Research Article

Acute heat stress and dietary methionine effects on IGF-I, GHR, and UCP mRNA expression in liver and muscle of quails

Abstract

This study evaluated the expression of insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I), growth hormone receptor (GHR), and uncoupling protein (UCP) mRNA in muscle and liver of quails that were in thermal comfort or exposed to heat stress and that were fed diets with or without methionine supplementation. Meat quails were fed a diet that either met the nutritional demands for methionine (MS) or did not meet this demand (methionine-deficient diet, MD). The animals were either kept at a thermal comfort temperature (25°C) or exposed to heat stress (38°C for 24 h starting on the 6th day). RNA was extracted from liver and breast muscle, and cDNA was synthesized and amplified using quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Animals that were fed the MS diet and remained at the thermal comfort temperature exhibited increased IGF-I mRNA expression in the liver (0.56 AU). The GHR mRNA expression in the liver and muscle was influenced by both the study variables. Animals receiving the MS diet showed higher GHR expression, while increased expression was observed in animals at the thermal comfort temperature. The UCP mRNA expression in the muscle was influenced by both methionine supplementation and heat stress. Higher expression was observed in animals that received the MD diet (2.29 vs 3.77 AU) and in animals kept in thermal comfort. Our results suggest that heat stress negatively affects the expression of growth-related genes and that methionine supplementation is necessary to appropriately maintain the levels of IGF-I, GHR, and UCP transcripts for animal metabolism.

This study evaluated the expression of insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I), growth hormone receptor (GHR), and uncoupling protein (UCP) mRNA in muscle and liver of quails that were in thermal comfort or exposed to heat stress and that were fed diets with or without methionine supplementation. Meat quails were fed a diet that either met the nutritional demands for methionine (MS) or did not meet this demand (methionine-deficient diet, MD). The animals were either kept at a thermal comfort temperature (25°C) or exposed to heat stress (38°C for 24 h starting on the 6th day). RNA was extracted from liver and breast muscle, and cDNA was synthesized and amplified using quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Animals that were fed the MS diet and remained at the thermal comfort temperature exhibited increased IGF-I mRNA expression in the liver (0.56 AU). The GHR mRNA expression in the liver and muscle was influenced by both the study variables. Animals receiving the MS diet showed higher GHR expression, while increased expression was observed in animals at the thermal comfort temperature. The UCP mRNA expression in the muscle was influenced by both methionine supplementation and heat stress. Higher expression was observed in animals that received the MD diet (2.29 vs 3.77 AU) and in animals kept in thermal comfort. Our results suggest that heat stress negatively affects the expression of growth-related genes and that methionine supplementation is necessary to appropriately maintain the levels of IGF-I, GHR, and UCP transcripts for animal metabolism.