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Interpretive Summary: Development of genomic predictions for Angus cattle in Brazil incorporating genotypes from related American sires

By: Gabriel Soares Campos, Fernando Flores Cardoso, Claudia Cristina Gulias Gomes, Robert Domingues,  Luciana Correia  de Almeida  Regitano, Marcia Cristina de Sena Oliveira, Henrique Nunes de Oliveira, Roberto Carvalheiro, Lucia Galvão Albuquerque,  Stephen Miller, Ignacy Misztal, and Daniela Lourenco

There was a desire to implement genomic selection for  Angus cattle in Brazil since the technology has been proved to increase genetic gain in animal breeding programs. Single-step genomic best linear unbiased prediction (ssGBLUP), which simultaneously combines pedigree and genomic information, was used to estimate individuals’ genomic breeding values (GEBV) or genetic merit. Genomic selection can accelerate genetic progress by increasing accuracy, especially in young animals without progeny. The accuracy of GEBV can also be improved by combing data from other countries to increase the reference population (i.e., genotyped and phenotyped animals) in small, genotyped populations. Thus, the  main  objective  of  this  study  was  to  evaluate  the  accuracy  of  GEBV  for  young  Brazilian  Angus  (BA)  bulls  and  heifers  with  ssGBLUP,  including or not the genotypes from  American  Angus sires. The accuracies with ssGBLUP were higher than those from traditional BLUP (EBV calculated from pedigree), improving accuracies by, on average, 16% for young bulls and heifers. Including genotypes from  American  Angus sires heavily used in Brazil just marginally increased the GEBV accuracies for selection candidates.

Read the full article on the Journal of Animal Science