Department of Animal Science


Date of this Version



Front. Genet. 10:327


Copyright © 2019 Rexroad, Vallet, Matukumalli, Reecy, Bickhart, Blackburn, Boggess, Cheng, Clutter, Cockett, Ernst, Fulton, Liu, Lunney, Neibergs, Purcell, Smith, Sonstegard, Taylor, Telugu, Eenennaam, Tassell and Wells.

Open access

doi: 10.3389/fgene.2019.00327


In 2008, a consortium led by the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and the National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA) published the “Blueprint for USDA Efforts in Agricultural Animal Genomics 2008–2017,” which served as a guiding document for research and funding in animal genomics. In the decade that followed, many of the goals set forth in the blueprint were accomplished. However, several other goals require further research. In addition, new topics not covered in the original blueprint, which are the result of emerging technologies, require exploration. To develop a new, updated blueprint, ARS and NIFA, along with scientists in the animal genomics field, convened a workshop titled “Genome to Phenome: A USDA Blueprint for Improving Animal Production” in November 2017, and these discussions were used to develop new goals for the next decade. Like the previous blueprint, these goals are grouped into the broad categories “Science to Practice,” “Discovery Science,” and “Infrastructure.” New goals for characterizing the microbiome, enhancing the use of gene editing and other biotechnologies, and preserving genetic diversity are included in the new blueprint, along with updated goals within many genome research topics described in the previous blueprint. The updated blueprint that follows describes the vision, current state of the art, the research needed to advance the field, expected deliverables, and partnerships needed for each animal genomics research topic. Accomplishment of the goals described in the blueprint will significantly increase the ability to meet the demands for animal products by an increasing world population within the next decade.