Loyola University Chicago

Department of Biology

Genetics of Growth

Our laboratory has had a long-term interest in the genetics of growth processes. We followed our earlier quantitative genetic studies in rodents with a series of quantitative trait locus experiments identifying genomic regions that affect body size growth process. In these experiments we found that distinct sets of genomic regions affected early postnatal growth (one to three weeks) and later growth (4 to 10 weeks). After 10 weeks skeletal growth appears to be complete but animals still gain weight, primarily due to increases in fat both in adipose depots and in organs. These studies also overlap with our studies of genetic maternal effects and genomic imprinting and their influences on growth.


Dr. Jason Wolf, University of Manchester, UK

Dr. Rongling Wu, University of Florida

Publications on the Topic

Hager, R., J. M. Cheverud and J. B. Wolf. 2009. Relative contribution of additive, dominance, and imprinting effects on phenotypic variation in body size and growth between divergent selection lines of mice. Evolution 63: 1118-1128.

Wolf, J, Cheverud, J, Roseman, C & Hager, R. (2008) 'Genome-wide analysis reveals a complex pattern of genomic imprinting in mice', PLoS Genetics, vol. 4, no. 6. doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1000091 [pdf]

Hager, R, Cheverud, J & Wolf, J. (2008) 'Maternal effects as the cause of parent-of-origin effects that mimic genomic imprinting', Genetics, vol. 178, no. 3, pp. 1755-1762. doi:10.1534/genetics.107.080697 [pdf]

Cui, Y, Cheverud, J & Wu, R. (2007) 'A statistical model for dissecting genomic imprinting through genetic mapping', Genetica, vol. 130, no. 3, pp. 227-239. doi:10.1007/s10709-006-9101-x [pdf]

Long, F, Chen, Y, Cheverud, J & Wong, R. (2006) 'Genetic mapping of allometric scaling laws', Genetical Research, Cambridge, vol 87, pp. 207-216. doi:10.1017/S0016672306008172 [pdf]

Cui, Y, Lu, Q, Cheverud, J, Littell, R & Wu, R. (2006) 'Model for mapping imprinted quantitative trait loci in an inbred F2 design', Genomics, vol. 87, pp. 543-551. doi:10.1016/j.ygeno.2005.11.021 [pdf]

Cheverud, J. (2005) 'Genetics of growth in the mouse', In: The mouse in animal genetics and breeding research, Eisen, E (ed.), Imperial College Press, London, pp. 113-130.

Lin, M, Ma, C, Zhao, W, Cheverud, J & Wu, R. (2005) 'Mechanistic mapping of ontogenetic growth based on biological principles', Growth, Development and Aging, vol. 69, pp. 31-37. doi:10.1534/genetics.104.034447 [pdf]

Zhao, W, Chen, Y, Cheverud, J & Wu, R. (2005) 'A nonstationary model for functional mapping of complex traits', Bioinformatics, vol. 21, pp. 2469-2477. doi:10.1093/bioinformatics/bti382 [pdf]

Wu, R, Wang, Z, Zhao, W %amp; Cheverud, J. (2004) 'A mechanistic model for the genetic machinery of ontogenetic growth', Genetics, vol. 168, pp. 2383-2394. doi:10.1534/genetics.104.034447 [pdf]

Zhao, W, Ma, C, Cheverud, J & Wu, R. (2004) 'A unifying statistical model for QTL mapping of genotype-sex interaction for developmental trajectories', Physiological Genomics, vol. 19, pp. 218-277. doi:10.1152/physiolgenomics.00129.2004 [pdf]

Wolf, J, Vaughn, T, Pletscher, L & Cheverud, J. (2002) 'Contribution of maternal effect QTL to the genetic architecture of early growth in mice', Heredity, vol. 89, pp. 300-310. doi:10.1038/sj.hdy.6800140 [pdf]

Vaughn, T, Pletscher, L, Peripato, A, King-Ellison, K, Adams, E, Erikson, C & Cheverud, J. (1999) 'Mapping quantitative trait loci for murine growth - A closer look at genetic architecture', Genetical Research, Cambridge, vol. 74, pp. 313-322. doi:10.1017/S0016672399004103 [pdf]

Kramer, M, Vaughn, T, Pletscher, L, King-Ellison, K, Adams, E, Erickson, C & Cheverud, J. (1998) 'Genetic variation in body weight growth and composition in the intercross of Large (LG/J) and Small (SM/J) inbred strains of mice', Genetics and Molecular Biology, vol. 21, pp. 211-218.

