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ARS Home » Plains Area » Clay Center, Nebraska » U.S. Meat Animal Research Center » Livestock Bio-Systems » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #400578

Research Project: Applying Nutritional Strategies to Improve Early Embryonic Development and Progeny Performance in Beef Cows

Location: Livestock Bio-Systems

Title: Multi-tissue multi-omics approach to investigate genomic factors underlying pubertal phenotypes in gilts

item WIJESENA, HIRUNI - Orise Fellow
item Nonneman, Danny - Dan
item Keel, Brittney
item Rohrer, Gary
item Snelling, Warren
item Lents, Clay

Submitted to: Plant and Animal Genome Conference
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/7/2022
Publication Date: 1/14/2023
Citation: Wijesena, H.R., Nonneman, D.J., Keel, B.N., Rohrer, G.A., Snelling, W.M., Lents, C.A. 2023. Multi-tissue multi-omics approach to investigate genomic factors underlying pubertal phenotypes in gilts [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the Plant and Animal Genome Conference, January 13-18, 2023, San Diego, California. Palm 1-2.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The research at U.S. Meat Animal Research Center on gilt development has focused on prepubertal phenotypes such as age at puberty, delayed puberty (DP), and behavioral anestrus (BA). Failure to reach puberty is an issue relevant to the industry because it is a main reason gilts are culled from the herd. Ovaries of gilts that failed to show estrus at 240 days of age were evaluated at harvest. Approximately 50% of the gilts examined were prepubertal (DP) while the rest had experienced at least one ovarian cycle without showing estrus (BA). Gene expression analysis of neural (olfactory bulb, hypothalamus, amygdala, hippocampus), anterior pituitary, and ovarian tissues of DP (n=8), BA (n=8), and normal cyclic controls (n=8) identified differentially expressed genes (DEG) involved in olfactory functions, neurological disorders, and follicular development. Genome-wide associations for age at puberty (n=4,986) and behavioral anestrus (n=515 BA cases and n=2,421 cyclic controls) identified 21 and 81 significant SNP associations, respectively. Candidate genes and polymorphisms in the AHR signaling pathway (AHR, ANKRA2) were identified for age at puberty. Several DEG in the ovary (AHR, MEF2C, EWSR1, SOSTDC1) and pituitary (PLEKHA8) were located within the QTL regions for age at puberty and BA, respectively. Application of tensor decomposition to muti-individual, multi-tissue expression data identified pituitary and ovary as most influential tissues regulating pubertal phenotypes. These expression data will be integrated with genomic association studies to generate SNP weights and improve QTL detection for prepubertal phenotypes in gilts.