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Newmarket, New Zealand

Pryce J.E.,Australian Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries | Pryce J.E.,Dairy Futures Cooperative Research Center | Arias J.,LIC | Bowman P.J.,Australian Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries | And 9 more authors.
Journal of Dairy Science | Year: 2012

Feed makes up a large proportion of variable costs in dairying. For this reason, selection for traits associated with feed conversion efficiency should lead to greater profitability of dairying. Residual feed intake (RFI) is the difference between actual and predicted feed intakes and is a useful selection criterion for greater feed efficiency. However, measuring individual feed intakes on a large scale is prohibitively expensive. A panel of DNA markers explaining genetic variation in this trait would enable cost-effective genomic selection for this trait. With the aim of enabling genomic selection for RFI, we used data from almost 2,000 heifers measured for growth rate and feed intake in Australia (AU) and New Zealand (NZ) genotyped for 625,000 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers. Substantial variation in RFI and 250-d body weight (BW250) was demonstrated. Heritabilities of RFI and BW250 estimated using genomic relationships among the heifers were 0.22 and 0.28 in AU heifers and 0.38 and 0.44 in NZ heifers, respectively. Genomic breeding values for RFI and BW250 were derived using genomic BLUP and 2 Bayesian methods (BayesA, BayesMulti). The accuracies of genomic breeding values for RFI were evaluated using cross-validation. When 624,930 SNP were used to derive the prediction equation, the accuracies averaged 0.37 and 0.31 for RFI in AU and NZ validation data sets, respectively, and 0.40 and 0.25 for BW250 in AU and NZ, respectively. The greatest advantage of using the full 624,930 SNP over a reduced panel of 36,673 SNP (the widely used BovineSNP50 array) was when the reference population included only animals from either the AU or the NZ experiment. Finally, the Bayesian methods were also used for quantitative trait loci detection. On chromosome 14 at around 25 Mb, several SNP closest to PLAG1 (a gene believed to affect stature in humans and cattle) had an effect on BW250 in both AU and NZ populations. In addition, 8 SNP with large effects on RFI were located on chromosome 14 at around 35.7 Mb. These SNP may be associated with the gene NCOA2, which has a role in controlling energy metabolism. © 2012 American Dairy Science Association. Source

Vialactia Biosciences NZ Ltd | Date: 2010-03-26

The invention provides the isolated promoter polynucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 from perennial ryegrass (

ViaLactia Biosciences NZ Ltd | Date: 2010-05-25

Agricultural products in the nature of chemicals, namely, chemicals used in the manufacture of approved crops and seeds. Agricultural, horticultural and forestry products used in farming practices in the fields of science, agriculture, horticulture and forestry, namely, pesticides, insecticides, insect growth regulators, probiotics and herbicides for agricultural use; agricultural products, namely, agricultural bio-pesticides, agricultural organisms, namely, probiotics, agricultural crops and feeds, namely, animal feed additive for use as a nutritional supplement, medicated animal feed and probiotics, and forestry products, namely, agricultural bio-pesticides, agricultural organisms, namely, probiotics, and agricultural, horticultural and forestry fiber products, namely, probiotics. Agricultural products, namely, processed edible seeds, meat and dairy products, excluding ice cream, ice milk and frozen yogurt. Agricultural products, namely, processed grains. Grains, namely, agricultural grains for planting; live animals; fresh fruits and unprocessed vegetables; seeds, namely, agricultural seeds and plant seeds; natural plants, namely, living plants and dried fodder plants; foodstuffs for animals. Biological services, namely, biological processing and transformation of organic substances for others; scientific, biological and technical services, namely, scientific research and biotechnology product design, product design for others related thereto, and research related to said scientific, biological and technical services, namely, laboratory and field research in the fields of agriculture, horticulture and forestry. MEDICAL AND VETERINARY SERVICES; AGRICULTURAL SERVICES, NAMELY, ANIMAL AND PLANT BREEDING; HORTICULTURAL SERVICES; forestry services, namely, reforestation and tree cultivation consultancy services.

Bajaj S.,ViaLactia Biosciences NZ Ltd | Puthigae S.,ViaLactia Biosciences NZ Ltd | Bryant C.,ViaLactia Biosciences NZ Ltd | Whittaker D.,ViaLactia Biosciences NZ Ltd | And 2 more authors.
Asia-Pacific Journal of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology | Year: 2010

Perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) is the most important pasture grass for meat, dairy and wool production in New Zealand, covering more than 7 million hectares. Due to its high self-incompatible nature, genetic improvement of this species has proven difficult thorough conventional breeding methods. Genomics is a tool that will help accelerate the improvements to ryegrass in traits recalcitrant to traditional conventional breeding. These traits include increased biomass, improved digestibility and enhanced drought tolerance. With this as our goal, we carried out a SAGE based transcriptome program in perennial ryegrass from livestock active paddocks and laboratory raised plants (Sathish et al., 2007). The SAGE tags were mapped to our proprietary methyl-filtered (GeneThresher®) perennial ryegrass genome sequence database. Genes and promoters were selected based on the transcriptome data and were functionally tested in transgenic rice, using the services of a commercial research lab - MetaHelix in Bangalore, India. We have identified ryegrass genes that confer increased shoot biomass in rice and ryegrass gene promoters that are constitutively expressed in transgenic rice. Leads from the functional testing are being fed into the perennial ryegrass Cisgenic® program of the Pastoral Genomics Research Consortium in New Zealand, where ryegrass may be improved using only ryegrass genetic elements, using our high-throughput Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated genetic transformation platform (Bajaj et al., 2006). We have also serendipitously identified a gene that improves the seed yield (but not the biomass of the plant) in rice by almost two fold. We will present the salient findings from our research in the presentation. Source

Lee J.M.,DairyNZ Ltd. | Sathish P.,ViaLactia Biosciences NZ Ltd | Donaghy D.J.,University of Tasmania | Roche J.R.,DairyNZ Ltd.
Functional Plant Biology | Year: 2011

Defoliation severity affects grass regrowth. The changes to biological processes affecting regrowth induced by severe defoliation are not fully understood, nor have they been investigated at a molecular level in field-grown plants. Field-grown perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) plants were defoliated to 20, 40 or 60mm during winter. Throughout regrowth, transcript profiles of 17 genes involved in photosynthesis and carbon metabolism or transport were characterised in stubble and lamina tissue. Although defoliation to 20mm reduced residual lamina area and stubble water-soluble carbohydrate reserves compared with plants defoliated to 40 or 60mm, net herbage regrowth was not reduced. Transcript profiles indicated a potential compensatory mechanism that may have facilitated regrowth. At the one-leaf regrowth stage, plants defoliated to 20mm had greater abundance of photosynthesis-related gene transcripts (rca, rbcS1, rbcS2, fba, fbp and fnr) and 20% greater stubble total nitrogen than plants defoliated to 60mm. A greater capacity for photosynthesis in outer leaf sheaths may be one potential mechanism used by severely defoliated plants to compensate for the reduced residual lamina area; however, this premise requires further investigation. © 2011 CSIRO. Source

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