From 2 November 2020, the autumn semester 2020 will take place online. Exceptions: Courses that can only be carried out with on-site presence.
Please note the information provided by the lecturers via e-mail.

Search result: Catalogue data in Spring Semester 2015

Agroecosystem Science Master Information
Majors According
Major in Animal Science
Disciplinary Competences
Ruminant Science
NumberTitleTypeECTSHoursLecturers
751-6502-00LRuminant Science (FS) Information W+4 credits4GM. Kreuzer, M. C. Härdi-Landerer, S. Marquardt, S. Neuenschwander, C. Soliva
AbstractThe course provides the scientific basis of the central aspects in ruminants of cattle, sheep and goat breeding, diseases and the interrelationship of animal nutrition and environment. Aspects of organic farming and tropical livestock systems form part of the course. Means of knowledge transfer include interdisciplinary approaches, disciplinary parts, web-based learning and self-study.
ObjectiveAt the end of the course the students are able to apply, by a comprehensive understanding of the underlying mechanisms, their knowledge in various fields of ruminant science. They will be able to develop and recommend best strategies for large and small ruminant breeding, for sustained animal health and disease prophylaxis, for environmentally friendly animal nutrition etc. They will be trained to carry out interdisciplinary and disciplinary research at the highest level. The course Ruminant Science (HS) offered in autumn has a similar structure but is complementary to this course.
ContentFields (contact hours)
- Introduction
- Interdisciplinary topics: 12 h
- Organic Ruminant Systems
- Tropical Ruminant Systems
- Mastitis
- Disciplinary topics: 36 h
- Cattle, Sheep and Goat Breeding: 12 h
- Ruminant Diseases and Prophylaxis: 12 h
- Ruminant Nutrition and the Environment (incl. general introduction): 12 h
- Lectures held by the students: 4 h
In summary
- Contact hours: 52 h
- Self-study within semester: 30 h (especially preparation for the interdisciplinary courses and the own lecture)
- Self-study in semester break: 38 h
Total: 120 h
Lecture notesDocumentations, links and other materials will be provided at the start of the course.
LiteratureInformation on books and other references will be communicated during the course.
Prerequisites / NoticeThe specialty of this course is that for the first time the animal science disciplines are unified. This is realised with a particular emphasis on interdisciplinary focal areas and new forms of teaching. At the same time the essential basics in the central fields are communicated.

The field of Ruminant Science will also be a part of the spring semester (planned interdisciplinary topics: Lameness, Fertility in Cows, Food Intake; disciplinary courses: Animal Husbandry, Ruminant Reproduction, Nutrition Physiology in Ruminants). However both courses are organized independently.

Conditions for successful participation: Background on animal science from the Bachelor is desired. In order to attend the Minor in Ruminant Science without any animal science background, 2 credit units are reserved for an initial self-study of the basics necessary to successfully pass the minor. A realistic self-assessment concerning the need for additional self-study is recommended for students which focused on Agricultural and Resource Economics in the Bachelor of Agricultural Science ETH. This necessary effort depends on the extent to which animal science courses have been already attended in the BSc.

The control of performance will consist of:
- an own lecture
- an interdisciplinary final oral examination with focus on comprehension of the fundamental linkages rather than of specific details
Non-Ruminant Science
NumberTitleTypeECTSHoursLecturers
751-6602-00LPig Science (FS)W+3 credits2GG. Bee, E. Hillmann, S. Neuenschwander
AbstractThe overall goal of the course is to provide the essential scientific knowledge of the genetic, physiological, behavioural and special nutritional aspects of pigs metabolism, health and diseases, and of the implications for product quality and economics.
ObjectiveStudents will
- understand the complex interactions of nutrition, quality traits of products, breeding and reproduction, health management and husbandry as well as various production systems including economics.
- be able to critically analyze published research data.
- be able to present precise scientific reports in oral form.
