My overall research objective is to improve efficiency and productivity in beef cattle production through strategic nutritional management of the cowherd. I am especially interested in physiological adaptation mechanisms of pregnant females to their nutritional environment that allow for maternal maintenance and fetal growth. An additional major interest is the developmental programming implications of maternal nutrition when this adaptation is not possible and fetal development is impaired. This overall objective includes investigation into applied production implications as well as systemic physiological, tissue-level, and cellular mechanisms.
Specific research objectives include:
1) investigating the effects of maternal metabolic efficiency on cow lifetime productivity and offspring efficiency.
2) nutritional management strategies and targeted supplementation to mitigate negative effects of gestational nutrient restriction in beef cows.
3) effects of gestational nutrition on maternal and offspring small intestinal function.
4) influences of small intestinal characteristics on individual whole animal feed efficiency.
5) production implications of developmental programming in ruminants