Precision breeding unlocks the natural health benefits inside animal DNA
Discovering the code
Every cell of all living things contains DNA, which is a code of instructions that tell the cell how to function. Components of DNA, called genes, determine the traits of an animal like its height, its hair color, whether or not it grows horns and to what diseases it is susceptible or resistant. Most traits are passed along to future generations from parent to child, and some are more desirable than others.
Within agriculture, animal breeding and traditional selection are intentional in order to bring forth the best attributes to the next generation. From the first-time we domesticated animals thousands of years ago, either knowingly or not, they were selected for desirable traits that we considered important. Through trial and error, farmers have set out to raise the best, most healthy food animals without sacrificing the good qualities they already have.
Unlocking the good genes
Thanks to exciting advances, Acceligen scientists are helping farmers and veterinarians solve long-standing animal health problems and advance the welfare and productivity of food animals faster using naturally occurring genes already present in the population and native to that species.
Consumers have safely eaten meat and dairy products with these genes for thousands of years.
Improving the lives the animals
For agriculture, Acceligen provides a faster, more precise way to deliver the benefits of established breeding programs without sacrificing genetic diversity or negatively impacting elite production traits. Our solutions allow genetics companies to continue to breed high merit animals while also addressing some long-elusive health and welfare traits.
Our technology makes animals healthier with less need for medicinal and surgical interventions. Better animal health decreases the toll on natural resources due to less waste from unproductive animals and fewer on-farm animal losses.
Precision breeding is also important in solutions for curbing deadly disease outbreaks that can decimate animal agriculture, cause mass losses, and increased prices at the grocery store.
Precision breeding improves animal health and well-being
The health and well-being of livestock and aquaculture animals are critically important to humankind. Animals provide our nourishment, our clothing, many products we enjoy, and they help provide jobs for billions.
Better breeding practices that elevate the health and well-being of animals equate better quality-of-lives for consumers, the economy, the planet and the animals themselves. The growing knowledge of genes and mechanisms of disease resilience are enabling breeders to enhance disease resilience through genetics.
Breeding for beneficial health and welfare traits has been a long-sought goal of animal breeders. Now, traits such as natural disease resistance and hornlessness are possible and require less need for medicinal, surgical or other interventions. Precision breeding can help shield animals from disease outbreaks that cause mass animal losses, and increased prices at the grocery store, also save them from routine procedures like dehorning and castration, which are unpleasant for animals and for farm workers who perform them.
Precision breeding improves the sustainability of raising animals
Accelerating the improvement of animal health through natural breeding technologies leads to many benefits that can reduce the number of animals raised and therefore lower greenhouse gases and the volume of natural resources needed for raising animals.
Food producers are mindful of breeding for enhanced sustainability. The growing knowledge of genes and mechanisms animal health are changing the old paradigm and enabling more ways to lessen the environmental impact of animal agriculture and aquaculture.