Tender Beef Gene test a world first
The steak knife is destined for the scrap heap.
The pleasure of enjoying melt-in-the-mouth beef consistently is the promise of a world first advance in technology announced today. A DNA test has been launched which identifies cattle carrying a tenderness gene. The Australian patented technology will allow beef producers to breed animals for their ability to more consistently deliver consumers a better eating experience.
Research leading to the test was carried out by a consortium, which comprises the Cattle and Beef Quality Cooperative Research Centre, CSIRO Livestock Industries and Meat and Livestock Australia. Brisbane-based company Genetic Solutions has now won a global race to bring a DNA tenderness test to the market.
Genetic Solutions Scientific Director Dr Jay Hetzel said the diagnostic test is now available to beef producers throughout Australia and around the world. “There is keen interest in using this tool to selectively improve the quality of beef herds in Australia as well as in the Americas and South Africa,” Dr Hetzel said.
The new test, known as GeneSTAR Tenderness, will complement GeneSTAR Marbling the world’s first commercial DNA test which identifies animals with the desirable trait of fat distributed through the muscle. Dr Hetzel said beef consumers had clearly identified inconsistency in tenderness as a major deficiency. Research had shown that tenderness was more important than juiciness and flavour factors to their eating experience. “A major scientific effort has now delivered beef producers a simple live animal test that will help them meet customer expectations.”
Both GeneSTAR tests use laboratory analysis of an animal’s DNA, which can be extracted from tail hair roots.
“The tenderness link to the naturally occurring enzyme calpastatin was identified in a major study led by Dr Bill Barendse and a team from the Beef Quality CRC using more than 5000 beef carcases from seven breeds” said CSIRO Livestock Industries chief, Mr Shaun Coffey.
Beef CRC Chief Executive Officer Professor Bernie Bindon said the GeneSTAR Tenderness test was made possible by the investment of more than $32 million of Commonwealth CRC funds, producer levies, and CSIRO project funding. “Genetic improvement of tenderness has proved very difficult because the trait is hard to measure and is influenced by many pre and post slaughter environmental factors. While the GeneSTAR test accounts for only a part of the variation in tenderness, the effects are permanent and cumulative.”
The test was easy to use and could be carried out at any stage on the live animal. “GeneSTAR Tenderness should have long term benefits for the beef quality of Australian herds,” Professor Bindon said.
Researchers discovered two variants of the calpastatin gene. — one associated with increased tenderness and one with increased toughness. Cattle are given a rating — 2-STAR, 1-STAR or 0-STAR – indicating how many copies they have of the tender form of the gene. Dr Hetzel said a bull and cow both with 2-STAR ratings will pass on the desirable traits to 100 percent of their progeny.
“The 2-STAR animals are genetically programmed to be more tender. The improvement made possible by using this technology is predicted to more than halve the number of carcasses rated unacceptably tough by consumers.” Dr Hetzel said selective breeding with 2-STAR bulls would eventually eliminate 0-STAR animals from a herd. Breeders unknowingly using 0-STAR or 1-STAR bulls could be putting future herd tenderness at risk.
The presence of the tender form of the gene varies across breeds with British-type breeds recording the highest frequency and the Brahman breed the lowest.
Meat and Livestock Australia Research Program Manager Dr Hutton Oddy said the tenderness technology presented a great opportunity to do something for beef consumers. “An enormous amount of work has gone into this project and it is good to see the results being commercialised in Australia.”
“In particular this test presents a fantastic opportunity for the northern beef industry to genetically improve cattle for tenderness while at the same time retaining the desirable traits of tick resistance and heat tolerance,” Dr Oddy said.
For further information, contact:
Dr Jay Hetzel at Genetic Solutions
on 07 3633 3502 or 0413 045478.
Dr Bill Barendse, CSIRO Livestock Industries
Ph 07 3214 2440
Prof Bernie Bindon, Cattle and Beef Quality CRC
Ph 02 6773 3501
Dr Hutton Oddy, Meat & Livestock Australia
Ph 02 9463 9333
December 2002: Quick uptake of new tender beef gene test
Some of the biggest cattle breed societies in Australia have embraced the world-first beef tenderness genetic test which was launched commercially in Brisbane last month.
The Brahman breed, which extends its genetic influence through a massive 50 percent of the Australian herd, is one of the early adopters along with the Australian Angus Society and Simmental Australia. The three breeds have reached agreements with Genetic Solutions, the company marketing the GeneSTAR tenderness test, to obtain special discount rates for their members.
