First cycle
degree courses
Second cycle
degree courses
Single cycle
degree courses
School of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine
Course unit
MVN1027744, A.A. 2017/18

Information concerning the students who enrolled in A.Y. 2017/18

Information on the course unit
Degree course First cycle degree in
MV1734, Degree course structure A.Y. 2011/12, A.Y. 2017/18
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Number of ECTS credits allocated 9.0
Type of assessment Mark
Course unit English denomination ANIMAL BIOLOGY AND FARM ANIMAL GENETICS
Website of the academic structure
Department of reference Department of Comparative Biomedicine and Food Science
E-Learning website
Mandatory attendance No
Language of instruction Italian
Single Course unit The Course unit CANNOT be attended under the option Single Course unit attendance
Optional Course unit The Course unit can be chosen as Optional Course unit

Teacher in charge PAOLO CARNIER AGR/17
Other lecturers ANTONELLA PERUFFO VET/01

ECTS: details
Type Scientific-Disciplinary Sector Credits allocated
Basic courses BIO/05 Zoology 4.0
Basic courses BIO/05 Zoology 4.0
Core courses AGR/17 General Techniques for Zoology and Genetic Improvement 5.0
Core courses AGR/17 General Techniques for Zoology and Genetic Improvement 5.0

Mode of delivery (when and how)
Period Annual
Year 1st Year
Teaching method frontal

Organisation of didactics
Type of hours Credits Hours of
Hours of
Individual study
Lecture 9.0 72 153.0 No turn

Start of activities 02/10/2017
End of activities 15/06/2018

Examination board
Board From To Members of the board
5 Commissione A.A. 2016/17 01/12/2016 30/11/2017 CARNIER PAOLO (Presidente)
PERUFFO ANTONELLA (Membro Effettivo)

Prerequisites: The student must possess basic knowledge of Biology, must know the basic concepts of probability and must be familiar with concepts and methods of descriptive and inferential statistics.

Required foundation courses: Statistical mathematics, mathematical analysis and physics
Target skills and knowledge: In Animal Biology, the student will gain a thorough understanding of the structure of the cell intended as a functional and structural unit of any biological organism. The student must acquire basic knowledge about: DNA structure, cell cycle, Mendelian genetics, genetic linkage, pedigrees and population genetics, concepts of species, evolution and speciation.
In Farm Animals Genetics, the student will acquire knowledge of the main characteristics of the livestock sector, will acquire the theoretical understanding of quantitative genetics and will get familiar with its application to the field of genetic improvement of animals.
Examination methods: Written exam
Assessment criteria: The student will be evaluated on the basis of the acquired knowledge in relation to its ability to use and present the concepts and topics learned during the course.
Course unit contents: a) Animal biology (4 ECTS)
Matter organization: viruses, prokaryotes and eukaryotes (5 hours)
General organization of the cell: membrane, cytosol, mitochondria, lysosomes and peroxisomes, nucleus (4 hours).
DNA structure: the DNA as material containing the genetic information, the double helix model, mechanisms of replication, structure of the eukaryote chromosome (4 hours). Cell cycle: chromosomic theory of heredity, cell division, mitosis, meiosis, genetic recombination, crossing-over (6 hours). Mendelian genetics: definition of relation between genotype and phenotype, homozygosis/heterozygosis (2 hours). Mendel (balanced segregation and independent assortment of traits) (3 hours). Mode of transmission of sex-linked traits (X-linked) (1 hour). Population genetics: allelic and genotypic frequencies, the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. Evolutionary forces: mutation, migration, natural selection and genetic drift (4 hours). Concept of species ( 1 hour).

Farm Animals Genetics (5 ECTS)
1) Livestock production systems.
Aims of livestock production. Meat, milk and dairy products. Dairy cattle production systems. Beef cattle production systems. Pig production. Dry-cured ham production. Pig production systems. Breeds of livestock. Dairy cattle breeds. Beef cattle breeds. Dual-purpose cattle breeds. Pig breeds.
2) Animal breeding.
Aims and features of breeding programs. Qualitative and quantitative traits. Genetic effects and variation of quantitative traits. Breeding value. Heritability and repeatability of quantitative traits. Basics of breeding value estimation. Accuracy of estimated breeding values. Additive genetic relationships. The tabular method. Inbreeding and inbreeding depression. Prediction of breeding values. Case studies on the use of predicted breeding values. Response to selection. Crossbreeding and production of commercial crossbred animals.
Planned learning activities and teaching methods: Animal Biology (4 ECTS)
lectures = 32 hours

Farm Animals Genetics (5 ECTS)
lectures: 40 hours
Additional notes about suggested reading: The material used for lessons (powerpoint slides) is made available on the Moodle platform (
For Farm Animals Genetics, a self-evaluation test that the student can undertake anonymously in the imminence of the exam can be accessed at

Office hours: an appointment with the teacher can be arranged by e-mail request on a daily basis.
Textbooks (and optional supplementary readings)
  • G. Bittante, I. Andrighetto, M. Ramanzin, Fondamenti di Zootecnica. Torino: Petrini Editore, 1999. Cerca nel catalogo
  • D.S. Falconer, Introduction to Quantitative Genetics. --: Benjamin-Cummings Publishing Company, 1996. ISBN: 0582243025; Inglese Cerca nel catalogo
  • Solomon E.P., Berg L., Martin D. W., Fondamenti di Biologia. Napoli: Edises, 2009. ISBN: 9788879594752; Capitoli 1-21 Cerca nel catalogo
  • G. Pagnacco, Genetica animale applicata. --: Casa Editrice Ambrosiana, 2004. ISBN : 8840813047 Cerca nel catalogo