Foto del docente

Stefania Dall'Olio

Associate Professor

Department of Agricultural and Food Sciences

Academic discipline: AGR/17 Livestock Systems, Animal Breeding and Genetics


Keywords: candidate genes different traits animal breeding biodiversity genetic markers traceability

The research aim to study the genetic basis of differences between the productive performances in animals of different species (cattle, pigs, sheep, goat and horses). In particular,  in bovine specie the study aimed to identify quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for the milk yield and the protein percentage and to study  the variability in candidate genes for the milk quality traits. In horses research is geared to increase knowledge in genes important for productive performances or behavioral traits, while in pigs researches are aimed to study the variability in candidate genes for carcass and meat quality traits. Attention is also for the traceability of products such as meat or processed cheeses using a molecular approach.


The subjects of research concern mainly the study of genetic diversity in the livestock specie to improve animal productions. As for dairy cattle and in particular Italian Holstein Frisian breed, the researches aimed to identify quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for milk production (milk fat and protein yield) and milk quality traits (fat and protein percentages and somatic cells count) using "daughter design" and selective DNA pooling. In particular, we analyzed pool of DNA extracted from milk samples of the daughters of bulls heterozygous at marker loci and with divergent estimated breeding values for the considered traits. The complete genome scan using microsatellite markers has already identified several chromosome regions with a significant effect on production and quality of milk . Furthermore, we study the variability in candidate genes (for their position and / or function) for the production traits or the quality traits of milk. In horses means to deepen the knowledge of genes, yet little studied in order to know the organization of genes (exons, introns and regulatory regions), identify and characterize the variability and to analyze the genetic structure in different breeds and populations. The research on the pigs are aimed to studying candidate gene for the carcass and meat quality traits. The issue of traceability of products using a molecular approach seeks to identify the animal comes from products such as meat or processed cheeses. Traceability is an important aspect to ensure the safety of foods and promote the typical products of high quality.