Three-minute thesis: Selecting the right pig for the job

A female pig’s suitability for breeding may be determined before her birth.


Jemma Seyfang, University of Adelaide.

PhD title

Prenatal programming of the lifetime performance of gilts


“The aim of this thesis was to determine if female pigs born into male-biased litters would have impaired reproduction and increased aggressive behaviour compared to those born into female-biased litters. This was assumed to be due to the increased androgen exposure that the female foetuses would be subjected to from the increased proportion of males in the litter that synthesis and secrete androgens during their foetal development. This project investigated key aspects of reproductive physiology and behaviour that can impact gilt selection into the breeding herd, gilt retention and animal welfare.”

The finals of the 2017 Asia-Pacific Three-Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, which challenges PhD students to communicate their research in a snappy three-minute presentation, were held on the 29 September at the University of Queensland, St Lucia Campus. Competitors came from 55 Universities from across Australia, New Zealand and North and South-East Asia.

The presentations were judged by distinguished figures in Australian science including Cosmos editor-in-chief Elizabeth Finkel.

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