Traits & Tests

What we doR&D

Ovita's research programme is based on genomic tools for current industry issues.  In May 2008 Ovita held an Industry Needs Workshop and information gained from the Needs Analysis meeting provided a background to the Ovita Traits Prioritization meeting held in July 2009.  The top ten traits identified through the Ovita Traits Prioritisation process are:

For more information on these traits, follow the trait link.  A full list of genetic tests that are currently available can be found on the Pfizer Animal Genetics website.

Other traits of importance which are included in Ovita's R&D programme are:

Facial eczema (FE) - FE is a disease caused by a fungus, sporidesmin.  It occurs under environmental conditions that favour fungal growth, with the clinical symptom being increased photosensitivity.  AgResearch has found several regions in the genome that are associated with FE and are researching these areas further with the aim of developing a commercial marker test for the disease. 

Meat quality - Meat quality research involves traits such as colour stability, tenderness and pH.  AgResearch is carrying out research in this area and aims to identify DNA markers for some meat quality traits.  Additionally, they have calculated breeding values for meat quality traits for a third party.

Genomic breeding values

Genomic breeding values (GBVs) are being developed for the following traits as per the timeline outlined below:

Trait

GBV

Release date 

Breeds GBVs available for 

Ovita needs 

Adult liveweight

no

2012

 

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks 

Carcass weight

yes

2010

Romney, Perendale, Coopworth

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks 

Dags/flystrike

no

2012

 

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks

Facial eczema

yes

2011

 

DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks measured in a RamGuard challenge

Feed efficiency

no

2015

 

A research facility has to be built first, watch this space

Lamb survival

no

2012

 

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks 

Longevity

no

2013

 

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks 

Meat quality

no

2013

 

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth, Texel, Dorset, composite and terminal sire SIL flocks with pH and meat colour stability data

Meat yield

yes

2011 - ultrasound

 

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth, Texel, Dorset, composite and terminal sire SIL flocks with ultrasound and particularly post-slaughter meat yield data

NLB

yes

2010

Romney

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks 

Parasites

yes

2010

Romney, Perendale, Coopworth

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks 

Twinning

no

2011/2012

 

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks 

Wool weight

yes

2011

 

Sire DNA from Romney, Perendale, Coopworth and especially Texel and composite SIL flocks 

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