Brazil is the second world leader in beef production and the expansion of exports is linked to the implementation of new selection tools for zebu cattle (Bos taurus indicus), which represent approximately 80% of the total Brazilian herd. The quantity of intramuscular fat can influence the sensory characteristics and nutritional value of beef, thus the selection of animals with adequate fat content for consumer becomes important. This trait shows to be complex by difficult to measure, this way it is necessary to have a better knowledge of gene pathways and regulators that controls it. With the advent of next generation sequencing (NGS) technologies, currently, is possible to study the genome and transcriptome in large-scale, faster and more cheaply. This project aims to analysis co-expression networks of microRNAs and theirs target genes expressed in Nelore muscle by integrating gene and microRNA expression data. The microRNAs identified from sequencing of Longissimus dorsi muscle from 30 samples and their target genes will be used to construct correlation networks with PCIT, PIF and RIF analysis. The results may contribute to understanding of the genetic regulatory mechanisms that are involved with lipid metabolism and control important economic trait for livestock such as intramuscular fat content in beef cattle.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: