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DNA Timeline, Requirements and Top Tips

By Lilly Platts, Jackie Atkins, Riley Foster, and Leoma Wells

Everything you need to know about ASA’s DNA Services & more. This is an extended version of the first installment of ‘Down to the Genes’ published in the September 2018 issue of the Register.  This article covers frequently asked questions and offers tips for a smooth DNA process. For additional FAQ’s and information, see the September issue of the Register.

When do I have to DNA test an animal?

 Animal Type Parentage Genomics Genetic Conditions
Purchased embryo Required Suggested *Recommended if CL (Carrier in Lineage),
Embryo from owned or leased donor dam Not Required Testing Recommended   DL (Documented Carrier in Lineage),
Donor Dam Required GGP-HD Required   or PR (Population Risk).
AI Sire  Required  GGP-HD Required  
Natural Service Sire  Recommended  Recommended   
Cows/replacement heifers  No Required Testing  Recommended  
       

If a sire or donor dam is listed as a CL, DL or PR for genetic conditions then the progeny will be placed on a genetic hold, which means as certificate/EPDs will not be issued until either the parent(s) have been tested or the individual itself is tested for the conditions marked as CL, DL or PR on the parent(s) TriatTrac.

I purchased semen.  Are those selling semen monitored by ASA to ensure HD/150K testing?

No. Breeders are responsible for completing ASA’s testing requirements. It is strongly suggested that buyers of semen ensure a bull has all required testing prior to purchasing semen and breeding cows.

Do ASA’s genetic defect testing requirements match those put in place by sales management and bull tests?

Not always. Sales managers and bull tests may require additional testing depending on their requirements. It is always best to follow up with the specific sales manager or bull test on the testing requirements prior to ordering DNA kits from ASA to ensure the animal can be sold through that venue.

Do other associations require the same testing?

Each association has different requirements. If a sire/dam is registered with ASA from another breed certificate, additional testing may be required to register progeny. Make sure to contact ASA with any questions prior to progeny being born to avoid delays at registration time.

 

Take home message:  Do not delay your DNA testing – order your kits today!

 

Ten things you can do to ensure a smooth DNA testing process:

  1. Familiarize yourself with ASA’s DNA testing requirements.
  2. First contact the sale, bull test, show, etc., you may participate in to be clear of their DNA requirements.
  3. Order kits early (at least two months before you need results) by contacting the ASA – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 406-587-4531. Please follow the instructions and have all the required information before calling.
  4. Use a blood card, TSU, or hair card for collection. NEVER send vials of blood, bags of hair, etc. to the lab.
  5. Follow the instructions for collection included with your kits. Failure to collect the samples properly may result in samples failing testing – watch for more information in the October issue.
  6. If you make a mistake, i.e. collect the sample from the wrong animal, etc., do NOT send the sample to the lab. If you do, contact ASA immediately.
  7. Never send kits to the lab without either ordering them for specific animals or if you have blank kits, always complete paperwork with the DNA department first.
  8. Send samples to the lab as soon as they are ready. Getting them out the door ensures faster processing and less time for paperwork to get mixed up.
  9. Check your email for results.
  10. If you have a question, ASA is happy to help. Please have your membership number and information on the animal you are inquiring about (ASA number, tattoo, etc.).
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Down to the Genes Series

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