The DNA test can identify whether a live animal is carrying one or two copies of the desirable tender form of the gene and is expected to have a significant impact on beef tenderness, an important trait sought by consumers. The Australian-patented tenderness test was developed after years of research by a consortium of leading scientists from the Cooperative Research Centre for Cattle and Beef Quality and Genetic Solutions.
Genetic Solutions Marketing Manager Jason Strong said the first commercial tests for GeneSTAR tenderness had now been completed and the volume would increase quickly with the strong support of breed societies. “As part of the agreements, the societies also benefit from feedback of testing results which will help build a data base on the tenderness status of their breed,” Mr Strong said.
“The test has solid scientific backing and is expected to be a powerful selection tool for cattle breeders,” Mr Strong said. The test, which is typically carried out on DNA extracted from the tail hair roots of an animal costs between $60 and $90 (ex GST) depending on volume.
Australian Brahman Breeders Association General Manager John Croaker said samples submitted by members would be batched and sent to Genetic Solutions for testing. “This test provides an opportunity to address one of the important issues for beef consumers and we are keen to take advantage of the benefits of this positive science,” Mr Croaker said.
“We expect initially that testing will focus on elite animals in stud breeding herds and a number of members are already planning to take advantage of our agreement. The whole area of molecular genetics is moving fast and some exciting gains will be made in the years ahead,” Mr Croaker said.
Australian Angus Society Breed Development Manager Carel Teseling said the new scientific test for tenderness was a welcome development. “The competitive testing price we have been able to negotiate with Genetic Solutions will encourage our members to make use of the service. The more information we have available on our cattle, the better the product will be for consumers,” Mr Teseling said.
Simmental Australia Chief Executive Peter Speers said the European cattle breed had already made extensive use of the GeneSTAR marbling test marketed by Genetic Solutions and members would welcome the new tenderness test.
Marbling is the degree to which fat is distributed through the beef muscle and is a highly desired trait in premium markets.
Mr Speers said Simmental breeders in Australia had been collaborating with their colleagues in the United States and the new tenderness test was sure to be well accepted in North America. “We will be encouraging producers to have the major Simmental sires tested and we hope to collect enough results to estimate the probability of the tenderness gene occurring,” Mr Speers said.
For further information contact:
Jason Strong, Genetic Solutions on 07 3633 3555 or 0418 658 887.
John Croaker, Australian Brahman Breeders on 07 4927 7799.
Carel Teseling, Australian Angus Society on 02 6772 3011.
Peter Speers, Simmental Australia on 0408 203 006.
November 2002: Genetic Solutions Signs New Beef and Lamb Research Agreements
Agreement to fast track beef DNA technology
Australian beef producers will gain access to a world-class array of genetic technology flowing from a major research and commercialisation agreement. The best intellectual property in the country will be pooled and science fast tracked to the marketplace under the broad ranging four-way agreement.
Partners in the new venture are the Co-operative Research Centre for Cattle and Beef Quality, CSIRO Livestock Industries, Meat and Livestock Australia and the biotechnology company Genetic Solutions which was formed in Brisbane four years ago.
Genetic Solutions Scientific Director Dr Jay Hetzel said the collaboration would focus on developing a range of gene markers for carcase and meat quality as well as in the future for live animal traits such as disease and parasite resistance. It would also lead to enhancements for existing Genetic Solutions gene marker products. One such improvement would be the development of high throughput testing procedures for the company’s GeneSTAR marbling test to make it suitable for use in cattle feedlots.
“We will also be evaluating new tenderness markers to improve beef eating quality. Researchers in CSIRO and the Beef Quality CRC already have promising leads on new gene markers. By pooling our DNA banks, databases and expertise we can accelerate the scientific work to produce cost-effective outcomes for the beef industry,” Dr Hetzel said.
The Beef CRC Chief Executive Officer Professor Bernie Bindon said the agreement broke new ground for the beef industry. “Genetic Solutions brings commercialisation and marketing skills to the partnership and also builds our research skills base,” Professor Bindon said.
“Our research will be enhanced and I have no doubt the agreement will speed up the delivery of useful products to the Australian beef industry,” Dr Bindon said.
For further information, contact:
Dr Jay Hetzel at Genetic Solutions
on 07 3633 3502 or 0413 045478.
Dr Len Stephens, MLA
Ph 02 9463 9333
Prof Bernie Bindon, Cattle and Beef Quality CRC
Ph 02 6773 3501
Dr Shaun Coffey, CSIRO Livestock Industries
Ph 07 3214 2700
Genetic boost to lamb industry prospects
Lamb producers and consumers will be the winners from a major new genetic research agreement which has just been signed. The agreement, which is the first of its type in the lamb industry, is between the University of New England, Meat and Livestock Australia and the Brisbane-based biotechnology company Genetic Solutions Ltd. It will focus scientific effort on improving meat quality and eating quality of the 16.5 million lambs produced in Australia each year.
The Scientific Director of Genetic Solutions Dr Jay Hetzel said the company would be applying its expertise in beef cattle genetics to the sheep meat industry. “We market a range of DNA-based tests which are now widely used by beef producers.”
“This new project with lamb will be seeking to identify gene markers for a range of traits including eating quality and tenderness, intramuscular fat and carcase muscling.” Dr Hetzel said the assessment phase of the project was due to be completed by mid 2003. Genetic Solutions plans to commercialise the technology in association with LAMBPLAN, the genetic evaluation scheme which has operated in the industry for more than a decade.
The project will be an important boost for Australian lamb producers. It will help them meet consumer demands and is expected to improve industry returns. The research will focus on more than 1200 offspring bred at the South Australian Research and Development Institute’s Struan field station. The progeny are from a group of high performance rams of several meat breeds and will be screened for gene markers that identify desirable quality traits. Once identified, these gene markers can be used in the national breeding flock to produce superior quality lambs.
For further information, contact Dr Jay Hetzel at Genetic Solutions
on 07 3633 3502 or 0413 045478
September 2002 – Gene Marker ProfilesTM – Launch of a new and powerful selection tool for the beef industry
Dr Jay Hetzel presenting to the group
A major new genetic selection tool in the form of Gene Marker Profiles (GMPTM) was launched in September by Genetic Solutions. GMPTM are a big step forward in fast-tracking genetic improvement in expensive and difficult-to-measure beef cattle traits.
Through the combination of gene markers, DNA sire parentage and Estimated Breeding Values(EBV), Gene Marker ProfilesTM can provide earlier, more powerful and more accurate selection of future breeding stock than anything used in the beef industry previously.
Development of the technology has come from a collaborative project between Genetic Solutions, North Australia Pastoral Company (NAPCO), CSIRO’s Division of Livestock Industries and AusIndustry.
Dr Gerard Davis (R), accepting START award from Professor Don Nicklin
The project involved the mating of 16 highly selected bulls from NAP’s Alexandria composite to groups of breeding cows over 3 years. Progeny were followed all the way through the normal NAP production system, and detailed measurements were taken from the progeny from weaning to slaughter, as well as objective meat quality characteristics and eating quality assessments. These traits included weaning weight, carcase weight, eye muscle area. Marbling, ossification, and eating quality data from taste panel work.
Speaking at the GMPTM launch, Managing Director of Genetic Solutions, Dr Gerard Davis said ‘These assessments enabled us to develop a gene marker profile for each of the sires involved, by using a range of gene markers previously identified as being associated with certain carcase characteristics or meat quality”. EBV and sire pedigrees were determined simultaneously.
After the initial matings, all bulls were re-mated to elite stud cows in the NAP nucleus herds to produce ‘implementation progeny’. GMP’s on the implementation progeny were then determined by performing gene marker tests.
L to R: Dr Bill Barendse (CSIRO), Dr Jay Hetzel, Prof Don Nicklin (AusIndustry) and Nigel Alexander (Napco)
“In the GMP process we use gene marker analysis on highly selected sires to produce a sire gene marker profile that can then be used to select amongst the sire’s progeny for the genetically superior offspring,” Dr Davis said.
The principle of GMP selection revolves around a set of genes on a chromosome that affects particular traits. In the case of a region that affects a trait, it is possible to have a good and bad chromosome. If you can determine what marker associates with the favourable form, and what associates with the unfavourable form, you can then test the progeny to see which form they have inherited. “This means that a very early age, we are able to determine which animals are desirable in terms of their genetics, and which are not – that’s the benefit of this technology” Dr Davis explained.
Genetic Solutions has now developed a system that enables it to offer GMPTM as a commercial selection tool to the beef industry. The system includes sample and data collection systems, database management, analytical software and a reporting system. The beef industry can now take the genetic selection process to a higher level, even in larger more extensive herds.
