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Genomics gets fishy

Breakthroughs in the Atlantic salmon genome project, initiated in 2010, now allows Atlantic salmon researchers access to technology comparable to the technological advancements of the major livestock species.

During the 10th World Congress of Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Dr. Thomas Moen of AquaGen gave a presentation on Tuesday describing the new technologies available, including:

  • a high-quality genome reference
  • a SNP-chip containing more than 657k polymorphic SNPs
  • A SNP-chip containing 132k polymorphic SNP and a linkage map

Details about the new genomic technology emerging from the Atlantic salmon genome project and related studies can be found in the proceeding paper titled “Genomics in Selective Breeding of Atlantic Salmon.”


More to low fertility than a negative energy balance

As selective breeding makes cattle more productive, producers (especially dairy producers) experience a decrease in fertility. The interval between calving and first estrus is longer, conception rates from 1st insemination are lower, and the number of insemination attempts before cows are impregnated is greater. Generally, this decreased fertility is blamed on a negative energy balance, but geneticists say there may be more to the story.

During the 10th World Congress of Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Dr. Michel Georges of University of Liege gave a presentation on Tuesday exploring an alternative/complementary hypothesis attributing the decrease in fertility to an increase in homozgosity for embryonic lethal alleles.

Read the related proceedings paper titled “NGS-based Reverse Genetic Screen Reveals Loss-of-Function Variants Compromising Fertility in Cattle.”


Using a hybrid model to improve genomic prediction

During the 10th World Congress of Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Dr. Dorian Garrik of Iowa State University gave a presentation on Monday outlining a Bayesian approach combining multiple methods into a single step method.

The outlined method uses observations from both genotyped and non-genotyped animals. It does not require direct inversion of matrices and is well suited to parallel computing approaches.

More information related to this topic can be found in the proceeding titled “Bayesian Prediction Combining Genotyped and Non-Genotyped Individuals.”


The big questions: Possible limitations of genomic information

During the 10th World Congress of Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Dr. Brian Kinghorn of  the University of New England gave a presentation on Monday about the potential impact genomic information could have on genetic change.

The presentation addressed 4 major questions about what genomic information can reveal. Read more

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