What is Genomics? Genetic information is contained with DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) and RNA (ribonucleic acids) Each plant, animal or bacteria carries its entire genetic code inside almost every one of its cells Genomics is the discipline that aims to decipher and understand the entire genetic information content of an organism Genomics marked the beginning of a new age in biology and medicine
What is a Gene?Genes are both units of inheritance and encoded messages forthe creation of a functional unit in a cell (usually a protein, butsometimes functional RNA).What is a Genome?This term refers both to the full set of genes carried by a singleorganism and to that carried by that organism’s species. Theprecise ordering of As, Ts, Cs and Gs in organisms’ genomesis the foundation of life’s diversity.Concept of Dominant vs. Recessive Genes
Some Interesting Genome Facts Human Genome contains about 3 billion basepairs Corn Genome contains about 2.6 billion basepairs but……. Wheat Genome contains more than 16 billion basepairs Not all genetic information encodes for functional molecules or life functions
Cont’d… Some Interesting Genomics Facts Humans only have 20% more genes than worms Around 99% of our genes have counterparts in mice Our genetic overlap with chimpanzees is about 97.5% The genetic difference between one person and another is less than 0.1 % But because only a few regions of DNA actively encode life functions, the real difference between one person and another is only 0.0003 percent
More Interesting Facts Human Genome: - Took 12 years to complete at a cost of US $3 billion Mouse Genome: - Took 3 years to complete at a cost of US $300 million Bovine Genome: - Took about 1 year at an estimated cost of US $30 million
Livestock Genomics: Potential Roles Breeding and Selection – Parentage & Performance testing of breeding stock – DNA based selection of economically important traits: • Environmentally-sensitive traits (e.g. methane production) • Behavioural traits (e.g. docility and pain sensitivity) • Nutritional traits (e.g. milk and meat composition) • Animal health traits (e.g. disease resistance) • Genomic information for crossbreeding and heterosis – Segregation of animals based on desirable attributes Food Quality & Consumer Confidence –Animal & breed identity/ authenticity –Product traceability & Consumer Confidence
Chromosome Numbers in Different SpeciesCommon Name Genus and Species Diploid Chromosome NumberBuffalo Bison bison 60Cat Felis catus 38Cattle Bos taurus, B. indicus 60Dog Canis familiaris 78Donkey E. asinus 62Goat Capra hircus 60Horse Equus caballus 64Human Homo sapiens 46Pig Sus scrofa 38Sheep Ovis aries 54
Potential Areas of Interest Breed improvement Growth rate Feed efficiency Carcass merit Animal welfare Zoonoses Product verification Others ?
Computer capability in Albertaassociated with oil and gasindustry via seismic data
Benefits Data management and integration of genomic data into evaluation systems Enhance our accuracy of selection or to identify new traits Identify superior cattle and provide validation to customers
Cont’d … Benefits Rapid integration of: – different kinds of feed (management) – rumen microflora – health records and samples on individual animals, and – Birth, growth, and carcass data upon termination
Reproductive or Health Technologies Pre-implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) - Checking the fertilized egg for mutations Gene Enhancement - Could include inserting genes to create the ‘best’ expression possible Treatments for monogenic diseases (single gene mutation or the more challenging multigenic disorders)
Cont’d … Reproductive or HealthTechnologies Gut Microflora - Introducing or eliminating specific microbial communities Gene Regulation - Possibility of switching genes on and off in response to environmental stimuli
Breeding is a lot likeplaying poker – it has a lot to do with probabilities.
Summary New technologies offer new opportunities for the cattle industry Expression of traits or disease resistance can be influenced by: – pre-partum environment – prepubertial environment – gut or rumen microflora – Feed, stress, exercise Real competition will come from other protein sources
Cont’d … Summary Opportunity to conduct some genomic trials and identify individuals with superior expression Apply genomic tools such as proposed in the new Alberta Livestock & Meat Strategy, and utilize the services of genomics provider companies Ultimate goal is to differentiate cattle in the market place and add value