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Projects

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  1. Brug af cellekultur-teknikker til at minimere behovet for forsøgsdyr i udvikling og fremstilling af vacciner til opdrætsfisk

    Niels Lorenzen, Helle Kristiansen & Helle Frank Skall

    Både for mennesker og husdyr er det bedre at forebygge smitsomme sygdomme end at skulle behandle, efter at der er opstået sygdom. Dette gælder også i fiskeopdræt, hvor øget brug af vacciner gennem de sidste 30 år, har ført til en markant nedgang i brugen af antibiotika. Udvikling af vacciner til fisk og kvalitetstjek af fremstillede vaccine er i stor udstrækning baseret på vaccinations- og smitteforsøg med forsøgsdyr.
    Dette projekt sigter mod at udvikle protokoller og metoder til brug af cellekulturer i de indledende undersøgelser af, hvordan vaccinekomponenter optages i og påvirker levende celler, herunder også toksisk effekt. Såvel analyse af genregulering som mikroskopiske undersøgelser vil indgå i arbejdet, som vil blive tilknyttet andre igangværende forskningsprojekter, hvor vaccinationsforsøg med fisk indgår. Projektet vil derfor i sig selv ikke gøre brug af yderligere forsøgsdyr.
    Resultatet forventes at kunne medvirke til delvist at erstatte brug af forsøgsdyr med cellekulturer i indledende trin i udvikling og fremstilling af vacciner til fisk. Dette vil bidrage til en reduktion (reduction) i behovet for forsøgsdyr i vaccineforskning og –industri, og også forfine (refinement) dyreforsøgene ved at nedbringe belastningsgraden i og med at komponenter med toksiske bivirkninger kan sorteres fra inden afprøvning i dyr.Description

    29/06-201628/11-2021

  2. EryPoP- a Research Project on Erysipelas in Laying Hens

    Eva Wattrang, Anna Aspan, Tina Sørensen Dalgaard, Elisabeth Bagge, Helena Eriksson, Robert Söderlund, Désirée Jansson, Mario Chiari & Mohammad Naghizadeh

    Erysipelas–an emerging disease in animal friendly production systems for poultry and pigs
    Project summary
    Following the change in housing systems for laying hens in Europe, erysipelas (caused by infection with the bacterium Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae) has become an emerging disease in several countries with outbreaks of high mortality in layer flocks in indoor aviaries and free-range/organic production. Erysipelas is a well-known acute disease in pigs and a suspected cause of arthritis and considerable economic losses in organic pigs. Erysipelas is difficult to prevent in the growing sector of animal friendly production systems for pigs and poultry. Moreover, E. rhusiopathiae-infections constitute an occupational hazard for humans (zoonosis).

    Although a well-known disease, vital basic knowledge particularly on the infection in chickens, is lacking. Hence, in this project (EryPoP) the epidemiology, infection dynamics and immunity development in poultry and pigs will be addressed in the field and by experimental infections through a multi-disciplinary and transnational approach and cooperation.
    The project has five main subtasks:
    to define transmission routes of E. rhusiopathiae by use of molecular epidemiology;
    to identify risk factors for outbreaks;
    to define the role of wild boars as potential reservoirs and sources of infection;
    to establish an assay to detect antibodies to E. rhusiopathiae in chickens; and
    to study the pathogenesis and immune responses to E. rhusiopathiae infections in chickens.
    Samples and metadata for analysis will be collected from poultry, domestic pigs and wild boars in Sweden and Italy. Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae isolates will be analysed by Next-Generation-Sequencing technologies and bioinformatics. Using available sequences and those provided within the project and proteomics, E. rhusiopathiae antigens will be identified and used for a novel ELISA test to detect chicken E. rhusiopathiae antibodies. This assay will be a valuable tool within the project as well as a future diagnostic tool in the field.
    A model for experimental infections in chickens will be established and used in studies of chicken immune responses to E. rhusiopathiae in naïve and vaccinated birds. These studies will provide information that will be vital in development of diagnostic methods and improvement of future prophylactic measures such as vaccines. Taken together, EryPoP will provide novel information that will enable scientifically based guidelines on prophylactic measures to prevent future erysipelas outbreaks and secure animal welfare in the growing animal friendly poultry and pig production.
    EryPoP started on March 1, 2016 and will run for three years. The project is funded by the Animal Health and Welfare ERA-Net (ANIHWA).
    Work in EryPoP is carried out in five different work packages.Description

    01/03-201628/11-2021

  3. VetBioNet - Veterinary Biocontained research facility Network

    Tina Sørensen Dalgaard & Mohammad Naghizadeh

    The principal aim of the VetBioNet infrastructure project is to establish and maintain a comprehensive network of pre-eminent high-containment (BSL3) research facilities, academic institutes, international organisations and industry partners that is dedicated to advance research on epizootic and zoonotic diseases and to promote technological developmentsDescription

