Transcriptomic analysis between Normal and high-intake feeding geese provides insight into adipose deposition and susceptibility to fatty liver in migratory birds Academic Article uri icon


  • BACKGROUND: Dysregulation of adipogenesis causes metabolic diseases, like obesity and fatty liver. Migratory birds such as geese have a high tolerance of massive energy intake and exhibit little pathological development. Domesticated goose breeds, derivatives of the wild greyleg goose (Anser anser) or swan goose (Anser cygnoides), have high tolerance of energy intake resembling their ancestor species. Thus, goose is potentially a model species to study mechanisms associated with adipogenesis. RESULTS: Phenotypically, goose liver exhibited higher fat accumulation than adipose tissues during fattening (liver increased by 3.35 fold than 1.65 fold in adipose), showing a priority of fat accumulation in liver. We found the number of differentially expressed genes in liver (13.97%) was nearly twice the number of that in adipose (6.60%). These differentially expressed genes in liver function in several important lipid metabolism pathways, immune response, regulation of cancer, while in adipose, terms closely related to protein binding, gluconeogenesis were enriched. Typically, genes like MDH2 and SCD, which have key roles in glycolysis and fatty acids metabolism, had higher fold change in liver than in adipose tissues. Three hundred two differentially expressed long noncoding RNAs involved in regulation of metabolism in liver were also identified. For example, lncRNA XLOC_292762, which was 5.7kb downstream of FERMT2, a gene involved phosphatidylinositol-3,4,5-trisphosphate binding, was significantly down-regulated after the high-intake feeding period. Further investigation of documented obesity-related orthologous genes in goose suggested that understanding the evolutionary split from mammals in adipogenesis will make goose fatty liver a better resource for future research. CONCLUSIONS: Our research reveals that goose uses liver as the major tissue to regulate a distinct lipid synthesis and degradation flux and the dynamic expression network analyses showed numerous layers of positive responses to both massive energy intake and possible pathological development. Our results offer insights into goose adipogenesis and provide a new perspective for research in human metabolic dysregulation.

published proceedings

  • BMC Genomics

altmetric score

  • 2.75

author list (cited authors)

  • Wang, G., Jin, L., Li, Y., Tang, Q., Hu, S., Xu, H., ... Wang, J.

citation count

  • 12

complete list of authors

  • Wang, Guosong||Jin, Long||Li, Yan||Tang, Qianzi||Hu, Silu||Xu, Hengyong||Gill, Clare A||Li, Mingzhou||Wang, Jiwen

publication date

  • January 2019