[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Body composition and meat quality traits are important economic traits of chickens. The development of high-throughput genotyping platforms and relevant statistical methods have enabled genome-wide association studies in chickens. In order to identify molecular markers and candidate genes associated with body composition and meat quality traits, genome-wide association studies were conducted using the Illumina 60 K SNP Beadchip to genotype 724 Beijing-You chickens. For each bird, a total of 16 traits were measured, including carcass weight (CW), eviscerated weight (EW), dressing percentage, breast muscle weight (BrW) and percentage (BrP), thigh muscle weight and percentage, abdominal fat weight and percentage, dry matter and intramuscular fat contents of breast and thigh muscle, ultimate pH, and shear force of the pectoralis major muscle at 100 d of age. The SNPs that were significantly associated with the phenotypic traits were identified using both simple (GLM) and compressed mixed linear (MLM) models. For nine of ten body composition traits studied, SNPs showing genome wide significance (P<2.59E-6) have been identified. A consistent region on chicken (Gallus gallus) chromosome 4 (GGA4), including seven significant SNPs and four candidate genes (LCORL, LAP3, LDB2, TAPT1), were found to be associated with CW and EW. Another 0.65 Mb region on GGA3 for BrW and BrP was identified. After measuring the mRNA content in beast muscle for five genes located in this region, the changes in GJA1 expression were found to be consistent with that of breast muscle weight across development. It is highly possible that GJA1 is a functional gene for breast muscle development in chickens. For meat quality traits, several SNPs reaching suggestive association were identified and possible candidate genes with their functions were discussed.
PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(4):e61172. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The associations between polymorphisms of five genes, calpain 1 ( CAPN1 ), follicle stimulating hormone beta (FSHB), follicle stimulating hormone receptor (FSHR), peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARG), and retinol binding protein 7 (RBP7), and live weight, carcass composition, and meat-quality traits were estimated from two meat-type chickens lines (n = 311). Except for the variants of the FSHR gene, 11 SNPs of the other four genes and two diplotypes of PPARG were associated with one or more traits excluding shear factor (SF). SNP C31566680T of the CAPN1 gene was significantly associated with live weight (LW) carcass traits. The SNP A4580859C of FSHB gene was significantly associated with breast muscle weight (BrW) and LW. One of the PPARG SNPs, C5070948T, was associated with intramuscular fat content in breast (IMF( br )). Diplotype P1 of the PPARG gene was significantly associated with LW and all carcass traits. P3 were significantly associated with abdominal fat weight (AbFW). SNPs in RBP7 were only associated with BrW. These results indicate that the four genes were associated with these traits and have promise as genetic markers for future marker-assisted selection. Supplementary materials for this paper are available online.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transcripts and protein for follicle-stimulating hormone receptor (FSHR) were demonstrated in abdominal adipose tissue of female chickens. There was no expression of the Fsh gene, but FSH and FSHR colocalized, suggesting that FSH was receptor bound. Partial correlations indicted that changes in abdominal fat (AF) content were most directly correlated with Fshr mRNA expression, and the latter was directly correlated with tissue FSH content. These relationships were consistent with FSH inducing Fshr mRNA expression and with the finding that FSH influenced the accumulation of AF in chickens, a novel role for the hormone. Chicken preadipocytes responded linearly to doubling concentrations of FSH in Fshr mRNA expression and quantities of FSHR and lipid, without discernable effect on proliferation. Cells exposed to FSH more rapidly acquired adipocyte morphology. Treatment of young chickens with chicken FSH (4 mIU/day, subcutaneous, days 7-13) did not significantly decrease live weight but increased AF weight by 54.61%, AF as a percentage of live weight by 55.45%, and FSHR transcripts in AF by 222.15% (2 h after injection). In cells stimulated by FSH, genes related to lipid metabolism, including Rdh10, Dci, RarB, Lpl, Acsl3, and Dgat2, were expressed differentially, compared with no FSH. Several pathways of retinal and fatty acid metabolism, and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) signaling changed. In conclusion, FSH stimulates lipid biosynthesis by upregulating Fshr mRNA expression in abdominal adipose tissue of chickens. Several genes involved in fatty acid and retinal metabolism and the PPAR signaling pathway mediate this novel function of FSH.
