Novel genomic technologies to improve fertility in Northern Beef Cattle (2017–2020)
Increased global demand for beef is driving northern Australian beef enterprises to develop innovative ways to
increase productivity. A substantial industry challenge is poor fertility of cows, with weaning rates frequently less
than 40%. This project will enable accelerated genetic gain for fertility in these enterprises by delivering a low
cost array which assays thousands of DNA variants affecting fertility simultaneously. These variants will be
discovered with a new genomic prediction method informed by gene expression data from a unique resource of Brahman cattle with exceptionally high fertility. A 4% improvement in weaning rates is anticipated following the
project, generating $40 million in industry benefits.