Journal article

New loci and neuronal pathways for resilience to heat stress in animals

Evans Cheruiyot, Mekonnen Haile-Mariam, Benjamin Cocks, Iona MacLeod, Ruidong Xiang, Jennie Pryce

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory | Published : 2021

Abstract

Climate change and resilience to warming climates have implications for humans, livestock, and wildlife. The genetic mechanisms that confer thermotolerance to mammals are still not well characterized. We used dairy cows as a model to study heat tolerance because they are lactating, and therefore often prone to thermal stress. The data comprised almost 0.5 million milk records (milk, fat, and proteins) of 29,107 Australian Holsteins, each having around 15 million imputed sequence variants. Dairy animals often reduce their milk production when temperature and humidity rise; thus, the phenotypes used to measure an individual’s heat tolerance were defined as the rate of milk production decline (..

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University of Melbourne Researchers

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