  4. Understanding microbiomes of the ruminant holobiont (HoloRuminant)

    Peter Lund & Samantha Joan Noel

    Horizon 2020 ProjectDescription

    01/10-202130/09-2026

  5. PIGWEB

    Jan Værum Nørgaard, Mette S Herskin, Samantha Joan Noel, Lene Juul Pedersen & Leslie Foldager

    An infrastructure for experimental research for sustainable pig production
    Funded by EU Horizon 2020 Description

    01/03-202128/02-2026

  6. Sustainable plant protection transition: A global health approach

    Martin Tang Sørensen, Ole Hojberg, Lis Wollesen de Jonge, Trine Norgaard & Vivi Schlünssen

    In SPRINT, the purpose is to develop, test and deliver a model (a tool for risk assessment) that can provide accurate information on the effects of plant protection products on ecosystems, plants, animals and humans. The focus will be on robustness, productivity and health.
    The model will be based on data from experiments as well as from conventional and organic farms spread across the EU.
    The project is financed by EU means.Description

    01/09-202031/08-2025

  7. Novel triple action feed additive approach to reduce enteric methane emission from cattle by blocking the enzymatic process, draining the hydrogen substrate and suppressing methanogenic archaea (NO-METHANE)

    Mette Olaf Nielsen, Samantha Joan Noel & Peter Lund

    The project will develop and document (in vitro and in vivo tests) a novel, safe triple action feed additive for cattle, which reduces enteric methane emission without negative impacts on productivity.

    Finansieret af Innovationsfonden.Description

    01/04-202101/04-2025

  8. Udvikling af model for kvægbesætningens udledning af enterisk metan under forskellige management strategier

    Søren Østergaard, Anne Braad Kudahl, Martin Riis Weisbjerg, Jan Tind Sørensen, Vivi Mørkøre Thorup, Peter Lund, Lisbeth Mogensen & Morten Kargo

    En fortsat stor dansk mælkeproduktion kan være model for andre lande, hvis Danmark kan finde klimaløsninger, som dels er anvendelige i praksis, dels er effektive, både når man ser på bedriftens samlede klimagas udledning og på det økonomiske perspektiv. Den enkelte malkekvægbesætnings produktions-og managementsystem er et centralt og nødvendigt delsystem i, at kunne forstå og kvantificere den samlede danske klimabelastning for produktion af mælk og kød. Projektets hovedaktivitet er at udvikle en ny besætningsmodel til simulering af tekniske og økonomiske konsekvenser af managementtiltag til reduktion af klimaaftryk i malkekvægsbesætninger.


    Projekt finansieret af GUDPDescription

    01/07-202131/12-2024

  9. What do we drink in 2030? In-vitro milk based on cultured cells

    Stig Purup

    Milk from dairy cows provides essential nutrients as part of the diet, and people have a central needfor this food. However, dairy cows account for appr. 75% of Danish agricultures emission of thegreenhouse gas, methane. One biological approach for reducing greenhouse gas emission is toproduce milk in a sustainable way - by in vitro biotechnology instead of dairy cows. Description

    01/11-202131/10-2024

  10. Intelligent farming and health control in landbased recirculating aquaculture systems INTELLIRAS

    Mogens Agerbo Krogh

    Production of fish in land-based aquaculture contributes significantly to the production of animal protein in the human food-supply chain in the Nordic countries. Recirculation aquaculture systems (RAS) is an environmentally sustainable solution that is
    becoming increasingly relevant for land-based aquaculture. However, production and health management are considerable
    challenges which limit production performance.

    In this project we will use Artificial Intelligence (AI) and statistical models to aid the transition from
    a human experience-based management of RAS production to a knowledge-based automatic one. Feed management, feeding and feed
    waste is a major challenge to production. In marine aquaculture, video systems are widely used to observe the fish. This has not yet
    been implemented in RAS systems. Within this project we will apply deep learning tools on recordings of thousands of video sequences
    of fish, teaching computer systems how the fish react and use this in feed management and health monitoring. We aim at developing a
    closed loop control feeding system to optimize growth and limit feed waste and at the same time explore the possibilities of an early
    detection system for health monitoring.Description

    01/03-202101/09-2024

  11. SIgAVAC –Beskyttelse mod Coli-induceret fravænningsdiarré ved vaccinefremkaldt SIgA respons

    Gregers Jungersen, Dennis Christensen, Ida Rosenkrands, Charlotte Lauridsen, Lola Tolstrup, Charlotte Sonne Christensen, Frank Follmann & Peter Lawætz Andersen

    Bevilliget af Miljø- og Fødevareministeriet, GUDPDescription

    01/07-202030/06-2024

  12. UV kombilys i staldmiljø - virkning og effekt (UVIBA)

    Nuria Canibe, Ricarda Margarete Engberg, Søren Krogh Jensen, Jaap Boes, Torben Olesen, Ole Juul Svendsen, Michael Linde Jakobsen & John Elmerdahl Olsen

    Formålet med UVIBA er at reducere brugen af antibiotika og øge grises
    velfærd gennem anvendelse af kombilys, Direct Intelligent Light (DIL),
    som udvikles og afprøves i projektet.