ContentAfter the Introduction (Aims of the course, organisation, program, student contribution & evaluation), actual topics that are relevant for pig production will be presented:
Nutrition; SGD; Breeding; Slaughtering; Economic Aspects; Meat Quality; presentation of Current Dissertations.
Lecture notesHandouts/scripts are being individually distributed by the the lecturers.
LiteratureSpecific literature is being indicated individually by the lecturers.
751-6802-00LPoultry ScienceW+2 credits1GR. Messikommer, R. Zweifel
AbstractThe overall goal of the course is to provide the essential scientific knowledge of the genetic, physiological and special nutritional aspects of poultry's metabolism, animal health and diseases, and of the implications for environment, product quality, housing and animal welfare, and breeding programs.
ObjectiveStudents will
- understand the complex interactions of nutrition, quality traits of products, breeding and reproduction, health management, diseases and husbandry as well as various production systems including environmental aspects and sustainable resource use.
- be trained to carry out interdisciplinary and disciplinary research at the highest level.
- be able to critically analyze published research data.
- be able to present precise scientific reports in oral and written form.
ContentAfter an introduction, the nutrition and health/diseases (2x2h each) are discussed.
In addition to the lectures held at the ETH, there are two days external courses at the Aviforum in Zollikofen (held by Aviforum and BVET). In this two days, relevant topics important for poultry science/production are discussed:

Aviforum:
- Introduction, development and impact of the poultry production (egg & meat, national & international), organization and division of work, importance of the wholesale merchants;
- Poultry: production systems, Good Manufacturing Practice
- Egg production: sorting, handling and storage, product quality, foodstuff legislation, production scheduling and economics.
- Genetics: breeds, gene reservoirs, hybrid breeding, organizations and hybrids
- Hygiene: concept and needs, assessment
- Actual experiments (hens and broiler): practical training (exterior and performance test, assessment of husbandry).

BVET:
- Origin of the chicken and its original habitat, wood hen -> requirements for livestock husbandry, anatomy and normal behavior, development of alternatives
- Animal welfare aspects of poultry production.
Lecture notesHandouts/scripts are being individually distributed by the lecturers.
LiteratureSpecific literature is being indicated individually by the lecturers.
Livestock in the World Food System
NumberTitleTypeECTSHoursLecturers
751-7702-00LTropical Animal Genetics and BreedingW+1 credit1VM. Goe
AbstractThe course provides an overview on animal breeding and genetics in the tropics with focus on livestock production in low-input farming systems. Topics covered include elements of different types of breeding programmes and the management and conservation of animal genetic resources.
ObjectiveLectures and independent exercises allow students to gain a general understanding of animal genetics and breeding in the tropics.
Lecture notesHandouts will be provided at the beginning of the course. Selected books and other references will be communicated as needed during the course.
752-2302-00LMilk Science Information W+1 credit1VJ. Berard, C. Lacroix, L. Meile
AbstractThe course provides information on synthesis and composition of milk, and the effects of various factors. Furthermore, specific hygienic and microbial problems of milk and fermented milk products, as well as basics on processing of milk into dairy products will be presented and discussed. The course is conceptually oriented towards the agri-food chain.
ObjectiveStudents attending this course get a comprehensive overview on milk and important milk products both from an agricultural and a food science perspective. In this way they earn competence at this borderline which is a pre-requisite for an efficient collaboration between milk producers, processors and consumers.
ContentTopics (contact hours)
- Milk synthesis and composition (Michael Kreuzer): 4 h
- Hygienic aspects of milk and milk products (Leo Meile): 6 h
- Milk processing (Christophe Lacroix): 4 h
Total contact hours: 14 h
Self-study within semester: 16 h (especially preparation for the examination)
Lecture notesDocumentations, links and other materials will be provided by each lecturer at the start of his part of the course. Additionally, an extensive German documentation for the part of M. Kreuzer can be downloaded via Moodle in "Kurs Nutztierwissenschaften". The access code will be communicated by e-mail.
LiteratureInformation on books and other references will be communicated during the course.
