Articles | Volume 59, issue 2
Original study
21 Jun 2016
Original study |  | 21 Jun 2016

AGPAT6 gene EX1_303T > C and EX12_299G > A mutations and associations with economic traits of Chinese Simmental-cross cattle

Xiaojuan Long, Xibi Fang, Ping Jiang, Hang Xiao, Haibin Yu, Mengjiao Zhou, Yunzhi Pan, Chunyan Lu, Zhihui Zhao, and Runjun Yang

Abstract. One of the 11 members in the family of 1-acylglycerol-3-phosphate-O- acyltransferases (AGPATs), AGPAT6, is responsible for the second step in the biosynthesis of triacylglycerol in eukaryotes. The AGPAT6 gene is highly expressed in brown adipose tissue, mammary gland epithelial cells and many other tissues. In this study, the PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism technique was applied to detect sites of polymorphism in the bovine AGPAT6 gene, and two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were detected in the exon 1 and exon 12. Thirty-three traits associated with the meat quality and the carcass were also measured in Chinese Simmental-cross steers. The association between the two SNPs and the traits was then analyzed. The polymorphism site EX1_303T > C was significantly associated with the omasum weight, liver weight, pH value of the beef (carcass), fat coverage rate of the carcass, fat color score, kidney weight and back fat thickness. The polymorphism site EX12_299G > A was significantly associated with bone net weight, forehoof weight, hind feet weight, the fat coverage rate of the carcass, the head and heart weight and the marbling score. Thus, the polymorphisms in the AGPAT6 gene might be important genetic factors that influence the carcass yield and meat quality of beef cattle and may be useful markers of meat quality traits in future marker-assisted selection programs for the breeding and production of beef cattle.

Short summary
AGPAT6 is a key candidate gene in the lipid metabolism pathway. We detected two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in bovine AGPAT6 exons, and we analyzed 33 traits associated with meat quality and the carcass of Chinese Simmental cattle. SNP1 was significantly associated with back fat thickness and fat coverage rate. SNP2 was significantly associated with fat coverage rate and marbling score. Thus, the SNPs of AGPAT6 may be genetic factors influencing carcass composition of beef cattle.