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Molecular characterization of myostatin (MSTN) gene and association analysis with growth traits in the bighead carp (Aristichthys nobilis)

Liu, Lusha, Yu, Xiaomu, Tong, Jingou
Molecular biology reports 2012 v.39 no.9 pp. 9211-9221
Aristichthys nobilis, amino acid sequences, amino acids, birds, body length, body weight, complementary DNA, exons, genes, genotype, growth and development, growth traits, introns, mammals, muscle development, muscles, myostatin, open reading frames, phylogeny, polymerase chain reaction, polypeptides, selection methods, sequence analysis, single nucleotide polymorphism, single-stranded conformational polymorphism, skeletal muscle
Myostatin (MSTN) is a member of the transforming growth factor-β superfamily and functions as a negative regulator of skeletal muscle development and growth. In this study, the bighead carp MSTN gene (AnMSTN for short) was cloned and characterized. The 3,769 bp genomic sequence of AnMSTN consisted of three exons and two introns, and the full length cDNA (2,141 bp) of the gene had an open reading frame encoding a polypeptide of 375 amino acids. The deduced amino acid sequence of AnMSTN showed 67.1–98.7 % homology with MSTNs of avian, mammalian and teleostean species. Sequence comparison and phylogenetic analysis confirmed the MSTNs were conserved throughout the vertebrates and AnMSTN belonged to MSNT-1 isoform. AnMSTN was expressed in various tissues with the highest expression in muscle. Two single nucleotide polymorphisms, g.1668T > C in intron 2 and g.2770C > A in 3′ UTR, were identified in AnMSTN by sequencing PCR fragments, and genotyped by SSCP. Association analysis showed that g.2770C > A genotypes were significantly associated with total length, body length and body weight (P < 0.01). These results suggest that AnMSTN involves in the regulation of growth, and this polymorphism would be informative for further studies on selective breeding in bighead carp.