Functional genome analysis for predictive biology of complex traits
Understanding the causal chain from genotypic to phenotypic diversity is a central aim of our livestock genome analyses focused on ruminants and horses. This is achieved by investigating structure and function of trait-associated genomic regions and physiological pathways encompassing all levels from DNA to metabolites applying high-throughput methods.
Focus of our work is on traits relevant to consumer and industry: animal health, resilience, resource efficiency and product quality. Exploiting the obtained detailed knowledge about naturally occurring genetic modulation of physiological processes will provide innovative methods for breeding and management. This research is integrated into fundamental analyses on yet unknown functional units in mammalian genomes, e.g. non-coding DNA regions.
Our work is embedded into international and national consortia (e.g. the worldwide 1000 bulls genome project, worldwide consortium Functional Annotation of Animal Genomes, or "ChronMast" - a national project on udder health in cattle). Currently, we coordinate the EU Horizon 2020 funded network project BovReg (www.bovreg.eu) with participation of 20 partners from Europe, North America and Australia and the EU Horizon Europe research infrastructure project EuroFAANG (https://eurofaang.eu/), which started in 2023.
There is a close collaboration with the University of Rostock due to the dual function as head of the chair for Genetics of Disease Resistance.