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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The role of melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH) receptor in bovine coat color determination.

The melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH) receptor has a major function in the regulation of black (eumelanin) versus red (phaeomelanin) pigment synthesis within melanocytes. We report three alleles of the MSH-receptor gene found in cattle. A point mutation in the dominant allele ED gives black coat color, whereas a frameshift mutation, producing a prematurely terminated receptor, in homozygous e/e animals, produces red coat color. The wild-type allele E+ produces a variety of colors, reflecting the possibilities for regulating the normal receptor. Microsatellite analysis, RFLP studies, and coat color information were used to localize the MSH-receptor to bovine Chromosome (Chr) 18.[1]


  1. The role of melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH) receptor in bovine coat color determination. Klungland, H., Våge, D.I., Gomez-Raya, L., Adalsteinsson, S., Lien, S. Mamm. Genome (1995) [Pubmed]
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