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    Muscle fiber diameter is an economically important trait because it affects meat yield and quality. However, the genetic basis underlying muscle fiber diameter has not been determined. In this study, we collected THREE muscular histological phenotypes in 479 ducks from an F2 segregating population generated by mallard × Pekin duck crosses. We performed genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and identified a quantitative trait locus (QTL) significantly associated with muscle fiber diameter on chromosome 3. Then, we discovered the selection signatures using the fixation index among 40 mallards and 30 Pekin ducks in this QTL region. Furthermore, we characterized the recombination event in this QTL region and identified a 6-kb block located on TASP1 that was significantly associated with muscle fiber diameter. Finally, five SNPs were screened as potential causative mutations within the 6-kb block. In conclusion, we demonstrated that TASP1 contributes to an increase in muscle fiber diameter, which helps to characterize muscle development and contributes to the genetic improvement of meat yield and quality in livestock.


    Dapeng Liu, Wenlei Fan, Yaxi Xu, Simeng Yu, Wenjing Liu, Zhanbao Guo, Wei Huang, Zhengkui Zhou, Shuisheng Hou. Genome-wide association studies demonstrate that TASP1 contributes to increased muscle fiber diameter. Heredity. 2021 Jun;126(6):991-999

    PMID: 33767369

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