The amount and composition of intramuscular fat (IMF) in the skeletal muscle of beef cattle is a relevant feature for the meat industry because of its effect on human health and the organoleptic properties of meat. Functional candidate genes related to GIM deposition have been extensively studied in cattle in the expectation of better understanding the biological mechanisms involved with this trait. However, many aspects still need to be explored for a better understanding of the physiology of formation and composition of GIM to enable the production of meat with higher quality. Due to previous results from our group about transcriptome and proteome of Nelore bovine skeletal muscle, 14 common genes associated with GIM deposition were identified, which showed alterations in the mRNA and protein expression level. Among these, we chose four (APOL3, HSP90AA1, ZC3H6, and RNF213) to be better characterized as putative functional candidates for GIM deposition. These genes do not have detailed description in the literature for this characteristic in cattle. Therefore, the aim of this study is to characterize the expression of new genes that are candidates for intramuscular fat deposition in Nellore cattle by quantitative real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) technique. This study would be part of a larger work that aims to validate also the level of expression of the corresponding proteins with the intention of presenting them as new biomarkers for this trait.
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