The objective of this proposal is to publish scientific papers related to novel insights on Nellore beef cattle production and training Dr. Camila D. A. Batalha in statistical analysis, modeling, and big data analysis. In addition, the knowledge and training earned will be key for the development of new research projects to be conducted in Brazil with Nellore cattle. The research will be focused on feed efficiency, mainly residual feed intake (RFI), whereas the adoption of RFI as selection criteria has extreme worldwide relevance given the need of production techniques to optimize feed utilization by beef animals and reduce environmental impacts of the activity. The use of RFI as selection criteria has been studied in the past decades. However, inconsistent data are still reported in studies with Nellore breed, evidencing the need for further research. Our objectives are (1) to determine the differences in nutritional requirements of Nellore cattle classified by RFI; (2) elucidate the associations between RFI in pregnant cows and offspring performance and growth capacity; and (3) to improve breeding programs, leading to specific genetic gain for more efficient beef production with Nellore animals. In order to achieve these results, the student will work with Dr. Tedeschi at Texas A&M University, on a dataset from Instituto de Zootecnia - IZ, Sertãozinho - SP, Brazil. In addition, during the abroad internship, the student will receive training in modeling and In Vitro procedure technique developed on Texas A&M University. Thus, by the end of the internship, the student will contribute to nationwide livestock development, visibility and impact of the Brazilian science.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: