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


M. F. Pegorer A , R. L. Ereno A , R. A. Satrapa B and C. M. Barros B
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- Author Affiliations

A Department of Animal Reproduction, FMVZ, Botucatu, Sao Paulo, Brazil;

B Department of Pharmacology, IBB, University of Sao Paulo State, Botucatu, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Reproduction, Fertility and Development 22(1) 173-173
Published: 8 December 2009


The objective of the present study was to evaluate the influence of different P4 concentrations, associated or not with eCG, in the ovulation and pregnancy rates of Nellore heifers submitted to hormonal protocols for FTAI. In experiment (exp.) 1, heifers (n = 15) presynchronized with a hormonal treatment were randomly allocated in 4 groups. At the time of intravaginal device insertion (Day 0) all animals received 2 mg of estradiol benzoate (EB) and a intravaginal progesterone-releasing device containing 0.558 g of P4 (Triu®, Biogenesis Bago, Buenos Aires, Argentina; group 0.5G, n = 4) or 1g of P4 (Cronipres®, Biogenesis Bago; group 1G, n = 4), or 0.558 g of P4 and PGF (150 μg of D-cloprostenol, group 0.5G/PGF, n = 4), or 1 g of P4 and PGF (group 1G/PGF, n = 3). Eight days later (Day 8), PGF (150 μg D-cloprostenol) was administered to all heifers, and the P4 source was removed. Twenty-four hours after removing the intravaginal device (Day 9), the heifers were treated with EB (1 mg, i.m.). Blood samples were collected on Days 0, 1, 2, 4, 8, and 10 to evaluate plasma P4 concentration. In exp. 2, cycling Nellore heifers (n = 292) were treated with the same protocols as in the exp. 1. However, 30 to 36 h later all animals were FTAI on Day 10. In exp. 3, heifers (n = 459) received the treatments described for groups 0.5G/PGF and 1G/PGF associated with 300 IU of eCG (i.m. groups 0.5G/PGF/eCG and 1G/PGF/eCG) at the time of intravaginal device removal (Day 8). In a subset of heifers from each group, ovarian ultrasonography was performed to determine the diameter of the dominant follicle on Day 9 (exp.3) and the ovulation rate on Day 12 (exp. 2 and 3). ANOVA for repeated measurements was used to compare P4 levels, and the binary variables (ovulation and pregnancy rates) were analyzed by logistic regression. In exp. 1, P4 concentrations were higher in animals that received 1.0 compared with 0.558 g of P4, and lower in heifers that received PGF on Day 0. In both exp. 2 and 3 there were no significant differences in ovulation (65 to 77%) and pregnancy (exp.2: 26 to 33%; exp.3: 39 to 43%) rates among the several groups. In exp. 3, the animals that received 0.558 g of P4 had a larger diameter of the dominant follicle on Day 9 compared with heifers treated with 1.0 g (10.3 ± 0.2 v. 9.3 ± 0.2 mm; P < 0.01). It is concluded that reduction of P4 concentration in the intravaginal device or the administration of PGF at the beginning of the treatments decreases blood levels of P4 between Days 1 and 8 of the FTAI protocols. However, although the use of intravaginal devices with lower P4 contributed to increase the dominant follicle diameter on Day 9, there was no significant increase on ovulation and pregnancy rates. Additionally, the association of eCG with FTAI protocols did not improve follicular growth or ovulation and pregnancy rates.

Supported by FAPESP (Sao Paulo, Brazil).

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