Prerequisites / NoticeA special point for this course is that it is taught by professors from food and agricultural sciences and is aimed to integrate both fields and provide a clear illustration of this important duality for the production of high quality, and safe dairy food.

This course is a core element of the Minor in Food Quality and Safety for students of the Master in Agroecosystem Science. It is optional (i) in the Major of Animal Science, (ii) for students selecting Majors in Crop Science or Food & Resource Economics. No specific qualification is demanded to attend the course.

Performance control is done by a final written examination of 60 min duration of the open-books type (all paper files can be brought and used).
752-5106-00LMeat Technology Restricted registration - show details
Prerequisite: successful participation in "Quality of Products of Animal Origin" (751-7800-00L, take place in FS).
W+1 credit1GD. Suter, M. Kreuzer
AbstractThe understanding of procedures and quality requirements in meat production and processing is the focus of this course. The basis for that is a modern meat technology at all steps of processing. In the form of a block course these procedures are demonstrated in practice, while the corresponding theoretical background is taught by accompanying lectures.
ObjectiveThe course in meat technology shall give in a reality-near manner an insight into meat production and processing, cover theoretical and practical aspects, and provide knowledge of the versatile aspects of meat hygiene and meat technology. The language used in this MSc course is German.
ContentBlockkurs Fleischtechnologie
- Vorlesungen: Einführung in die Fleischwirtschaft und Schlachtviehvermarktung (Landesversorgung, Marktgeschehen, Organisationen, Preis- und Qualitätsmerkmale). Technik und Hygiene des Schlachtvorganges (Geflügel, Schweine, Grossvieh). Fleischqualität und Fleischwarensorten. Fleisch- und Fleischwarentechnologien (Handwerk und Industrie). Aspekte der Fleisch- und Fleischwaren - Mikrobiologie und -Hygiene. Fleischchemie. Molekularbiologische Aspekte (Tierartbestimmung, BSE). Gesetzgebung und Produktehaftpflicht im Bereich Fleisch und Fleischwaren.
- Praktische Uebungen: Kalbs- und Schweine-Zerlegung. Stückbenennung und -verwendung. Herstellung verschiedener Fleischwaren.
- Exkursion: Besuch eines Grossbetriebs mit Schweineschlachtung und Produktion sowie eines Geflügelschlachthofes unter fachlicher Leitung.
Lecture notesVorhanden, wird stundenweise verteilt.
LiteratureFleisch, Technologie und Hygiene der Gewinnung und Verarbeitung; Verlag Eugen Ulmer 1988. ISBN 3-8001-2135-2
Fleischtechnologie; Behr's Verlag1996 ISBN 3-86022-188-4
Prerequisites / NoticeBesonderes zum Besuch der Veranstaltungsteile der Lerneinheit „Fleischtechnologie“:

Die Lehrveranstaltung „Qualität tierischer Produkte“ ist Voraussetzung für die Belegung des Blockkurses.

- Der Blockkurs Fleischtechnologie findet in Spiez (Ausbildungszenter für die Schweizer Fleischwirtschaft) und in Courtepin nach Ende des Frühjahrssemester statt.
Animal Health and Genetics
NumberTitleTypeECTSHoursLecturers
751-6212-00LGenetic Evaluation of LifestockW+1 credit1GC.  Baes
AbstractMethods for practical genetic evaluation in livestock populations are presentend and applied in assignments using small numerical examples. Applications in practical pig and cattle breeding are dealt with in guest lectures.
ObjectiveThe students know the most important methods used for genetic evaulation in livestock populations. They are able to apply these methods to simple examples.
Content- Selection index and BLUP
- The BLUP Multitrait Animal Model
- Genetic evaulation using maternal effekts
- Random Regression and the test day model
- Guest lectures on practical applications of genetic evaluation in pigs and cattle.
Lecture notesCopies of the slides are available on the net.
LiteratureTo be announced in the lectures.
751-6111-00LPhysiology and Pathophysiology in Selected Organ Systems
Does not take place this semester.