    Det forventes, at inaktiveringen med DIL reducerer det mikrobielle smittetryk og dermed sygdomsforekomsten i svinestalden, hvilket mindsker brugen af antibiotika og udviklingen af mikrobiel resistens.

    Projekt bevilliget af GUDPDescription

    01/01-202130/06-2024

  13. Identification and elucidation of bioactivity of new compounds excreted into milk as the result of introduction of novel feeds and/or anti-methanogenic feed additives in diets for cattle

    Mette Olaf Nielsen, Marie Rønn, Natalja Nørskov, Stig Purup, Peter Lund, Christine Brøkner, Peter Langborg Wejse & Henrik Jørgen Andersen

    It is the aim of the PhD project to develop and validate (in this PhD: on 3-4 new feed additives) a methodological approach for identification and safety assessment of unknown compounds that potentially could be excreted into milk (or accumulated in meat) when novel feed additives are being introduced to markedly reduce enteric methane emission to be able to comply with climate goals defined by the EU, the Danish government, as well as the dairy/beef industry.
    Methane reduction efficiency and safety assessed of 3-4 new anti-methanogenic feed additives, which are presently being researched at AU as part of IFD projects: compound X and Nordic hemisphere macroalgae. 1) Validated targeted methods will be refined to accurately quantify compound X and possible break-down products in biological samples (e.g. blood, milk and meat). 2) Untargeted metabolomics approaches will be used to identify hitherto unknown compounds excreted into milk, when macroalgae or compound X based feed additives are included in cow diets.
    The project is funded by AU-Arla PhD Fellowhsip, GSTS and IFD.Description

    01/05-202130/04-2024

  14. Cattle Feed in Take - CFIT

    Martin Riis Weisbjerg, Søren Østergaard, Troels Kristensen, Jan Lassen, Peter Løvendahl, Jørgen Rind Thomasen, Lars Arne Hjort Nielsen, Anders Fogh & Samantha Joan Noel

    This project will generate new data for individual cow feed intake. This will be a game changer in dairy cattleproduction going from optimization of management on herd level to optimization for the individual cow.


    Projektet er finansieret af InnovationsfondenDescription

    01/02-202131/01-2024

  15. Prolonged lactation: Optimal strategy for lactational length at cow and herd level

    Søren Østergaard, Peter T. Thomsen, Lars Bilde Gildbjerg & Martin Bjerring

    The project focusses on identification of cows with optimal possibility to complete a prolonged lactation successfully.
    The project is funded by The Danish Dairy Levy Foundation.Description

    01/01-202031/12-2023

  16. Resilience for Dairy - R4D

    Søren Østergaard & Margit Bak Jensen

    Horizon 2020 project

    The overall objective of R4D is to develop and to strengthen a self-sustainable EU ThematicNetwork on “resilient and robust dairy farms” designed to stimulate knowledge exchanges and cross-fertilisation among a wide range of actors and stakeholders of thedairy industry. The aim of R4Dis to widely disseminate relevant ready-to-use best practices based on innovations, facilitating knowledge exchange from farmers to farmers.Description

    01/01-202131/12-2023

  17. Ablacto+: Biotechnological fight against post-weaning diarrhea

    Sandra Wingaard Thrane, Mads Laustsen, Nuria Canibe, Susanne Brix Pedersen, Carsten Hjort & Nicolai Weber

    Post-weaning diarrhea (PWD) in piglets is an extensive problem, causing weight loss and piglet death, resulting in financial loss for farmers and reduced welfare for the animals. The current treatment for PWD includes the use of zinc oxide and antibiotics. Zinc oxide is banned from year 2022, as it pollutes the environment, and the use of antibiotics is increasingly restricted due to antibiotic resistance including MRSA development. This leaves farmers with no alternatives for treatment of PWD. Bactolife's first product, Ablacto+, is a product for prevention of PWD in piglets and is currently under development.

    After having established proof of concept for Ablacto+, the scope of this project is to perform research and development of Ablacto+ to take it from concept to a defined product. Included are activities relating to production development, formulation, toxicology, treatment regimen, and large-scale testing of the product in an industrial setting. Ablacto+ will be based on a novel technology platform, and will be developed to be an easyto- use, cost-effective, sustainable prevention for PWD, ensuring the financial security of farmers.

