PARAGON ADVANCED BREEDING – St Boniface Vets/University of Nottingham

Using parthenogenetic embryos to improve dairy cow fertility

Currently, around 35% of dairy cows hold to their first insemination during early lactation (Hanks and Kossaibati, 2020). Our service, which is under development, but based on promising evidence, aims to improve this.

Given that feed conversion efficiency is greatest during the first 100 days of lactation, overall efficiency of production is enhanced and environmental impact minimised when cows conceive during this period (Scottish Government and SRUC, n.d.). This also leads to greater cow longevity (poor fertility is the main reason for involuntary culls (University of Reading, n.d.)) and lifetime productivity, whilst reducing the number of replacement heifers and, consequently, the number of methane-generating cattle to maintain.

Studies in high-yielding cows indicate that around 85% of embryo loss occurs during the period leading up to placental attachment (Day 28 of gestation), and that 75% of this loss occurs between Days 7-28, coinciding with when the embryo signals its presence to the uterus (Wiltbank et al., 2016).

Through an Innovate UK funded project, St. Boniface Veterinary Clinic, Paragon Vet Group and the University of Nottingham have collaborated to research the transfer of parthenogenetic embryos (bPaE) following artificial insemination (AI) as an alternative means by which to enhance pregnancy recognition. The study was undertaken on two commercial dairy farms in Devon, UK involving 256 cows.

Please talk to us about these developments by visiting our stand.

www.paragonvet.com/advanced-breeding

STAND B23

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