W+2 credits1VS. E. Ulbrich
AbstractThe course procures detailed understanding on the development of diseases and their impact on the apparatus. The focus is on the understanding of mechanism and their variations, which compared to normality, lead to restrictions and diseases.
ObjectiveAm Ende dieser Lehrveranstaltung sind die Studierenden in der Lage, Zusammenhänge zwischen Krankheiten, ihren Uraschen, Symptomen und Auswirkungen zu erkennen und verstehen. Sie sind befähigt, dieses Wissen auf neue, ihnen unbekannte Krankheiten zu Übertragen und Folgerungen für Therapie und Prophylaxe zu ziehen.
751-7406-00LCurrent Problems of Herd Health and ManagementW+1 credit1SM. C. Härdi-Landerer
AbstractCurrent problems of animal health and husbandry with a view to latest scientific findings, statutory aspects and evolutions in practice.
ObjectiveThe students are informed about current problems. They know how to acquire information independently and to discuss a predefined topic well informed
751-6220-00LFuntional Genomics in Livestock PhysiologyW2 credits2GS. E. Ulbrich, S. Bauersachs
AbstractFundamentals in functional genome analysis will be teached in this interactive lecture and the practical part. The topics will include the areas transcriptomics, proteomics, and epigenetics, and their impact on research in domestic animals.
ObjectiveThe conveyed knowledge shall enable the students to recognize the potential impact of omics technologies on the research in the context of animal physiology and genetics as well as on future animal production. Recently published studies in the field of reproductive biology will be discussed with regard to agricultural sciences.
ContentA main focus of this lecture and the corresponding practical course will be on next-generation sequencing technologies, e.g., RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq), small RNA-Seq, as well as methyl-Seq und ChIP-Seq. In proteomics, methodological basics will be given, such as 2D gel-based and mass spectrometry approaches. An important point of the lecture and the subsequent practical course will be the bioinformatics data analysis. Fundamental principles and strategies for the analysis of genomics data will be discussed and basic bioinformatics analyses will be performed.
LiteratureA selection of review articles will be provided at the beginning oft he lecture series.
Prerequisites / NoticeBasics in molecular biology
751-6122-00LPhysiology of LactationW2 credits2GS. E. Ulbrich, R. Bruckmaier
AbstractIm Rahmen der Lehrveranstaltung Laktationsphysiologie lernen die Studierenden die detaillierten Vorgänge kennen, die zur Milchbildung und Milchabgabe im Rahmen der Laktation bei Säugetieren, insbesondere bei Nutz- und Wildtieren, führen.
ObjectiveZiel der Vorlesung ist das Verständnis der komplexen Funktion der Laktation. Mit den erworbenen Kenntnissen werden die Studierenden befähigt, das Potential und die Problematiken zu beurteilen und weiterzuentwickeln, die sich in der Tierproduktion im Rahmen der Milchproduktion ergeben.
ContentDie interaktive Vorlesung, die durch zwei Praktikumstage komplementiert wird, ermöglicht den Studierenden die detaillierten Vorgänge kennenzulernen, die zur Milchbildung und Milchabgabe bei Säugetieren führen.
Dazu gehören das grundlegende Verständnis der Entwicklung und Funktionsstadien der Milchdrüse und ihre Bedeutung für die verschiedenen Nutztierspezies und den Menschen als Nahrungsmittel. Auch werden hormonelle Veränderungen, die sich während der unterschiedlichen Phasen der Laktation einstellen, eingehend erörtert. Zudem werden Techniken des Milchentzugs in Vorlesung und Praktikum diskutiert und die mitunter herausfordernde Interaktionen zwischen Melktechnik und Tier thematisiert.
Lecture notesDen Studierenden werden die Folien der Vorlesung als pdf zeitnah bereitgestellt.
LiteratureF. Döcke, "Veterinärmedizinische Endokrinologie"
Prerequisites / NoticeVorraussetzung:
Die Vorlesung "Endokrinologie und Reproduktionsbiologie" (751-6113-00L, findet im HS statt) eignet sich als sehr gute Vorbereitung und Ergänzung zur "Laktationsphysiologie".