August 2002 – GeneSTAR Marbling test reaches South African market
Dr Michael Bradfield (R), and Lewellyn Angus (Chairman Simmental and Simbra Association) with 2-star Simmental bull, Wisp Will Pert 4
The GeneSTAR marbling test for the production of quality beef was officially launched in South Africa at the recent World Simmental Congress.
Genetic Solutions Pty Ltd, in partnership with Agricultural Business South Africa Pty Ltd, co-hosted the launch.
GeneSTAR marbling is a world-first DNA-based diagnostic test for a major gene associated with marbling in beef cattle.
The launch featured a 2-STAR Simmental bull. The term 2-STAR refers to the animal having two copies of the favourable form of the marbling gene; 1-STAR refers to the animal having one copy.
Genetic Solutions Marketing and Operations Officer, Jason Strong, said the South African launch was the next step in the global commercialisation of GeneSTAR.
“Growing international demand is being driven by breeders wanting to make future generations of cattle more predictable with respect to marbling and eating quality,” Mr Strong said.
GeneSTAR marbling is marketed in Southern Africa through a partnership with Agricultural Business South Africa – one of the leading supplier of genetic improvement services in the region.
Managing director Michael Bradfield says the launch was a significant development for the Southern African region as a whole.
“Our partnership with Genetic Solutions gives all cattle breeders in the Southern African region the opportunity to be part of the global market in terms of better meat quality. Meat exports from Southern Africa to Europe and Asia are increasing markedly and it is important that our breeds meet the required meat quality standards in the future,” he said.
The South African launch closely follows the recent opening of Genetic Solutions’ US-based office in Denver, Colorado.
The GeneSTAR marbling test was first introduced in July 2000 and is currently the only DNA-based test for a cattle production trait available in the world.
Genetic Solutions has developed a range of innovative DNA-based testing systems to improve predictability and control in the beef production chain for livestock producers, processors, wholesalers and retailers.
Genetic Solutions products currently include SureTRAK®, a DNA-based system for validation of beef supply chain tracking systems, GeneSTAR® marbling, a DNA diagnostic test for carcass quality and SireTRACETM a DNA parentage and progeny testing tool.
“The increasing uptake of the GeneSTAR technology is testimony to the interest in DNA based management tools. Genetic Solutions and its representatives look forward to working with progressive cattle breeders as additional technology is developed.” Mr Strong added.
July 2002 – Genetic Solutions expands in US market
Jason Strong, Don Nicol, Abe Oommen, Jim Gibb, Jay Hetzel
Australian biotechnology company, Genetic Solutions Pty Ltd, is leading the commercialisation of cutting edge genetic information technology for use in the global livestock industries.
In response to growing demand from North America, Genetic Solutions will officially open its first US office in Denver, Colorado, on July 11.
Genetic Solutions has developed a range of innovative DNA-based testing systems to improve predictability and control in the beef production chain for producers, processors, wholesalers and retailers.
Products currently include SureTRAK®, a DNA-based system for validation of beef supply chain tracking systems, GeneSTAR® marbling, a DNA diagnostic test for carcass quality and SireTRACE™, a DNA parentage test.
L-R: Keith and Bonnie Long, Bell Ranch, New Mexico and John Pollack, Cornell University
Managing Director Gerard Davis said demand for DNA based products is growing steadily and that the company is now in a strong position to market its products on a global basis.
Dr Davis said inquiries from the USA had grown rapidly over the past year. More than half of Genetic Solutions’ sales of some products is to the North American region.
“The beef industry is confronting a progressive marketplace where both retailers and consumers want to know whether their beef is safe, where it comes from and a guarantee of quality,” Dr Davis said.
“Our GeneSTAR marbling test is still the only DNA test for a beef production trait in the world.”
Our other products are highly competitive in terms of performance and price.
L-R: Donnell Brown, Rob Brown, RAB Ranch, Throckmorton Texas, and Butch Schuler, Schuler Red Angus, Bridgeport, Nebraska
In June this year Genetic Solutions entered into a multi-year strategic partnership with Luminex Corporation to commercialise a new line of testing kits based on Luminex’s proprietary xMAP™ technology and designed specifically for the cattle industry.
Earlier in the year, Genetic Solutions secured a worldwide non-exclusive license to intron sequence and genomic mapping patents held by Genetic Technologies Limited for application in the livestock and aquaculture industries.
