Principle Investigators

John Basarab
University of Alberta - Beef Genomics

Dr. Basarab is a research scientist at the University of Alberta and Head of Beef Operations at Livestock Gentec. John has over 30 years experience in beef cattle production and management. His work includes the development of one of the largest genotype-phenotype databases for beef cattle in Canada, and for genetic marker discovery, global collaborations, and validation of genomic tools like EnVigour HX(TM).

Michael Dyck
University of Alberta - Reproductive Physiology and Biotechnology

Dr. Dyck is a Professor at the University of Alberta whose research is focused on the development and application of molecular techniques and reproductive technologies, in collaboration with the pork production industry, to improve breeding and production efficiency in swine. He is currently leading a Genome Canada Genomics Applications Partnership project on the application of genomic tools to select for disease resilience in pigs.

Carolyn Fitzsimmons
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada - Bovine Genetics

Dr. Fitzsimmons is a research scientist at AAFC and is co-located at the University of Alberta as an Adjunct Professor in Beef Cattle Science. Her research is focused in the areas of gene expression and epigenetics, and molecular control of economically important traits in beef cattle. In particular, Dr. Fitzsimmons is interested in how gene expression can be modified by the environment, especially at the pre-natal stage.

Leluo Guan
University of Alberta - Functional Genetics and Microbiology

Dr. Guan is a Professor at the University of Alberta and an Associate Dean in the Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences. Her research is focused on 1) molecular mechanisms of host-microbial interactions of the bovine gut, 2) association between gut microbial ecology and feed efficiency, methane emission and gut immunity, and 3) study of the bovine transcriptome, proteome and non-coding mRNA for economically important traits in cattle.

Changxi Li
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada - Bovine Genomics

Dr. Li is a Research Scientist with AAFC and was recently appointed as Team Lead of Beef Genomics and Livestock Production. He is also co-located at the UofA as an Adjunct Professor, is an AAFC Professor and Chair in Bovine Genomics Dr. Li’s research interests include identification and characterization of genes and genetic mechanisms related to economically important traits in the beef industry, as well as development of genomic tools to improve the beef industry.

Graham Plastow
University of Alberta - Livestock Genomics

Dr. Plastow is a Professor at the University of Alberta and is the CEO of Livestock Gentec. His research is focused on the application of genomics to increase value for all of the links within protein value chains (from the animal breeder to the consumer) with a focus on improving animal health. Dr. Plastow’s main ambition is to develop the program, together with other groups in ALES and their partners, to develop new tools for application in many of the farmed animal species.

Paul Stothard
University of Alberta - Bioinformatics, Genomics, Genetics

Dr. Stothard is a Professor at the University of Alberta in animal molecular biology and bioinformatics. His research is focused on the genetic basis on important traits in animals, with the use of whole genome sequencing and bioinformatics to understand the genetic bases of production and health traits, including pathogen resistance and resilience, in livestock.


Key Academic Collaborators

Gregg Adams
University of Saskatchewan - Veterinary Medicine

Dr. Adams is a Professor at the University of Saskatchewan in the Western College of Veterinary Medicine. He has broad interests in basic and applied aspects of reproductive science. Most recently, Dr. Adams is the lead for the InegrOmes project, which was awarded $6.76 M from the Canada Foundation for Innovation to conserve threatened animal species and address challenges facing the beef industry.

Edward Bork
University of Alberta - Rangeland and Ecology Management

Dr. Bork is a Professor at the University of Alberta and is the Mattheis Chair in Rangeland and Ecology Management. The major theme of his research is in improving the level of productivity and long-term sustainability of rangeland plant communities and ecosystems. This includes research in rangeland management and planning, monitoring and assessment, as well as rangeland improvement and restoration.

Gleise de Silva
University of Alberta - Beef Production Systems

Dr. de Silva is an Assistance Professor at the University of Alberta and the Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC)-Hays Chair in Beef Production Systems. Her research goals are to identify sustainable nutritional and management strategies able to enhance cattle health and performance, therefore, increasing profitability in the cow-calf sector.

Ben Willing
University of Alberta - Microbiology of Nutrigenomics

Dr. Willing is an Associate Professor at the University of Alberta. The objectives of his research are to understand how different members of the resident gut flora contribute to the metabolism of the diet and how this process contributes to microbial regulation of host physiology. Dr. Willing uses antibiotic and gnotobiotic (germ-free) animal models and tissue cultures, metabolomics and transcriptomics to study this complex system.

David Wishart
University of Alberta - Metabolomics and Data Science

Dr. Wishart is a Professor at the University of Alberta and Director of the Metabolomics Innovation Centre. He has created metabolomics databases in Edmonton that receive over 20 million hits a year, making Edmonton the centre of the world's most influential metabolomics databases. He has also help to pioneer many of the necessary technical, software and database developments to enable metabolomics to enter the scientific mainstream.