Animal Science Major Professor: Susan Lamont
Genomic evaluation of response to environmental challenges of commercial egg-laying chickens
Heat and Newcastle disease virus are considered the largest biotic and abiotic limitations, respectively, to poultry production in low-income countries. Breeding chickens that are stronger in these challenging environments will ultimately reduce mortality rates and increase the amount of quality protein available for human consumption. From several previous reports, it is clear that the response to NDV and heat in chickens is at least partially controlled by the genetic makeup of the bird. After a trait is determined to be influenced by genetic makeup, the next logical step is to search for potential genes or genomic regions that affect the trait. If specific areas of the genome can be associated with a trait, this genomic information can be used to further enhance the trait through selective breeding. This dissertation contributes to the knowledge of genomic control of response to NDV and heat stress in laying hens.