Animal Reproduction (AR)
Animal Reproduction (AR)

In vitro and in vivo embryo production efficiency in Flemish and Holstein donor females

Fabiano Carminatti Zago; Luís Fernando Schütz; Renato Pereira da Costa Gerger; Luís Henrique de Aguiar; César Augusto Pinzón-Osorio; Alceu Mezzallira; José Luiz Rodrigues; Fabiana Forell; Marcelo Bertolini

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Abstract: The aim of this study was to compare embryo production efficiency in Flemish and Holstein donor females using ovum pick-up and in vitro fertilization (OPU-IVF) or in vivo production (superovulation; SOV) procedures. The study was conducted using a split-plot design, with eight Flemish and eight Holstein non-lactating cycling females. Females were subjected to ten weekly OPU/IVF sessions and/or two SOV/embryo collections sessions at a 63-day interval, for a total of 160 OPU-IVF and 32 SOV sessions. Mean numbers of follicles and corpora lutea, and cumulus-oocyte complex (COC) recovery rates were similar between breeds after the OPU and SOV sessions. However, Flemish donors yielded better quality grade II COCs (301, 41.9%) than Holstein females (609, and 202, 33.1%). Also, cleavage and blastocyst rates, and the total number and the mean number of viable embryos obtained after OPU-IVF were higher in Flemish (49.6% and 11.8%, and 63 and 11.8 per donor, respectively) than in Holstein (32.8% and 7.2%, and 34 and 7.2 per donor, respectively) females. Flemish females were also more efficient in yielding viable embryos after SOV (111, 7.3 per donor) than Holstein (48, 3.3 per donor) females. Overall, Flemish donor females had better responses to OPU-IVF or SOV procedures than Holstein counterparts. Irrespective of the breeds, SOV procedures were more efficient than OPU-IVF in yielding more viable embryos, under the conditions of this study. Both reproductive procedures were useful tools for the genetic conservation of the Flemish cattle breed in Southern Brazil.


breed conservation, in vitro fertilization, multiple ovulation, ovum pick-up, cattle


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