Mentor: Dr. Raluca Mateescu
College of Agriculture and Life Science
"For as long as I can remember science has been an important part of my life. Every year in elementary and middle school my school pushed us to have better science projects going as far as in middle to have invention fair. It has only felt natural to continue that at the collegiate level in research. I have had a strong interest in genetics and was excited to join Dr. Mateescu’s research."
Animal Science Biology Speccialization
- Genetic engineering
- Animal behavior
- Equine health
- University Scholars Program 2016
- Addison Animal Hospital
- Springhill Equine
- Mystic Jungle Education Facility
Hobbies and Interests
- Spending time with family
Genetic Markers in the Calpastatin Gene Associated with Beef Tenderness
Genetic markers or SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms), are small fragments of DNA with a known location on a chromosome. These SNPs are associated with a specific gene or trait such as carcass quality and final cut characteristics, as well as tenderness, juiciness, and flavor. This is important because if a set of SNPs that affect carcass properties and palatability traits can be identified, they can be used to identify genetically superior bulls early in life for breeding or can be used to predict desirability for marketing purposes leading to higher and more consistent beef quality. For the proposed study, I will use data from thirty-six animals from the Angus-Brahman multibreed herd developed at the University of Florida Beef Research Unit (BRU). I will extract DNA from the blood samples and use the DNA to analyze one single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the calpastatin gene. A statistical analysis will be used to determine if there is a difference in tenderness values between the 3 different genotypes and also if the breed composition has an interaction with the genotype.