Molecular Biology Reports

, Volume 39, Issue 9, pp 8733–8740 | Cite as

Genetic effects of stearoyl-coenzyme A desaturase (SCD) polymorphism on milk production traits in the Chinese dairy population

  • M. A. Alim
  • Y. P. Fan
  • X. P. Wu
  • Y. Xie
  • Y. Zhang
  • S. L. Zhang
  • D. X. Sun
  • Y. Zhang
  • Q. Zhang
  • L. Liu
  • G. Guo


Stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD) is a multifunctional complex enzyme important in the cellular biosynthesis of fatty acids. The present study was to investigate the association of the SCD gene with milk production traits in dairy cattle. Two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) (g.6926A>G and g.8646A>G) in introns 3 and 4, and three SNPs (g.10153A>G, g.10213T>C and g.10329C>T) in exon 5 were identified with pooled DNA sequencing and genotyped using matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry assay in 752 Chinese Holstein cows. Polymorphism g.10329C>T was predicted to result in an amino acid replacement from alanine to valine in the SCD protein. With a mixed animal model, the significant associations of the five SNPs with 305-day milk, fat and protein yields and protein percentage were determined. We further demonstrated cows with heterozygous genotypes (A/G or C/T) had highest 305 day milk yield, fat yield, protein yield and lowest protein percentage. Heterozygous cows with genotype AG at the g.6926A>G locus showed the greatest milk yield (P < 0.0001), fat yield (P < 0.0001) and protein yield (P < 0.0001) among other heterozygous genotypes at any of the loci. Dominance effects of all identified SNPs on milk, fat and protein yields and protein percentage were significant. Moreover, significant allele substitution effects at g.6926A>G locus on milk yield and at g.10213T>C on protein yield were observed. Five-locus haplotypes and strong linkage disequilibrium (D′ > 0.9) between the five SNPs were also observed. The results suggest that identified polymorphisms could be potential genetic markers to improve the production performance of Chinese Holstein.


Chinese Holstein Milk production traits SCD Polymorphisms 



This work was supported by the Key Development of New Transgenic Breeds Program of China (2009ZX08009-156B) and National Natural Science Foundation of China (31072016), and National “948” Project (2011-G2A), The authors would also like to thank the Dairy Association of China for providing frozen semen samples, DHI data and pedigree information. The authors also would like to thank Dr. David Rheinheimer, Post-doctoral Researcher, Wuhan University, for his assistance with English expression and editing.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. A. Alim
    • 1
  • Y. P. Fan
    • 1
  • X. P. Wu
    • 1
  • Y. Xie
    • 1
  • Y. Zhang
    • 1
  • S. L. Zhang
    • 1
  • D. X. Sun
    • 1
  • Y. Zhang
    • 1
  • Q. Zhang
    • 1
  • L. Liu
    • 2
  • G. Guo
    • 3
  1. 1.College of Animal Science and Technology, Key Laboratory of Animal Genetics and Breeding of Ministry of Agriculture, National Engineering Laboratory for Animal BreedingChina Agricultural UniversityBeijingChina
  2. 2.Beijing Dairy Cattle CenterBeijingChina
  3. 3.Beijing Sanyuan Lvhe Dairy Farming CattleBeijingChina

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