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Animal biotechnology is providing new tools for animal breeding and genetics and thus contributing to advances in production efficiency and quality of animal products. However, the progress is slower than anticipated, mainly because of the difficulty involved in identifying genes that control phenotypic characteristics of importance to the animal industry. Three main strategies: QTL mapping, candidate genes and DNA and mRNA sequencing have been used to identify genes of economic interest to animal breeding and each has advantages and disadvantages. QTL mapping allows identification of the genomic region that contains the genes, but the confidence interval of the regions is usually large and may contain several genes. Candidate gene approach is limited to our restricted knowledge of the biological function of the genes. Sequencing of genomes and expressed sequences tags can provide identifying gene position and metabolic pathways associated with phenotypic trait. Integrating these strategies using bioinformatics software will allow identifying of novel genes for animal production. Then, animal breeding programs will include the information from DNA directly on evaluation of genetic value of livestock production.

Poultry; Bovine; Genomics; Molecular marker; Animal breeding; Swine

Instituto de Estudos Avançados da Universidade de São Paulo Rua da Reitoria,109 - Cidade Universitária, 05508-900 São Paulo SP - Brasil, Tel: (55 11) 3091-1675/3091-1676, Fax: (55 11) 3091-4306 - São Paulo - SP - Brazil