In 1985, the first reports of the production of transgenic farm animals (rabbits, sheep and pigs) were published (Hammer et al., 1985; Brem et al., 1985). Thus, methods are available to change the genetic make-up of farm animals with a selectivity unapproachable by traditional genetic selection procedures. But our knowledge about the translation of the genotype into phenotype is very limited and we are not yet able to predict the consequences of genetic manipulations in the intact animal. The design, construction, and testing of useful genetic control sequences are the most important tasks in gene transfer.
In the paper the following aspects of gene transfer in farm animals are discussed: Utilization of identified and cloned genes for the manipulation of physiological processes which determine production characters (growth, lactation); possibilities to manipulate the immune response in mammals via gene transfer; identification and cloning of single genes of Importance in animal breeding. The utilization of model systems, mainly transgenic mice, to find the most promising gene constructs for experiments with farm animals. The efficiency of gene transfer techniques in farm animals at the present stage and developments in progress which might improve the efficiency.
Proceedings of the World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production, Volume XII. Biotechnology, selection experiments, parameter estimation, design of breeding systems, management of genetic resources., , 22–31, 1986
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