    The product is a zootechnical feed additive which is based on nanobodies; these are binding proteins that are selected to specifically inhibit bacterial toxins and virulence factors, making the pathogen unable to establish an infection nor elicit symptoms, thereby preventing disease without disturbing the healthy microbiota in the gut.Description

    01/01-202030/09-2023

  18. Rethinking of Antimicrobial Decision-systems in the Management of Animal Production

    Mette Vaarst, Hanne Kongsted, Mogens Agerbo Krogh, Line Kollerup, Merete Studnitz, Katy Overstreet & Jan Tind Sørensen

    ROADMAP is a 4-year EU-funded project that will foster transitions towards prudent antimicrobial use (AMU) in animal production in a large variety of contexts, by favouring a rethinking of antimicrobial decision-systems all along the food supply chain.Description

    01/06-201931/05-2023

  19. Feed the pigs and train the enzymes prior to weaning

    Mette Skou Hedemann, Helle Nygaard Lærke, Nuria Canibe & Søren Krogh Jensen

    The purpose of FORFRA is to develop a new feeding concept for piglets that ensures weaning with optimal growth without development of diarrhea and without use of zinc oxide at medical levels and antibiotics. The feed will consist of optimized heat treated cereals, processed soy protein, and milk protein. The degradation profile of the cereal products and soybean meal will be determined in vitro and products with fast liberation of nutrients will be selected for the diets. These products are advantageous in piglets where high passage rate in the small intestine combined with low secretion of digestive enzymes limit digestion and absorption. This will furthermore allow for optimal protein supply that supports maximal growth. The diets will be fed to piglets from two days of age, which is hypothesized to stimulate the development and secretion of digestive enzymes. Feeding the same diets until two weeks post-weaning ensures that a high feed intake is maintained. Overall, the optimized diet and feeding concept in combination will translate into high digestibility of nutrients that will result in optimal growth and prevent development of post weaning diarrhea.
    The project is financed by GUDP.Description

    01/01-201931/12-2022

  20. Feeding and phenotype of the climate-efficient dairy cow

    Peter Lund, Martin Riis Weisbjerg, Ole Hojberg, Anne Louise Frydendahl Hellwing, Maria Holst Kjeldsen, Troels Kristensen, Samantha Joan Noel & Christian Friis Børsting

    We will validate existing additives and, in collaboration with the industry, start the development of new safe additives, which in the long term can ensure a significant reduction in methane without compromising the animal's health and milk quality.

    In the project we will establish the phenotype for the effective dairy cow so that this can be included in the future breeding goals. The use of new mitigation-tools depends entirely on the possibility of implementation on the individual farm. We will develop tools to document the real production of enteric methane on a cattle farm.Description

    01/01-202031/12-2022

  21. Innovative solutions for global animal health in an era of infectious diseases and antimicrobial resistance

    Tina Sørensen Dalgaard & Cheol-Heui Yun

    The purpose of the network project is to establish research collaboration between the main applicant and the main Korean partner within the area of innovative solutions for animal health.

    Moreover, the project also aims to explore how this collaboration can be extended to include private and other academic partners in South Korea with the aim of attracting shared research funding.

    Finally, the network will act as platform for discussions on broader aspects of institutional collaboration in animal science between Aarhus University and Seoul National University


    Funding body: Styrelsen for Forskning og UddannelseDescription

    01/01-202131/12-2022

  22. Pigs without antibiotics: A pig model of colitis-complex diarrhea with focus on colonic microbial fermentation

    Tina Skau Nielsen, Ole Hojberg & Charlotte Lauridsen

    Diarrhea in weaned pigs is one of the major causes of antimicrobial use in pig production. When pigs are 7-12 weeks of age, heavier and therefore takes larger doses of antibiotics to treat than right after weaning, a second phase of diarrhea typically occurs; the colonic colitis-complex diarrhea (CCD). In order to reduce the need for antibiotics, a new and deeper understanding of the colonic microbial fermentation pattern in the pathogenesis of CCD is needed and how this fermentation can be modulated by dietary means to prevent or alleviate CCD.

    In this project we will characterize the microbial composition and fermentation pattern in feces from commercial pigs with and without CCD and use this knowledge to establish a new CCD experimental disease model in pigs. Finally, we will test the model and investigate if inclusion of high-amylose maize starch (HAMS) high in resistant starch and butyrylated HAMS can prevent or reduce CCD.

    Description

    01/01-202031/12-2022

  23. Veterinærforlig III: Betydning af råmælksindtag/fødselsvægt samt supplerende mælk/fodring i dieperioden for fravænningsvægt, tarmens robusthed samt sundhed og trivsel hos den fravænnede gris (7-30 kg).

