Fertility-associated antigen on Nelore bull sperm and reproductive outcomes following first-service fixed-time AT of Nelore cows and heifers
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The objective was to determine whether the presence of fertility-associated antigen (FAA) on sperm collected from Nelore (Bos indicus) bulls can be used to assess potential fertility of sperm for use at first-service fixed-time AI (TAI). Six Nelore bulls were selected based on FAA status (FAA-negative: N = 3; FAA-positive: N = 3) and the ability to produce neat semen with >= 70% morphologically normal sperm and 60% estimated progressive motility before cryopmservation. In Experiment 1, suckled multiparous Nelore cows (N = 835) were evaluated for body condition score (BCS) and received an intravaginal progesterone device (CIDR) and 2.0 mg of estradiol benzoate (Day 0). on Day 9 the CIDR was removed, 12.5 mg of PGF(2 alpha) and 0.5 mg of estradiol cypionate were administered, and calves were removed for 48 h. All cows received TAI on Day II (48 h after CIDR removal). Pregnancy per TAI (P/TAI) was not different between FAA-positive and FAA-negative bulls (41.5% vs. 39.3%, respectively). There was an effect of AI technician on P/TAI (36.0% vs. 43.9%; P < 0.05) and BCS tended to affect P/TAI (P = 0.09), as cows with BCS >= 2.75 were 1.4 times more likely to become pregnant compared with cows with BCS < 2.75. In Experiment 2, nulliparous Nelore heifers (N = 617) were evaluated for BCS and received a CIDR and estradiol benzoate (2.0 mg) on Day 0. on Day 7, all heifers received PGF(2 alpha) (12.5 mg). on Day 9, CIDR inserts were removed and all heifers received estradiol cypionate (0.6 mg) and 200 IU eCG. All heifers received TAI on Day 11 (48 h after CIDR removal). Pregnancy/TAI was different (P = 0.04) between FAA-positive and FAA-negative bulls (33.7% vs. 40.7%, respectively). Presence of FAA on sperm was unsuccessful in assessing the potential fertility of sperm for use in TAI. (C) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.