Genome-Wide Identification of the Mutation Underlying Fleece Variation and Discriminating Ancestral Hairy Species from Modern Woolly Sheep.

TitleGenome-Wide Identification of the Mutation Underlying Fleece Variation and Discriminating Ancestral Hairy Species from Modern Woolly Sheep.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsDemars, J, Cano, M, Drouilhet, L, Plisson-Petit, F, Bardou, P, Fabre, S, Servin, B, Sarry, J, Woloszyn, F, Mulsant, P, Foulquier, D, Carrière, F, Aletru, M, Rodde, N, Cauet, S, Bouchez, O, Pirson, M, Tosser-Klopp, G, Allain, D
JournalMol Biol Evol
Volume34
Issue7
Pagination1722-1729
Date Published2017 Jul 01
ISSN1537-1719
Abstract

The composition and structure of fleece variation observed in mammals is a consequence of a strong selective pressure for fiber production after domestication. In sheep, fleece variation discriminates ancestral species carrying a long and hairy fleece from modern domestic sheep (Ovis aries) owning a short and woolly fleece. Here, we report that the "woolly" allele results from the insertion of an antisense EIF2S2 retrogene (called asEIF2S2) into the 3' UTR of the IRF2BP2 gene leading to an abnormal IRF2BP2 transcript. We provide evidence that this chimeric IRF2BP2/asEIF2S2 messenger 1) targets the genuine sense EIF2S2 RNA and 2) creates a long endogenous double-stranded RNA which alters the expression of both EIF2S2 and IRF2BP2 mRNA. This represents a unique example of a phenotype arising via a RNA-RNA hybrid, itself generated through a retroposition mechanism. Our results bring new insights on the sheep population history thanks to the identification of the molecular origin of an evolutionary phenotypic variation.

DOI10.1093/molbev/msx114
Alternate JournalMol. Biol. Evol.
PubMed ID28379502
PubMed Central IDPMC5455980