    Charlotte Lauridsen, Lene Juul Pedersen, Peter Kappel Theil & Dar'ya Vodolazs'ka

    Formålet med dette projekt er at fremme grisenes sundhed ved fravænning ved at have fokus på tiltag i dieperioden, der har betydning for grisenes robusthed og forebyggelse af sygdomme. Det overordnede mål er at opnå viden om, hvordan tidlig udvikling påvirker robusthed og modstandskraft over for sygdomme efter fravænning, hvor grisen er særligt udfordret. Description

    01/05-201801/01-2022

  24. Reduktion af fravænningsstress og af behov for AB gennem fravænning i farestien og brug af robust genotype

    Lene Juul Pedersen, Hanne Kongsted & Charlotte Lauridsen

    Formålet med projektet er at undersøge, om staldsystemet til løse søer, hvor grisene bliver i farestien efter fravænning, kan reducere de negative forandringer i immunforsvar, tarmflora og ædeadfærd, der normalt ses ved fravænning, og som forårsager fravænningsdiarré. Konceptet undersøges med to forskellige genotyper, der varierer ift. antal og vægt af de fødte grise. Description

    01/01-202031/12-2021

  25. Robuste grise med funktionelle ingredienser i foderet

    Uffe Krogh, Charlotte Lauridsen, Jan Værum Nørgaard, Peter Kappel Theil, Mette Skou Hedemann & Ruurd Zijlstra

    Det overordnede formålet med projektet er at finde konkrete ernæringsmæssige tiltag, der kan sikre robuste grise med god vækst, med særligt fokus på perioden omkring tre uger efter fravænning.

    Det specifikke formål er at undersøge tarmsundhed, absorptionskapacitet, tilvækst og fodereffektivitet hos grise:
    • Fodret med to niveauer af fermentérbare kulhydrater.
    • Fodret med 15% ekstra threonin og/eller 20% ekstra tryptofan i foderet.
    • Med højt eller lavt foderindtag i dagene omkring fravænning
    Description

    01/01-201931/12-2021

  26. Glyphosate treatment of crops: a sustainable strategy?

    Martin Tang Sørensen, Søren Krogh Jensen, Ole Hojberg, Sanna Steenfeldt, Leslie Foldager, Natalja Nørskov, Hanne Damgaard Poulsen & Uffe Krogh

    The aim of the project is to examine potential effects when farm animals are exposed to glyphosate residues via the feed. The project examines the effect of glyphosate on the gastrointestinal microorganisms and on the mineral status in pigs and poultry as well as possible secondary effects on the animals’ health and productivity. The studies will be conducted both at the research facilities at Aarhus University Foulum as well as in a number of commercial herds. The studies will be carried out with newly weaned piglets and laying hens.
    Velux-fonden.Description

    01/01-201730/06-2021

  27. Refined forage legumes as local sources of protein feed for monogastrics and high quality fibre need for ruminants in organic production

    Søren Krogh Jensen, Lene Stødkilde-Jørgensen & Anne Braad Kudahl

    Protein supplementation is a challenge in organic livestock production. Use of imported protein feeds on organically managed farms limits the recycling of nutrients. Fractionation of forage legumes, through novel harvesting and biorefining techniques, into protein- and fibre-rich feeds for monogastrics and ruminants, respectively, can increase farm self-sufficiency with feed. Leaf stripping and biorefing will be studied in experiments located in different regions in Europe and Turkey and assessed for feed value in monogastrics and ruminants. Concepts of local food systems based on fractionation of lucerne and red clover will be assessed for sustainability. Stakeholder groups will be involved in the project, and to ensure effective dissemination of the results, farmers will be interviewed regarding attitudes to self-sufficiency and barriers to cooperation that may be necessary for the implementation of local food systems.The proposed project will establish important knowledge about how to improve self-sufficiency in organic livestock production. An assessment of economic, environmental and social aspects can be used to adapt sustainable local food systems in different regions.
    The project is financed by CORE Organic CofundDescription

    01/03-201830/04-2021

  28. VetBioNet - Veterinary Biocontained research facility Network

    Tina Sørensen Dalgaard

    The principal aim of the VetBioNet infrastructure project is to establish and maintain a comprehensive network of pre-eminent high-containment (BSL3) research facilities, academic institutes, international organisations and industry partners that is dedicated to advance research on epizootic and zoonotic diseases and to promote technological developments.Description

    01/03-201730/04-2021

  29. RobustPig - Early inoculation of probiotics to newborn piglets

    Lea Hübertz Birch Hansen, Nuria Canibe & Charlotte Lauridsen

    Bevilliget af Innovationsfonden og i samarbejde med Chr. Hansen A/SDescription

    15/02-201814/02-2021

  30. Karakterisering af medfødte immunreceptorer hos kyllinger med henblik på bedre sygdomskontrol overfor virusinfektioner

    Tina Sørensen Dalgaard & Frederik Larsen

    Kommercielt opdrættede kyllinger er sårbare overfor en række virus sygdomme der uden forbyggelse giver direkte økonomiske tab for producenterne. Ydermere skaber det øget risiko for infection med sekundære bakterielle patogener, der kræver antibiotika behandling.
    Det overordnede formal med projektet er at tilveje bringe viden om dyrene genetiske variations indflydelse på kvaliteten af vaccinationsprogrammer. Derudover skal information om denne variation bruges til at udvikle nye vaccine-adjuvanser, der kan anvendes til at optimere control af virusinfektioner gennem nye vaccinetyper med bredere beskyttelse.Description

