Current research areas

  • Development of new genetic/genomic analytical tools

    Far from focusing on a specific domestic species, my research interests rely on the development and implementation of statistical approaches for a better understanding of the genomic architecture of animals. I have already worked on genetic/genomic evaluation, gene expression data, canalization models, segregation analysis, mutational patterns, partitioning of inbreeding depression, circular data, proportional hazard models, and threshold traits, among others. Most of my developments are based on Bayesian statistics...

  • Integrative omics for litter size in Iberian pigs

    Genomics, metabolomics, microbiomics and phenomics... all together to improve the reproductive performance of Iberian sows. This is a collaboration with colleagues from Universidad de Zaragoza (Zaragoza, Spain), Universitat Politècnica de València (Valencia, Spain) and Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology (IRTA, Lleida, Spain). Data come from Inga Food SA (Almendralejo, Spain), a private company owning the biggest herd of Iberian pigs in Spain.

  • Transmission ratio distortion in cattle

    Genomic screening of regions involved in abnormal inheritance patterns (i.e., non-Mendelian). This will unravel fertility-related genes with potential contributions to current cattle industry. Indeed, this is coordinated by the Department of Animal Biosciences of the University of Guelph (Guelph, Canada) and merges efforts from leader dairy and beef companies such as as Semex (Guelph, Canada) and Angus Genetics, Inc. (Saint Joseph, MO, USA), with

Selected publications

● Casellas J, Cañas-Álvarez JJ, Fina M, Piedrafita J, Cecchinato A (2017) Fine mapping by composite genome-wide association analysis. Genet. Res. 99: e4.
● Casellas J, Esquivelzeta C, Legarra A (2013) Accounting for new mutations in genomic prediction models. J. Dairy Sci. 96: 5389-5402.
● Casellas J, Varona L (2012) Modeling skewness in gene expression data analyses. PLoS One 7: e38919.
● Casellas J, Ibáñez-escriche N (2012) Bayesian recursive mixed linear model for gene expression analyses with continuous covariates. J. Anim. Sci. 90: 67-75.
● Casellas J, Varona L (2011) Effect of mutation age on genomic predictions. J. Dairy Sci. 94: 4224-4229.
● Casellas J (2007) Survival quantitative trait loci fine mapping by measuring and testing for Hardy-Weinberg and linkage disequilibrium. Genetics 176: 721-724.


● Id-Lahoucine S, Casellas J (2017) Impact of incomplete pedigree data and independent culling level pre-selection on the genetic evaluation of livestock: A simulation study on lamb growth. Livest. Sci. 198: 76-81.
● Casellas J (2016) Comparison between linear and proportional hazard models for the analysis of age at first lambing in the Ripollesa breed. Animal 10: 365-371.
● Casellas J, Piedrafita J (2015) Accuracy and expected genetic gain under genetic or genomic evaluation in sheep flocks with different amounts of pedigree, genomic and phenotypic data. Livest. Sci. 182: 58-63.
● Casellas J, Bach R (2012) Comparison of linear, skewed-linear and proportional hazard models for the analysis of lambing interval in Ripollesa ewes. J. Anim. Sci. 90: 1788-1797.
● Casellas J, Piedrafita J, Caja G, Varona L (2009) Analysis of founder-specific inbreeding depression on birth weight in Ripollesa lambs. J. Anim. Sci. 87: 72-79.


● Casellas J, Cañas-Álvarez JJ, González-Rodríguez A, Puig-Oliveras A, Fina M, Piedrafita J, Molina A, Díaz C, Baró J, Varona L (2017) Bayesian analysis of parent-specific transmission ratio distortion in seven Spanish beef cattle breeds. Anim. Genet. 48: 93-96.
● Fina M, Ibáñez-Escriche N, Casellas J (2013) Canalization analysis of birth weight in Bruna dels Pirineus beef cattle. J. Anim. Sci. 91: 3070-3078.
● Fina M, Varona L, Piedrafita J, Casellas J (2012) Sources of sire-specific genetic variance for birth weight and weaning weight in Bruna dels Pirineus beef calves. Animal 6: 1931-1938.


● Casellas J, Manunza A, Mercader A, Quintanilla R, Amills M (2014) A flexible Bayesian model for testing for transmission ratio distortion. Genetics 198: 1357-1367.
● Casellas J, Vidal O, Pena RN, Gallardo D, Manunza A, Quintanilla R, Amills M (2013) Genetics of serum and muscle lipids in pigs. Anim. Genet. 44: 609-619.
● Casellas J, Martínez-Giner M, Pena RN, Balcells I, Fernández-Rodríguez A, Ibáñez-Escriche N, Noguera JL (2013) Variability-specific differential gene expression across reproductive stages in sows. Animal 7: 378-385.


● Casellas J (2018) On individual-specific prediction of hidden inbreeding depression load. J. Anim. Breed. Genet. 135: 37-44.
● Casellas J, Vidal-Roqueta D, Flores E, Casellas-Vidal D, Llach-Vila M, Salgas-Fina R, Casellas-Molas P (2011) Epistasis for founder-specific inbreeding depression in rabbits. J. Hered. 102: 157-164.


● Casellas J, Gianola D, Medrano JF (2014) Bayesian analysis of additive epistasis arising from new mutations in mice. Genet. Res. 96: e008.
● Casellas J, Gularte RJ, Farber CR, Varona L, Mehrabian M, Schadt EE, Lusis AJ, Attie AD, Yandell BS, Medrano JF (2012) Genome scans for transmission ratio distortion regions in mice. Genetics 191: 247-259.
● Casellas J, Farber CR, Verdugo RA, Medrano JF (2010) Segregation analysis of a sex ratio distortion locus in congenic mice. J. Hered. 101: 351-359.
● Casellas J, Farber CR, Gularte RJ, Haus KA, Warden CH, Medrano JF (2009) Evidence of maternal QTL affecting growth and obesity in adult mice. Mamm. Genome 20: 269-280.
● Casellas J, Medrano JF (2008) Within-generation mutation variance for litter size in inbred mice. Genetics 179: 2147-2155.


Full List (01/JUN/18)

Mentored students

  • Doctor of Philosophy degrees

    Xavier Fernández de Sevilla (2008)

    Selection objectives for animal welfare in the pig industry


    Cecilia Esquivelzeta (2012)

    Morphology, carcass and meat characterization in the Ripollesa sheep breed


    Marta Fina (2013)

    Optimization of genetic evaluation in the Bruna dels Pirineus beef cattle breed


    Mayela del Carmen Castillo (2017)

    Modelization of mutational variability depending on parents' age in two mammalian species

  • Masters of Science degrees

    Samir Id Lahoucine (2016)

    Detecting signatures of selection in genes under epistatic interaction by simulation in cattle breeds


    ToniMarie Ebbole (2016)

    Analysis of interferences among sires in paternity testing procedures by SNP genotypes


    Melani Martín de Hijas (2017)

    Weighting SNP panels for genomic prediction by simulated annealing




Once upon a time...

  • This was me when I collected data for my M.S. dissertation about piglet survival... (early 2002)