OMIA:000894-9913 : Scurs in Bos taurus (taurine cattle)

In other species: indicine cattle (zebu)

Categories: Craniofacial phene

Mendelian trait/disorder: no

Mode of inheritance: Multifactorial

Considered a defect: no

Key variant known: no

Cross-species summary: Scurs are horn-like appendages. In contrast to horns, scurs are not attached to the skull.

Species-specific name: Scurs, type 1

Species-specific description: A very useful summary was provided by Gehrke et al. (2020): "With respect to scurs, the most commonly accepted model of inheritance was initially proposed by White and Ibsen [(1936)] . . . and revised by later studies [Long and Gregory, 1978; Brem et al., 1982] . . . . The model assumes that four biallelic loci interact to control the development of horns: the “symbolic” horn locus (H, which is suggested to be always present and homozygous), the polled locus (with alleles P for polled and p for horns), the scurs locus (Sc for scurs and sc for no scurs) and the African horn locus (Ha for African horns and ha for no African horns) [White and Ibsen, 1936; Long and Gregory, 1978] . . . . Scurs are expected to be masked in otherwise horned animals (p/p), but there is discussion about an epistatic interaction between the polled and scurs loci. However, in the literature contradictory results are reported on the mapping and expression of scurs, and some studies discuss whether the development of scurs depends on sex, the genotype at the polled locus, and heterogeneity at the scurs locus [Capitan et al., 2009; Brenneman et al., 1996; Long and Gregory, 1978; Tetens et al., 2015; Wiedemar et al., 2014] . . . "

Mapping: A tentative locus was mapped to BTA19 by Asai et al. (2002). Since the horns locus is on BTA1, there is now convincing evidence that these two traits are inherited independently in cattle. Gehrke et al. (2020) reported that "expression of scurs depends on age at phenotyping, sex and polled genotype. Scurs were more prevalent in males than in females. Moreover, homozygous polled animals did not express any pronounced scurs and we found that the Friesian polled allele suppresses the development of scurs more efficiently than the Celtic polled allele. Combined linkage and linkage disequilibrium mapping revealed four genome-wide significant loci that affect the development of scurs, one on BTA5 and three on BTA12. Moreover, suggestive associations were detected on BTA16, 18 and 23. The mixed linear model-based association analysis supports the results of the combined linkage and linkage disequilibrium analysis. None of the mapping approaches provided convincing evidence for a monogenic inheritance of scurs."

Breeds: Charolais (Cattle) (VBO_0000177), Galloway (Cattle) (VBO_0000207), Simmental (Cattle) (VBO_0000380).
Breeds in which the phene has been documented. (If a likely causal variant has been documented for the phene, see the variant table breeds in which the variant has been reported).

Cite this entry

Nicholas, F. W., Tammen, I., & Sydney Informatics Hub. (2023). OMIA:000894-9913: Online Mendelian Inheritance in Animals (OMIA) [dataset].


Note: the references are listed in reverse chronological order (from the most recent year to the earliest year), and alphabetically by first author within a year.

2021 He, X.H., Jiang, L., Pu, Y.B., Zhao, Q.J., Ma, Y.H. :
Progress on genetic mapping and genetic mechanism of cattle and sheep horns. Yi Chuan 43:40-51, 2021. Pubmed reference: 33509773. DOI: 10.16288/j.yczz.20-229.
2020 Gehrke, L.J., Capitan, A., Scheper, C., König, S., Upadhyay, M., Heidrich, K., Russ, I., Seichter, D., Tetens, J., Medugorac, I., Thaller, G. :
Are scurs in heterozygous polled (Pp) cattle a complex quantitative trait? Genet Sel Evol 52:6, 2020. Pubmed reference: 32033534. DOI: 10.1186/s12711-020-0525-z.
2015 Tetens, J., Wiedemar, N., Menoud, A., Thaller, G., Drögemüller, C. :
Association mapping of the scurs locus in polled Simmental cattle--evidence for genetic heterogeneity. Anim Genet 46:224-5, 2015. Pubmed reference: 25645725. DOI: 10.1111/age.12237.
2014 Wiedemar, N., Tetens, J., Jagannathan, V., Menoud, A., Neuenschwander, S., Bruggmann, R., Thaller, G., Drögemüller, C. :
Independent polled mutations leading to complex gene expression differences in cattle. PLoS One 9:e93435, 2014. Pubmed reference: 24671182. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0093435.
2010 Mariasegaram, M., Reverter, A., Barris, W., Lehnert, SA., Dalrymple, B., Prayaga, K. :
Transcription profiling provides insights into gene pathways involved in horn and scurs development in cattle. BMC Genomics 11:370, 2010. Pubmed reference: 20537189. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2164-11-370.
2009 Capitan, A., Grohs, C., Gautier, M., Eggen, A. :
The scurs inheritance: new insights from the French Charolais breed. BMC Genet 10:33, 2009. Pubmed reference: 19575823. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2156-10-33.
2004 Asai, M., Berryere, TG., Schmutz, SM. :
The scurs locus in cattle maps to bovine chromosome 19. Anim Genet 35:34-9, 2004. Pubmed reference: 14731227.
1996 Brenneman, R.A., Davis, S.K., Sanders, J.O., Burns, B.M., Wheeler, T.C., Turner, J.W., Taylor, J.F. :
The polled locus maps to BTA1 in a Bos indicus x Bos taurus cross Journal of Heredity 87:156-161, 1996. Pubmed reference: 8830095.
1982 Brem, G., Karnbaum, B., Rosenberg, E. :
Zur Vererbung der Hornlosigkeit beim Fleckvieh Bayer. Landwirtsch. Jahrb. 59:688-695, 1982.
1978 Long, C.R., Gregory, K.E. :
Inheritance of the horned, scurred and polled condition in cattle Journal of Heredity 69:395-400, 1978.
1957 Koch, P. :
The inheritance of scurs in cattle Deutsche Tierarztliche Wochenschrift 64:428 only, 1957.
1955 Siegert, M. :
The horns of cattle and their origin with personal investigations on the structure and inheritance of scurs Veterinary Medicine Dissertation, Freie University, Berlin :31, 1955.
1936 White, W.T., Ibsen, H.L. :
Horn inheritance in Galloway-Holstein cattle crosses Journal of Genetics 32:33-49, 1936.

Edit History

  • Created by Frank Nicholas on 16 Sep 2005
  • Changed by Frank Nicholas on 11 Feb 2020
  • Changed by Frank Nicholas on 12 Feb 2020
  • Changed by Imke Tammen2 on 18 Sep 2022
  • Changed by Imke Tammen2 on 25 Sep 2023