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Prediction of genomic estimated breeding values for reproductive traits, evaluated in females, for composite beef bulls

Grant number: 21/03714-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2021
Effective date (End): December 02, 2022
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Animal Husbandry - Genetics and Improvement of Domestic Animals
Principal Investigator:José Bento Sterman Ferraz
Grantee:Gabriel Costa Medeiros
Host Institution: Faculdade de Zootecnia e Engenharia de Alimentos (FZEA). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Pirassununga , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):22/00686-9 - Genomic prediction of breeding values for reproductive and carcass traits in montana tropical composite cattle, BE.EP.IC


Livestock production is one of the main and most important components of the economy linked to agribusiness in Brazil. The country is recognized among the top worldwide beef producers and exporters. For this reason, the development and use of composite animals, such as Montana Tropical® Composite, through the combination of different biological types, represents a promising alternative to maximize production due to the exploration of heterosis retention and breed complementarity. Several methodologies have been applied in order to implement genomic evaluation, mainly for multi-breed and composite populations. Given the complexity of reproductive traits, as well as their sex-dependent phenotypic expression, it is crucial to evaluate new methodologies and understand the implications of applying genomic predictions in order to improve the reproductive efficiency of bulls, heifers and cows, obtaining reliable and accurate information and creating opportunities to improve the reproduction of composite animals through selection. The aim with the development of this study is to evaluate the inclusion of genomic information in the prediction of estimated breeding values for males, using pseudo-phenotypes for reproductive traits evaluated in females of Montana Tropical® Composite beef cattle. The database used will contain approximately 100.000 phenotypic data for reproductive traits, 370.000 animals in the pedigree and around 2.000 genotyped animals. For the deregression of genomic estimated breeding values and obtaining pseudo-phenotypes, two methods will be used and prediction of new genomic estimated breeding values will be through the GBLUP statistical method. This applies to the selection objectives of the Montana Tropical® Composite program, which aims to produce high-quality meat, high-performance animals and high reproductive rates. Verifying the impact of pseudo-phenotype methodologies combined with genomics in this population is important for the selection program and for national livestock.

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