Resistance to Metritis (METR)

METR measures the resistance to Metritis

Benefits of Trait

Introduced in April 2018 and April 2020, genetic and genomic evaluations for resistance to metritis (METR) are provided for Holstein and Jersey males and females, respectively. Evaluations are expressed in percentage points of resistance above and below the breed average.

Resistance to Metritis (METR)

The METR predicted transmitting ability (PTA) represents the expected resistance of an animal’s offspring to metritis in a herd with average management conditions. Evaluations are expressed in percentage points of resistance above and below the breed average. Larger, positive values are more favorable.

Percentage points

The average resistance rate is equal to 93.8% in U.S. Holsteins. The resistance rate is equivalent to the incidence rate subtracted from 100.

Daughters of a Holstein bull with a MAST PTA of +2.0% are expected to have an average resistance rate to clinical metritis of 96% (assuming the breed average resistance is approximately 94%). Daughters of a Holstein bull with a MAST PTA of -2.0% are expected to have an average resistance of 92%. Daughters from the bull with PTA -2.0% are expected to have twice the number of cases of metritis as daughters from the bull with PTA of +2.0%

BreedMean GL for CowsMean GL for HeifersMean GL for the
current base year (2010)

Holsteins: April 3, 2018
Jerseys: April 7, 2020

METR is currently available for Holsteins and Jerseys. As more health data become available, evaluations can be provided for additional breeds.

METR is included in selection indices for Holsteins and Jerseys as part of the Heath $ sub-index.

Estimated heritability is 1.4% for resistance to metritis (observed scale).

Young genomic bulls are expected to have reliabilities averaging 42% for resistance to metritis, and progeny tested bulls are expected to have genomic reliabilities averaging 48%. As additional data is accumulated, reliabilities will increase.

BreedAverage Reliability for GL of
Young Genotyped Bulls by Breed

The largest significant (P < 0.05) correlation with PTA for resistance to metritis was with daughter pregnancy rate PTA at 0.46. Additional significant correlations were 0.41 with cow conception rate PTA, 0.32 with productive life PTA, 0.26 with livability PTA, and 0.23 with heifer conception rate PTA.

CDCB METR evaluations were developed using producer-recorded data collected through Dairy Herd Information (DHI) affiliates from herds across the U.S. Strict editing was applied to ensure only the most reliable data was included for the development of genetic evaluations. The edited data included a total of 2 million METR records from 1.1 million cows. These health records are used in conjunction with lactation data available in the national cooperator database, stewarded by CDCB.

The standard deviation (variation) for METR PTA is 0.9%. Because 1 and 2 standard deviations normally include 68% and 95% of observations, respectively, we assume about 68% of bulls will have a MAST PTA between -0.9% and +0.9% while 95% of the bulls will range from -1.8% to +1.8%.

METR PTAs range from 2.3 percentage points below to 2.2 percentage points above average in evaluated Holstein bulls born since 1990 with reliabilities of ≥90% (December 2017).

Pre-release analysis indicates the active AI Holstein sires in December 2017 (614 bulls) range from -1.6% to +1.3%, with the average at approximately +0.6 percentage points.

Future Development

In the future, further model improvements and development will be researched and tested. This may include the development of a multi-trait model that incorporates multiple reproductive disorders and/or measures of fertility.

Related Publications
Emanuelson, U., P. A. Oltenacu, and Y. T. Gröhn. 1993. Nonlinear mixed model analyses of five production disorders of dairy cattle. J. Dairy Sci. 76:2765–2772.
Fourichon, C., H. Seegers, and X. Malher. 2000. Effect of disease on reproduction in the dairy cow: A meta-analysis. Theriogenology. 53:1729–1759. doi:10.1016/S0093-691X(00)00311-3.
Donnelly, M. R., A. R. Hazel, B. J. Heins, & L. B. Hansen, 2018. Health treatment cost of Holsteins in 8 high-performance herds. J. Dairy Sci. (in preparation).
Liang, D., L.M. Arnold, C.J. Stowe, R.J. Harmon, & J.M. Bewley, 2017. Estimating US dairy clinical disease costs with a stochastic simulation model. J. Dairy Sci. 100(2): 1472–1486.

Information last updated March 2018.