Genome-wide association studies on collagen contents trait for meat quality in Hanwoo.

Kyeong-Hye Won1, Do-Hyun Kim1, In-Ho Hwang3, Hak-Kyo Lee1,2, Jae-Don Oh1,*
Author Information & Copyright
1Department of Animal Biotechnology, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, Jeonbuk National University, Jeonju 54896, Korea.
2Department of Agricultural Convergence Technology, Jeonbuk National University, Jeonju 54896, Korea.
3Department of Animal Science, Jeonbuk National University, Jeonju 561756, Korea.
*Corresponding Author: Jae-Don Oh, Department of Animal Biotechnology, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, Jeonbuk National University, Jeonju 54896, Korea, Republic of. E-mail:

© Copyright 2022 Korean Society of Animal Science and Technology. This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


 Beef consumers valued meat quality traits such as texture, tenderness, juiciness, flavor, and meat color that determining consumers’ purchasing decision. Most research on meat quality has focused on marbling, a key characteristic related to meat eating quality. However, other important traits such as meat texture, tenderness, and color have not much studied in cattle. Among these traits, meat tenderness and texture of cattle are among the most important factors affecting quality evaluation of consumers. Collagen is the main component of connective tissues.It greatly affects meat tenderness. The objective of this study was to determine significant variants and candidate genes associated with collagen contents trait (total collagen) through genome-wide association studies (GWAS). Phenotypic and genomic data from 135 Hanwoo were used. The BLUPF90 family program and GRAMMAR method for GWAS were applied in this study. A total of 73 potential single nucleotide polymorphisms SNPs showed significant associations with collagen content. They were located in or near 108 candidate genes. TMEM135 and ME3 genes were identified to have the most significant SNPs associated with collagen contents trait. Data indicated that these genes were related to collagen. Biological processes and pathways for the prediction of biological functions of candidate genes were confirmed. We found that candidate genes were involved in positive regulation of CREB transcription factor activity and actin cytoskeleton related to tenderness and texture of beef. Three genes (CRTC3, MYO1C and MYLK4) belonging to these biological functions were related to tenderness. These results provide a basis for improving genomic characteristics of Hanwoo for the production of tender beef. Furthermore, they could be used they could be used as an index to select desired traits for consumers.

Keywords: Genome-wide association studies (GWAS); Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs); Collagen; Meat quality; Tenderness; Hanwoo