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Sofia Mikko

sofia_mikko.jpg
Section head, full time since 2001, at SLU's Animal Genetics Laboratory. Research, development and teaching approximately 10 % of time.

Presentation

I ride my own horses every day and even spend a large part of my working day looking at horse pedigrees. In my free time also try to find time for listening to music, gardening and enjoying nature.

I am Director of SLU's Animal Genetics Laboratory where we perform paternity testing and genotyping of animals and host the SLU SciLife Biobank. 

Horses have for thousands of years been selected using traditional breeding methods for performance and exterior features. The breeds therefore differ in characteristics that make them good at, for example, pulling a plough in farming, being ridden for leisure, or the more specialized breeds used as sport horses. Using the latest large-scale development of molecular genetic methods, we can significantly increase our knowledge of the genetic basis of performance and other characteristics.

Teaching

I am currently co-supervisor to Agnesa Viluma and was co-supervisor to Lisa Andersson who defended her thesis on Sept 28, 2012. I regularly supervise students in their projects. I teach on various courses, mainly on the subject of the genetics of coat color in domestic animals but also on inheritance testing, ID control and related subjects.

Research

My current research includes genetic background of equine traits such as performance in sport- and racehorses, sarcoid tumors, skeletal atavism, and large-scale sequencing to better characterize the MHC in the horse. Most of the research is performed in cooperation with other researchers, and I am also involved in some genetics projects in sheep, and moose.

Cooperation

Delegate of the "Equine Genetics and Thoroughbred Parentage Testing Standardization Committee" as well as "Applied Genetics of Companion Animals Committee" within the International Society of Animal Genetics

President of the regional horse breeding association "Mälardalens Varmblodsklubb" within the Swedish Warmblood Association.

Background

PhD thesis 1992-1997
"A Comparative Analysis of Genetic Diversity at Mhc DRB Loci in Some Ruminant Species", Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. Supervisor: Professor Leif Andersson, SLU. 

Selected publications

Jäderkvist K, Andersson LS, Johansson AM, Árnason T, Mikko S, Eriksson S, Andersson L, Lindgren G. The DMRT3 ´Gait keeper´ mutation affects performance of Nordic and Standardbred trotters. Journal of Animal Science, 2014, 92: 4279-4286.

Promerová M, Andersson LS, Cothran G, Reissman M, Tozaki T, Calcagno M, Dunner S, Horin P, Imsland F, Imsland P, Leonard J, Mikko S. et al. World-wide frequency distribution of the 'Gait keeper' mutation in the DMRT3 gene. Animal Genetics 45: 274-282, 2013.

Petersen JL, Mickelson JR, Cothran EG, Andersson LS, Axelsson J, Bailey E, Bannasch D, Binns MM, Borges AS, Brama P, da Câmara Machado A, Distl O, Felicetti M, Fox-Clipsham L, Graves KT, Guérin G, Haase B, Hasegawa T, Hemmann K, Hill EW, Leeb T, Lindgren G, Lohi H, Lopes MS, McGivney BA, Mikko S, Orr N, Penedo MC, Piercy RJ, Raekallio M, Rieder S, Røed KH, Silvestrelli M, Swinburne J, Tozaki T, Vaudin M, M Wade C, McCue ME. Genetic diversity in the modern horse illustrated from genome-wide SNP data. PLoS One 8(1): e54997, 2013.


Petersen JL, Mickelson JR, Rendahl AK, Valberg SJ, Andersson LS, Axelsson J, Bailey E, Bannasch D, Binns MM, Borges AS, Brama P, da Câmara Machado A, Capomaccio S, Cappelli K, Cothran EG, Distl O, Fox-Clipsham L, Graves KT, Guérin G, Haase B, Hasegawa T, Hemmann K, Hill EW, Leeb T, Lindgren G, Lohi H, Lopes MS, McGivney BA, Mikko S, Orr N, Penedo MC, Piercy RJ, Raekallio M, Rieder S, Røed KH, Swinburne J, Tozaki T, Vaudin M, Wade CM, McCue ME. Genome-wide analysis reveals selection for important traits in domestic horse breeds. PLoS Genet. 9(1): e1003211, 2013.

Andersson LS, Larhammar M, Memic F, Wootz H, Schwochow D, Rubin CJ, Patra K, Arnason T, Wellbring L, Hjälm G, Imsland F, Petersen JL, McCue ME, Mickelson JR, Cothran G, Ahituv N, Roepstorff L, Mikko S, Vallstedt A, Lindgren G, Andersson L, Kullander K. Mutations in DMRT3 affect locomotion in horses and spinal circuit function in mice. Nature 488 (7413): 642-6, 2012.


Contact
Researcher at the Department of Animal Breeding and Genetics; Molekylär genetik
Telephone: 018-671979
Postal address:
HGEN, Husdjursgenetiska laboratoriet, Box 7023
75007 UPPSALA
Visiting address: Ulls väg 26, Uppsala

Publications list: