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Association of single nucleotide polymorphisms in the leptin gene with carcass and meat quality traits of beef cattle.

  • Schenkel, F S
  • Miller, S P
  • Ye, X
  • Moore, S S
  • Nkrumah, J D
  • Li, C
  • Yu, J
  • Mandell, I B
  • Wilton, J W
  • Williams, J L
Published Article
Journal of animal science
Publication Date
Sep 01, 2005
PMID: 16100055


Studies with different populations are required to properly characterize the robustness of associations of polymorphisms in candidate genes with economically important traits across beef cattle populations before this sort of genetic information can be used efficiently in breeding and management decisions. The objective of this study was to evaluate the association of previously reported SNP in the bovine leptin gene with carcass and meat quality traits from a large sample of crossbred beef cattle. Five SNP (UASMS1, UASMS2, UASMS3, E2JW, and E2FB) were genotyped on 1,111 crossbred bulls, heifers, and steers. The measured traits included fat, lean, and bone yield (%) by partial rib dissection, grade fat, LM area, HCW, quality grade, LM i.m. fat, and tenderness evaluation of LM and semitendinosus muscle. Only four SNP were analyzed (UASMS1, UASMS2, E2JW, and E2FB), because UASMS1 and UASMS3 were completely linked. A uni-variate mixed-inheritance animal model was used to evaluate the association of either genotypes or haplo-types with the traits. The two leptin exon 2 SNP were associated with fat and lean yield and grade fat (E2JW, P < 0.01; E2FB, P < 0.05), and they interacted in their effect on LM tenderness (P < 0.01). The leptin promoter SNP were either not associated with any of the traits (UASMS2) or with fat yield only (UASMS1). Three haplotypes (TCAC, CCAT, TTAC) were at high frequency in the population (88%) and had similar effects on all the traits. Compared with the common haplotypes, one haplotype (CCTT) showed a significantly different effect on fat and lean yield and grade fat (P < 0.01), and one haplotype (TTTT) had a different effect on LM tenderness (P < 0.03). Therefore, important associations between SNP within the leptin gene with lean yield, fatness (fat yield and subcutaneous fat), and tenderness were detected. Results confirm some of the previously reported associations, but diverge with respect to others, showing that further efforts are required to validate some prospective associations.

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