Termine:
Die genauen Termine insbesondere für die stattfindenden Praktika werden beim ersten Termin nach gemeinsamer Absprache festgelegt.
Methodology Competences
Methods in Animal Sciences
NumberTitleTypeECTSHoursLecturers
751-7512-00LPractical Course in Applied EthologyW+2 credits3GE. Hillmann
AbstractThe course imparts the knowledge of conducting of scientific projects in applied ethology by performing a project in small teams. This includes planning, methods and implementation, analysis and presentation. After the end of the course, the students write a short manuscript about their project in form af a scientific paper.
ObjectiveStudents know the procedure and most important steps within a scientific project. They know important statistical methods for data analysis in ethological experiments und are able to illustrate the results and present them in a short scientific talk. This knowledge can be applied in future projects, e.g. master or PhD theses.
ContentWährend des fünftägigen Blockkurses an der Agroscope Reckenholz-Tänikon in Tänikon führen die Studierenden in Kleingruppen ein wissenschaftliches ethologisches Projekt durch. Sie erarbeiten am ersten Tag die Fragestellung und Hypothese und nehmen am zweiten und dritten Tag Daten auf, die am vierten Tag statistisch ausgewertet und graphisch dargestellt werden. Am letzen Tag werden alle Projekte präsentiert und diskutiert. Zusätzlich werden in Seminaren Grundlagen zu Hypothesenbildung und Versuchsplanung, zur Methodik ethologischer Datenaufnahme sowie zu problemorientierter Staistik vermittelt. Im Anschluss an den Kurs wird durch die Studierenden über ihr Projekt ein kurzer Bericht in Form einer wissenschaftlichen Arbeit verfasst.
Lecture notesnone
LiteratureMartin, P & Bateson, P. Measuring Behaviour. 1993, 2nd edition, Cambridge University Press
Prerequisites / NoticeThe course will take place from 24.-28.8.2015 at Agrospcope in Tänikon. Accomodation in Tänikon (ca. 280.-). Please bring with you suitable clothes and your laptop if available.
A preliminary meeting will take place during spring semester. Registration until 31.6.15, minimum number of participants: 4, maximum 15.
751-7602-00LApplied Statistical Methods in Animal ScienceW+1 credit2VC.  Baes
AbstractRefresh matrix operations and solving of systems of linear equations using the generalised inverse. Introduction to theory and application of linear models: regression, models with fixed effects (one factor, multiple factors, interactions), models with random effects, mixed models. Assignments using the statistics programmes R and SAS.
ObjectiveThe students are familiar with matrix operations and the solving of systems of linear equations. They know the possibilities to solve systems of linearly dependent equations using the generalized inverse. They are able to set up linear models for the analysis of animal science data. They know the difference between fixed and random effects. They are familiar with the application of the statistics programmes R and SAS to solve linear models and to interpret their results.
Content- Matrix algebra, systems of linear equations, generalised inverse
- Linear models with fixed effects:
- Regression: simple linear, multiple, non linear regression
- Models with 1 factor, 2 factors (without and with interaction), generalisation
- Linear models with random effects, mixed linear models
Lecture notesCopies of the slides are available on the net.
LiteratureTo be announced in the lectures.
751-6003-00LTraining Course in Research Groups (Large) Restricted registration - show details W+6 credits13PM. Kreuzer, E. Hillmann, S. Neuenschwander, S. E. Ulbrich
AbstractThe students will learn the conceptual and methodological background of research in the animal science groups of the Institute of Plant, Animal and Agroecosystem Science. In addition to teaching the theoretical background, the major aim of the course is to integrate the students into the research groups (on job training) and, hence, to focus on the practical application of the knowledge.
