News Release

BGI Tech, DLF-Trifolium A/S, and Aarhus University applying genomic selection methods

Goal is to produce higher yields and improved content

Business Announcement

BGI Shenzhen

COPENHAGEN, Denmark and CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts, U.S.A., September 18, 2014 -- BGI Tech Solutions Co., LTD., (BGI Tech) is providing sequencing service to Denmark-based DLF-Trifolium and the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics (MBG) at Aarhus University in an effort to develop a series of new high-yielding forage grass varieties by employing genomic selection (GS) methods.

GS is a new form of marker assisted selection, which in contrast to the traditional QTL-based selection, uses information equally from all available DNA markers for prediction of phenotypic performance among new candidates. This method can deliver more accurate predictions and more rapid gains from breeding at reduced cost. This year for the first time ever breeders and scientists will utilize markers based on sequence data from BGI Tech to select new breeding lines in grasses based on GS.

The goal of the development program is to achieve higher yields combined with improved fiber and sugar content, which will increase milk production and reduce methane emission and nitrogen losses from dairy farming.

BGI Tech, a subsidiary of the world's largest genomics organization, is providing high-quality next-generation sequencing services to the program, while MBG is conducting bioinformatics analysis and developing statistical models. Based on the data and results generated by BGI Tech and MBG, DLF-Trifolium will develop the new grass varieties utilizing its rich experience in plant breeding. DLF-Trifolium provided grass to the World Cup in 2010 and 2014, and is a leader in the development of new grass varieties through international collaborations.

"BGI Tech has been instrumental in delivering critical data on time that finally has brought us to where we are today," said senior scientist at DLF-Trifolium, Christian Sig Jensen. "We have found them to be one of the most reliable and responsive NGS providers. The future is very exciting when it comes to breeding not only for grasses but also all the other important crops which provide food and feeds for a growing world population. Breeding and bioinformatics will become even more integrated in the future."


About DLF-Trifolium

DLF-Trifolium is a leading international supplier of grass seed. Build on decades of continuous plant breeding, DLF-Trifolium has developed and produced some of the very best grass and clover varieties on the market. Grass breeding is operated in Europe, USA, Canada, New Zealand, and Russia and extends to several other countries through local testing facilities. The company is owned by 4000 Danish seed growers and serves approximately 25% of the global market for grass- and clover seeds.

About Aarhus University

The Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics (MBG) has strong competences in the development of bioinformatics strategies and methods to manage and analyze large-scale NGS datasets for assembly and annotation of complex plant genomes, RNA-seq based transcriptome analysis, and genotyping-by-sequencing. MBG develops GWS methodology for the management, integration, and extraction of relevant information from the massive amounts of data emerging from whole genome sequencing, functional genomics, epigenomics, and complex phenotyping technologies. MBG has close collaborations with plant breeding companies to develop future breeding strategies for crops based on GWS.


Bicheng Yang, Ph.D.
Public Communication Officer

Joyce Peng, Ph.D.
Marketing Director
BGI Tech & BGI Americas

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