The hitherto existing selection of domestic animals for increased production has resulted in some serious disease problems in the herds. As a consequence attempts of breeding domestic animals that can withstand ordinary levels of exposure to infectious diseases have been renewed. The knowledge that the biological fitness of domestic animals to cope with their environment, including infectious diseases, can be greatly increased by selective breeding, is not new. The basis for previous selection experiments on disease resistance, however, has always been the infection experiment: animals surviving natural or artificial infection formed the basis for selection. Stimulated by the results obtained with small laboratory animals ( BIOZZI et al. 1979» RUSCHMANN and MEYER 1981 ) we started to investigate the use of immunological parameters that can be easily measured in living animals as basis for future selection experiments on disease resistance in pigs.
Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume 7. Symposia (1), , 351-356, 1982
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