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ARS Home » Plains Area » Clay Center, Nebraska » U.S. Meat Animal Research Center » Genetics and Animal Breeding » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #166539


item Casas, Eduardo
item Thallman, Richard - Mark
item Smith, Timothy - Tim

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/2/2004
Publication Date: 10/13/2004
Citation: Casas, E., Thallman, R.M., Smith, T.P. 2004. The application of molecular genetics in a commercial environment to improve production and carcass composition in cattle. Advances in Animal Biotechnology and Their Applications in the National Livestock Industry, Symposium & Compendium Series Proceedings. October 13-15, 2004, Villarica, Chile. 10:53-70.

Interpretive Summary: The science of genome research in livestock has been the focus of substantial worldwide effort over the last decade. It has been possible to identify chromosomal segments carrying genes affecting production traits. Variation in individual genes having major impact on phenotypes in cattle has been identified. However, the majority of the loci remain unknown except for their approximate position in the cattle genome. Approaches to develop DNA-based tests of genetic merit for important production traits have been slow to develop. The objective of this review was to describe the regions in the genetic material where evidence suggests genes that influence economically important traits reside, describe the methodology used to develop genetic markers, and their potential use in selection programs. Some discussion centers on how this information will be used to improve economically relevant traits.

Technical Abstract: The objective of the present review was to describe the procedure to detect quantitative trait loci (QTL), how to select candidate genes under the QTL, and develop genetic markers and describe their use in a commercial environment. Production and carcass composition traits are quantitative in nature. Searches for the detection of QTL have been pursued and have been identified for growth and carcass composition traits. The genomic region under the QTL is the region where candidate genes reside. Functional genomics and comparative maps are two resources used to identify putative genes under the QTL responsible for the expression of a quantitative trait. Genetic markers need to be developed to assess the effect of that genomic region with traits of economical importance. These markers need to be evaluated in several populations to establish if the genetic markers developed are associated with the quantitative trait of interest. Once this association has been established, it will be possible to use the genetic marker information in animal breeding programs.