The leptin receptor (LEPR) gene is considered a candidate gene for fatness traits. It is located on SSC 6 in a region in which quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for backfat thickness (BF), fat area ratios, and serum leptin concentration (LEPC) have previously been detected in a Duroc purebred population. The objectives of the present study were to identify porcine LEPR polymorphisms and examine the effects of LEPR polymorphisms on fatness traits in this same population. The Duroc pigs (226 to 953 pigs) were evaluated for BF, fat area ratios using image analysis, and LEPC. A total of seven single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the full-length LEPR coding region were identified in pigs from the base population. Four non-synonymous SNPs of the LEPR gene and 15 microsatellite markers on SSC 6 were then genotyped in all pigs. During candidate gene analysis, we detected significant effects of the non-synonymous SNP c.2002C>T in exon 14 on all traits. In fine mapping analysis, significant QTLs for BF, fat area ratios, and LEPC were detected near the LEPR gene in the same region. These results indicated that the c.2002C>T SNP of LEPR has a strong effect on BF, fat area ratios and LEPC.
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