Studying the animal transcriptome: State of the art and challenges in the context of animal and veterinary sciences

José Ricardo Parreira, Susana de Sousa Araújo

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Knowledge in animal physiology has significantly advanced due to transcriptomics, a complementary tool to proteomics, and this is particularly relevant for farm animals. Transcriptomics aims to study the transcriptome, the complete set of coding (mRNAs) and noncoding (e.g., small RNAs) transcripts encoded by the genome in a specific spatiotemporal context. Various technologies, including hybridization and sequencing-based approaches, have been developed to infer and quantify the transcriptome changes. Transcriptomics has become an option for many research studies in the main farmed animals, herein limited to bovines, pig, chicken, sheep, goat, and salmon. So far, the transcriptomic studies performed in these species have disclosed potential candidate genes associated with muscle growth, meat quality, lactation, reproduction efficiency, or response to diseases. Coupled to this, transcriptional and posttranscriptional regulatory mechanisms controlling the expression of these genes have been uncovered. This chapter focuses on the recent contributions that transcriptomics has brought to improve our knowledge in farmed animal physiology. The current limitations associated with the application of this methodology, as well as the possible implications of using transcriptome data to develop new strategies to improve animal health, welfare, and production, are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProteomics in Domestic Animals
Subtitle of host publicationfrom Farm to Systems Biology
PublisherSpringer International Publishing Switzerland
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9783319696829
ISBN (Print)9783319696812
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2018


  • Farmed animals
  • Gene expression
  • miRNA
  • mRNA
  • Transcriptomics


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