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Population Genetics and Embryology

Research Centre Foulum
Postbox 50
DK-8830 Tjele

Head of research unit:  Peer Berg
tel: +45 8999 1226


The section conducts intensive experiments in order to clarify the genetic background of traits related to production, fertility, liability for disease, metabolic stress, longevity, and behaviour in all farm animal species. This includes the study of the underlying physiological regulation of these traits, studies of the effect candidate genes, and the genetic variation in the immune system. Furthermore, the section is involved in projects to identify QTLs with effects on traits of relevance for practical breeding programs.

The optimum use of the above mentioned research results in practical breeding programs is studied through development of models of commercial breeding programs. Such models include the optimum use of dna-information or other physiological and immunological markers and the derivation of the economic value of different traits or components in the breeding program. Similar models is used to study the optimum use of dna-information in marker assisted conservation programs in order to maintain genetic diversity in our farms animal species. Such a broad range of research areas requires a range of skills in the section. Therefore, also basic research is conducted towards development and implementation of methods in biometrical analysis, models of commercial breeding programs as well as development of new assays for the analysis of relevant biological samples.

A very important complement to the research conducted in the section is the co-operation with other sections as well as other research groups inside or outside DIAS. The experiments conducted in the section is carried out in close co-operation with other groups at DIAS and with the agricultural industry who also provide research facilities, animal and access to national databases.