Cattle producers will soon have access to a powerful new suite of traits from Pfizer Animal Genetics that uses significantly more information to generate genomic predictions. The result, which will lead to a set of traits that exhibit the highest level of accuracy to date, will emerge with the launch of the company’s first commercial genomic predictions based directly on the high-density BovineSNP50 chip. The new offering will be available within the next few months, following completion of the final validation studies.
“This product introduction represents a signature event for the beef industry and our company,” says Dr. Nigel Evans, vice president of Animal Genetics for Pfizer Animal Health. “More than two years of extensive research approaching 10,000 cattle genotyped with the Bovine SNP50 chip has yielded initial genomic predictions for a selection of economically important performance, efficiency and carcass traits. In the future, cattle producers will access many other innovative traits as they become available from Pfizer Animal Genetics’ rich Research & Development pipeline.”
“This progressive program of continual trait delivery over the next six to 24 months brings unprecedented genetic selection information to cattlemen and the beef industry,” Dr. Evans states.
The genomic predictions developed by Pfizer Animal Genetics utilizing the SNP50 platform will be delivered using Molecular Value Predictions (MVPs). For beef producers this advancement means that substantially more genomic information than ever before will be captured and integrated into selection tools for making breeding and management decisions.
Some of the new MVPs will enhance the reliability of traditional expected progeny difference (EPD) traits. Other MVPs, in addition to what is offered through EPDs, are for traits that are expensive and time consuming to measure using traditional means, yet are economically important.
The first offering will have direct application for Angus breeders. However, Pfizer Animal Genetics will extend the offering to the full spectrum of genetics across the beef industry in the near future.
“This will be a great opportunity for cattlemen to take advantage of technology that previously wasn’t available,” says Ronnie Green, Ph.D., senior director, global technical services for Pfizer Animal Genetics. “Breeders will be able to measure traits that aren’t covered by existing genetic evaluations to further identify elite animals that can offer premium genetics for their own herds and for potential buyers. What’s more, breeders can cost-effectively genotype animals at a young age before individual and progeny performance data is generated to enhance the scope and accuracy of available selection information.”
More information on the new product offering will be made available in the coming weeks. To stay up to date with the latest news, visit www.pfizeranimalgenetics.com