Casein haplotypes and their association with milk production traits in Norwegian Red cattle.
Genetics Selection Evolution, February 2009
Nilsen H, Olsen HG, Hayes B, Sehested E, Svendsen M, Nome T, Meuwissen T, Lien S, Heidi Nilsen, Hanne Olsen, Ben Hayes, Erling Sehested, Morten Svendsen, Torfinn Nome, Theo Meuwissen, Sigbjørn Lien
A high resolution SNP map was constructed for the bovine casein region to identify haplotype structures and study associations with milk traits in Norwegian Red cattle. Our analyses suggest separation of the casein cluster into two haplotype blocks, one consisting of the CSN1S1, CSN2 and CSN1S2 genes and another one consisting of the CSN3 gene. Highly significant associations with both protein and milk yield were found for both single SNPs and haplotypes within the CSN1S1-CSN2-CSN1S2 haplotype block. In contrast, no significant association was found for single SNPs or haplotypes within the CSN3 block. Our results point towards CSN2 and CSN1S2 as the most likely loci harbouring the underlying causative DNA variation. In our study, the most significant results were found for the SNP CSN2_67 with the C allele consistently associated with both higher protein and milk yields. CSN2_67 calls a C to an A substitution at codon 67 in beta-casein gene resulting in histidine replacing proline in the amino acid sequence. This polymorphism determines the protein variants A1/B (CSN2_67 A allele) versus A2/A3 (CSN2_67 C allele). Other studies have suggested that a high consumption of A1/B milk may affect human health by increasing the risk of diabetes and heart diseases. Altogether these results argue for an increase in the frequency of the CSN2_67 C allele or haplotypes containing this allele in the Norwegian Red cattle population by selective breeding.
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