    01/01-201731/12-2020

  31. Food ingredients from green biorefining

    Søren Krogh Jensen, Lene Stødkilde-Jørgensen & Anne Braad Kudahl

    Grass protein-based foods are not marketed yet, but great potential is predicted.
    In the project, grass protein-based dietary supplements will be developed, and products such as protein drinks, bars, as well as vegan pies, sausages and ready meals will be invented.
    The project is financed by Region Central Jutland.Description

    01/02-201930/09-2020

  32. Glyphosate treatment of crops: a sustainable strategy?

    Sundas Rani

    Objective
    To investigate if glyphosate residues in genetically modified (GM) feed crops like Roundup ready soybeans and desiccated grain cause livestock health problems and so the use of glyphosate is a sustainable strategy for weed control.
    Experimental approach
    To achive our objective we will use pigs and hens as an experimental organism. Will analyze their health ststus and growth using NGS technology mainly Illumina Miseq NGS platform. Then short chain fatty acid analysis using gas chromatography (FID- based). Also some specific quantitative PCR (qPCR) analysis. For bioinformatics we will mostly rely on Qiime and R software.Description

    01/09-201701/09-2020

  33. Breeding Danish Shorthorn in the future – Genomic mapping of shorthorn populations

    Anna A. Schönherz & Bernt Guldbrandtsen

    At Center for Quantitative Genetics and Genomics (QGG), Aarhus University, we work with genomic characterisation and improvement of sustainable preservation of live livestock genetic resources. Within the past five years we have mapped the genetic diversity and relationship of 12 old, Danish livestock breeds, among others three of the four old cattle breeds worthy of preservation: The Danish red dairy breed anno 1970 (RDM-70), the black Danish dairy breed anno 1965 (SDM-65) and the Danish Shorthorn. These studies determined that Danish Shorthorn have an average degree of genomic inbreed of 33% (Szekeres et al. 2016), which is very high and alarming. It reflects a very small population with a low genetic variation. In the future, the degree of genomic inbreed will grow concurrently with the continuous growth of the degree of relationship in a small population. An additional increase of the degree of inbreed will result in a weakened reproduction ability, reduced life force, and a reduced resistance to diseases and subsequently an impaired health. Signs of reduced reproduction ability in Danish Shorthorn are found, but at present, it cannot be established if this is caused by depression of inbreeding.

    A sustainable preservation programme for Danish Shorthorn is therefore indispensable to secure the survival of the race. A continuous loss of genetic variation will lead to inbreed depression – even within a relatively short time. Establishing a sustainable preservation programme requires a sufficient amount of animals with a sufficient genetic variation, a knowledge of the relationship between the animals in the breed, and an insurance that the existing, genetic variation is preserved. In situations where the genetic variation is reduced in a population such as Danish Shorthorn, crossbreeding can be the only method to re-establish the genetic variation in the population, with the aim of recreating the sustainability of the breeding work (Kettunen et al., 2017; Lewis et al., 2015). It is necessary to act quickly regarding Danish Shorthorn. The possibility for gene renewal in Danish Shorthorn should therefore be examined as a preservation strategy.

    The Shorthorn race originates from England, but spread out geographically to Northern Europe, America, Canada and Australia, among others. It became popular in Denmark in the late 19th century, mainly through imported animals from Ejderstedt in Germany, followed later by import from England (Sørensen and Nielsen, 2017). Supplementation of the genetic variation in Danish Shorthorn can therefore be done with animals of pure shorthorn pedigree, which are presumed to have donated genetic material, or to have an origin resembling Danish Shorthorn.

    With financial support from The Danish Agricultural Agency under the Danish Ministry of Environment and Food, we have initiated the project Danish Shorthorn breeding in the Future – Genomic Mapping of Shorthorn populations (Dansk Korthornsavl i Fremtiden - Genomisk Kortlægning af Korthornspopulationer). Our goal is to map and compare the genetic variation and the relationship between the Danish population and foreign shorthorn populations in order to ensure a sustainable preservation effort of Danish Shorthorn in the future, with focus on potential gene renewal of the existing Danish Shorthorn population. By applying new technologies that use the variation in the genome, it is possible not only to determine the relationship between animals, but also to characterize genetic differences both between and within shorthorn populations. The genomic information will form the basis for the clarification of present relationships between the Danish population and the foreign shorthorn populations. The results of the genetic examinations will be used to trace potential unwanted mix in other shorthorn herds, so that mixed herds or animals can be excluded from import of genetic material. Furthermore, the information will be the basis for identification of suitable collaboration partners in sustainable preservation of Danish Shorthorn, particularly concerning potential gene renewals of the existing Danish Shorthorn, and without compromising the specific character of the Danish shorthorn population.Description