Objective- Introduction into the conceptual and methodological basis of research
- Integration of the students into the research groups (on job training)
- Application of the gained knowledge
ContentThe students will be integrated into the research groups’ day-to-day work and will thus deal with all aspects of scientific work. This comprises the planning (conceptually and logistically), execution (data collection, laboratory analyses) and evaluation (statistics, data presentation) of experiments as well as the basics of scientific writing (aim: later publication, Master thesis). The research topics and the range of methodologies vary between the animal science research groups of the Institute of Plant, Animal and Agroecosystem Sciences.
Lecture notesNone
LiteratureSpecific readings after enlisting in a particular research group.
Prerequisites / NoticeThe number of training slots in the various groups is limited. It is therefore highly recommended to contact the group leaders early enough (first come first serve).
The full integration in a research group often means to work on weekends.
The total time budget is equivalent to about 180 hours. Active participation in group meetings (discussion, presentation) and short written reports about the work conducted are required for the 6 credit points. There are no grades, it is only pass or fail.
751-6003-01LTraining Course in Research Groups (Small) Restricted registration - show details W+3 credits6PM. Kreuzer, E. Hillmann, S. Neuenschwander, S. E. Ulbrich
AbstractThe students will learn the conceptual and methodological background of research in the animal science groups of the Institute of Plant, Animal and Agroecosystem Science. In addition to teaching the theoretical background, the major aim of the course is to integrate the students into the research groups (on job training) and, hence, to focus on the practical application of the knowledge.
Objective- Introduction into the conceptual and methodological basis of research
- Integration of the students into the research groups (on job training)
- Application of the gained knowledge
ContentThe students will be integrated into the research groups’ day-to-day work and will thus deal with all aspects of scientific work. This comprises the planning (conceptually and logistically), execution (data collection, laboratory analyses) and evaluation (statistics, data presentation) of experiments as well as the basics of scientific writing (aim: later publication, Master thesis). The research topics and the range of methodologies vary between the animal science research groups of the Institute of Plant, Animal and Agroecosystem Sciences.
Lecture notesNone
LiteratureSpecific readings after enlisting in a particular research group.
Prerequisites / NoticeThe number of training slots in the various groups is limited. It is therefore highly recommended to contact the group leaders early enough (first come first serve).
The full integration in a research group often means to work on weekends.
The total time budget is equivalent to about 90 hours. Active participation in group meetings (discussion, presentation) and short written reports about the work conducted are required for the 3 credit points. There are no grades, it is only pass or fail.
Project Management and Presentation Skills
NumberTitleTypeECTSHoursLecturers
751-1000-00LInterdisciplinary Project Work Information Restricted registration - show details
Prerequisite: successful completion of the bachelor programme.
O3 credits4UB. Dorn, E. Frossard, L. Meile, H. Adelmann, N. Buchmann, C. De Moraes, P. A. Fischer, M. C. Härdi-Landerer, M. Kreuzer, U. Merz, S. Peter, M. Schuppler, M. Siegrist, J. Six, S. E. Ulbrich, A. Walter
AbstractDie Studierenden der Agrar- und Lebensmittelwissenschaften erarbeiten in interdisziplinären Teams Lösungen für Probleme, welche ihnen von Projektpartner im Bereich der Nahrungsmittelwertschöpfungskette gestellt werden.
ObjectiveDie Studierenden kennen
- die Grundlagen des Zeit- und Projektmanagements
- Vorgehensweisen, um Probleme, die ihnen von Projektpartnern gestellt werden, zielorientiert zu lösen.
ContentDie Studierenden der Agrar- und Lebensmittelwissenschaft erarbeiten in interdisziplinären Teams Lösungen für Probleme, welche ihnen von Projektpartnern entlang der Nahrungsmittelwertschöpfungskette gestellt werden. Die Studierenden präsentieren und diskutieren die Lösungsvorschläge an der Schlussveranstaltung mit den Projektpartnern und verfassen einen schriftlichen Projektbericht.
Prerequisites / NoticeDie Anwesenheit der Studierenden an der Startveranstaltung am 26.2.2015 gemäss speziellem Programm ist Pflicht.
