A genome scan for milk production traits in dairy goats reveals two new mutations in Dgat1 reducing milk fat content

Pauline Martin, Isabelle Palhière, Cyrielle Maroteau, Philippe Bardou, Kamila Canale-Tabet, Julien Sarry, Florent Woloszyn, Justine Bertrand-Michel, Ines Racke, Hüseyin Besir, Rachel Rupp, Gwenola Tosser-Klopp (Lead / Corresponding author)

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The quantity of milk and milk fat and proteins are particularly important traits in dairy livestock. However, little is known about the regions of the genome that influence these traits in goats. We conducted a genome wide association study in French goats and identified 109 regions associated with dairy traits. For a major region on chromosome 14 closely associated with fat content, the Diacylglycerol O-Acyltransferase 1 (DGAT1) gene turned out to be a functional and positional candidate gene. The caprine reference sequence of this gene was completed and 29 polymorphisms were found in the gene sequence, including two novel exonic mutations: R251L and R396W, leading to substitutions in the protein sequence. The R251L mutation was found in the Saanen breed at a frequency of 3.5% and the R396W mutation both in the Saanen and Alpine breeds at a frequencies of 13% and 7% respectively. The R396W mutation explained 46% of the genetic variance of the trait, and the R251L mutation 6%. Both mutations were associated with a notable decrease in milk fat content. Their causality was then demonstrated by a functional test. These results provide new knowledge on the genetic basis of milk synthesis and will help improve the management of the French dairy goat breeding program.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1872
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 12 May 2017


  • Journal article
  • Animal breeding
  • Enzymes
  • Genome-wide association studies


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