Cattle Genomics Scheme

Cattle Genomics Scheme

This article covers “Daily Current Affairs” and the topic details “Cattle Genomics Scheme”. The topic “Cattle Genomics Scheme” has relevance in the “Economy” section of the UPSC CSE exam.

For Prelims:

What is the Cattle Genomics Scheme?
What is genomics? 

For Mains:

GS3:  Economics of Animal Rearing
GS3: Science and Technology

Why in the news?

The Cattle Genomics Scheme has garnered significant attention in the news due to its multifaceted approach and potential impact on farmers and the rural economy.


Cattle Genomics Scheme:

  • The Cattle Genomics Scheme, launched by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) in collaboration with the Union Ministry of Science and Technology and Earth Science, aims to empower farmers and bolster the rural economy.


Aim of Cattle Genomics Scheme:

  • Creating Farmer-Scientist Networks:
      • Establishing direct connections between farmers and scientists to enhance productivity through scientific interventions and education.
      • Selected research institutes will play a pivotal role in advancing cattle genomics.
  • Selective Breeding for High-Yielding, Disease-Resistant Livestock:
    • The scheme’s core objective is to promote selective breeding of local livestock, ensuring the development of high-yielding, disease-resistant, and resilient cattle.


Importance of Cattle Genomics Scheme:

  • Poverty Reduction and Rural Livelihoods: Livestock’s significant role in reducing poverty and supporting rural livelihoods.
  • Meeting Growing Demand for Animal Products: Increasing demand for animal food products by 2020 highlights the need to enhance livestock productivity.
  • Overcoming Limitations of Traditional Selection: Traditional selection methods for genetic improvement have inherent limitations. Genomic selection provides a more precise and sustainable alternative.
  • Cost and Time Reduction with High-Density DNA Chips: Development of high-density DNA chips reduces the cost and time required for breeding programs.


Benefits of Cattle Genomics:

  • Improved Cattle Health: Genomic tools contribute to enhancing cattle health, particularly in combating infectious diseases.
  • Reducing Economic Burden of Infectious Diseases: Genomic selection minimises the economic burden associated with infectious diseases, reducing reliance on vaccines and antibiotics.
  • Development of Disease-Resistant Livestock: Genomic tools facilitate the creation of breeding programs focused on developing less susceptible livestock.


Future Application of Cattle Genomics Scheme:

  • Enhancing Production Performance and Disease Resistance: Research in cattle germplasm improvement is crucial for enhancing production performance and disease resistance.
  • Global Adoption of Genomic Selection: Genomic selection has successfully been applied in various countries, predicting economically important traits and disease susceptibility.
  • Accelerating Genetic Gains in Developing Countries: Developing nations like India are adopting genomic selection to expedite genetic improvements in large animals.


Additional Information

What is Genomics?

  • Genomics is the study of an organism’s complete set of DNA, encompassing all genes and their interactions.
  • Genomics involves DNA sequencing, bioinformatics, and genetic analysis to understand the structure and function of genomes.
  • It aids in predicting future genetic potential and optimizing breeding programs for livestock.


Genomics is applied across various domains:

  • Human Health: It aids in developing novel diagnostic tests and treatments for diseases like cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Agriculture: Genomics enhances crop yields and boosts resistance to pests and diseases in agriculture.
  • Environmental Science: It contributes to the study of pollution and climate change impacts on organisms in environmental science.
  • Evolutionary Research: Genomics helps comprehend the evolutionary relationships among diverse organisms.



  • IndiGau, India’s first Cattle Genomic Chip was launched by National Institute of Animal Biotechnology (NIAB), Hyderabad. 
  • This chip aims to conserve pure varieties of indigenous cattle breeds, including Gir, Kankrej, Sahiwal, Ongole, and more.
  • IndiGau is the world’s largest purely indigenous cattle chip.
  • Its primary objective is to conserve indigenous cattle breeds with desirable traits, contributing to the goal of doubling farmers’ income by 2022.
  • The development of this chip aligns with the Rashtriya Gokul Mission and showcases India’s self-reliance (Atmanirbhar Bharat).
  • Moreover, the chip demonstrates the application of scientific knowledge and innovations for enhancing the quality of life for all segments of society.


Sources: Press Information Bureau ( 

Yojna daily current affairs eng med 2nd Sep 2023


Q1. With reference to Cattle Genomics Scheme, consider the following statements: 

  1. The Cattle Genomics Scheme aims to empower farmers and bolster the rural economy by establishing direct connections between farmers and scientists.
  2. Cattle genomics can be used to breed high-yielding, disease-resistant cattle.
  3. The Scheme is launched by the Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairy. 

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 3 only 

(d) None 

Answer: (a) 


Q2. Consider the following:

  1. Personalised Medicine
  2. Crop Improvement
  3. Disease Diagnosis
  4. Forensic Analysis
  5. Weather Forecasting
  6. Evolutionary Biology

How many of the abovementioned are applications of Genomics?

(a) Only two

(b) Only three

(c) Only five

(d) All six

Answer: (c)

Q3. Discuss the significance of genomics in agriculture and livestock development, focusing on its potential impact on the Indian rural economy. Elaborate on the objectives and benefits of the Cattle Genomics Scheme.

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