NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – AgResearch, a research institute funded by the government of New Zealand, said today that it will work with the University of Otago on livestock and human studies at a new Centre for Reproduction and Genomics, which will be situated at AgResearch’s Invermay campus near Dunedin.
The CRG, which will be located in a new building, will focus on using genomics to study livestock and human reproduction, health, disease, and mammalian reproductive control, AgResearch said.
The University of Otago’s researchers in reproduction and genomics will relocate to the CRG, and staff from AgResearch’s Reproductive Biology and Animal Genomics sections are housed in the new building.
The center’s director, Neil Gemmell, said in a statement that the new center can utilize data from the country’s “decades of work in livestock and translate it into other areas of animal and human health.
“We want to enhance animal and human health and reproduction, create new wealth and industry and sustain our environment,” said Gemmell. “We also want to generate new knowledge and train people who are capable of utilizing that knowledge.”
In the coming years, New Zealand’s “pastoral industry will be required to perform at a higher level but at a lower cost – and that is where the Centre for Reproduction and Genomics will play a most important role,” said AgResearch GM of Science and Technology Jimmy Suttie. “To a large extent successful farming practices will depend on the selection of elite animals by observing phenotype and the use of a variety of genetic tools, as well as gaining more understanding of animal reproductive systems.”
Suttie added that the studies CRG undertakes in livestock genomics eventually will translate into the area of human health.