Centre for Large Animal Biotechnology


The Centre for Large Animal Biotechnology (CeLAB) carries out research aimed at enhancing the productivity and welfare of farm animals and to develop models of human development and disease. 

CeLAB utilizes and develops genomic resources and tools to improve the understanding of animal growth and development. Progress in these areas will fulfil the increasing demands for animal protein to feed a growing human world population, and contribute to Global Food Security. 

Human stem cells labelled  with a surface marker



Furthermore, because of the physiological similarities between humans and farm animals, research in farm animals contributes to improving our understanding of human development, the causes of genetic disorders, and ageing. CeLAB key research priority areas are addressed in the following 4 research themes: 

CeLAB Technologies

  • Gene editing, assisted reproduction, stem cell technologies, genomic evaluation and selection, bioinformatics.  

CeLAB Research Themes

  • Basic Biomedical Research: Comparative embryology, developmental epigenetics, cell differentiation and stem cell biology
  • Applied  Biomedical Research: Human models of kidney disorders, osteoarthritis, metabolic syndrome, biology of ageing
  • Animal and Food Production: Improved feed efficiency, muscle growth, gut microbiome, reduced environmental impact, lab-grown foods. 
  • Animal Health and Welfare: disease resistance, stress and immuno-competence

Current projects

  • Developmental roadmap of primordial germ cells in humans and pigs (BBSRC)
  • Combat Ovarian Cancer Treatment (MRC)
  • Gastrulation in humans and pigs (BBSRC)
  • Generation of gametes in vitro (Horizon2020)
  • Enhancing oocyte quality from peri-pubertal donors to promote biosecure and sustainable food production (BBSRC)
  • Novel targets to improve muscle growth and feed efficiency (BBSRC)
  • High-throughput, minimally invasive systems for genetic and cytogenetic analyses of mammalian embryos (Innovate UK) 
  • Genetic effects on energy metabolism and resilience in dairy cows (University of Nottingham Future Food Beacon)
More projects
  • Insects as intermediate “nutrient concentrators” for sustainable animal feeds (BBSRC DTP Industrial Challenge Strategy Fund with AB Agri/AB Vista)
  • The impact of exogenous enzymes added to feed on the chicken digestive system (AB Vista funded)
  • Practical Strategies to Increase Individual Layer Hen Feed Efficiency (FE) (Australian Eggs)
  • Salmonella control programs in commercial egg layers (Australian Eggs)
  • Administration of probiotics in pigs effect on phytase” (Protexin)
  • Effect of the prebiotic Galacto-Oligosaccharide (GOS) on the microbiome of weaning pigs” (Dairy Crest)
  • Investigating osteoarthritis and osteochondrosis in commercial pigs (BBSRC)


Centre for Large Animal Biotechnology

The University of Nottingham
Sutton Bonington Campus
Loughborough, LE12 5RD

telephone: +44 (0) 115 951 6302
email: Lorraine.sabin@Nottingham.ac.uk