Identification and Expression Profiling of miRNAome in Goat <i>longissimus dorsi</i> Muscle from Prenatal Stages to a Neonatal Stage

<div><p>Skeletal muscle development is a complex biological process regulated by numerous genes and non-coding RNAs, such as microRNAs (miRNAs). In the current study, we made use of the deep sequencing data from Jianzhou Da’er goat <i>longissimus dorsi</i> sampled on days 45, 60, and 105 of gestation, as well as day three after birth to identify miRNAs that regulate goat skeletal myogenesis, and examine their temporal expression profiles. A total of 410 known goat miRNAs, 752 miRNA homologs and 88 novel miRNAs were identified across four stages. Besides three myomiRs, the abundance of 17 miRNAs, including chi-miR-424, chi-miR-542-3p and chi-miR-136-5p was more than 10,000 reads per million mapped reads (RPM), on average. Furthermore, 50 miRNAs with more than 100 RPM clustered at the imprinted <i>DLK1–DIO3</i> locus on chromosome 21 and showed similar expression patterns, indicating that these miRNAs played important roles in skeletal myogenesis of goats. Based on pairwise comparisons, 221 differentially expressed (DE), known miRNAs were identified across four stages. GO and KEGG analyses of the genes targeted by the DE miRNAs revealed the significantly enriched processes and pathways to be consistent with temporal changes of skeletal muscle development across all sampled stages. However, follow-up experimental studies were required to explore functions of these miRNAs and targets underlying skeletal myogenesis.</p></div>