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Animal Breeding, Genetics, & Genomics

Bovine (Cow) Genome Effort

NIFA-funded research in the laboratory of Harris Lewin at the University of Illinois has led to the development of new technology that is transforming the science and application of animal breeding and genetics.

Professor Lewin's laboratory is at the forefront of research in mammalian comparative and functional genomics. Research in his laboratory has led to the development of the most detailed comparative map of cattle and human genes in the world. Many scientists in the public and private sectors have used this map to identify genes affecting traits of economic importance to the dairy and beef industries, such as those that affect disease resistance and the quantity and quality of milk and meat products.

In addition, Lewin's laboratory developed the first large-scale microarrays for functional genomics in cattle. These microarrays are used worldwide to identify genes that are responsible for resistance to infectious diseases, the efficiency of cloning, and the impact of nutrition on health and productivity. Using the microarray technology, Lewin has recently developed a new method (patent pending) called “phenomic selection” for enhanced animal breeding.

Contact: Harris Lewin, University of Illinois.


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