Livestock Genetics and Phenotypic Trait Research


Source: University of Idaho

The Livestock Genetics and Phenotypic Trait Research laboratory utilizes the best molecular tools towards a better understanding of the genetically mediated regulation of economically important traits in livestock species including; beef cattle, dairy cattle and sheep. The traits examined include efficiency, immune function, disease resistance, beef quality, muscle growth, fertility, fecundity, longevity and recombination in male and female gametogenesis.


  • Characterizing the relationship between genetic variation in mammals with biological traits that are valued and important to society
  • Exploit molecular and genetic tools available to further improve our understanding of how chromosome structure and genetic variations affect biological processes of both undesirable and desirable phenotypic traits
  • Association of genetic mutations, genotypes, alleles, haplotypes and chromosomal regions with the incidence of disease and a number of valued complex traits

Current projects

  • Advanced carcass maturity: developing an understanding, screening method and possible solution
  • Functional importance of microbiota on sensory attributes of whole-muscle dry aged beef
  • Implementation of genetic selection technologies on Texas sheep ranches
  • The functional annotation of the bovine animal genome
  • Ovine FAANG project
  • Understanding parasite resistance in organic livestock and using a systems approach for control
  • Optimizing and characterizing sustainable beef cattle production in forage base systems on western rangelands
  • Reproductive performance in domestic ruminants


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