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GeneSeek to Help New Zealand Company Genotype Dairy Cattle

NEW YORK, Jan. 22 (GenomeWeb News) - GeneSeek will help New Zealand company A2 Corporation genotype cattle for a gene linked to health problems in humans, the company said today.


Terms of the agreement call for GeneSeek to genotype dairy cattle for the beta-casein gene, which will enable the dairy farmer to select cows for A2 milk production and other A2 dairy products. A2 will sell the resulting milk throughout North America.


According to GeneSeek, A2 Milk is free of the A1 form of the protein beta-casein. Beta-casein A1 is found at varying levels in all cow milk currently sold in the United States, and "has been linked by some researchers to certain health risks," the companies said.


It's been a busy month for GeneSeek, which recently announced that it was the company the US Department of Agriculture chose earlier this year to confirm the identity of the cow infected with bovine spongiform encephalopathy in the United Stateslast month.


GeneSeek, which is based in Lincoln, Neb., said the USDA asked it to analyze DNA from brain tissue of the infected cow, and during Dec. 31 and Jan. 1, the company analyzed the DNA using an "expanded set" of short tandem repeats. It confirmed the results using Sequenom's MALDI-TOF-based MassArray platform, according to Daniel Pomp, vice president and CSO of GeneSeek.

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