In-silico model of lifetime trajectories of dairy cows

Commonly used acronym: INSILICOW

Scope of the method

The Method relates to
  • Animal health
The Method is situated in
  • Basic Research
  • Translational - Applied Research
Type of method
  • In silico
This method makes use of
  • Animal derived cells / tissues / organs


Method keywords
  • dairy cow
  • white-box model
  • lifetime trajectory
  • reproduction
  • milk yield
  • modelling
  • simulation
Scientific area keywords
  • Animal science
  • statistical modelling
Method description

This white-box model uses energy partitioning throughout the lifetime of dairy animals (growth, lactation, gestation, ...) to simulate reproduction performance, lifetime length, production performance etc. The method is developed by dr. Olivier Martin at INRAE, MoSAR, Paris.

Lab equipment

You need the model codes to work with them.

Method status
  • History of use
  • Published in peer reviewed journal

Pros, cons & Future potential

  • Replaces costly animal trials,
  • Accurate outcomes if you put the right parameters in.

Parameter choice and identifiability


Further extensions and improvements are in constant course of development

Future & Other applications

Simulation studies in dairy cows, for example for studying resilience and perturbations in milk yield, or reproduction progesterone profiles

References, associated documents and other information


Adriaens I., Martin O., Saeys W., De Ketelaere B., Friggens N.C., Aernouts B. (2019). Validation of a novel milk progesterone-based tool to monitor luteolysis in dairy cows. Timing of the alerts and robustness against missing values. JOURNAL OF DAIRY SCIENCE, 102 (12), 11491-11503

Martin O, Blavy P, Derks M, Friggens NC, Blanc F. (2019) Coupling a reproductive function model to a productive function model to simulate lifetime performance in dairy cows. Animal. 13(3):570-579.

Associated documents
Validation of a novel milk progesterone-based tool to monitor luteolysis in dai…