Marcelo H Ratto, Wilfredo Huanca, Jaswant Singh and Gregg P Adams
Date of Publication:
Theriogenology, Volume 66, Issue 5, Pages 1102–1106
We have recently reported the presence of an ovulation-inducing factor (OIF) in the seminal plasma of llamas and alpacas—species characterized as induced ovulators. The study was designed to test the hypothesis that the seminal plasma of bulls will induce ovulation in llamas, and to compare the ovulation-inducing effect of seminal plasma of conspecific versus hetero-specific males. The seminal plasma of alpacas, a closely related induced ovulator (Lama pacos), and cattle, a distantly related ruminant species (Bos taurus) considered to be spontaneous ovulators, were compared with that of the llama (Lama glama). Ovulation and maximum corpus luteum diameter were compared by ultrasonography among female llamas (n = 19 per group) treated intramuscularly with 2 mL of phosphate buffered saline (PBS, negative control) and those treated with 2 mL of seminal plasma of bulls, alpacas, or llamas (conspecific control). The diameter of the preovulatory follicle did not differ among groups at the time of treatment. Bull seminal plasma induced ovulations in 26% (5/19) of llamas compared to 0% (0/19) in PBS group (P < 0.001). The proportion of females that ovulated was lower (P < 0.01) in bull seminal plasma group compared to the groups treated with alpaca or llama seminal plasma (100%). A corpus luteum was detected on Day 8 (Day 0 = treatment) in all llamas in which ovulation was detected earlier (Day 2) by ultrasonography. The diameter of the CL did not differ among groups. Results document the presence of an ovulation-inducing factor in the seminal plasma of B. taurus. The interspecies effects of seminal plasma on ovulation and luteal development provide rationale for the hypothesis that OIF is conserved among both spontaneous and induced ovulating species.
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