Prospective directions and results of research Department of Genetics, Breeding and Animal Biotechnology Faculty of Livestock Raising and Water Bio-resources of NUBiP of Ukraine

28 травня 2022 року

    Climate change and socio-economic relations significantly affect the development of the agricultural sector in Ukraine. The rainfall efficiency decreases as a result of increased air temperature, with the risk the disappearance of the zone of sufficient moisture (Polissya and western Forest-steppe) in Ukraine with its rapid transition into a zone of unstable and insufficient moisture.

    Severe economic conditions in the livestock sector lead to greater specialization and technological modernization of Ukrainian farms on the basis of horizontal (production specialization in one direction) and vertical integration (market element, which provides specialized enterprises with cross-sector services).

     Constituent vertical integration involves the rapid entrance of Ukraine into the world scientific, educational and business space.

     The responses to those challenges the department focused on such scientific and industrial areas related to livestock:

  1. Modification of breeding programs by combining genomic selection, reproductive and genome editing technologies to increase frequencies of desirable alleles and reduce frequencies of harmful mutations;
  2. Increasing the economic efficiency of livestock production due to improved animal resilience;
  3. Impact of climate change on livestock production;
  4. Methods for assessing and improving animal welfare;
  5. Development and use of new methods and technologies for animal phenotyping (e.g. the use of mid-infrared spectrometry in the study of the milk composition, the use of automated feeders with individual recording of feed intake, etc.);
  6. Development of management systems based on automated monitoring of animal performance, reproduction, health and behavior (precision livestock farming);
  7. Improvement of feed efficiency through breeding and changes in nutrition (dairy cattle, beef cattle, pigs, sheep, poultry);
  8. Mitigation of methane emissions in ruminants;
  9. Improvement of milk quality by changing its composition (protein fractions, amino acids concentration, fatty acids concentration) through breeding and correction of diets.

    The department analyzed the possibilities of application of genomic selection in dairy and beef cattle in Ukraine (S. Ruban, V. Danshin). The consequences of use of breeding programs based on traditional and genomic selection were studied. Laboratory of Molecular Research (European Union Erasmus + project) investigated the effect of certain genotypes and allelic variants of polymorphic variants CAPN316 and CAST282 of calpain and calpastatin genes on the reproductive function of the Aberdeen-Angus cattle and the parameters of growth rate of offspring (O.Fedota, N.Puzik, S.Ruban, L.Mitiohlo).

   The next objective of the project will be to conduct works in the field of dairy cattle breeding, analysis and advertising of effective herd management with Norwegian and Ukrainian representatives of production structures, education of students, post-graduates and a wide range of experts in related industries. The important part of the project is the use of effective schemes for dairy cattle breeding in Ukraine using crossbreeding with the Norwegian Red breed. This work has been in progress since 2019 and include analyzing results of cross-breeding of local breeds of Ukraine (Black-and-White and Red-and-White dairy breeds) with the Norwegian Red in a number of experimental farms of the University and private farms of Kyiv, Poltava and Cherkasy regions.

   Semen of Norwegian Red bulls belonging to Geno SA was used in the crossbreeding. The department has completed control and analysis of the identification of breeding animals, their origin and registration of control dates and events (birth, insemination, diseases, culling etc.), recording of milk production (daily milk yield, fat and protein content in milk) and milk quality (concentration of somatic cells). The positive effects of such crossbreeding on a number of important traits have been tentatively proved. The work continues, the obtained data are used both by producers and in the educational process of NUBiP of Ukraine.

    Experiments conducted as a part of the doctoral work of Oleksandr Borshch (scientific adviser Sergiy Ruban) allowed improving the resource-saving technologies of milk production under conditions of global climate change.

     On the basis of analysis and consideration of a wide range of environmental assessments of farms in Ukraine, the optimal technical and technological decisions which increase the efficiency of milk and by-products production for different housing systems have been substantiated and developed.

    Under conditions of abrupt rise in price of nitrogen fertilizers it was experimentally proved that annual amount of organic fertilizer produced on the compost barn in a herd of 400 cows can replace by the active substance (N, P, K) a greater amount of purchased mineral fertilizers (in addition to +8.02 tons due to the resulting compost), compared to the systems of manure processing in bioreactors-fermenters and lagoons.

    The method of disposal and storage of wastewater on a dairy farm from washing and disinfection of milking equipment to minimize the deterioration of water quality in natural sources was optimized. It was proved that storage and utilization of wastes separately from manure (in farms with deep-litter bedding) in comparison with variants of storage of manure and wastes in bioreactors-fermenters and lagoons allowed to reduce concentration of chlorides, sulphates and phosphates in sources of drinking water and water supply sources of the population within 1 km and the nearest natural water bodies.

     Postgraduate student Mykhaylo Matvieiev (supervisor - professor Andriy Getya) conducted research on improvement of economic selection index for dairy cows that included milk protein, milk fat, and days open.

     The proposed index based on the objective function of getting maximum profit made it possible to select animals in order to optimally combine milk production and level of reproduction.

     On the basis of linear assessment of dairy cows according to the recommendations of ICAR, sires were evaluated according to their influence on the traits of functional exterior of their daughters.

      Postgraduate student Taras Yakubets (supervisor - Associate Professor Vasyl Bochkov) estimated the influence of exterior traits of rabbits of the ancestral cross "Hyla" on parameters of reproduction of does. It was revealed that the use of bucks with a large width of the loin allows increase the size of the rabbit’s fetus, affects milk yield and the stayability of rabbits. The influence of bucks of the ancestral form of the cross on the growth, development and reproductive performance of their daughters of the maternal forms was studied. It was found that the use of large bucks affects the intensity of growth of replacement does, which allows to reduce the age of first insemination and to accelerate the herd turnover.

    Postgraduate student Mansur Yagofarov (supervisor - Associate Professor Mycola Seba) explored the possibility of accelerating uterus involution in cows after calving by using a complex of substances of neurotropic and metabolic action and nanocarboxylates of food acids.

      The influence of the studied drugs on acceleration of uterus involution and reduction of the interval from calving to first heat was revealed.

    The capacity of the department in cooperation with other institutions both in Ukraine and in the European Union allow us to successfully conduct the planned researches in training of Masters, PhDs and Doctors of sciences.

Sergiy Ruban
Doctor of Agricultural Sciences, Professor,
Head of the Department of Genetics, Breeding and Animal Biotechnology

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