The Journal of Lipid Research 02/2012; 53(5):909-17. · 4.39 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Toll-like receptors (TLRs) signaling pathways are the first lines in defense against Salmonella enteritidis (S. enteritidis) infection but the molecular mechanism underlying susceptibility to S. enteritidis infection in chicken remains unclear. SPF chickens injected with S. enteritidis were partitioned into two groups, one consisted of those from Salmonella-susceptible chickens (died within 5 d after injection, n = 6), the other consisted of six Salmonella-resistant chickens that survived for 15 d after injection. The present study shows that the bacterial load in susceptible chickens was significantly higher than that in resistant chickens and TLR4, TLR2-1 and TLR21 expression was strongly diminished in the leukocytes of susceptible chickens compared with those of resistant chickens. The induction of expression of pro-inflammatory cytokine genes, IL-6 and IFN-β, was greatly enhanced in the resistant but not in susceptible chickens. Contrasting with the reduced expression of TLR genes, those of the zinc finger protein 493 (ZNF493) gene and Toll-interacting protein (TOLLIP) gene were enhanced in the susceptible chickens. Finally, the expression of TLR4 in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) infected in vitro with S. enteritidis increased significantly as a result of treatment with 5-Aza-2-deoxycytidine (5-Aza-dc) while either 5-Aza-dc or trichostatin A was effective in up-regulating the expression of TLR21 and TLR2-1. DNA methylation, in the predicted promoter region of TLR4 and TLR21 genes, and an exonic CpG island of the TLR2-1 gene was significantly higher in the susceptible chickens than in resistant chickens. Taken together, the results demonstrate that ZNF493-related epigenetic modification in leukocytes probably accounts for increased susceptibility to S. enteritidis in chickens by diminishing the expression and response of TLR4, TLR21 and TLR2-1.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(3):e33627. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: TLR signaling plays a role in Salmonella infection, but less information is available in chickens infected with Salmonella serovar Pullorum. The present study with young chickens, experimentally infected with S. Pullorum, has used real-time quantitative RT-PCR to investigate the relative expression of genes of the TLR4 signaling pathway (TLR4, MyD88, TRAF6 and NF-kappaB) in the spleen and caecum at 1, 3, 7 and 14 days post-infection (dpi). Three-day-old specific-pathogen-free chickens were orally infected with S. Pullorum or saline (controls). In addition to gene expression, the bacterial burden of spleen and caecum was assessed and serum concentrations and total IgG were measured. Significantly more bacteria were found in the caecum than in the spleen. Concentrations of IgG were significantly higher in infected birds at 1 dpi, reached a peak at 3 dpi (P<0.01), and then gradually decreased with the time. Infected young chickens had significant up-regulation of the expression of TLR4, MyD88, TRAF6 and NF-kappaB in the spleen at 3 dpi compared to controls (P<0.05). In the caecum, only increased expression of NF-kappaB mRNA (P<0.05) was observed at 1 dpi. The pattern of immune response to infection with S. Pullorum differed between spleen and caecum and did not directly correspond with pathogen burden. The observed changes indicate that the MyD88-dependent pathway of TLR4 signaling plays a role in young chickens infected with S. Pullorum.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Avian leukosis virus subgroup J (ALV-J) is a new type of virus that mainly induces myeloid leukosis (ML) in chickens. To further elucidate the pathogenesis of ALV-J infection and tumor development, expression profiles from the bone marrow tissue of 15 infected and 18 non-infected birds from a local-breed poultry-farm under naturally infected conditions, were analyzed by suppression-subtractive hybridization. The birds were diagnosed as ML+ (or ML-) by specific ALV-J detection methods, involving serological tests for antigens and antibodies, and RT-PCR to detect viral RNA. A total of 59 partial gene sequences were revealed by differential screening of 496 forward and 384 reverse subtracted cDNA clones. Of these, 22 identified genes, including 8 up-regulated and 14 down-regulated, were related to immune functions, these genes being, MHC B-G antigen, translationally-controlled tumor protein (TPT1/TPTC), transferrin and ferritin, hemoglobin and Carbonic anhydrase. Four of the down-regulated genes were selected for further analysis, in view of their predicted roles in infection and immunity by real-time qRT-PCR, using RNA collected from the same birds as those used for SSH. The four genes were expressed at significantly lower levels (p < 0.001) in ALV-J infected birds than in non-infected ones.
Genetics and Molecular Biology 01/2010; 33(1):44-50. · 0.74 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: PCR-SSCP analysis was used to detect polymorphic sites in chicken adipocyte fatty acid binding protein (A-FABP) gene. Six Chinese local breeds, Beijing-You chicken, Dwarf chicken, Taihe silky chicken, Chongrenma chicken, Xiayan chicken,
Luyuan chicken and an introduced foreign breed, Arbor Acre broiler, were used as test populations. Three PCR-SSCP loci were
detected. Statistical results showed that frequencies of genotypes and alleles were significantly different in the test populations.
Sequence analysis revealed that C → T, G → A, and C → T transitions were responsible for the polymorphisms. Some fat-related
traits such as body weight, content of intramuscular fat (IMF) and percentage of abdominal fat (AFP) were measured in Dwarf
chickens and male Beijing-You chickens. We found out that chicken quality was significantly related to different genotypes
in these two populations.
Frontiers of Agriculture in China 11/2008; 2(4):474-479.