New peer-reviewed research reveals discovery of valuable disease-fighting qualities in African indigenous cattle

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Author and Spokesperson Biographies

Olivier Hanotte is a principal scientist at ILRI and professor of genetics at the University of Nottingham, who led the work at ILRI (he is the corresponding author on this paper). The central theme of his research is the understanding at the genome level, the genetic adaptations of “tropical’’ livestock to their production environments. 

Ally Okeyo Mwai is a co-author on this paper and a principal scientist at ILRI who leads its African Dairy Genetic Gains program. Okeyo is a quantitative geneticist with over 30 years of experience in practical design and implementation of livestock improvement programs in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia regions. Okeyo has in the past led ILRI’s Breeding strategies Research, specifically focusing on development and implementation projects, covering a wide range of research areas including, characterization and genetic diversity of indigenous tropical livestock; their improved utilization, as well as development and application of assisted reproductive technologies in dairy cattle. 

Steve Kemp is a co-author on this paper, leader of ILRI’s LiveGene program, and a professor in tropical genetics at the University of Edinburgh. He has expertise in the genomics of tropical adaptation, particularly host-pathogen interactions and mechanisms of tolerance and resistance as well as informatics systems. 

Tadelle Dessie is a Senior Scientist - Animal Genetics/Breeding at ILRI with more than 20 years’ experience in the areas of animal breeding and genetics field with a long track record of research on poultry. As a Project leader/PI of ACGG will manage the project. He joined ILRI in 2004 and he is currently scientist and the member of Global Livestock Genetics (LiveGene) program at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI). His publication and project management record demonstrates his ability to undertake, plan and manage multidisciplinary research in poultry genetics and breeding research and development. He will be responsible for coordinating the design and implementation of project activities in collaboration with and among partners and for project reporting. In consultation with partners, the PM will be responsible for researching and providing alternative approaches. He will also be responsible for leading the sourcing of tropically adapted chicken lines and developing material transfer agreements between owners of the chicken lines and ILRI. All the project team members report to him.

Livestock Gallery

At dawn, Ethiopian Boran cattle leave the village in search of grazing

The Mursi cattle of Ethiopia are sturdily framed and strongly patterned, with prominent hump and dewlap

A line of Ugandan Ankole cows head homeward after a day grazing in the bush

The improved Boran of Kenya are muscular and well proportioned, yet docile and easily managed

In Senegal, improved N’Dama cattle produce more meat and milk.