    01/01-201930/06-2020

  34. Veterinærforlig III: Fodringsstrategi baseret på fermenteret korn og probiotika til forbedring af tarmsundhed og reducering af fravænningsdiarré hos grise

    Nuria Canibe, Helle Nygaard Lærke, Samantha Joan Noel & Ole Hojberg

    Formålet med projektet er at undersøge effekten af at anvende en fodringsstrategi, der forventes at 1) stimulere foderoptagelse hos smågrise allerede under diegivning og på samme tid 2) reducere risikoen for fravænningsdiarré med fokus på E. coli infektion.Description

    01/05-201801/05-2020

  35. Feed-a-Gene: Adapting the feed, the animal and the feeding techniques to improve the efficiency and sustainability of monogastric livestock production systems

    Knud Erik Bach Knudsen, Samantha Joan Noel, Søren Krogh Jensen, Mette Skou Hedemann & Helle Nygaard Lærke

    Feed-a-Gene aims to better adapt different components of monogastric livestock production systems (i.e., pigs, poultry and
    rabbits) to improve the overall efficiency and to reduce the environmental impact. This involves the development of new and
    alternative feed resources and feed technologies, the identification and selection of robust animals that are better adapted to
    fluctuating conditions, and the development of feeding techniques that allow optimizing the potential of the feed and the
    animal.
    To reach this overall objective, the project will:
    - Develop new and alternative feeds and feed technologies to make better use of local feed resources, green biomass and
    by-products of the food and biofuel industry.
    - Develop methods for the real-time characterization of the nutritional value of feeds to better use and adapt diets to animal
    requirements.
    - Develop new traits of feed efficiency and robustness allowing identification of individual variability to select animals that are
    more adapted to changes in feed and environmental conditions.
    - Develop biological models of livestock functioning to better understand and predict nutrient and energy utilization of
    animals along their productive trajectory.
    - Develop new management systems for precision feeding and precision farming combining data and knowledge from the
    feed, the animal, and the environment using innovative monitoring systems, feeders, and decision support tools.
    - Evaluate the overall sustainability of new management systems developed by the project.
    - Demonstrate the innovative technologies developed by the project in collaboration with partners from the feed industry,
    breeding companies, equipment manufacturers, and farmers’ organisations to promote the practical implementation of
    project results.
    - Disseminate new technologies that will increase animal production efficiency, whilst maintaining product quality and animal
    welfare and enhance EU food security to relevant stakeholders.
    Funding: Horizon 2020Description

    01/03-201501/03-2020

  36. Effect of redox staus on immunity of pigs pre-weaning

    Charlotte Lauridsen

    Project in collaboration with Adisseo, FranceDescription

    01/08-201831/01-2020

  37. Nedsat metan fra malkekøer fodret med økologisk dyrket oregano

    Peter Lund, Kai Grevsen, Dana Olijhoek, Anne Louise Frydendahl Hellwing, Martin Riis Weisbjerg & Ole Hojberg

    Målet er at reducere udslip af metan fra malkekøer med op til 25 %.
    Metan er en drivhusgas, der virker 25 gange stærkere end kuldioxid.
    Metan fra kvæg udgør en betydelig del (40 %) af dansk landbrugs
    produktion af drivhusgasser. For økologisk produktion er der kun få
    tilgængelige midler til metanreduktion. Indledende pilotforsøg i udlandet
    og i Danmark har indikeret, at tilsætning af oregano med højt indhold af
    carvacrol (terpen i æteriske olier, stærkt antimikrobiel) i foderet
    nedbringer produktion af metan i koens vom. Bioaktive stoffer i oregano
    påvirker formentlig sammensætningen af mikroorganismer i koens
    fordøjelsessystem, og reducerer antallet af metanproducerende
    organismer. Det ser samtidig ud til at oregano i koens foder påvirker
    fedtsyresammensætning i mælken positivt. I projektet udføres
    fodringsforsøg med oregano i specielle metan-kamre for at kvantificere
    effekten af varierende mængder på metanudledning, mælkeydelse og -
    kvalitet.Til de betydelige mængder af oreganomateriale, der bliver tale
    om, skal der i projektet udvikles optimeret dyrkning og forarbejdning af
    økologisk oregano. Højtydende underarter af Origanum vulgare med
    højt indhold af aktive stoffer og stabilt udbytte anvendes. Desuden
    forædles nye højtydende sorter specielt til metanreduktion.
    Vi vil vise at det virker, komme med eksakte tal på effekter, og angive
    hvordan det kan dyrkes økologisk og anvendes i praksis, og med
    hvilken gevinst for klima, landbrug og samfund.Description

    01/01-201631/12-2019

  38. SYN-CARB Synthetic carbohydrate with broad targeting of avian C-type lectin receptors as a novem tool for sustainable control of pathogens with zoonotic potential

