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Short communication: Signs of host genetic regulation in the microbiome composition in 2 dairy breeds: Holstein and Brown Swiss

Gonzalez-Recio, O., Zubiria, I., García-Rodríguez, A., Hurtado, A., & Atxaerandio, R. (2018). Short communication: Signs of host genetic regulation in the microbiome composition in 2 dairy breeds: Holstein and Brown Swiss. Journal of Dairy Science, 101(3), 2285–2292. https://doi.org/10.3168/jds.2017-13179

This study aimed to evaluate whether the host genotype exerts any genetic control on the microbiome composition of the rumen in cattle. Microbial DNA was extracted from 18 samples of ruminal content from 2 breeds (Holstein and Brown Swiss). Reads were processed using mothur (https://www.mothur.org/) in 16S and 18S rRNA gene-based analyses. Then, reads were classified at the genus clade, resulting in 3,579 operational taxonomic units (OTU) aligned against the 16S database and 184 OTU aligned against the 18S database. After filtering on relative abundance (>0.1%) and penetrance (95%), 25 OTU were selected for the analyses (17 bacteria, 1 archaea, and 7 ciliates). Association with the genetic background of the host animal based on the principal components of a genomic relationship matrix based on single nucleotide polymorphism markers was analyzed using Bayesian methods. Fifty percent of the bacteria and archaea genera were associated with the host genetic background, including Butyrivibrio, Prevotella, Paraprevotella, and Methanobrevibacter as main genera. Forty-three percent of the ciliates analyzed were also associated with the genetic background of the host. In total, 48% of microbes were associated with the host genetic background. The results in this study support the hypothesis and provide some evidence that there exists a host genetic component in cattle that can partially regulate the composition of the microbiome.