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Anim Biosci > Accepted Articles
https://doi.org/10.5713/ab.24.0135    [Accepted] Published online June 25, 2024.
Investigation of SNPs in differentially expressed genes and proteins reveals the genetic basis of skeletal muscle growth differences between Tibetan and Large White pigs
Heli Xiong1,*  , Yan Zhang1  , Zhiyong Zhao1 
Animal Nutrition and Swine Institute, Yunnan Academy of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Sciences, Kunming 650224, China
Correspondence:  Heli Xiong, Tel: +86-087165018775, Fax: +86-087165018775, Email: helihewei@163.com
Received: 5 March 2024   • Revised: 2 April 2024   • Accepted: 7 June 2024
Skeletal muscle growth is an important economic trait for meat production, with notable differences between Tibetan pigs (TIBPs, a slow-growing breed) and Large White pigs (LWPs, a fast-growing breed). However, the genetic underpinnings of this disparity remain unclear.
In the current study, we integrated differentially expressed genes (DEGs) and proteins (DEPs) from 60-day-old embryonic muscle tissue, along with whole-genome single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) displaying absolute allele frequency differences (ΔAF) of 0.5 or more between the TIBP and LWP breeds, to unravel the genetic factors influencing skeletal muscle growth.
Our analysis revealed 3499 DEGs and 628 DEPs with SNPs having a ΔAF equal to or greater than 0.5. Further functional analysis identified 145 DEGs and 23 DEPs involved in biological processes related to skeletal muscle development, and 22 DEGs and 3 DEPs implicated in the mTOR signaling pathway, which is known for positively regulating protein synthesis. Among these genes, several DEGs and DEPs, enriched with TIPB-specific SNPs in regulatory or/and coding regions, showed marked ΔAF between the TIBP and LWP breeds, including MYF5, MYOF, ASB2, PDE9A, SDC1, PDGFRA, MYOM2, ACVR1, ZIC3, COL11A1, TGFBR1, EDNRA, TGFB2, PDE4D, PGAM2, GRK2, SCN4B, CACNA1S, MYL4, IGF1, and FOXO1. Additionally, genes such as CAPN3, MYOM2, and PGAM2, identified as both DEPs and DEGs related to skeletal muscle development, contained multiple TIBP-specific and LWP-predominant SNPs in regulatory and/or coding regions, underscoring significant ΔAF differences between the two breeds.
This comprehensive investigation of SNPs in DEGs and DEPs identified a significant number of SNPs and genes related to skeletal muscle development during the prenatal stage. These findings not only shed light on potential causal genes for muscle divergence between the TIBP and LWP breeds but also offer valuable insights for pig breeding strategies aimed at enhancing meat production.
Keywords: Tibetan Pigs; Large White Pigs; SNPs; Differentially Expressed Genes; Differentially Expressed Proteins; Skeletal Muscle Growth

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