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Volume 61, issue 3 | Copyright
Arch. Anim. Breed., 61, 271-278, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/aab-61-271-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Original study 11 Jul 2018

Original study | 11 Jul 2018

The microRNA gene bta-mir-2313 in cattle: an atlas of regulatory elements and an association analysis with growth and carcass traits in the Slovenian Simental cattle breed

Špela Malovrh1,*, Tanja Kunej1,*, Milena Kovač1, and Peter Dovč1 Špela Malovrh et al.
  • 1Department of Animal Science, Biotechnical Faculty, University of Ljubljana, Groblje 3, 1230 Domzale, Slovenia
  • *These authors contributed equally to this work.

Abstract. MicroRNAs (miRNA) are a class of non-coding RNAs important in posttranscriptional regulation of target genes. Regulation requires complementarity between the target mRNA and the miRNA region responsible for their recognition and binding, also called the seed region. Previous studies have proven that expression profiles and genetic variations of miRNA genes (miR-SNP; SNP – single nucleotide polymorphism) and their target sites (miR-TS-SNPs) have an impact on phenotypic variation and disease susceptibility in human, animal models, and livestock. MicroRNA-associated polymorphisms therefore represent biomarker potential for phenotypic traits in livestock. Effects of miRNA gene polymorphisms on phenotypic traits have been studied in several animal species but much less in cattle. The aim of the present study was therefore to analyze the genetic variability in the bta-mir-2313 gene and test associations with growth and carcass traits of the Slovenian Simmental cattle breed. Additionally, validated and predicted genomic information related to the miRNA gene bta-mir-2313 has been obtained and presented as an atlas of miRNA regulatory elements. Sanger sequencing has been used for biomarker development and genotyping of 145 animals of Slovenian dual-purpose Simmental cattle. Out of nine known polymorphisms located within pre-miRNA regions, one mature miRNA seed SNP was polymorphic in the Slovenian Simmental cattle breed. An additional three polymorphisms were identified within the flanking pri-miRNA regions. There was no significant effect of polymorphisms on 18 tested fattening and carcass traits; however, validated polymorphisms could now be tested in association with other traits in other cattle populations. The microRNA gene bta-mir-2313 warrants further genetic and functional analyses since it overlaps with a large number of quantitative trait loci (QTL), has over 3100 predicted targets and highly polymorphic mature seed regions, and is located within protein-coding gene GRAMD1B, previously associated with production traits in cattle. Mature miRNA seed SNPs present important genomic loci for functional studies because they could affect the gain/loss of downstream targets and should be systematically studied in cattle.

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Effects of miRNA polymorphisms on phenotypic traits have been studied in several species but much less in cattle. We tested the association between polymorphisms of bta-miR-2313 and growth and carcass traits in the Slovenian Simmental cattle breed and developed an atlas of miRNA regulatory elements. Bta-miR-2313 warrants further functional analysis since it overlaps with several QTL, has over 3100 predicted targets, and is located within GRAMD1B, associated with production traits in cattle.
Effects of miRNA polymorphisms on phenotypic traits have been studied in several species but...
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