Zhenqiang Xu, Qinghua Nie and Xiquan Zhang Pages 137 - 146 ( 10 )
Over the two past decades, a significant number of studies have observed animal growth traits to examine animal genetic mechanisms due to their ease of measurement and high heritability. Chicken which has a significant impact on fundamental biology is a major source of protein worldwide, making it an ideal model for examining animal growth trait development. The genetic mechanisms of chicken growth traits have been studied using quantitative trait loci mapping through genome-scan and candidate gene approaches, genome-wide association studies (GWAS), comparative genomic strategies, microRNA (miRNA) regulation of growth development analysis, and epigenomic analysis. This review focuses on chicken GWAS and miRNA regulation of growth traits. Several recently published GWAS reports showed that most genome-wide significant single nucleotide polymorphisms are located on chromosomes 1 and 4 in chickens. Chicken growth, particularly skeletal muscle growth and development, is greatly regulated by miRNA. Using dwarf and normal chickens, let-7b was found to be involved in determining chicken dwarf phenotypes by regulating growth hormone receptor gene expression.
Chicken, Genome-wide association study (GWAS), Growth traits, microRNA (miRNA) regulation, Quantitative trait loci (QTL), Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs)
Guangdong Provincial Key Lab of Agro-Animal Genomics and Molecular Breeding, and Key Lab of Chicken Genetics, Breeding and Reproduction, Ministry of Agriculture, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou 510642, Guangdong, China.