Jaquish, C, Tardif, S & Cheverud, J. (1997) 'Interactions between infant growth and survival: Evidence for selection on age-specific body weight in captive marmosets (Callithrix jacchus)', American Journal of Primatology, vol. 42, pp. 269-280. doi:10.1002/(SICI)1098-2345(1997)42:4<269::AID-AJP2>3.0.CO;2-V [pdf]

Kohn, L, Olson, P & Cheverud, J. (1997) 'Age of epiphyseal closure in tamarins and marmosets', American Journal of Primatology, vol. 41, pp. 129-139. doi:10.1002/(SICI)1098-2345(1997)41:2<129::AID-AJP5>3.0.CO;2-Z [pdf]

Cheverud, J, Routman, E, Duarte, F, van Swinderen, B, Cothran, K & Perel, C. (1996) 'Quantitative trait loci for murine growth', Genetics, vol. 142, pp. 1305-1319. pmid:8846907 [pdf]

Jaquish, C, Cheverud, J & Tardif, S. (1996) 'Genetic and environmental impacts on litter size and early infant survival in three species of callitrichids (Primates)', Journal of Heredity, vol. 87, pp. 74-77. pmid:8742821 [pdf]

Richtsmeier, J, Corner, B, Grausz, H, Cheverud, J & Danahey, S. (1993) 'The role of postnatal growth pattern in the production of facial morphology', Systematic Biology, vol. 42, pp. 307-330. doi:10.2307/2992466 [pdf]

Cheverud, J, Dittus, W & Wilson, P. (1992) 'Primate population studies at Polonnaruwa. III. Somatometric growth in a natural population of toque macaques (Macaca sinica)', Journal of Human Evolution, vol. 23, pp. 51-78. doi:10.1016/0047-2484(92)90043-9

Charles, D, Condon, K, Cheverud, J & Buikstra, J. (1989) 'Estimating age-at-death from growth layer groups in cementum', In: Age markers in the human skeleton, Iscan, M (ed.), Charles C. Thomas, Publisher, Springfield, IL, pp. 277-301.

Richtsmeier, J & Cheverud, J. (1989) 'Sexual dimorphism of facial growth in Macaca mulatta and M. fasicularis', In: Trends in Vertebrate Morphology, Proceedings of the 2nd International Symposium on Vertebrate Morphology, Fortschritte der Zoologie, vol. 35, Gustav Fisher Verlag, New York, pp. 438-440.

Richtsmeier, J & Cheverud, J. (1986) 'Finite element scaling analysis of normal human craniofacial growth', Journal of Craniofacial Genetics and Developmental Biology, vol. 6, pp. 289-323. pmid:3771738

Cheverud, J & Richtsmeier, J. (1986) 'Finite-element scaling applied to sexual dimorphism in rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta) facial growth', Systematic Zoology, vol. 35, pp. 381-399. doi:10.2307/2413389 [pdf]

Charles, D, Condon, K, Cheverud, J & Buikstra, J. (1986) 'Cementum annulation and age determination in Homo sapiens. I. Tooth variability and observer error', American Journal of Physical Anthropology, vol. 71, pp. 311-320. doi:10.1002/ajpa.1330710306 [pdf]

Condon, K, Charles, D, Cheverud, J & Buikstra, J. (1986) 'Cementum annulation and age determination in Homo sapiens. II. Estimates and accuracy', American Journal of Physical Anthropology, vol. 71, pp. 321-330. doi:10.1002/ajpa.1330710307 [pdf]

Cheverud, J & Leamy, L. (1985) 'Quantitative genetics and the evolution of ontogeny. III. Ontogenetic changes in correlation structure among live-body traits in random bred mice', Genetic Research, Cambridge, vol. 46, pp. 325-335. pmid:4092924

Leamy, L & Cheverud, J. (1984) 'Quantitative genetics and the evolution of ontogeny. II. Genetic and environmental correlations among age-specific characters in random bred house mice', Growth, vol. 48, pp. 339-353. pmid:6500333

Cheverud, J, Leamy, L, Rutledge, J & Atchley, W. (1983) 'Quantitative genetics and the evolution of ontogeny. I. Ontogenetic changes in quantitative genetic variance components in random bred mice', Genetical Research, Cambridge, vol. 42, pp. 65-75.

Cheverud, J, Rutledge, J & Atchley, W. (1983) 'Quantitative genetics of development: Genetic correlations among age-specific trait values and the evolution of ontogeny', Evolution, vol. 37, pp. 895-905. doi:10.2307/2408405 [pdf]