GIMIC (Genetic IMprovement of Indian Cattle and buffaloes) Associated International Laboratory

LIA GIMIC

GIMIC (Genetic IMprovement of Indian Cattle and buffaloes) Associated International Laboratory

The GIMIC International Associated Laboratory was created in 2018 for a period of 5 years. He coordinates the activities of a very large Indian NGO, BAIF, and a group of geneticists and research professors from AgroParisTech, members of the GABI unit.

India has cattle and buffalo populations of over 100 million each. However, their productivity is very low due to harsh environmental conditions (climate, health situation), a system with very low inputs, tiny herds (less than two cows on average) and the lack of significant genetic progress for decades.

BAIF (http://www.baif.org.in/) is a large Indian NGO whose main mission is to improve the living conditions of smallholder dairy farmers. It was a pioneer in introducing crossbreeding in India through the artificial insemination of cows with Bos taurus (Holstein or Jersey) bulls, which now contribute to more than 50% of the country's milk production. Despite these programs, there has been little (if any) improvement in native breeds and buffalo.  However, the development of genomic selection is completely changing this context.
A partnership between GABI and BAIF began in 2003 and has developed through the Genosouth1 and 2 projects of the SelGen metaprogramme.

INRA, V. Ducroq
INRA, V. Ducroq

The LIA GIMIC should allow for a change of scale and is based on a much more ambitious project of data analysis, unique in the world, in the service of the implementation of an efficient genomic selection in pure and crossed zebu, or even in buffaloes. GIMIC involves seven permanent GABI scientists belonging to the G2B and GiBBS teams, as well as three research professors from AgroParisTech, who will also contribute to the training of BAIF staff.

The project combines basic and applied research to demonstrate the feasibility of implementing sustainable breeding programmes for cattle and buffalo in tropical conditions characterised by low-input livestock systems and very small herd sizes.

Contact  : Vincent Ducrocq

Reference

A review article was published in Frontiers in Genetics using the BAIF experience as a case study. This article, co-authored by GIMIC members, is a good illustration of what is envisaged for the LIA.

Modification date : 24 October 2023 | Publication date : 24 October 2023 | Redactor : P. Huan