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Journal of Animal Science Abstract - Animal Nutrition

Bovine pyruvate carboxylase 5′ untranslated region variant expression during transition to lactation and feed restriction in dairy cows1


This article in JAS

  1. Vol. 89 No. 6, p. 1881-1892
    Received: Nov 13, 2010
    Accepted: Jan 13, 2011
    Published: December 4, 2014

    3 Corresponding author(s):

  1. H. M. White22,
  2. S. L. Koser and
  3. S. S. Donkin 3
  1. Department of Animal Sciences, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907



Pyruvate carboxylase (PC; EC is a critical enzyme for gluconeogenesis and maintenance of tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle intermediates, and expression of PC mRNA is increased at calving and during feed restriction. The bovine PC gene contains 3 promoters (3, 2, and 1 from 5′ to 3′) that produce 6 mRNA 5′ variants (A through F). Products of promoter 1, untranslated region (UTR) variants A, B, C, and F are specifically expressed in glucogenic and lipogenic tissues. The objective of this study was to develop a quantitative PCR-based assay for bovine PC 5′ UTR variants that would permit simultaneous characterization of PC variant expression and to determine the pattern of PC variant expression during the transition to lactation and during feed restriction. Primer combinations specific to the coding region of PC and the 5′ UTR for variants D, E, and F were used with Taqman probes in a real-time PCR multiplex assay to simultaneously determine total PC mRNA and expression of each UTR variant. The intraassay and interassay CV were less than 2 and 10%, respectively. Total PC mRNA and PC 5′ UTR variant profile was determined for liver biopsy samples collected from Holstein cows (n = 8) at −28, +1, and +28 d relative to calving (DRTC) and from mid-lactation Holstein cows subjected to either feed restriction (n = 8) or fed for ad libitum intake (n = 8). The expression of PC mRNA corresponding to the coding region of PC and PC 5′ UTR variant regions A, B, C, and F increased (P < 0.05) 4-fold with feed restriction and 6-fold at calving. Nuclei isolated from liver biopsy samples and used to determine the rates of PC gene transcription indicate changes in the abundance of PC 5′ mRNA variants A, B, C, and F that are due to corresponding changes in the rate of transcription of the bovine PC gene. The data support the use of the multiplex assay described here as a proxy measure of the activity of bovine PC promoter 1. The increased PC mRNA expression observed at calving and during feed restriction is the result of specific increases in 5′ UTR variants A, B, C, and F due to increased transcriptional activity of promoter 1 of the PC gene.

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