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‘Speed gene’ test for horses wins innovation award

Emmeline Hill of University College Dublin has won the 2014 Nova UCD Innovation Award for her discoveries in equine genomics and for spinning out a company to commercialise them.

Equinome, which employs 10 people, is based at the Nova UCD incubation centre for young companies. Hill has developed a number of genetic tests and now sells them in Ireland and in Australia. The company plans also to open a US office during 2015, which will double company employment.

Hill co-founded Equinome in 2009 with the Irish trainer and breeder Jim Bolger. She identified a gene that was linked to a horse’s capacity for long races, thus influencing a horse’s value or how it might be trained.

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