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Sasaki S.,Shirakawa Institute of Animal Genetics | Sasaki S.,National Livestock Breeding Center | Ibi T.,Okayama University | Watanabe T.,Shirakawa Institute of Animal Genetics | And 4 more authors.
BMC Genetics | Year: 2013

Background: Calving efficiency can be described as the measure of a cow's ability to produce viable offspring within a specific period of time. This trait is crucial in beef cattle because calves are necessary both for the production of beef and for heifer replacements. Recently, the number of calves produced at 4 years of age (NCP4) has been used to evaluate the calving efficiency of Japanese Black cattle. To identify variants associated with calving efficiency in Japanese Black cattle, we conducted a genome-wide association study (GWAS) using 688 animals with extreme NCP4 values selected from 15,225 animals.Results: We identified genetic variants on bovine chromosome 12 (BTA12) that were associated with NCP4. The General Transcription Factor IIF, polypeptide 2 (GTF2F2), located in the 132 kbp-associated region, proved to be in strong linkage disequilibrium. We found 15 associated variants in the promoter and the 3' UTR regions. Consistent with this finding, transcripts of GTF2F2 derived from the haplotype (Q) with the increased number of calves were 1.33-fold more abundant than q-derived transcripts. Furthermore, luciferase assays revealed that the activity of the 3' UTR, a region that includes nine SNPs, was higher in constructs with the Q haplotype than in those with the q haplotype by approximately 1.35-fold. In contrast, the activity of the promoter region did not differ between haplotypes. The association was replicated in an independent sample of 827 animals that were randomly selected from the remainder of the cohort from the same farms used in the GWAS. In the replicated population, the frequency of the Q haplotype is 0.313, and this haplotype accounts for 2.69% of the total phenotypic variance. The effect of the Q to q haplotype substitution on NCP4 was 0.054 calves. These findings suggest that variants in the 3' UTR of GTF2F2 affect the level of GTF2F2 mRNA, which is associated with calving efficiency.Conclusions: This GWAS has identified variants in the 3' UTR of GTF2F2 that were associated with the NCP4 of Japanese Black cattle, and this association was validated in an independent sample. The Q haplotype will be immediately useful in improving the calving efficiency of Japanese Black cattle. © 2013 Sasaki et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

Noguchi J.,Japan National Institute of Agrobiological Science | Nakai M.,Japan National Institute of Agrobiological Science | Kikuchi K.,Japan National Institute of Agrobiological Science | Kaneko H.,Japan National Institute of Agrobiological Science | Imaeda N.,Gifu Prefectural Livestock Research Institute
Journal of Reproduction and Development | Year: 2013

In the process of establishment of an inbred Duroc pig strain, males with size asymmetry of the testes were frequently observed. To clarify the possible causes of this asymmetry, we examined the testes and epididymides of 67 males of the F4-F7 generations at 35-100 weeks of age. Testicular weights showed a wide variation (120-610 g). When the weights of the testes were compared bilaterally, 35 of the 67 males showed more than a 10% difference. Histological examination of testes from this asymmetry group revealed a range of seminiferous tubule disruption including disappearance of all germ cells, but not Sertoli cells, in the epithelium. Focal lesions associated with the degenerated tubules were observed. Trends of incident fibrosis or hyalinization of these lesions were seen in aged males of the asymmetry group. Besides this abnormality of spermatogenesis, infiltration of mononuclear inflammatory cells around the tubule was frequently observed in the asymmetry group (32.9%, compared with 1.6% in males showing testis symmetry). In severe cases, the inflammatory cells were concentrated in the intertubular region instead of Leydig cells. Cellular infiltration was also observed around the epididymal duct and blood vessels, but its incidence did not differ between the symmetry and asymmetry groups. Testicular testosterone levels were significantly increased in the asymmetry group, but those of E2 and inhibin did not differ between the two groups. These histopathological features indicate that disruption of spermatogenesis after orchitis/epididymo-orchitis could induce testicular atrophy. Genetic predispositions for this trait may cause prevalent retrograde infections, resulting in orchitis/epididymo-orchitis. © 2013 by the Society for Reproduction and Development. Source

Hoshino Y.,Gifu Prefectural Livestock Research Institute | Saeki K.,Kinki University
Journal of Mammalian Ova Research | Year: 2010

Cloning by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) can be used for the conservation of endangered and extinct animals and elite livestock, and their somatic cells have often been cryopreserved as genetic resources. However, viable cells are not always available when individuals are already dead or when their species have extinct. If the intact genome could be retrieved from such animals, cloned animals could be produced by SCNT technology. Recently, we have demonstrated that viable somatic cells can be obtained from certain bovine organs frozen without cryoprotectant for a decade and that viable cloned animals can be produced from the retrieved cells by SCNT technology. In this mini-review, we discuss recent attempts to rescue animal genetic resources from tissues, organs or bodies frozen without cryoprotectant for a long time. Source

Miyasaka T.,RIKEN | Miyasaka T.,Nihon University | Takeshima S.-N.,RIKEN | Matsumoto Y.,RIKEN | And 7 more authors.
Gene | Year: 2011

In cattle, bovine leukocyte antigens (BoLAs) have been extensively used as markers for bovine diseases and immunological traits. In this study, we sequenced alleles of the BoLA class II loci, BoLA-DRB3 and BoLA-DQA1, from 650 Japanese cattle from six herds [three herds (507 animals) of Japanese Black cattle and three herds (143 animals) of Holstein cattle] using polymerase chain reaction-sequence-based typing (PCR-SBT) methods. We identified 26 previously reported distinct DRB3 alleles in the two populations: 22 in Japanese Black and 17 in Holstein. The number of DRB3 alleles detected in each herd ranged from 9 to 20. Next, we identified 15 previously reported distinct DQA1 alleles: 13 in Japanese Black and 10 in Holstein. The number of alleles in each herd ranged from 6 to 10. Thus, allelic divergence is significantly greater for DRB3 than for DQA1. A population tree on the basis of the frequencies of the DRB3 and DQA1 alleles showed that, although the genetic distance differed significantly between the two cattle breeds, it was closely related within the three herds of each breed. In addition, Wu-Kabat variability analysis indicated that the DRB3 gene was more polymorphic than the DQA1 gene in both breeds and in all herds, and that the majority of the hypervariable positions within both loci corresponded to pocket-forming residues. The DRB3 and DQA1 heterozygosity for both breeds within each herd were calculated based on the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. Only one Japanese Black herd showed a significant difference between the expected and observed heterozygosity at both loci. This is the first report presenting a detailed study of the allelic distribution of BoLA-DRB3 and -DQA1 genes in Japanese Black and Holstein cattle from different farms in Japan. These results may help to develop improved livestock breeding strategies in the future. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. Source

Miyasaka T.,RIKEN | Miyasaka T.,Nihon University | Takeshima S.N.,RIKEN | Takeshima S.N.,Tokyo Medical University | And 7 more authors.
Tissue Antigens | Year: 2013

Bovine leukemia virus (BLV) is the etiological agent of enzootic bovine leukosis, which is the most common neoplastic disease of cattle. Bovine leukocyte antigen (BoLA) is strongly involved in the subclinical progression of BLV infections. Recent studies show that the BoLA-DRB3 gene might play a direct role in controlling the number of BLV-infected peripheral B lymphocytes in vivo in Holstein cattle. However, the specific BoLA class II allele and DRB3-DQA1 haplotypes determining the BLV proviral load in Japanese Black cattle are yet to be identified. In this study, we focused on the association of BLV proviral load and polymorphism of BoLA class II in Japanese Black cattle. We genotyped 186 BLV-infected, clinically normal cattle for BoLA-DRB3 and BoLA-DQA1 using a polymerase chain reaction-sequence-based typing method. BoLA-DRB3*0902 and BoLA-DRB3*1101 were associated with a low proviral load (LPVL), and BoLA-DRB3*1601 was associated with a high proviral load (HPVL). Furthermore, BoLA-DQA1*0204 and BoLA-DQA1*10012 were related to LPVL and HPVL, respectively. Furthermore, we confirmed the correlation between the DRB3-DQA1 haplotype and BLV proviral load. Two haplotypes, namely 0902B or C (DRB3*0902-DQA1*0204) and 1101A (DRB3*1101-DQA1*10011), were associated with a low BLV proviral load, whereas one haplotype 1601B (DRB3*1601-DQA1*10012) was associated with a high BLV proviral load. We conclude that resistance is a dominant trait and susceptibility is a recessive trait. Additionally, resistant alleles were common between Japanese Black and Holstein cattle, and susceptible alleles differed. This is the first report to identify an association between the DRB3-DQA1 haplotype and variations in BLV proviral load. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons A/S 81 2 February 2013 10.1111/tan.12041. Source

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