New Genetic Evaluation System Provides Data with Stronger Accuracies

The new International Genetic Solutions multi-breed genetic evaluation system powered by BOLT has finally arrived! This new system was released earlier this month and yields the world's largest genetic evaluation of beef cattle with over 17 million animals and 120,000+ genotypes. Talk about an impressive collection of data! 

So what does all this fancy jargon mean for beef producers like ourselves and our customers? The bottom line is stronger, more predictive EPDs, data accuracies and better use of genomic data. We strongly believe in the use of accurate EPD data and genomic testing here at Advanced Beef Genetics.  This new system will provide greater accuracy and instill confidence in breeders when selecting for traits most needed in their operation. 

Since BOLT was launched on May 5, 2018 there are a few notable changes as this new technology is implemented into the American Simmental Association database: 

  • EPDs and indexes will change with the most drastic changes being in young, lower accuracy cattle.
  • The range of EPDs for most traits will reduce. 
  • Improved use of genomics through single-step genomic evaluation, which simultaneously utilizes DNA markers, pedigree information and phenotypic data. The genomic information will not only enhance each EPD for genotyped animals but be applied in the EPD estimates of relatives.

DNA continues to evolve and play an integral role in EPD predictions and accuracies. BOLT's single-step method only uses markers that have a meaningful impact on the traits of interest, while ignoring those that have little to no effect. Research has shown by using this approach, BOLT reduces statistical “noise” and increases the accuracy of the EPD prediction compared to other single-step methods. Although DNA has scientific value the ASA also notes the collection of phenotypic records remain a vital tool in genetic predictions. 

For more information about the IGS Multi-breed Genetic Evaluation powered by BOLT, go to

American Simmental Association. (2018, May 4). IGS Releases Multi-breed Genetic Evaluation powered by BOLT. Retrieved from