Genomics

Ordering Kits:  Test kits can be ordered by contacting the office.

EPDs are selection tools that describe the genetic potential or breeding value of seed stock animals. EPDs are calculated using pedigree and performance data that is collected and submitted by members of the Canadian Angus Performance Program. These selection tools are used around the world to estimate how an animal’s calves will perform in comparison to either other animal’s calves or the breed average.

Average Black EPDs for all Calves born in 2016

Average Red EPDs for all Calves born in 2016

Birth Weight Weaning Weight Yearling Weight Milk Total Maternal Scrotal Circ. Calving Ease Direct  Calving Ease Mat. Stay HPG Marbling REA Fat Yield Grade Carcass Wt
EPD +2.1     0.4 +45         +53 +80        +78 +21    +17 +43          +44 +1.23   n/a +3.5      +3.4 +6.6      +4.0 n/a    +10 n/a    +10 +0.77      +0.29 +0.69  +0.05 +0.015  -0.013 n/a
0.01
+43       +16

Traditionally, EPDs have been calculated using pedigree and performance information.

The more information that can be included in the calculation of EPDs, the more accurate or reliable the prediction of genetic breeding value will be. Accuracies are always posted with every EPD. P accuracies indicate parental averages. These are a good base line but have the lowest accuracy. P+ accuracies indicate Interim EPDs (Parental Averages plus a small amount of individual performance data). More accurate are national EPDs that have numerical accuracies (1 being the lowest and 100 being the most accurate).

In order to accurately select young animals or animals with very little individual or progeny performance information available, the industry has developed genomic marker panels. The Zoetis HD 50K and i50K Red Angus and Black Angus genomic marker panels are available to Canadian Angus Association members. These genomic marker panels are used to increase the accuracies for EPDs on animals with little performance data (typically young animals but also animals belonging to non-performance data herds).

Genomically Enhanced EPDs (GE-EPDs) can have higher accuracies for young animals and animals with limited performance data.

 

 

The table below indicates the increase in accuracy you can expect from the genomic marker panels available through the Canadian Angus Association. Each panel explains a different amount of variation for each trait. The best panel will depend on which traits are most important to each member. The Zoetis 50K HD Red and Black Angus panels include parentage verification.

Trait Black Red
Correlation (% Genetic Variance) Progeny Equivalents Correlation (% Genetic Variance) Progeny Equivalents
SC .77 (59) 13
HP .49 (24) 12
CED .63 (40) 22 .73 (53) 22
BW .66 (44) 12 .72 (52) 13
Milk .38 (14) 15 .49 (24) 15
Doc .65 (42) 9
WW .56 (31) 19 .56 (31) 13
YW .67 (45) 23 .62 (38) 15
DMI (RADG) .73 (53) 17
YH .73 (53) 10
MW .71 (50) 14
CW .58 (34) 7
Marb .66 (44) 17 .57 (32) 10
RE .68 (46) 11 .57 (32) 8
Fat .64 (41) 16 .73 (53) 26

 

These improvements in accuracy are only seen in EPDs with low accuracies. Once an animal has progeny on the ground, and are proven, they have higher accuracy EPDs and the genomic marker panels have less impact on the accuracy of their EPDs. The graph below quantifies the amount of increase in accuracy that can be expected from genomic marker panels for traits that are 40% heritable. Most economically relevant traits in the beef have heritability of 40% or less.

 

(Spangler, 2011)

Reporting and Traits: Results from all three panels will be incorporated directly into our two genomic evaluations for more accurate EPDs. In addition, the Association will make available Zoetis percentile rank scores. Below are the traits and the percentile rank information that members will receive.

Trait Zoetis Score 1 – 100
Calving Ease Direct 1 = more unassisted
Calving Ease Maternal 1 = more unassisted
Birth Weight 1 = lighter
Weaning Weight 1 = heavier
Yearling Weight 1 = heavier
Average Daily Gain (Post Weaning) 1 = heavier
Milk 1 = more milk
Marbling 1 = more marbled
Rib Eye Area 1 = bigger
Fat 1 = less back fat
Carcass Weight 1 = heavier carcass
Dry Matter Feed Intake 1 = eats less
Residual Feed Intake 1 = lower feed / lb
Tenderness 1 = more tender
Docility 1 = more docile
Yearling Height 1 = more hip height
Scrotal Circumference 1 = larger
Mature Weight 1 = heavier
Mature Height 1 = more height
Heifer Pregnancy n/a

Test your animals HD 50K and get your operation featured on the GenomeXchange website. Read more about the new i50K tests available here!

 

Canadian Angus Association

292140 Wagon Wheel Blvd,
Rocky View County, AB T4A 0E2

Tel: (403) 571-3580
Fax: (403) 571-3599
Toll Free: 1-888-571-3580
E-Mail: cdnangus@cdnangus.ca

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Vision: The Canadian Angus Association exists to preserve and expand the Angus breed for Canadian cattle producers and beef consumers, providing the best opportunities for profitability today and for future generations. Mission: To maintain breed registry, breed purity and provide services that enhance the growth and position of the Angus breed.
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