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Embryo Transplantation in Cattle

Non-Surgical Transfer of 6½–7½-Day Old Embryos to Lactating Dairy Cows Under farm Conditions

Ægtransplantation på kvæg. Ikke-kirurgisk overfõrsel af 6½–7½ dage garnie embryoner til lakterende malkekøer


Previous attempts to transfer embryos non-surgically to heifers have been rather discouraging. The present experiment describes a simple non-surgical technique where the 6½–7½ -day old embryo is placed in a 0.25 ml ministraw, fitted into a common insemination gun and transferred cervically to synchronized lactating dairy cows. Thirty-two viable embryos were transferred to the middle part of the uterine horn ipsilateral to the ovary containing the corpus luteum. It was easy to pass the cervix, and most embryos could be deposited in the horn within 1 or 2 min. Eighteen animals were diagnosed pregnant (56% ). It is conceivable that the easy atraumatic transfers and good management (feeding, oestrus control) of the recipients contributed to the high pregnancy rate.


Undersøgelsen beskriver anvendelsen af ikke-kirurgisk overførsel af embryonier til lakterende malkekøer. Efter udskylning, identifikation og isolation anbringes det enkelte embryon i et ministrå, 0,25 ml. Efter at inseminatoren er ladet, føres denne under omhyggelig rektal kontrol ud i uterushornet ipsilateralt til ovariet, som indeholder det funktionsdygtige corpus luteum, og embryonet deponeres så dybt som muligt. Toogtredive embryoner overførtes på denne måde til 32 synkromiserede, lakterende malkekøer, og 18 blev drægtige (56%). Dette resultat er overraskende godt. Endnu er det svaert at vurdere virkningerne af eventuelt medvirkende faktorer, men den lette cervikale passage og recipienternes gode fodringstilstand har uden tvivl medvirket til den høje drægtighedsprocent.


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This work was supported by a grant from the Danish Agricultural and Veterinary Research Council.

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Greve, T., Lehn-Jensen, H. Embryo Transplantation in Cattle. Acta Vet Scand 20, 135–144 (1979).

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  • non-surgical embryo transfer
  • lactating cattle