    Tina Sørensen Dalgaard, Frederik Larsen & Rikke Brødsgaard Kjærup

    Infektionssygdomme udgør en alvorlig trussel mod dyrevelfærden og medfører store økonomiske tab i fjerkræproduktion på verdensplan. Særlig opmærksomhed er i tiden rettet mod brugen af antibiotika og problemerne omkring resistensudvikling.Description

    01/01-201731/12-2019

  39. Synergiskabende aktiviteter på ST

    Charlotte Lauridsen

    Bevilliget af Aarhus Universitets ForskningsfondDescription

    01/10-201801/12-2019

  40. Ablactomab - et bioteknologisk alternativ til antibiotika i landbruget

    Charlotte Lauridsen

    Bevilliget af InnovationsfondenDescription

    01/02-201830/06-2019

  41. Delivery of intestinal satiety inducing ingredients

    Mette Skou Hedemann, Stig Purup & Yuan Yue

    Obesity and the related medical conditions are a global challenge which is affecting an increasing number of the population worldwide. However, current approaches such as education, encouragement for more physical activities, and availability of low fat and low calorie food have not yielded the anticipated positive effects on weight management. Therefore, there is an urgent need for novel strategies for reducing food intake without influencing the pleasure of food, by taking recently gained knowledge from molecular biology, material and food science into consideration. The overall goal is the identification and controlled delivery of active ingredients designed to affect the regulating satiety mechanisms in the gastrointestinal tract, which can be part of everyday foods. Satiety enhancing products aim at reducing the food intake by strengthening the internal physiological signals. This project is a collaborative effort between DuPont, the Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center and the Department of Animal Science at Aarhus University, aiming at supporting national and international strategies to address the preventable disease obesity. The successful interplay of the three main research challenges include; 1) identification of novel satiety enhancing ingredients, 2) development of encapsulation strategies for protection, masking and site specific delivery, and 3) combination with food formulations. Taken together, this project is anticipated to yield knowledge and technologies with significant commercial and social impact. The beneficial outcomes of this project will not only contribute to the accessibility of healthier food, but will also strengthen Denmark’s world leading position in the food science and production, thereby having an impact on growth and employment.Description

    01/01-201601/06-2019

  42. Effekt af jerntilskud i første leveuge på minkhvalpens jernstatus, vækst og overlevelse

    Rikke Brødsgaard Kjærup

    Projekt bevilliget af Dansk Pelsdyravlerforenings Forskningsfond.

    Formålet med projektet er at undersøge effekten af at give minkhvalpe ét tilskud af jern i første leveuge på hvalpenes jernstatus (hæmoglobinniveau), tilvækst, sundhed (immunforsvar) og overlevelse.

    Projektet gennemføres som et samarbejdsprojekt mellem Kopenhagen Fur og Aarhus Universitet. Forsøget gennemføres på Kopenhagen Fur forsøgsgård i dieperioden 2018, og analyserne af blodprøverne foretages af Aarhus Universitet, ANIS.Description

    01/05-201831/05-2019

  43. Salmonelladiagnostik ved hjælp af luftprøver

    Ricarda Margarete Engberg

    Samarbejde med Force TechnologyDescription

    30/10-201830/04-2019

  44. Vitamin og tarmfunktion

    Charlotte Lauridsen

    Projekt i samarbejde med DSM Nutritional products AGDescription

    01/06-201801/03-2019

  45. Erysipelas - an emerging disease in animal friendly production systems for poultry and pigs - EryPOP

    Tina Sørensen Dalgaard

    Erysipelas is a severe infectious disease caused by the bacterium Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae (ER).
    Following the change in housing for laying hens in Europe, erysipelas has become an emerging disease in
    several countries with outbreaks of high mortality in layer flocks in indoor aviaries and free-range/organic
    production. Erysipelas is a well-known acute disease in pigs and a suspected cause of arthritis and
    considerable economic losses in organic pigs. Erysipelas is difficult to prevent in the growing sector of
    animal friendly production systems for pigs and poultry.
    The overall aim of the proposed project (EryPoP) is to generate important knowledge on infections with
    Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae (ER) in animal friendly poultry and pig production. This knowledge is crucial
    to secure animal welfare in these growing sectors, by developing effective management routines to
    prevent future disease outbreaks.Description

    01/01-201631/12-2018

  46. METAPIG Modulation of the pig gut microbiome to increase feed efficiency and gut health

    Nuria Canibe

    Ny forskning har vist, at tarmens bakterier spiller en afgørende rolle i forhold til udnyttelse af fødens energi og for udviklingen af et effektivt immunforsvar og dermed beskyttelse mod sygdomme.
    I dette projekt vil vi udnytte den store viden, der eksisterer i Danmark omkring svineprodukt, udvikling af foder samt grisens genetik og tarmbakterier til at afdække, hvorledes det vil være muligt at ændre sammensætningen af tarmens bakterier - for netop at styrke immunsystemet og udnyttelsen af foderet.Description

    01/01-201531/12-2018