10.7717/peerj.4619

Sheep skeletal muscle transcriptome analysis reveals muscle growth regulatory lncRNAs

Abstract

As widely distributed domestic animals, sheep are an important species and the source of mutton. In this study, we aimed to evaluate the regulatory lncRNAs associated with muscle growth and development between high production mutton sheep (Dorper sheep and Qianhua Mutton Merino sheep) and low production mutton sheep (Small-tailed Han sheep). In total, 39 lncRNAs were found to be differentially expressed. Using co-expression analysis and functional annotation, 1,206 co-expression interactions were found between 32 lncRNAs and 369 genes, and 29 of these lncRNAs were found to be associated with muscle development, metabolism, cell proliferation and apoptosis. lncRNA–mRNA interactions revealed 6 lncRNAs as hub lncRNAs. Moreover, three lncRNAs and their associated co-expressed genes were demonstrated by cis-regulatory gene analyses, and we also found a potential regulatory relationship between the pseudogene lncRNA LOC101121401 and its parent gene FTH1. This study provides a genome-wide resolution of lncRNA and mRNA regulation in muscles from mutton sheep

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This paper was published in Directory of Open Access Journals.

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