A new method for detecting and quantifying the transgenerational transmission of environmental effects to help animals adapt to tomorrow's farming conditions

Publication GSE, GABI (BIGE) I. David & al.

A new method for detecting and quantifying the transgenerational transmission of environmental effects to help animals adapt to tomorrow's farming conditions

In a study published in Genetic Selection Evolution, researchers from the BIGE team (Génétique Animale et Biologie Intégrative - GABI, INRAE/AgroParisTech/UPSaclay, Jouy-en-Josas) have proposed a new model identifying the transmission of environmental effects based on the analysis of phenotypes and pedigrees.

Sources of information other than genetics are transmitted from one generation to the next (epigenetics, microbiota, culture). Unlike DNA, non-genetic information can be modified by the environment, making it a key factor in the adaptation of wild species to environmental constraints. As a result of climate change, societal demands and the agro-ecological transition, farm animals will rapidly be confronted with new farming conditions to which they will have to adapt.

In response to this challenge, new criteria are being included in genetic selection objectives. However, genetic improvement of a population is a slow process that will not allow us to respond quickly to new constraints. Taking into account transmissible non-genetic effects when selecting future breeding stock could help overcome this difficulty, by transferring recently acquired environmental information to the offspring, facilitating adaptation.

To identify and quantify the impact of the environment on non-genetically transmissible factors, the transmissibility with environment model has been developed, and its performance has been evaluated and compared with the conventional approach based on the difference in performance between batches of the last generation. The approach proved to be much more powerful, with the added benefit of controlling for Type I error, which was not a problem for the conventional approach.

Contact : Anne Ricard et Ingrid David
 

See also

Reference

David, I., Ricard, A. An improved transmissibility model to detect transgenerational transmitted environmental effects. Genet Sel Evol 55, 66 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12711-023-00833-y

Modification date : 01 December 2023 | Publication date : 01 December 2023 | Redactor : PH