Bovigen secures rights to national carcass merit project genetic markers

US - Bovigen has reached a formal agreement that includes the evaluation, research and marketing of the genomics discovered through the National Carcass Merit Project, as well as resultant discoveries by the Texas A&M Angleton project.
calendar icon 11 January 2007
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The National Carcass Merit Project was a collaboration between a group of Universities, led by the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station, a component of Texas A&M University System, and 14 breed associations. Coordinated by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), the project was primarily funded by the Beef Checkoff Program.

The agreement also includes the ability to commercialize previously discovered markers patented by Texas Agricultural Experiment Station and NCBA, and access to data and populations necessary for Bovigen’s continued extensive research.

The Carcass Merit Project used DNA technology to evaluate several regions in the cattle genome related to economically important traits. Their effect on heritable traits such as tenderness, ribeye area, juiciness, marbling, hot carcass weight and dressing percentage were measured across 14 breeds and more than 8,500 progeny.

“The Carcass Merit Project is one of the most important undertaken by the beef industry in recent years,” said Dr. Dave Lunt of Texas A&M University. “The outcomes of this project will make possible basic changes to the genetic base of beef cattle in the United States, with the specific target of improving producers’ ability to meet consumer demands for product satisfaction.”

“The effort and cooperation necessary to put together a resource of this magnitude is a credit to beef producers’ checkoff, Texas Agricultural Experiment Station and the fourteen breed associations that participated.” said Victor Castellon, CEO of Bovigen. “We believe this project and the research already completed will enable us to quickly bring additional tests to market for economically relevant traits.”

NCBA Vice President of Research and Knowledge Management Bo Reagan stated, “Over the last decade the beef industry has increasingly focused on providing the most palatable and economical product possible to our customers – the beef consumer. Much of this work has focused on post-harvest technologies. This project, however, focuses on the fact that we can make at least as much progress at addressing consumer demands by improving the genetics within the industry.”

Source: Drovers

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