Reproduction, Fertility and Development Reproduction, Fertility and Development Society
Vertebrate reproductive science and technology


G. M. Greco A , J. A. Dell’aqua Jr A and M. A. Alvarenga A
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UNESP-São Paulo State University, Botucatu, Brazil

Reproduction, Fertility and Development 22(1) 246-246
Published: 8 December 2009


Long-acting progesterone compounds containing concentrations of 150 mg mL-1 (P4LA150) have been routinely used in Brazil, especially at the beginning and end of the breeding season when the percentage of recipient mares showing normal estrous cycles is low compared to donors (Greco GM et al. 2008 Proceedings 7th International Symposium on Equine Embryo Transfer, 59-60). However, recipients treated with P4LA150 must receive weekly administrations until pregnancies achieve 100 days. The present study aimed to evaluate pregnancy and pregnancy loss rates from acyclic mares treated at 7-day intervals with P4LA150 and 14-day intervals with a long-acting progesterone formulation containing 300 mg mL-1 (P4LA300). Acyclic Campolina breed mares (n = 80) ranging from 4 to 13 years old showing considerable endometrial edema 2 days after estradiol benzoate injection (5 mg, i.m.) were split in 2 groups. Group 1 mares (n = 40) received 10 mL of P4LA150 (1500 mg) i.m. every 7 days, whereas Group 2 mares (n = 40) were treated with 10 mL of P4LA300 (3000 mg) i.m. every 14 days. Steroid hormone formulations were produced in our research laboratory, at São Paulo State University, Botucatu, Brazil. Embryos 7 to 8 days of age were transferred into the uteri of recipients between 4 and 7 days after the first progesterone administration. Following a positive pregnancy diagnosis at 14 to 15 days, mares were examined at Days 50 and 100, when progesterone treatment was discontinued. These evaluations were conducted in order to determine pregnancy loss rates during both periods. Results were analyzed through the chi-square test and significance was set at P < 0.05. Pregnancy rates and pregnancy loss rates at Day 50 from mares treated with P4LA150 (Group 1) and P4LA300 (Group 2) did not differ. Pregnancy rates were 60.0% (24/40) and 75.0% (30/40) at Day 50 for mares treated with P4LA150 (Group 1) and P4LA300 (Group 2), respectively (P > 0.10). Pregnancy loss rates at Day 50 were 8.3% (2/24) and 10.0% (3/30) for mares treated with P4LA150 and P4LA300, respectively (P > 0.10). Pregnancy losses were not identified at Day 100. Based on the results from the present study, we concluded that acyclic recipient mares treated with P4LA150 or P4LA300 are able to obtain satisfactory pregnancy rates with low pregnancy losses. Moreover, the use of 3000 mg of long-acting progesterone every 14 days reduces overall progesterone administrations, minimizes stress in horse handling, and makes the choice for acyclic recipient mares more appealing in commercial embryo transfer programs.

Authors would like to thank FAPESP for financial support.

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