Genetic Variation of Growth Hormone Gene and Its Relationship with Milk Production Traits in China Holstein Cows

  • Zhou, Guo-li (College of Life Science, Liaocheng University) ;
  • Zhu, Qi (College of Life Science, Liaocheng University) ;
  • Jin, Hai-guo (Branch of animal husbandry Jilin Academy of Agricultural Sciences) ;
  • Guo, Shan-li (College of Life Science, Liaocheng University)
  • Received : 2004.11.25
  • Accepted : 2005.05.27
  • Published : 2006.03.01


Associations were analysed between polymorphisms localized in intron 3 of the growth hormone gene (GH-MspI) and milk production traits of 543 China Holstein cows. A PCR-RFLP method was used for identification of genotypes. The following frequencies of genotypes and alleles were found: 0.77, 0.21 and 0.02 for +/+, +/- and -/-, respectively, and 0.87 and 0.13 for $GH^+$ and $GH^-$, respectively. Significant differences between herds were observed in the frequencies of both genotypes and alleles. The results of least squares analysis showed that in all three lactation phases the GH +/+ cows yielded most milk (p<0.01 for lactation I and p<0.05 for lactations II and III), whereas +/- cows showed higher milk fat content than +/+ individuals (p<0.05 for lactation I and II, and p<0.01 for lactation III). The +/+ cows yielded more fat than +/- individuals (p<0.01 only in lactation I). The +/+ cows yielded more milk protein than +/- individuals (p<0.01 for lactation I, II, and III). The +/+ cows produced milk of higher protein content than that of +/- individuals (p<0.05 only in lactation II). Based on these results, we conclude that the +/+ of GH locus should be the favored genotype in China Holstein cow breeds for use in marker-assisted selection programmes.


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