Major in Crop Science
Disciplinary Competences
Cropping Systems
NumberTitleTypeECTSHoursLecturers
751-4704-00LWeed Science IIW+2 credits2GB. Streit, N. Delabays, U. J. Haas
AbstractModern weed management comprises competent knowledge of weed biology, weed ecology, population dynamics, crop-weed-interactions and different measures to control weeds. Weeds are understood to be rather part of a habitat or a cropping system than just unwanted plants in crops.
ObjectiveAt the end of the course the students are qualified to develop sustainable solutions for weed problems in agricultural and natural habitats.
ContentModern weed management comprises competent knowledge of weed biology, weed ecology, population dynamics, crop-weed-interactions and different measures to control weeds. Weeds are understood to be rather part of a habitat or a cropping system than just unwanted plants in crops. Accordingly, this knowledge will be imparted during the course and will be required to understand the mechanisms of integrated weed control strategies.
751-3604-00LPlant Breeding
Does not take place this semester.
W+3 credits3GA. Hund, B. Boller, C. Grieder, R. Kölliker, B. Studer
AbstractSuccessful plant breeding requires knowledge of genetics, the methods to detect genetic variation and to utilize it for selection. The course builds on the course "Pflanzengenetik" and illustrates these basics by means of exercises and practical examples. This will be complemented by lessons in molecular breeding and latest developments in genotyping and phenotyping.
ObjectiveAt the end of the course you will be able to design, assess and analyze variety test experiments. You will have basic knowledge on phenotyping and genotyping technologies, and know how to connect this information for quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping and association analysis. Furthermore, you will be able to assess relationships among genotypes by means of multivariate statistics (e.g. cluster analysis) using genetic and phenotypic information.
ContentThe course is organized in the following three modules:
Module 1: Phenotyping of plant breeding experiments in the field phenotyping platform (FIP) at Eschikon Field Station.
Module 2: Statistical evaluation of the assessed data in R
Module 3: Molecular breeding
The course will be held at Eschikon Field Station, where 12 computers will be available for exercises with R.
We will observe the development of crops planted in the unique filed phenotyping platform. The field part includes two full days (July 02/03) during the summer semester break. The dates are chosen to allow you assessing buckwheat and wheat plants at stages of development, when meaningful measurements can be taken. In case somebody can't attend the course at these two days for justified reasons, we will seek for an alternative exercise.
During the course, we will have a closer look at wheat and buckwheat.
In wheat, we aim to teach the basic skills of phenotyping of plant development. You will assess the development using the simple scoring method, to train your breeder's eyes. Furtheremore, you will use sensors and indices used in the novel Field Phenotyping Platform (FIP), such as normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), thermography and multispectral sensing. At the end of the course you will be able to judge the advantages of the "NDV-eye" vs. your Breeder's eye.
With Buckwheat we aim to establish a breeding program at ETH which is mainly operated by students. Here we need your enthusiasm, experience and input in order to succeed. You will score different traits of agronomic importance during the field day in summer. At the end of the course you should be able to pick the best varieties to make crosses for a planned breeding program organized by you and your fellow students of subsequent semesters.
In the statistical part of the course (module 2), you will learn how to process your data using the statistic package R and ASREML-R. For example, you will use the data assessed in module 1 to calculate heritabilities by means of analysis of variance. This part requires a basic understanding of R as taught in "Experimental Design and Applied Statistics in Agroecosystem Science" as well as of quantitative genetics as taught in "Pflanzengenetik". However these courses are not mandatory to enroll in plant breeding.
In the third module, you will learn about the genetic toolbox that is available for molecular breeding. Starting with the latest developments in DNA marker and genotyping technologies, the basic principles of genetic linkage mapping and QTL analysis will be illustrated. Novel breeding concepts such as genomic selection or breeding by design will be explained, discussed and evaluated for their potential to accelerate breeding progress in different crop species.
Prerequisites / NoticeYou need a Basic understanding of R as taught in "Experimental Design and Applied Statistics in Agroecosystem Science" as well as quantitative genetics as taught in "Pflanzengenetik". However these courses are not mandatory to enroll in plant breeding.
