Welcome to Website of Institute of Animal Science!

Institute of Animal Science (IAS) Prague – Uhříněves is a public research institution founded by the Ministry of Agriculture of the Czech Republic.

Since its foundation in 1951, the Institute has been a centre of research into biological and bio-technological basis of animal science.

IAS carries out basic and applied research focusing on innovation and the practical use of knowledge in animal science. Eight research departments perform research in the fields of animal genetics and breeding, bio-technology and reproduction, nutrition, quality of products, animal ethology and welfare, breeding technology, herd management and production economy.

In addition to basic and applied research, IAS carries out other expert activities. One of the most significant is the implementation of the National Programme for Conservation and Utilization of Farm Animal Genetic Resources. In 2016, the IAS was appointed as the National Centre for Genetic Resources to coordinate and implement the National Programme, along with many stakeholders. The Institute has also provided for the activity of the Scientific Committee for Animal Nutrition and was entrusted by the Ministry of Agriculture to represent the Czech Republic in the European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP). IAS provides professional training on classification of swine and cattle carcasses according to SEUROP, under a contract with the Ministry of Agriculture.

 

A Year of Challenges and Changes

 

The year 2020 was in the „wake of the COVID-19 pandemic“ and government actions capped a number of activities affecting, among others, events held for the public. Some planned activities had to be cancelled, others took the form of webinars and videoconferences, some events were postponed. Číst dále

How to escape male infanticide: mechanisms for avoiding or terminating pregnancy in mammals

The phenomenon whereby pregnancy may be inhibited or terminated when a female is exposed to non-sire males after mating is often, and rather generally, referred to as the ‚Bruce effect‘. Widespread and indiscriminate use of the term for any case of pregnancy failure following exposure to an unfamiliar male, however, masks distinct physiological and social causes of the blocking or termination of pregnancy. Within the available literature, we identify four basic processes by which mammalian females can terminate pregnancy, and thus minimise risks of wasted reproductive costs which might result from male infanticide by a subsequent consort of any progeny carried to full-term where he was not the father. Physical contact with a non-sire male may induce pregnancy failure either before implantation (pregnancy block) or after implantation (pregnancy disruption). By direct contrast, in other species, physical presence of a familiar non-sire male may act to prevent the blocking or disruption of pregnancy, while separation from this non-sire male may act to trigger termination. We propose that use of the term ‚Bruce effect‘ should be restricted to situations in which pregnancy failure is induced primarily by physical contact and/or odour stimuli from a non-sire male as in its initial formulation. Blanket use of this single term for all situations of pregnancy block or disruption, implying by default that pregnancy failure is the consequence of pre-implantation pregnancy block of an inseminated female as a result of physical contact with an unfamiliar male or his olfactory cues, masks the fact that, in many circumstances or species, very different mechanisms may operate in the prevention or disruption of pregnancy. The implicit presumption that pregnancy failure is a single and uniform phenomenon also discourages further research into the range of rather different circumstances and mechanisms by which pregnancy disruption may be triggered.

Scientific Committee for Animal Nutrition                                                                                                                       

The Scientific Committee for Animal Nutrition was established in 2002 as an advisory body of the food safety coordination group. Its main task is to prepare scientific studies, offer expert views, and prepare proposals for measures ensuring safety throughout the entire chain of food and feed production.

CURRENT PROJECTS

Verification of genomic procedures in small populations

Animal breeding is based on the continuous development of individual breeds and their adaptation to changing environmental conditions. For genetic evaluation of animals, huge national databases of performance testing and pedigree datasets are used. Computations, where many model equations are involved is processed by methods BLUP and REML. Currently, SNP markers from DNA chips are also included. The project is focus on Czech cooperation with University of Georgia (USA). Aim of project is to developed and tested algorithms and programs for genomic data editing, construction of genomic relationshipmatrix and verification of genomic procedures in small populations (including impact of export animal, crossbreeds and overlapping populations).

The fattening of entire male boars as an economically and ethically acceptable option to resolve the ban or restriction on surgical castration

The aim of the project is to offer pig breeders the practical possibilities of mitigating or eliminating the operational and economic impacts of the restriction and prohibition of surgical castration of the piglets and introducing to farmers validated alternatives to the production of pancakes corresponding to the current trend in a number of European Union countries. The project should provide the user with the knowledge, facts and methodologies leading to a successful adaptation to the changing conditions of the European pigmeat market related to restrictions in the field of surgical castration of the male piglets.

PRACTICAL ACTIVITIES

SERVICES AND APPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICAL USE

EXPERT REPORTS

Preparation of analyses, studies and research on individual demand

CONTRACT RESEARCH

Contract research following the partners’ assignment

SEUROP

Training courses for cattle and pig carcass classifiers.

ECONOMIC ANALYSES

ECOWEIGHT, FarmProfit, Forecasting the Structure of Dairy Cattle Herd, Forecasting the structure of dairy cattle herd

CONSULTANCY

Active consultancy for the breeders of dairy cattle, beef cattle, goats and sheep, pigs, poultry, rabbits, horses and cervids.

EXPERT SEMINARS

Invited lectures for breeders, students and agricultural business staff on specific topics