The manipulation of reproduction through artificial insemination and embryo transfer has had a major impact on genetic strategies in animal production during the last fifteen years. The advent of estrus synchronization, non surgical embryo collection and transfer, embryo freezing and splitting have allowed the industry to move from the laboratory to the farm. Other aspects of embryo manipulation which have a major impact on breeding strategies include embryo splitting to produce monozygotic twins, in vitro fertilization, cross species fertilization, embryo sexing, chimera production of tetraparental animals and possibly cloning. Similarly, rapid advances in recombinant DNA and plasmid construction coupled with our increased knowledge of the molecular biology of domestic animal species now permits genetically engineered animals to enter into classical breeding programs. Genetically engineered animals are now appearing, however very little is known about the molecular biology and physiology required to utilize the potential for increased production efficiency. All of the technologies associated with embryo manipulation and the production of genetically engineered animals through gene transfer will demand very different genetic strategies if they are to be utilized fully in genetic improvement programs.
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., , 133–138, 1986
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