Polymorphisms in 5′ proximal regulating region of THRSP gene are associated with fat production in pigs


Chinese and imported pig breeds differ in fat production potential, which is associated with the polymorphisms in the 5′ proximal regulating region (5′PRR) of thyroid hormone responsive gene (THRSP). In three Chinese breeds (Dingyuan, CDY; Wannanhua, CWH; and Jixi, CJX) and one introduced breed (Yorkshire, YKS), three variant sites were located at T/C-400, A/G-376, and G/A-98 in the 5′PRR. Chinese pig breeds had higher C-400 allele frequencies than YKS. The frequencies of A-376 in CDY and G-376 in CWH were about 0.8. G-98 allele frequencies in CWH and YKS were 0.8617 and 0.8149, respectively. TGG was the dominant haplotype in YKS, CGG in CWH and CJX, and CAA in CDY. According to haplotype frequency, four breeds were clustered into three types, which was consistent with the geographical distribution of the breeds. In CDY, the average backfat thickness (BFT) was the highest with the CC-400 genotype, followed by CT-400 and TT-400 genotypes. In YKS, the pigs with CC-400 or CT-400 genotypes had higher BFT and average daily weight gain, whereas those with CC-400 or TT-400 genotypes had larger lion-eye area. No significant difference was observed in carcass traits among different genotypes at the A/G-376 and G/A-98 loci. The mRNA abundance of THRSP expression for the CCAGAG genotype was significantly higher than that for CTAGAG or TTAGAG genotype. These results indicated that the polymorphisms and genotype distribution of THRSP were closely related to the potential for fat production in pig breeds, which were the result of adaptation to artificial selection and natural selection.

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Data will be available on request to corresponding or first author.


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The work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) [Grant No. 31172180] and Project of Anhui Province Scientific Technology Plan (No. 17030701007).

Author information




HC: conceptualization, funding acquisition, methodology, project administration, supervision, writing—review & editing. XW: investigation, methodology, project administration, roles/writing—original draft, writing—review & editing. JC, WQ: formal analysis, investigation, writing—review & editing. GC, HC: formal analysis, writing—review & editing. XS, MZ, and NB: formal analysis.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Hongquan Chen.

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All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest..

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All procedures that involved animals were approved by the animal care and use committee at the institution in which the experiment was conducted. All procedures that involved animals were also approved and authorized by the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture.

Additional information

Xiaohong Wang and Jin Cheng contributed equally to this work.

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Wang, X., Cheng, J., Qin, W. et al. Polymorphisms in 5′ proximal regulating region of THRSP gene are associated with fat production in pigs. 3 Biotech 10, 267 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13205-020-02266-6

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  • Backfat thickness
  • Carcass trait
  • Genotype distribution
  • Pig breed
  • THRSP gene