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Expression profile of microRNAs extreme animals for feed efficiency in Nelore breed

Grant number: 14/22325-1
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctoral
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2015
Effective date (End): September 30, 2019
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Animal Husbandry - Genetics and Improvement of Domestic Animals
Principal Investigator:Luciana Correia de Almeida Regitano
Grantee:Priscila Silva Neubern de Oliveira
Host Institution: Embrapa Pecuária Sudeste. Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuária (EMBRAPA). Ministério da Agricultura, Pecuária e Abastecimento (Brasil). São Carlos , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:12/23638-8 - Molecular basis of meat quality in Nelore beef cattle, AP.TEM
Associated scholarship(s):18/09565-4 - SNP network analysis from cross-species related to fatty acids composition, BE.EP.PD   16/03291-4 - Cross-species expression profile of miRNAs related to fatty acids, BE.EP.PD


Brazil has the largest commercial cattle herd in the world, with about 208 million head. The Brazilian herd consists mainly of Zebu and the Nelore breed has the highest expression as meat producer, with notable levels of economic performance. Feed efficiency is an important production trait of late and costly measurement, and despite its moderate heritability is not been included in the genetic evaluation programs in Brazil. Selection for more efficient animals may contribute to reductions in pasture area and pollutant production, despite a higher profitability for the producer. New methodologies for sequencing, genotyping and expression analysis technologies on a genome-scale have contributed to the knowledge of the genetic basis of variation and for the earlier selection in cattle. A previous project entitled "Genetic Strategies for quality beef production" produced 796 steers, offspring of 34 sires representing the diversity of Nelore. The steers were evaluated for feed efficiency and had their genotypes analyzed in the Illumina SNP BovineHD chip. This project identified genomic regions and genes associated feed efficiency. The present project aims to achieve a better understanding of the genetic mechanisms involved in variation in quantitative traits highlighted by the association analysis. Therefore, it is proposed to complement the analysis of genome wide association, expanding the functional analysis of the genome (RNA and microRNA), with the identification of microRNAs in muscle and liver tissue of Nelore cattle extremes for feed efficiency.

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