In an historical period in which the use of multimedia tools for learning, dissemination, exchange of information and maintenance of working relationships has become indispensable, this project aims to develop a multimedia platform “Knowledge Exchange Platform – KEP” as an innovative tool for the exchange of knowledge and learning in the context of Animal and Food Science.

Maria Martinez Castillero

Genetic analyses of fertility traits in dairy cattle

Improvements in technology, managment and breeding strategies allowed to increase milk production, rear greater herds and increase farm productivity.

However, these improvements have been done at the expenses of reducing the animal genetic variability by a high selection pressure, which had a strong impact on different animal traits, including fertility.

The aim of Maria’s project is to study genetic aspects related to female fertility and the relationships with milk production traits in dairy cattle from Holstein, Brown Swiss and Simmenthal breeds.

Maria uses different methodologies, from the interactions between the genetics and the environment to the effects of inbreeding on fertility traits

Giovanni Bertoldo

Effects of biostimulants on sugar beet gene expression

How can we feed 9 billion people?

Biostimulants are natural products largely used in agriculture to make plants more resilient and to increase their yields, assuring food security.

Despite the large use of biostimulants, there is still a lack of knowledge in their mechanisms of action in the plant physiology and Giovanni is trying to fill this gap!

He feeds sugar beet, a model plant, with biostimulants and than he goes deep at the DNA scale to see the different expression levels of the sugar beet genes to identify which one is modulated by the biostimulants

In detail, Giovanni is exploring the effects of humic substances, which turned out to modify the gene expression of specific enzymes that can make plants more tolerant to stress and improve biological functions of the plants, leading to a higher production and ensuring to feed our growing population!