751-4106-00LCrop PhenotypingW4 credits4GA. Walter, A. Hund, J. Leipner, F. Liebisch
AbstractPhenotyping is mostly understood as a non-invasive, quantitative assessment of plant and organ morphology at different wavelengths. In this course, standard and customized phenotyping platforms and approaches are introduced and applied to characterize crop performance in the field and in the lab. The relevance of phenotyping for breeding, field management and precision agriculture is shown.
ObjectiveAt the end of the course you will know a range of different phenotyping methods and how to assess their utility for different issues. You also know the critical stages of individual crops and you can identify promising traits and phenotyping approaches that are appropriate to improve a crop or its management in the field.
ContentBasic knowledge in physiology, breeding and management of our major crops will be combined with concepts of inheritance, experimental design, crop modelling and abiotic stress. By lectures, discussions, and hands-on experiments, you will learn to use image-based phenotyping methods for a performance assessment of genotypes of a breeding population and to assess the efficiency of measures of field management.
Crops are exposed to different abiotic stress factors during their development. Adaptation of crops to extreme environmental conditions likely to be encountered in the course of the year (e.g. cold and heat stress; water-saturated or dry soils) has been achieved by plant breeding to a good extent. In many cases, however, there is enormous potential for optimization.
The most important mechanisms of plant adjustment towards stress will be explained, as well as critical stages identified in which stress affects yield most severely. You will learn methods by which the response of plants to environmental parameters is quantified non-destructively. You learn how to deal with the challenge of spatial variability in the field, when it is necessary to analyze a lot of genotypes. You will get to know different phenotyping methods in the field and under controlled conditions. An important parameter of analysis will be the measurement of the growth of roots and shoots and the response of this parameter to environmental stress. Moreover, you will apply thermography and multispectral image analysis as exemplary remote sensing methods and you will use these methods to calculate parameters such as canopy cover, water status and leaf greenness of individual plants or crop stands. Also, you will learn the use of chlorophyll fluorescence to assess the efficiency of the photosynthetic apparatus.
751-3606-00LMolecular Plant BreedingW3 credits2GB. Studer, C. Grieder, A. Hund, R. Kölliker
AbstractMolecular tools have contributed significantly to improve the process of plant breeding throughout the last decades. The course Molecular Plant Breeding illustrates - on the basis of lectures, exercises and practical examples - the most important molecular breeding tools (QTL, association studies..) and how these tools are applied to plant breeding by means of marker-assisted or genomic selection.
ObjectiveAt the end of the course Molecular Plant Breeding you will be able to:
- design and statistically analyze genetic experiments for important characteristics such as repeatability, heritability, or least square means
- understand different molecular marker technologies and genotyping methods, and how the generated data can be used for genetic distance measures and multivariate statistics in experimental and natural populations
- use the most important molecular breeding tools such as genetic linkage mapping, QTL analysis, genome-wide association studies and to apply these tools to plant breeding by marker-assisted and genomic selection
- describe different sequencing technologies and strategies for genome sequencing, transcriptome profiling (RNAseq) and genotyping by sequencing
- apply basic bioinformatics tools for sequence data management and comparative genomics (BLAST, simple assemblies, alignments and gene annotations)
ContentThe course Molecular Plant Breeding is based on complementing lectures, exercises and practical examples. The examples cover a wide range of species and traits and will be taught by four different experts in the field. A detailed program including dates and specific contents will be provided by the end of 2014.
Lecture notesScripts and slides for each lecture and will be made available through eDoz.
LiteratureFor each lecture, additional literature covering the topic will be provided.
Prerequisites / NoticeThe course will be held at Eschikon Field Station, where 12 computers will be available for exercises with R or - if necessary - other specific software packages. Attendance of the courses Pflanzenzüchtung and Plant Breeding II is recommended; basic understanding of R (as taught in Experimental Design and Applied Statistics in Agroecosystem Science) is advantageous.
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