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Vet J. 2006 May;171(3):500-3. Epub 2005 Jan 26.

Effects of time of progesterone supplementation on embryo development and interferon-tau production in the cow.

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  • 1Division of Animal Physiology, School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington, Loughborough LE12 5RD, UK. george.mann@nottingham.ac.uk


We have investigated the effects of the timing of progesterone supplementation on early embryo development in mature, non-lactating Holstein-Friesian cows. Animals were inseminated 72 h (day 1) and 96 h following prostaglandin injection and were either left as untreated controls (n=6) or received progesterone supplementation from either days 5 to 9 (early; n=6) or from days 12 to 16 (late; n=6). Daily plasma samples were collected until day 16, when cows were slaughtered and reproductive tracts recovered and flushed to collect embryos and to measure interferon-tau activity. Both early and later progesterone supplementation resulted in marked increases in plasma progesterone (P<0.01). Early, but not late, progesterone supplementation resulted in a fourfold increase in trophoblast length (P<0.01) and a sixfold increase in uterine concentration of interferon-tau (P<0.05). The results demonstrate that progesterone supplementation during the postovulatory rise, but not later in the luteal phase, increases embryo development and interferon-tau production.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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