We investigate the associations between growth hormone (GH) gene polymorphism and behavioral and physiological responses to stressors and learning ability in Japanese Black cattle. Flight distance test was conducted in the first experiment. Steers with haplotype C of GH gene polymorphism avoided human approaches at a significantly greater distance than ones without haplotype C (C: 1.9±0.9, non-C: 1.0±0.2m, P<0.05). An open-field test was conducted in the second experiment. Behavioral responses did not differ significantly between steers with and without haplotype C. Increases of heart rates to dropping of iron pipes was significantly higher in steers with haplotype C (C:161.7±21.8, non-C:130.7±31.3%, P<0.05). Despite basal serum concentrations not being different between steers with and without haplotype C, serum cortisol in blood sampling immediately after severe confinement in a race tended to be higher in steers with haplotype C (P=0.1). The maze test was conducted as the third experiment. There was no difference in performance in the maze test between steers with and without haplotype C. It is concluded that genetic polymorphism of GH may affect stress responses through GH concentration in steers.
- Flight distance
- Growth hormone gene polymorphism
- Heart rate
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)