The Iowa Intellectual Property Law Association has named Iowa State University (ISU) animal science professor Max Rothschild the 2002 Inventor of the Year.

The group cited Rothschild’s three gene tests to improve pig litter size, which have been licensed to PIC.

"The tests have revolutionized genetic improvement for a trait (litter size) that has been enhanced only slowly over the past 40 years," says Kenneth Kirkland, executive director, ISU Research Foundation.

The use of the three gene tests is the first application of DNA tests to improve reproductive traits in domestic animals.

Rothschild joined the ISU faculty in 1980. He also coordinates the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Pig Genome Mapping Project.