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Do genomic proofs hold up?

Seven years into it, genomics has become nearly as common of a term as AI. We’re now used to the genetic technology and feel confident using genomic-proven bulls as part of a balanced breeding program.

However, you may still have questions about the difference to expect between a genomic proof and a daughter proof. Or maybe you’re looking for comparisons on the genetic merit between genomic-proven and daughter-proven sires.

Peace of mind from increasing proof stability

Closer analysis of proof stability shows the ever-increasing stability we see with each passing proof round.

Graph 1 below illustrates the change in TPI for all industry genomic-proven Holstein bulls first released between January 2010 and December 2012. As the graph shows, the bulls released in January 2010 had an average change of 164 TPI points from their first genomic release to their December 2015 daughter proof (the difference shown as the amount of space between the blue line and the orange line).

The decreasing change in TPI from first genomic release to Dec ’15 dtr proofs for industry bulls released between 2010 and 2012.

Fast forward to December 2012, and the bulls released at that time saw only a 67 point TPI difference from their initial genomic proof to their December 2015 daughter proof.

This means that the stability in GTPI from the time of genomic release until daughter proofs has improved by nearly 100 TPI points!

The same goes for Net Merit $, shown below in Graph 2. Industry bulls first released as genomic-proven sires in January 2010 experienced an average change of -135 NM$. That change from first genomic proof to December 2015 daughter proof decreased to just -63 NM$ for the group of bulls first released to genomic line-ups in December 2012.

The decreasing change in NM$ from first genomic proof to Dec ’15 dtr proof for industry bulls released between 2010 and 2012.

This shows that while genomic proofs are still slightly inflated, the gap between genomic and daughter proofs changes less with each passing proof round.

If we take a look at the facts and figures in a different light, and zoom in on just the bulls released in 2012, the stability remains. The bell curve below shows the average change in TPI for the 1,060 industry bulls released as genomic-proven sires throughout 2012 that now have milking daughter proofs.

As you can see, the average change in TPI was -89 points. Nearly 70 bulls have a daughter-proven TPI within ten points of their original genomic proof, and only 40 bulls of that entire group gained or lost more than 300 TPI points.

And for NM$, the same trend holds true. As you can see below, the average change in NM$ from the group of all industry bulls released throughout 2012 was at -92 NM$ from initial genomic proof to December 2015 daughter proof. Sixty-three bulls held steady within the small 10 point swing from genomic to daughter-proven NM$.

If you are still debating whether daughter-proven or genomic-proven sire groups are your best option, take a look at the top 10 TPI sires available for you from Alta today.

Compare your top daughter-proven sire choices with your top genomic-proven options.

Despite the solid 2364 TPI average from the top daughter-proven sire options, the genomic-proven group provides a 220 point TPI advantage! Your odds are nearly zero that every single sire on the genomic-proven list would drop in production, health and conformation traits after receiving a daughter proof to rank them lower than the current daughter-proven stars.

As you make your genetic selection decisions, keep in mind:

  1. While genomic proofs are slightly inflated, they continue to become more accurate and see less change in TPI and NM$ with each passing proof round because of model adjustments made along the way.
  2. Even though the average change in TPI and NM$ for bulls released in 2012 is about -90 from genomic proof to daughter proof, the currently available genomic sires will still make much faster genetic progress than the current daughter-proven bulls available.
  3. Make sure the genetic progress you make is in the direction of your goals. Use a group of genomic-proven sires selected based on your customized genetic plan with emphasis only on the production, health or conformation traits that matter most to you.

Please Click HERE to download a PDF of this article.

Written by Gerbrand van Burgsteden, Global Product Development Analyst, Alta Genetics

Source: Alta Genetics


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