This is documented by fossil remains (195,000 years) and DNA aging (best left to the experts). We had four different MtDNA "Luci's" and an unknown number of male progenerators. There have been some physical changes in the last 200,000 years. Those who went North at about 75,000 (tough time which lowered our numbers to about 2500 breeding pairs) and 50,000 years when ice ages turned the Saharan desert into Savannah eventually became lighter skinned as the lack of sunlight caused the darker skin types to die off earlier in life as Vitamin D was not well absorbed causing the darker skin types to not form disease fighting agents as well. Colors changed as small groups over wide expenses did not breed to a common group. Blue eyes started at 6000-12,000 years ago. There were other physical changes, but we remain the descendants from four different females. One would think more based upon phenotypical differences we see today.

Time will tell how many horse "Luci's" there were. However, we have seen how differences in small groups/families/farms can change in only a few decades. Although the human made moniker "strain" may have had a beginning within a given tribe for a single great example of that tribe or strain, there is no reason to change it if that mare's line continues to be of a certain phenotype. The common ancester may have been 2000 or 100,000 years ago.

Complicating the picture is how we assign strain names today. The single female ancestor assigns the strain name, but in going back 3 or 5 generations, there may be no other ancestor of that strain making it rather silly to identify a foal as such. Also, calling a horse "pure in the strain" is done if both parents are of a certain strain even though going further back shows a low percentage of that particular strain. On the other hand, if the phenotype matches the strain type, it is a good call. But what if it is a totally different type? I suppose if it is a superb specimen and passes that along, we may have a new famous foundation strain mare in another 100-200 years.
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Caryn Rogosky
post Jul 1 2008, 03:36 PM
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My understanding is that mtDNA can only show whether or not two (or more) individuals share the same maternal ancestor within a given group. In my opinion this does not alter the current status of strains with regard to the practice of horse breeding. In a post on a different thread, Diane stated that a pedigree is a tool, a listing of names which serves as a sort of index associating an individual with other individuals (paraphrasing here). I agree with this and believe that we, modern Arabian horse breeders, have somewhat miscontrued the inherent value in both pedigree and strain designations.

Strain designations provide an instant but not a foolproof overview of a related group in which particular individuals have been selectively bred for many generations according to a specific criteria. In certain cases, these have evolved into a powerful breeding influence, consistently asserting genetic dominance. This is true regardless of mtDNA findings, and I believe that the issue of the Kuhayla Jellabia and Saqlawi Jedrania strains -- who typically display uniquely different phenotypes, clearly demonstrates this.

Since it is very likely that all Arabian horses go back to the same or closely related Eve genes, it does not surprise me that science would find some inconsistencies between mtDNA and pedigree information (which is very limited relative to the existence of this breed). Knowing that various strains do or do not share the same maternal ancestor according to DNA test results does not change the practical application of strain information.

Recognizing that strains are not and have never been something that science created, I believe that the survival of the distinct strain types as we know them today should not be undermined nor abandoned. Today more than ever, there is a very real need to secure the strain tool for the future, as one means of maintaining traditional, authentic and wonderful diversity within the Arabian breed.
Caryn Rogosky
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post Jul 1 2008, 04:21 PM
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What about the 5 mares of war that were each deemed a name!!!
They simply could have all been sisters or cousins or maybe just 3 were maternal sisters??? And maybe one was not a purebred?? Was there a purebred?
Maybe any that do not share the same mternal lineage are not true purebreds???
Or maybe the ones that share the same strands are not the purebreds??
I would like anything with Polka 2 tested thru dam lineage!
I think we may be on to something!
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