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January – June 2019
From 21-25 June 2019 the Interbull Meeting was held in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA in conjunction with the ADSA meeting. This document contains a summary of the relevant information and decisions of this Meeting, as well as of other meetings that were held during the first half of 2019.
2019 Interbull Meeting in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
The Interbull Technical Committee, Steering Committee and Scientific Advisory Committee met during the Interbull Annual meeting. Open Meeting and Business Meetings were held on 22 and 23 June, while on 24 June two joint Interbull-ADSA scientific symposia were organised.
Following a 20-year membership of the Interbull SC, of which 13 years as Chairman, Reinhard Reents chaired his last Interbull Business Meeting on 22 June 2019. In line with last year’s announcement, he was succeeded by Matthew Shaffer (CEO of DataGene, Australia) who chaired the Business Meeting on 23 June 2019. They welcomed 118 participants from 24 countries to the 2019 Interbull Meetings.
During the Business and Open Meetings, Interbull activities were presented by Interbull Centre staff, and members of all Interbull Committees, covering Interbull Centre’s personnel, finance, services and operations (Dairy, Beef and SNP services), as well as Interbull and ICAR governance. Updates on R&D activities included SNPMace, InterGenomics-Holstein, Genomic Pre-Selection and Future MACE, and the development of ideas to incorporate output from Single Step Genomic Evaluations into MACE. The Business Meeting was provided with an update on two recent surveys in relation to the interest and possibilities for introducing new traits in MACE to the Interbull Portfolio. The surveys, and following discussions, highlighted such interest, and reiterated the desire to review the business models applied to new services. They also identified that several populations are not (yet) included in Trait Groups already included in MACE. Further details, clarifications and next steps will be made available to the Interbull Community in coming months.
Open and Joint Meetings
The Open Meetings addressed:
Interbull-related R&D and other new methodologies related to genetic and genomic evaluations.
- New traits and phenotypes collection: Feed Efficiency, Resilience, Fertility, Milk, Beef and Crossbreeding
Joint Interbull-ADSA Symposia were titled: 1) “Ten years of Genomic Selection” and 2) “Data pipelines for implementation of Genomic Evaluation of Novel Traits”.
Additionally, a meeting was held where research towards evaluations of ‘beef from dairy’ was discussed.
Reports are available at www.interbull.org/ib/itbcreports, while presentations are available online for the Business Meeting (www.interbull.org/ib/bm_cincinnati_2019) and the Open Meeting and joint sessions (www.interbull.org/ib/programme_cincinnati_2019).
Photos of these Meetings are available on: http://interbull30years.blogspot.se/.
2019 ICAR Meeting in Prague, Czech Republic.
Reinhard Reents, Matthew Shaffer and Toine Roozen represented Interbull at the ICAR Board and Chairs meeting on Sunday 16 June 2019, and informing the participants to that meeting of the priorities for Interbull in the coming year.
Reinhard Reents was awarded the ICAR President’s Award for his contributions to Interbull over the past 2 decades. Eva Hjerpe received a service award for her activities at the Interbull Centre.
Steering Committee Membership
During the Interbull Business Meeting on 22 June 2019, the following 3 candidates were proposed as Interbull Steering committee members, and their names have been put forward to the ICAR board for endorsement:
- Gert Pedersen Aamand (Denmark; sitting SC member, representing the “Nordic Countries”; Norway, Denmark, Finland and Sweden); Gert is also the sitting chairman of the Interbull Technical Committee, and it has been proposed that he will continue this role as SC representative;
- Urs Schnyder (Switzerland, new SC Member, representing “the German speaking countries”; Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Luxemburg);
- Gerben de Jong (The Netherlands, new SC Member, representing The Netherlands, UK and Ireland).
Marco Winters (Interbull member since 2015; 1 term) and Reinhard Reents (since 1999; 5 terms) did not renew their terms in the SC. At the Interbull Dinner that evening, Matthew Shaffer, Jay Mattison, Toine Roozen, Brian Van Doormaal and Reinhard Reents took to the podium to lead the 118 dinner guests’ celebrations of Reinhard’s leadership of Interbull.
In line with last year’s announcement, Matthew Shaffer (CEO of DataGene, Australia) will be the 6th Chair of the Interbull Steering Committee.
The Business Meeting was informed that, during its meeting on 21 June 2019, the Interbull SC elected Brian Van Doormaal as vice chair. Brian is the Chief Services Officer of Lactanet Canada. He is a member of the SC, representing Canada, since 1997, and is the Chair of the ICAR DNA Working Group since its inception in 2016.
(Left to right: Brian Van Doormaal (SC Vice-chair), Matthew Shaffer (SC Chair), Reinhard Reents (former SC Chair), Toine Roozen (Interbull Centre Director), Jay Mattison (ICAR President))
Update on New Services
Truncated MACE: The Business Meeting was reminded of a new service, which is relevant for countries with their own genomic evaluation: Truncated MACE (“TMACE”) will provide appropriate validation inputs for countries using foreign bulls in their reference population. The first TMACE evaluation is scheduled for October 2019. The fee for subscribing to TMACE is €500 for organisations submitting data for a single breed. Organisations submitting data for 2 or more breeds will need to pay €1000.
GenoEx-PSE: As of 31 May 2019, genotypes of 57021 animals had been uploaded by 9 Service Users. Over 95% of those records are for males, with just over 50% for Holstein cattle. This first set of data highlighted some issues:
- Request for only records with at least 95 SNP to be uploaded.
Focus on uploading full data sets of ‘Target Animals’ – especially AI Sires for the countries and populations that the GenoEx-PSE Service User represents.
New developments will focus on Parentage Discovery, as part of GenoEx-PSE, and on a new service for (full) Genotype Data Exchange (“GenoEx-GDE”).
Development of New Services
InterGenomics-Holstein (Ig-Hol): Following the ITC’s review of the latest Ig-HOL research run, it has been decided to issue a new data call for the next research run in the autumn of 2019. This research run aims to include the latest genotypes of the participating countries, as well as those of influential bulls from outside the Ig-HOL countries as Germany announced its intention to contribute genotypes of influential bulls to the Ig-HOL service. This research run will focus on traits with sufficient data and its objective is to:
- Validate, with and without foreign animals, that Ig-HOL gives improved accuracy compared to national (G)EBV
- Apply the Grel procedure to estimate realistic reliabilities. Bias will need to be considered (as is the case in any other national evaluations).
Any other countries interested in joining or contributing to Ig-HOL, please contact the Interbull Centre.
SNPMace progress and plans were discussed during meetings of the SC, ITC, SNPMace WG and Open Meeting. Results are promising, but Phase 1 of the project is not due for completion until November 2019. At that stage the final report is expected, and a decision on Phase 2 will be made by the SC.
ICAR-Interbull 2020 Meeting 8-12 June 2019
The ICAR-Interbull 2020 Annual Meeting will be held in Leeuwarden, The Netherlands. The overall theme of the meeting is: “Circular economy, impact and challenges in animal performance recording”. The ICAR meeting (with General Assembly, Technical sessions and technical tours) will be held from 10-12 June 2020. Monday and Tuesday 8 and 9 June 2020 have been reserved for the Interbull Business and Open Meetings, as well as the meetings of ICAR Working Groups.