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Open Access Research article

Identification and association of the single nucleotide polymorphisms in calpain3 (CAPN3) gene with carcass traits in chickens

Zeng-Rong Zhang1, Yi-Ping Liu1*, Yong-Gang Yao2, Xiao-Song Jiang3, Hua-Rui Du4 and Qing Zhu1

Author Affiliations

1 College of Animal Science and Technology, Sichuan Agriculture University, Ya'an, Sichuan 625014, PR China

2 Key Laboratory of Animal Models and Human Disease Mechanisms, Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, Yunnan 650223, PR China

3 Institute of Poultry Sciences, Sichuan Animal Science Academy, Chengdu, Sichuan 610066, PR China

4 Breeding Center, Sichuan Dahen Poultry Breeding Company, Chengdu, Sichuan 610066, PR China

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BMC Genetics 2009, 10:10  doi:10.1186/1471-2156-10-10

Published: 5 March 2009



The aim of this study is to screen single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) of chicken Calpain3 (CAPN3) gene and to analyze the potential association between CAPN3 gene polymorphisms and carcass traits in chickens. We screened CAPN3 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in 307 meat-type quality chicken from 5 commercial pure lines (S01, S02, S03, S05, and D99) and 4 native breeds from Guangdong Province (Huiyang Huxu chicken and Qingyuan Ma chicken) and Sichuan Province (Caoke chicken and Shandi Black-bone chicken), China.


Two SNPs (11818T>A and 12814T>G) were detected by single strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) method and were verified by DNA sequencing. Association analysis showed that the 12814T>G genotypes were significantly associated with body weight (BW), carcass weight (CW), breast muscle weight (BMW), and leg muscle weight (LMW). Haplotypes constructed on the two SNPs (H1, TG; H2, TT; H3, AG; and H4, AT) were associated with BW, CW (P < 0.05), eviscerated percentage (EP), semi-eviscerated percentage (SEP), breast muscle percentage (BMP), and leg muscle percentage (LMP) (P < 0.01). Diplotype H1H2 was dominant for BW, CW, and LMP, and H2H2 was dominant for EP, SEP, and BMP.


We speculated that the CAPN3 gene was a major gene affecting chicken muscle growth and carcass traits or it was linked with the major gene(s). Diplotypes H1H2 and H2H2 might be advantageous for carcass traits.