|Title||Genome-wide association study for behavior, type traits, and muscular development in Charolais beef cattle|
|Author(s)||Vallée, A.; Daures, J.; Arendonk, J.A.M. van; Bovenhuis, H.|
|Source||Journal of Animal Science 94 (2016)6. - ISSN 0021-8812 - p. 2307 - 2316.|
Animal Breeding and Genetics
|Publication type||Refereed Article in a scientific journal|
|Keyword(s)||Association study - Beef cattle - Behavior traits - Charolais - Muscular development - Type traits|
Behavior, type traits, and muscular development are of interest for beef cattle breeding. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) enable the identification of candidate genes, which enables genebased selection and provides insight in the genetic architecture of these traits. The objective of the current study was to perform a GWAS for 3 behavior traits, 12 type traits, and muscular development in Charolais cattle. Behavior traits, including aggressiveness at parturition, aggressiveness during gestation period, and maternal care, were scored by farmers. Type traits, including udder conformation, teat, feet and legs, and locomotion, were scored by trained classifiers. Data used in the GWAS consisted of 3,274 cows with phenotypic records and genotyping information for 44,930 SNP. When SNP had a false discovery rate (FDR) smaller than 0.05, they were referred to as significant. When SNP had a FDR between 0.05 and 0.20, they were referred to as suggestive. Four significant and 12 suggestive regions were detected for aggressiveness during gestation, maternal care, udder balance, teat thinness, teat length, foot angle, foot depth, and locomotion. These 4 significant and 12 suggestive regions were not supported by other significant SNP in close proximity. No SNP with major effects were detected for behavior and type traits, and SNP associations for these traits were spread across the genome, suggesting that behavior and type traits were influenced by many genes, each explaining a small part of genetic variance. The GWAS identified 1 region on chromosome 2 significantly associated with muscular development, which included the myostatin gene (GDF8), which is known to affect muscularity. No other regions associated with muscular development were found. Results showed that the myostatin region associated with muscular development had pleiotropic effects on udder volume, teat thinness, rear leg, and leg angle.