Principles and Applications of Genetics and Genomics to Improve Animal Health

Genetics header - black pig, white pig
  • Location: Online
  • Credits: 10 Veterinary CE Hours will be offered for the completion of this self-study course
  • Registration: Register Now
  • Fees: $375 general | $125 student
  • For: Veterinary and graduate students, research and industry veterinarians, immunologists, geneticists, and swine and other animal health professionals

Help improve swine health by learning to identify the various concepts and strategies involved in genetic selection and be able to apply those concepts to disease resistance and health improvement; evaluate the impact that genetic selection has on disease epidemiology and pathogen evolution and apply the application of these concepts to the porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) virus. 

PRRS is deeply affecting the US and global swine industries. PRRS virus is commonly managed on farms through immunization protocols, to decrease the impact of the disease, and biosecurity measures to prevent the introduction of new strains. However, there are limitations to these control actions.

Genetics is a fast-evolving field, and it can become challenging for a swine professional to stay current on all the advances made on a daily basis. Furthermore, genetic selection programs are complex and require a comprehensive understanding of the methods and strategies employed by breeding stock companies to deliver genetic improvement.


Course Dates

The course is projected to open in March 2018. 

Register online when registering yourself and paying with a credit card. After registering you'll receive "Registration Confirmation" and "Receipt" emails from (make sure your email is set to recognize this address or check your spam folder).


$375 general | $125 student

Cancellations and Refunds

Refunds are not granted for cancellation. If you have any questions, please contact

Registration Questions?


Course Information

There is a growing recognition of the role that host genetics plays on disease. Over past years there has been a significant shift in genetic selection programs to include genetic strategies to improve animal health. However, genetics is a topic veterinarians are seldom exposed to during their training years. This online class is designed for anyone interested in learning more about genetic selection and the application of genetic improvement strategies to enhance animal health. The course will identify basic concepts of infectious disease biology and provide an introduction to genetics and genetic selection, including the use of genomics in genetic improvement programs and the implementation of genetic selection for disease resistance. Finally, the course will focus on the application of genetics in the control of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus.

Course Structure

The course is divided in four modules

  • Unit 1: Introduction to disease biology
  • Unit 2: Genetics and genetic selection
  • Unit 3: Implementing genetic selection for disease resistance
  • Unit 4: Genetic selection for PRRS

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the class, a student will be able to:

  • Synthesize the epidemiological and biological characteristics of an infectious disease
  • Explain the basis of a genetic improvement program and how a program works
  • Compare and contrast the various genetic selection tools and approaches and how they can be used to improve health
  • Recognize the limitations of genetic improvement of health due to the pathogen’s biology and evolution
  • Explain genetic approaches to control PRRS infections

Time Commitment

This self-paced online course will take 30 hours to complete.


This conference is sponsored by the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine and Iowa State University, and funded by the US Department of Agriculture.



Contact Us

For more information about this course, contact Katherine Hagberg
College of Continuing and Professional Studies
University of Minnesota
612-624-4230 |