Improving Animal Production & Welfare
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Genetic improvement of farmed animals

This theme aims to define the genetic architecture of production-relevant traits in poultry, pigs, ruminants and aquatic species, as well as indigenous breeds of relevance to low- and middle-income countries and develop novel computational tools and strategies to optimise the design of breeding programmes.

Research Highlights

Examples of previous and current work in this area:


Reducing aggressive behaviour in pigs

Number of skin lesions at the front of the body proves to be a good selection criterion to breed less aggressive pigs.

Understanding maternal behaviour in poultry

Two chickens
The identification of genes associated with broodiness could help select hens for egg production.

Enhancing egg's natural defence against bacterial penetration

The genes responsible for cuticle deposition protects eggs from microorganisms.

Selective breeding to improve sheep meat quality

Black face sheep
Roslin scientists have accurately measured carcass composition on live Scottish Blackface lambs

Resources for genotyping

Norwegian salmon
New genotyping tools enable selection for desirable traits in chickens, salmon, pigs and cattle.

The genomic architecture of mastitis resistance in sheep

Genetics study helps scientists understand mastitis resistance.