- Webinar recorded on Tue 12th May, 2015
- 1 hours 4 mins
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Several cross sectional studies have in the past shown that there is a strong association between body condition score and lameness, with lame cows found to be thinner than their healthy counterparts. This for long was thought to be a result of lameness; in other words, lame cows were thought to be thinner because they were lame. However, strong evidence now exists suggesting that the relationship is bidirectional. Thin cows may actually be more susceptible to specific lameness causing foot lesions and this could be associated with the thickness of their digital cushion. Interestingly, the role of genetics in this relationship is significant.
Dr. Georgios Oikonomou is a Lecturer of Livestock Health and Welfare at the School of Veterinary Science, University of Liverpool. He graduated from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in 2002, and during his PhD studies he investigated the genetics of energy balance and reproduction in Holstein cows. He worked for a few years as a veterinarian/herd manager for a 600 cow dairy farm and then decided to cross the Atlantic and work for Cornell University and Dr. Rodrigo Bicalho. There, he got involved in research projects regarding dairy cattle lameness, mastitis, and reproductive diseases; he collaborated with large dairy farms, and was also introduced to the fascinating world of metagenomics. He still collaborates with Cornell University (recently appointed an Adjunct Assistant Professor position at the Department of Population Medicine) and is a co PI in a USDA funded grant that aims to study the dynamics of the mammary microbiota during and after intramammary infection with major mastitis pathogens.