2nd Annual Meeting

by C. Moreno

Due to the Covid19 crisis, the SMARTER 2nd annual meeting was postponed to summer 2021 in Leon University (Spain). We organized virtual meetings for WP1-8 (2-3h meeting/WP) in December and a plenary session was organized for January 14th to summarize the WP1-8 sessions and to give information about management (WP9), ethics and data protection (WP10).

Globally, the project was slightly impacted by the lock-downs in the different countries. One year delay is necessary for some experiments of WP1, 2 and 3. Most of the work was done on time and promising results from experimental works were presented at a dedicated SMARTER session at EAAP 2020. A total of 17 peer-reviewed papers have been published or submitted for publication. The number of papers per Work Package (WP) are: WP2 (5), WP3 (2), WP5 (8) and WP6 (2) and a remarkably fruitful output has been generated from WP3 and WP5 (10 papers!). The agreement to share data in WP6 was signed and the exchange of genotyping and pedigree data was almost completed. The stakeholder platform was created in WP8 including 30 participants.

Thanks to the late acceptation of the amendment by EU (June 2020), we now have two new partners in the project which are CNR for WP4 and AbacusBio for WP7 respectively. Consequently, the work has begun in these WPs but no major results were presented so far.

To conclude, there are a lot of interactions between SMARTER partners, many more than originally anticipated! These include a metanalysis in WP3 lead by INRAE and SRUC, an exchange of data to perform an international evaluation (WP6), detection of lethal mutations in goats (WP2), and shared survey/interview data between countries in WP7. It also has included new data coming from several partners (INRAE, University of Leon and INIA-Uruguay) to develop new models and methods. The lock-downs due to Covid19 virus seem to have motivated these new collaborations between partners. Unfortunately, we have not had any contact with 2 of our original partners (CAS and Buas) with whom we have not had contact for more than a year despite our reminders.