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My name is Tom Berghof. I am a postdoctoral researcher at Animal Breeding & Genomics at Wageningen University & Research.
Originally, I was trained in immunology of animals. During my PhD project I combine this interest with quantitative genetics. This got me really enthusiastic! I am interested in the genetic variation underlying the immune system of animals: why are some individuals less often or less sick than other individuals? So why do some animals have a better disease resistance than others, and what genes play a role in this? By answering these questions, we will gain more insight in the how disease resistance is achieved and how the immune system is (genetically) regulated. Eventually, this will result in application in the breeding industry.
At this moment I work on the EU project 'SusTradeOff'. I am investigating if (ir)regular production of laying hens is a proxy for her resistance/robustness. Hens with a lower resistance may become more frequently ill, and likely produce fewer (or no) eggs for some days. I want to see if I can discover such a relationship.
Although all my research so far has focused on laying chickens, I do not have a preference for animal species. I like them all! My research is also applicable for broiler (breeders), pigs, or cows. I hope to work in the near future with all these species.
I am happy to get in touch with you: send me a message!