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Copy number variation and missense mutations of the agouti signaling protein (ASIP) gene in goat breeds with different coat colors



Copy number variation and missense mutations of the agouti signaling protein (ASIP) gene in goat breeds with different coat colors



Cytogenetic and Genome Research 126(4): 333-347



In goats, classical genetic studies reported a large number of alleles at the Agouti locus with effects on coat color and pattern distribution. From these early studies, the dominant A(Wt) (white/tan) allele was suggested to cause the white color of the Saanen breed. Here, we sequenced the coding region of the goat ASIP gene in 6 goat breeds (Girgentana, Maltese, Derivata di Siria, Murciano-Granadina, Camosciata delle Alpi, and Saanen), with different coat colors and patterns. Five single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were identified, 3 of which caused missense mutations in conserved positions of the cysteine-rich carboxy-terminal domain of the protein (p.Ala96Gly, p.Cys126Gly, and p.Val128Gly). Allele and genotype frequencies suggested that these mutations are not associated or not completely associated with coat color in the investigated goat breeds. Moreover, genotyping and sequencing results, deviation from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium, as well as allele copy number evaluation from semiquantitative fluorescent multiplex PCR, indicated the presence of copy number variation (CNV) in all investigated breeds. To confirm the presence of CNV and evaluate its extension, we applied a bovine-goat cross-species array comparative genome hybridization (aCGH) experiment using a custom tiling array based on bovine chromosome 13. aCGH results obtained for 8 goat DNA samples confirmed the presence of CNV affecting a region of less that 100 kb including the ASIP and AHCY genes. In Girgentana and Saanen breeds, this CNV might cause the A(Wt) allele, as already suggested for a similar structural mutation in sheep affecting the ASIP and AHCY genes, providing evidence for a recurrent interspecies CNV. However, other mechanisms may also be involved in determining coat color in these 2 breeds.

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Accession: 052346562

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PMID: 20016133

DOI: 10.1159/000268089


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