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J Reprod Dev. 2008 Aug;54(4):270-4. Epub 2008 May 22.

Relationship between peripartal plasma oxytocin and prostaglandin F(2alpha) metabolite and placental expulsion time in heavy draft mares.

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Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Obihiro, Japan.


The aim of this study was to clarify the relationship between circulating oxytocin (OT) and PGF(2alpha) metabolite (PGFM) in mares at the third stage of labor and placental expulsion time in order to investigate a cause of retained placenta of which the incidence increase in a heavy draft mare. Blood was sampled every 5 min from foaling to expulsion of the placenta in 18 heavy draft mares to evaluate circulating OT and PGFM. The relationships between OT and PGFM concentration and recorded placental expulsion times were investigated. The results were as follows (1) The highest level of OT concentration was observed close to foaling in 15 mares. (2) The OT concentrations close to foaling were variable with a large difference from the lowest concentration, 22.1 pg/ml, to the highest concentration, 209.3 pg/ml. (3) The highest level of PGFM was observed close to foaling in 17 mares. (4) During the 60 min following foaling, the OT concentrations of the mares (n=11) that had a shorter placental expulsion time (i.e., <1 h), were significantly higher than those of the mares (n=7) that had a longer placental expulsion time (i.e., >1 h; P<0.05). Collectively, the OT concentration immediately after foaling is negatively related to the placental expulsion time. Deficiency of OT secretion at foaling have should be considered as one of the causes of retained placenta in heavy draft mares.

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