The quality of fat is an important factor in defining the quality of meat. Fat quality is determined by the composition of fatty acids. Among lipid metabolism-related genes, including fatty acid synthesis genes, several genetic variations have been reported in the bovine fatty acid synthase (FASN), stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD), sterol regulatory element-binding protein 1 (SREBP1), and GH genes. In the present study, we evaluated the single and epistatic effects of 5 genetic variations (4 SNP and 1 insertion/deletion) in 4 genes (FASN, SCD, SREBP1, and GH) on the fatty acid composition of the longissimus thoracis muscle and carcass and meat quality traits in 480 commercial Japanese Black cattle. Significant single effects of FASN, SCD, and GHL127V polymorphisms on the fatty acid composition of the longissimus thoracis muscle were detected. The A293V polymorphism of SCD had the largest effect on myristic acid (C14:0, P < 0.001), myristoleic acid (C14:1, P < 0.001), stearic acid (C18:0, P < 0.001), oleic acid (C18:1, P < 0.001), and MUFA (P < 0.001). Polymorphisms in the FASN, SCD, and SREBP1 genes showed no effect on any meat yield trait. There were no significant epistatic effects on fatty acid composition among pairs of the 3 genes (FASN, SCD, and SREBP1) involved in fatty acid synthesis. No epistatic interactions (P > 0.1) were detected between FASN and SCD for any carcass trait. When the genotypes of 3 markers (FASN, SCD, and GHL127V) were substituted from the lesser effect allele to the greater effect allele, the proportion of C18:1 increased by 4.46%. More than 20% of the genetic variance in the C18:1 level could be accounted for by these 3 genetic markers. The present results revealed that polymorphisms in 2 fatty acid synthesis genes (FASN and SCD) independently influenced fatty acid composition in the longissimus thoracis muscle. These results suggest that SNP in the FASN and SCD genes are useful markers for the improvement of fatty acid composition in commercial Japanese Black cattle.
ASJC Scopus subject areas