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Vertebrate reproductive science and technology

86 Difficulty of Transfer of In Vivo-Derived Bovine Embryos and Route of Administration of Flunixin Meglumine at the Time of Transfer may Affect Pregnancy Rate

J. Duran A , D. Argudo A , S. Bravo A , C. Soria A , G. Guevara A and R. Alberio B
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Fac. Ciencias Agropecuarias Univ. de Cuenca, Cuenca, Azuay, Ecuador;

B Fac. Ciencias Agrarias. Univ. Nac. de Mar del Plata, Mar del Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Reproduction, Fertility and Development 30(1) 182-183
Published: 4 December 2017


Recipient handling during embryo transfer (ET) induces prostaglandin F (PGF) production in 2 periods: an early transient and rapid increase around the time of ET, followed by another 2 to 4 h later. This PGF is associated with embryonic loss during early gestation by affecting both the embryo and the corpus luteum. To control this, antiprostaglandins such as flunixin meglumine (FM) have been applied IM at the time of ET with varying results. In such studies, the interaction of IM administration of FM and difficulty of transfer has not always been evaluated, possibly confusing the interpretation of the results. Furthermore, IV FM injection at ET and its relationship with pregnancy rates (PR) has not been determined. The objectives were (1) to determine the relationship between difficulty of ET and PR; and (2) to evaluate the efficacy of IM v. IV FM on pregnancy outcomes. One hundred and ten crossbred (Bos taurus × Bos indicus) heifers (18-24 months old) from 3 farms were used as recipients. Two evaluation systems of ET difficulty were used: (1) duration of transfer (objective determination of the elapsed time measured in seconds between the introduction of the catheter and embryo release), and (2) level of difficulty experienced by the practitioner (subjective determination; 1 = minimum and 2 = medium to extreme manipulation). Quality 1 and 2 fresh embryos from superovulated cows were transferred by the same practitioner. At ET, recipients were randomly divided into 3 groups: (1) Control (no treatment, n = 31); (2) FM-IM (n = 39): injected IM with 2.2 mg kg−1 FM at ET; and (3) FM-IV (N = 40): injected with 2.2 mg kg−1 FM IV at ET. Pregnancy was diagnosed at 30 to 40 and 60 to 90 days after ET. Spearman’s test was performed to determine the correlation between duration and difficulty at ET and Chi-square test was used to compare PR. The mean duration of transfer for all heifers was 62.3 ± 57.5 s (11 to 357 s; median: 44.5 s). There was a high correlation (0.8; P < 0.001) between the ET difficulty evaluation systems. Overall, ET difficulty 1 had higher PR than ET difficulty 2 (64.2 v. 40.7; P = 0.013). The PR was significantly improved (P < 0.01) in the FM-IV group (75 and 70% at 30 and 60 days after ET) compared with control (45.2 and 32.3%) and FM-IM (33.3 and 30.7%). In conclusion, results indicate that the difficulty of transfer affects PR achieved following the transfer of in vivo-derived bovine embryos. Treatment with FM-IV following transfer resulted in significantly higher PR compared with control and FM-IM recipients. The IV injection of FM may antagonize the very early and transient increase of PGF caused by genital tract manipulation (even gently performed) at embryo transfer. Further research is necessary to confirm the results of the present study.

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