Dr Gerard Davis
Phone: +61 7 3633 3501 or 0413 049 478
Troy Marshall, Burlington, CO – Seedstock Digest, Lorna Marshall, Burlington, CO – ABS, and Chris Christianson, Wessington Springs, SD – Christianson Simmental
L-R: Willie Altenburg, Glen Smith – AgInfoLink, James Bennett, Knoll Crest Farm, and Jerry Conneally, Conneally Angus, Whitman Nebraska
June 2002: Genetic Solutions announces strategic partnership with Luminex Corporation.
Genetic Solutions to market GeneSTAR® line of DNA diagnostic tests using Luminex’s xMAP™ technology
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA, and AUSTIN, TEXAS, June 12/PRNewsWire – FirstCall/ – Genetic Solutions Pty Ltd and Luminex Corporation (Nasdaq: LMNX) announce today that they have entered into a multi-year strategic partnership to commercialize a new line of testing Kits designed specifically for the cattle industry based on Luminex’s proprietary xMAP™ technology. Genetic Solutions will develop, manufacture and market its GeneSTAR® line of DNA tests for use with the Luminex 100™ system.
Under the terms of the parties’ agreement, Genetic Solutions has worldwide nonexclusive rights to develop and distribute reagent kits based on Luminex’s proprietary xMAP technology, including microsphere beads and the Luminex 100 system. For these rights, Luminex will receive royalties from the commercialization of Genetic Solutions’s products based on Luminex’s technology, as well as revenue from the sale of instruments and beads.
Dr. Jay Hetzel, Scientific Director at Genetic Solutions said, “The Luminex technology will enable us to increase the throughput of our current DNA diagnostic tests. Importantly, it will also provide a platform for the development of multi gene and multitrait tests in the near future.”
“We are pleased to announce our first strategic partner focused on producing tests for animal product quality and health within the cattle industry,” stated Luminex’s Executive Vice President Gail Page. “The announcement of this partnership demonstrates the flexibility of the Luminex platform to add value outside of the traditional clinical diagnostic testing market and research life sciences.”
Luminex’s open platform xMAP system is a proprietary technology that performs up to 100 assays simultaneously on a single drop of fluid with the capability for both medium- and high-throughput assay applications. xMAP combines the use of low-cost microsphere-based assays with small lasers, advanced digital signal processors and proprietary software to offer greater speed, precision and flexibility over current bioassay technologies.
About Luminex Corporation
Luminex Corporation develops, manufactures and markets proprietary biological testing technologies with applications throughout the life sciences industry. The company’s xMAP system is an open-architecture, multi-analyte technology platform that delivers fast, accurate and cost-effective bioassay results to markets as diverse as pharmaceutical drug discovery, clinical diagnostics and biomedical research, including the genomics and proteomics research markets. The company’s xMAP technology is sold worldwide and is already in use in leading research laboratories as well as major pharmaceutical, diagnostic and biotechnology companies. Further information on Luminex Corporation or xMAP can be obtained on the Internet at http://www.luminexcorp.com.
About Genetic Solutions Pty Ltd
Genetic Solutions is a privately held company which provides leading edge genetic information technology to the livestock and aquaculture industries in Australia and globally. Products currently include SureTRAK® a DNA-based system for validation of beef supply chain tracking systems and GeneSTAR® marbling, a DNA diagnostic test for carcass quality. Further information on Genetic Solutions can be obtained on the Internet at http://www.geneticsolutions.com.au
Statements made in this press release that express Luminex’s or management’s intentions, plans, beliefs, expectations or predictions of future events are forward-looking statements. The words “believe,” “expect,” “intend,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “will” and similar expressions are intended to further identify such forward-looking statements. It is important to note that the company’s actual results or performance could differ materially from those anticipated or projected in such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause Luminex’s actual results or performance to differ materially include risks and uncertainties relating to market demand and acceptance of Luminex’s products, the company’s dependence on strategic partners for development, commercialization and distribution of products, fluctuations in quarterly results due to a lengthy and unpredictable sales cycle, competition, Luminex’s ability to scale manufacturing operations, potential shortages of components and the timing of regulatory approvals, as well as the risks discussed under the heading “Factors That May Affect Future Results” in Luminex’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2001 and Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2002, as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The forward-looking statements contained herein represent the judgment of Luminex as of the date of this press release, and Luminex expressly disclaims any intent, obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements to reflect any change in Luminex’s expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statements are based.
Jay Hetzel, Ph.D.
