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Áine O’Brien

Post-doctoral Researcher – Sheep Genetics and Genomics

Research Interests

  • Sheep systems
  • Sheep health
  • Breeding objectives
  • Developing new traits for inclusion in breeding indexes
  • Genetic and genomic evaluations
  • Additional benefits of genomics
  • Predicting breed composition using genotype data

Current Projects

SMARTER: SMAll RuminanTs breeding for Efficiency and Resilience (EU Horizon H2020 grant agreement No 772787).

More information: https://www.smarterproject.eu/

Education

BAgrSc Agricultural Science (Animal Science) University College Dublin, 2015

PhD – Genetics and genomics for performance in a multi-breed Irish sheep population, University of Limerick, 2019

Peer reviewed publications:

O’Brien A.C., Purfield D.C., Judge M.M., Long C., Fair S., Berry D.P., 2020. Population structure and breed composition prediction in a multi-breed sheep population using genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphism genotypes. Animal (2020) 14:3, pp 464 – 474. doi:10.1017/S1751731119002398

O’Brien A.C., Judge M.M., Fair S., Berry D.P., 2019. High imputation accuracy from informative low-density to medium-density single nucleotide polymorphism genotypes is achievable in sheep. Journal of Animals Science, accepted. doi:10.1093/jas/skz043

O’Brien A.C., McHugh N., Wall E., Pabiou T., McDermott K., Randles S., Fair S., Berry D.P., 2017. Genetic parameters for lameness, mastitis and dagginess in a multi-breed sheep population. Animal (2017) 11:6, pp 911 – 919. doi:10.1017/S1751731116002445

Berry D.P., Bohan A., O’Brien A.C., Campion F.C., McHugh N., Wall E., 2020. Heteropaternal superfecundation frequently occurs in multiple-bearing mob-mated sheep. Animal Genetics, accepted. doi: 10.1111/age.12939

Berry D.P., McHugh N., Wall E., McDermott K., O’Brien A.C., 2019. Low-density genotype panel for both parentage verification and discovery in a multi-breed sheep population. The Irish Journal of Agricultural and Food Research, 58 (2019) 1 - 12. doi: 10.2478/ijafr-2019-0001

Bohan A., Shalloo L., Creighton P., Berry D.P., Boland T.M., O’Brien A.C., Pabiou T., Wall E., McDermott K., McHugh N., 2019. Deriving economic values for national sheep breeding objectives using a bio-economic model. Livestock Science 227 (2019) 44 – 54. doi: 10.1016/j.livsci.2019.05.018

Berry D.P., O’Brien A., O’Donovan J., McHugh N., Wall E., Randles S., McDermott K., O’Connor R.E., Patil M.A., Ho J., Kennedy A., Byrne N., Purfield D.C., 2018. Aneuploidy in dizygotic twin sheep detected using genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphism data from two commonly used commercial vendors. Animal 12:12, pp 2462 – 2469. doi:10.1017/S1751731118000204.

Berry D.P., McHugh N., Randles S., Wall E., McDermott K., Sargolzaei M., O’Brien A.C., 2018. Imputation of non-genotyped sheep from the genotypes of their mates and resulting progeny. Animal 12:2 pp 191 – 198. doi:10.1017/S1751731117001653.

Berry D.P., O’Brien A., Wall E., McDermott K., Randles S., Flynn P., Park S., Grose J., Weld R., McHugh N., 2016. Inter- and intra-reproducibility of genomics from sheep technical replicates on Illumina and Affymetrix platforms. Genetic Selection Evolution 48:86. doi:10.1186/s12711-016-0267-0

Links:

National presentations:

O’Brien A.C., 2020. Making life easier at the busiest time - the potential to breed for improved lamb vigour and better mothering ability. ICBF and Sheep Ireland Genetics Conference, 2020. Link: https://www.sheep.ie/wp/?p=5272

O’Brien A.C., 2018. Can we breed healthier sheep? Breeding as a solution to improve sheep health. ICBF and Sheep Ireland Genetics Conference, 2018.

Conference proceedings:

O’Brien A.C., McHugh N., Wall E., Pabiou T., McDermott K., Randles S., Fair S., Berry D.P., 2016. Genetic parameters for health traits in a multi-breed sheep population. Proceedings of the World Buiatrics Congress, Dublin, Ireland. P602

O’Brien A.C., McHugh N., Wall E., Pabiou T., McDermott K., Randles S., Fair S., Berry D.P., 2016. Genetic parameters for health traits in a multi-breed sheep population. Proceedings of the 67th Annual Meeting of the European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP). Book of abstracts No.419 Belfast, Ireland.

O’Brien A.C., Purfield D., Hugh N., Wall E., Pabiou T., McDermott K., Randles S., Fair S., Berry D.P., 2016. Inference of population structure of 16 sheep breeds using SNP genotype data. Proceedings of the 67th Annual Meeting of the European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP). Book of abstracts No.419 Belfast, Ireland.