Building on the Next Generation Tools for Genetic Improvement of Dairy Cattle

The profitability of dairy production is based on the ability of the animal to have high milk production, good health and good fertility. A major challenge for dairy producers is to select for high performing animals and avoid the undesirable correlated response between production and other traits. The proposed research includes the imputation of newly developed SNP markers for calving performance, bull and cow fertility traits, somatic cell score, milking speed and temperament, conformation traits and life profit indices traits, and a validation to determine how much prediction accuracy these new SNP would add to existing SNP panels when used in selection programs. The partner organization and the Canadian dairy cattle industry at large would greatly benefit particularly from any increase in the ability to select for male or female fertility, since these traits have been difficult to improve, even with existing genomic tools.

Faculty Supervisor:

Dr. Flavio Schenkel


Mohammed Abo-Ismail


Semex Alliance


Animal science




University of Guelph



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