Genetic Solutions Pty Ltd
Tel: +61 7 3633 3502
Acting Chief Financial Officer
June 2002 : Shorthorn breeder receives 5000th GeneSTAR® marbling result
A New South Wales Shorthorn breeder has submitted the 5000th sample for GeneSTAR® marbling testing through Brisbane-based biotechnology company, Genetic Solutions.
GeneSTAR® marbling is a DNA-marker test for one of the major marbling genes in cattle and can be tested for using tail-hair follicles or semen.
Mr J. Graham Hall of “Oakton” Shorthorn Stud sent in ten tail-hair samples from his cattle for testing.
The samples included four from bulls destined for the National Show and Sale at Dubbo on 12-13 June.
Mr Hall said he was extremely pleased when two of the bulls destined for sale at the Dubbo Show, Lots 160 and 161 of Oakton Vanquish V56 and V55 respectively, received a 2-STAR result and the other two bulls received a 1-STAR result.
Of the ten samples tested, two bulls were 2-STAR, three were 1-STAR and five were 0-STAR.
The term 2-STAR refers to the animal having two copies of the favourable form of the marbling gene and 1-STAR refers to the animal having one copy.
Mr Hall said he was delighted with the high frequency of the marbling gene in this sample of his stud herd and pleased that he could provide this information to potential buyers.
Genetic Solution’s GeneSTAR® marbling test was introduced in July 2000 and is the only DNA-based test for a cattle production trait available in the world.
Genetic Solutions Marketing and Operations Manager, Mr Jason Strong, said that he was very pleased at how shorthorn breeders had adopted the technology in a drive to make future generations of cattle more predictable with high levels of marbling.
Mr Strong said that the sale of the 5000th test was an important milestone for Genetic Solutions.
February 2002: Genetic Solutions Secures Global License
Genetic Solutions, an Australian livestock genomics company, has secured the first license to Genetic Technologies Limited (ASX-GTG) intron sequence patents.
Brisbane-based Genetic Solutions secured the world wide non-exclusive license to GTG’s intron sequence and genomic mapping patents for application in the livestock and aquaculture industries. The agreement will allow Genetic Solutions to determine whether an animal has desirable performance characteristics, and also to develop new tests for specific genes.
Dr Gerard Davis, Managing Director of Genetic Solutions said: “This license will enable us to move forward in developing and marketing our products and services in Australia and overseas. The patents covered by the license are key pieces of intellectual property for our business.”
Dr Mervyn Jacobson, the Executive Chairman of GTG said he was pleased that the first license issued would benefit an Australian company. “This is a significant milestone for GTG and likely to be the first of many such licensing agreements worldwide.”
Intron Sequence Analysis Patent
The ability to determine the inheritance of certain genetic regions in an animal, without knowledge of the parental genes, is important in the case of livestock in assessing the probability that an animal will have desirable performance characteristics. The Intron Sequence Analysis patent applies to all genes and all species, whether humans, animals, plants, insects, or even single-celled organisms. It will be employed to improve medical diagnostics as well as animal and plant testing programs.
Genome Mapping Patent
This patent covers a critical process in the efficient discovery of genes and gene markers and provides guidance as to the location of target genes.
January 2002: Genetic Solutions Director honoured by Science Academy
Dr Jay Hetzel, Scientific Director at the Brisbane based company Genetic Solutions has been elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering.
The citation referred to ’his contributions through research leadership and innovation to the commercialisation of livestock molecular genetic technologies‘.
During 20 years with CSIRO Australia, Dr Hetzel had a distinguished research career in bovine genomics and animal breeding. Particular achievements include leadership of teams that produced a complete bovine linkage map, mapped a large number of genes for carcass and meat quality traits, produced a diagnostic test for Pompe’s disease and a DNA fingerprinting system in cattle. Earlier achievements included quantifying consequences of selection and crossbreeding in cattle, ducks, sheep and mice.
In 1998, Dr Hetzel co-founded Genetic Solutions with the objective of developing and commercialising DNA technologies in the livestock and aquaculture industries.
The company markets a DNA based meat traceability system as well as DNA tests for use in breeding and management of cattle. It has successfully established markets for its products in Australia, North America and Japan.
The Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering is one of four learned Scientific Academies in Australia. It actively promotes the development and application of science and technology.
There are currently around 660 Australians whose achievements have been recognised by membership of the Academy. Approximately 25 new Fellows are elected annually.