Dr. Eveline M. Ibeagha-Awemu

Image Eveline Ibeagha-Awemu
Research Scientist

Dr. Ibeagha-Awemu’s research program focuses on improving productivity and disease resistance and the safety of the dairy and pork value chains. She uses OMICS and advanced technologies to characterize regulatory elements, uncover the molecular mechanisms, and genetic and epigenetic markers associated with health, production and environmental adaptation traits; and develop biomarkers for livestock disease and health management, and environmental adaptation.

Dr. Ibeagha-Awemu research also seeks to understand how the microbiota interacts with the genome and epigenome in response to nutrients and pathogens to influence health and disease traits. Specifically the identification/development of favorable microbial strains for disease and greenhouse gas emission mitigation, and development of alternatives to antibiotics use in livestock production.

Her research also involves the regulatory aspects of the emerging field of Cellular agriculture in Canada through studies on the nutritional composition of cultured foods to inform regulatory stakeholders, development of screening tools/protocols for cultured foods and studies to enhance cell growth and production ability using gene editing techniques.

Before joining AAFC in 2011 as a research scientist in Animal Genomics, Dr. Ibeagha-Awemu completed a  MSC in Animal Breeding and Genetics from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria, a PhD in Animal Genetics from Justus Liebig University Giessen, Germany in 2003 followed by postdoctoral studies at McGill university.

Current research and/or projects

  • Role of epigenetic (DNA methylation and miRNA) biomarkers in mastitis and milk production
  • Characterization of the regulatome (miRNA, lncRNA, snoRNA and circRNA, etc.) and transposable elements in the bovine genome.
  • Role of the microbiota in livestock infectious diseases
  • Regulatory aspects of cellular agriculture


Professional activities / interests

  • Member: African Animal breeding Network

  • Member: GRESABO (Groupe de Research en Sante Bovine)

  • Member: Biological Assay Committee of FAANG (Functional Annotation of Animal Genomes)

  • Member: Animal Health Committee of American Society of Animal Science/Canadian Society of Animal Science

  • Member: Op+lait grouping of researchers on milk quality through FQRNT strategic grouping program 

  • Member: Dairy Cattle Breeding and Genetics Committee, Canada

  • Member: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Animal Care Committee

  • Member: Canadian Bovine Mastitis Research Network

  • Editorial Board Member: BMC Genomics

  • Editorial Board Member: Scientific Reports

  • Editorial Board Member: Frontiers in Genetics

  • Past President of the Canadian Society of Animal Science 

  • Member: Canadian Society of Animal Science 

  • Member: American Dairy Science Association 

  • Member: International Society of Animal Genetics 

  • Member: International Association for Paratuberculosis  

Education and awards

Recipient of 2021 CSAS (Canadian Society for Animal Science) Award for Technical Innovation in Enhancing Production of Safe and Affordable Food.

International experience and/or work

 Member: Member of the Working Group on Animal Seed of the African Seed and Biotechnology Partnership Platform (ASB PP) of the African union [2021 – Present]

Member: Steering committee of the African Animal Breeding Network

International collaboration projects:

  • Mammary gland specific transcriptional profiling of Kashmiri cattle and its Jersey cross for milk quality and yield traits (India)
  • Role of the microbiota in the pathogenesis of pestes des petits ruminants (Nigeria)
  • FarmGTEx Project

Key publications

  1. Wang, M., M. Laterrière, P.-L. Dudemaine, N. Bissonnette, D. Gagné, and E. M. Ibeagha-Awemu. 2022. PSVIII-B-15 Potential Involvement of DNA Methylation of First Intron in Transcriptional Regulation During Bovine Subclinical Mastitis Caused by Staphylococcus Aureus. Journal of Animal Science 100(Supplement_3):310-311. doi: 10.1093/jas/skac247.565 %J Journal of Animal Science

    2022 - View publication details

  2. Bissonnette, N., D. Kelton, G. Fecteau, K. Tahlan, E. Ibeagha-Awemu, and P. Griebel. 2022. Identification of disease tolerant and susceptible cows to Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis infection for genetic analyses of disease resistance. 15th International Colloquium on Paratuberculosis. Dublin, Irland, June 12-16 2022.

    2022 - View publication details

  3. Ariel, O., Brouard, J.S., Marete, A., Miglior, F., Ibeagha-Awemu, E., Bissonnette, N. (2021). Genome-wide association analysis identified both RNA-seq and DNA variants associated to paratuberculosis in Canadian Holstein cattle ‘in vitro’ experimentally infected macrophages. BMC Genomics, [online] 22(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12864-021-07487-4

    2021 - View publication details

  4. Oladokun, S., Koehler, A., MacIsaac, J., Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M., Adewole, D.I. (2021). Bacillus subtilis delivery route: effect on growth performance, intestinal morphology, cecal short-chain fatty acid concentration, and cecal microbiota in broiler chickens. Poultry Science, [online] 100(3), http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.psj.2020.10.063

    2021 - View publication details

  5. Are some cows genetically susceptible to Johne’s Disease?

    2021 - View publication details

  6. Wang, M., and Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M. (2021). Impacts of Epigenetic Processes on the Health and Productivity of Livestock. Frontiers in Genetics 11, 1812.

    2021 - View publication details

  7. Peters, S.O., Kızılkaya, K., Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M., Sinecen, M., Zhao, X. (2021). Comparative accuracies of genetic values predicted for economically important milk traits, genome-wide association, and linkage disequilibrium patterns of Canadian Holstein cows. Journal of Dairy Science (JDS), [online] 104(2), 1900-1916. http://dx.doi.org/10.3168/jds.2020-18489

    2021 - View publication details

  8. Nathalie Bissonnette, Andrew Marete, Dave Kelton, Flavio Schenkel, Eveline M Ibeagha-Awemu, Gilles Fecteau, Filippo Miglior, Conditional GWAS using sequence-based genotypes for susceptibility to Mycobacterium avium subsp paratuberculosis infection in Canadian Holstein, Journal of Animal Science, Volume 98, Issue Supplement 4, November 2020, Page 17.

    2020 - View publication details

  9. Bissonnette, N., D. Gendron, O. Ariel, P.-L. Dudemaine, and E. Ibeagha-Awemu. Transcriptome profiling of primary bovine macrophages from cows with Johne’s disease suggests a tolerance state induced by convergent signalling via NF-κB and its synergistic tolerized genes. ASAS-CSAS Annual Meeting & Trade Show, Vancouver, Canada, July 8-12th.

    2018 - View publication details

  10. Bissonnette, N., J.-S. Brouard, O. Ariel, N. Gévry, E. Ibeagha-Awemu, and F. Miglior. 2018. Discovery of expression quantitative trait loci associated with Johne’s disease using both RNA-seq and DNA variants. 11th World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Production. February 10th-16th 2018, Auckland, New-Zealand.

    2018 - View publication details

  11. Do D.N., Fomenky B.E., Dudemaine P-L., Bissonnette N. and Ibeagha-Awemu E.M. (2018) Weighted gene co-expression network analysis reveal gene clusters and pathways related to rumen development in calves. Proceedings of the 11th World Congress on Genetics Applied to Livestock Productio, 11.945, February 11 to 16, 2018, Auckland New Zealand. 5 pages.

    2018 - View publication details

  12. Do, D.N., Dudemaine, P.L., Li, R., Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M. (2017). Co-expression network and pathway analyses reveal important modules of miRNAs regulating milk yield and component traits. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, [online] 18(7), http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms18071560

    2017 - View publication details

  13. Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M.; Khatib, H., Chapter 29 - Epigenetics of Livestock Breeding. In Handbook of Epigenetics. The New Molecular and Medical Genetics (second edition), Edited by Tollefsbol, trygve o. Academic Press: 2017; pp 441-463.

    2017 - View publication details

  14. Brouard, J.S., Boyle, B., Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M., Bissonnette, N. (2017). Low-depth genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) in a bovine population: Strategies to maximize the selection of high quality genotypes and the accuracy of imputation. BMC Genetics, [online] 18(1), http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12863-017-0501-y

    2017 - View publication details

  15. Do, D.N., Bissonnette, N., Lacasse, P., Miglior, F., Sargolzaei, M., Zhao, X., Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M. (2017). Genome-wide association analysis and pathways enrichment for lactation persistency in Canadian Holstein cattle. Journal of Dairy Science (JDS), [online] 100(3), 1955-1970. http://dx.doi.org/10.3168/jds.2016-11910

    2017 - View publication details

  16. Bissonnette, N., J.-S. Brouard, B. Boyle, and E. Ibeagha-Awemu. 2017. Low-Depth Genotyping-by-Sequencing (GBS) in a Bovine Population: Strategies to Maximize the Selection of High Quality Genotypes and Accuracy of Imputation. Plant & Animal Genome Plant & Animal Genome Conference, San Diego 2017/01/14 - 2017/01/18

    2017 - View publication details

  17. Fock-Chow-Tho, D., Topp, E., Ibeagha-Awemu, E.A., Bissonnette, N. (2017). Comparison of commercial DNA extraction kits and quantitative PCR systems for better sensitivity in detecting the causative agent of paratuberculosis in dairy cow fecal samples. Journal of Dairy Science (JDS), [online] 100(1), 572-581. http://dx.doi.org/10.3168/jds.2016-11384

    2017 - View publication details

  18. Do, D.N., Bissonnette, N., Lacasse, P., Miglior, F., Sargolzaei, M., Zhao, X., and Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M. (2016). "Genome wide association analysis and pathways enrichment for lactation persistency in Canadian Holstein cattle.", Journal of Animal Science, 94(Supp. 2). (Abstract)

    2016 - View publication details

  19. Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M., Li, R., and Dudemaine, P.-L. (2016). "Long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) is abundantly expressed in the gastro intestinal tract of calves.", XXIV Plant and Animal Genome Conference, San Diego, USA, January 9-13, 2016, https://pag.confex.com/pag/xxiv/meetingapp.cgi/Paper/21424. (Poster)

    2016 - View publication details

  20. Fock-Chow-Tho, D., Topp, E., Ibeagha-Awemu, E.M., and Bissonnette, N. (2016). "Comparison of commercial DNA extraction and QPCR systems for a better sensitivity in detecting the causative paratuberculosis pathogen in dairy cow fecal samples.", 13th International Colloquium on Paratuberculosis, Nantes, France, 19-24 June, 2016, P-03.18, pp. 98. (Abstract)

    2016 - View publication details