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South African Journal of Animal Science

On-line version ISSN 2221-4062
Print version ISSN 0375-1589


MAKGAHLELA, M.L.; FAN, B.; DU, Z.-Q.  and  ROTHSCHILD, M.F.. Investigation of effects of three candidate genes on leg action and fat deposition traits in pigs. S. Afr. j. anim. sci. [online]. 2009, vol.39, n.2, pp.127-130. ISSN 2221-4062.

Data from 188 sows were used in the current study to examine the effects of high mobility group AT-hook1 (HMGA1), transcription factor 7-like-2 (TCF7L2) and insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3 (IGFBP3) genes on leg action and fat deposition traits, and further to explore the possible relationships between these genes on both traits. The candidate genes used in the study are known for their roles in fat deposition and growth. Overall leg action was scored on a scale of 1 (good movement) to 9 (leg weakness). Fatness traits included 10th rib backfat (BF10), adjusted 10th rib backfat to 125 kg (adjBF10) and last rib backfat (last BF), measured by ultrasonic imaging approach. The association analyses between single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and traits were performed using PROC MIXED procedures of SAS. The results showed that the associations between HMGA1, TCF7L2 and IGFBP3 genotypes with fat deposition traits were mostly suggestive in this limited data set. Leg action was also suggestively associated with IGFBP3 gene effects but was not associated with HMGA1 and TCF7L2 genes. Thus, IGFBP3 AA homozygote individuals tended to have had better movements (5.40), and were fatter when compared to GG homozygotes (5.84). The results from this study suggest a possible association between the IGFBP3 gene effects on both leg action and fatness. Therefore, further studies must be carried out in several populations, and using larger data to demonstrate these results conclusively.

Keywords : Candidate genes; overall leg action; fatness; association; pig.

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