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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The influence of ovarian activity and uterine involution determined by ultrasonography on subsequent reproductive performance of dairy cows.

The objective of this study was to test the hypothesis that a follicle >8 mm diameter in the ovary ipsilateral to the previously gravid uterine horn (PGUH), between 14 and 28 days postpartum, improves subsequent reproductive performance. Lactating Holstein-Friesian cows (n=284) in 3 commercial herds were examined using transrectal ultrasonography once between 14 and 28 days postpartum to determine associations between uterine and ovarian measurements and subsequent fertility. There were fewer cows with a corpus luteum in the ovary ipsilateral to the PGUH compared with the contralateral ovary (16.9% vs. 37.0%; P<0.001). In addition, in the ovary ipsilateral to the PGUH there were fewer follicles >5 mm diameter (mean +/- SEM; 0.69 +/- 0.06 vs. 1.02 +/- 0.06; P<0.001) and fewer animals with a follicle >8 mm diameter (26.1% vs. 49.6%; P<0.001). These differences between the ovaries ipsilateral or contralateral to the PGUH declined with increasing time between 14 and 28 days postpartum. The presence of a purulent vaginal discharge decreased the number of animals with a corpus luteum in the ovary contralateral to the PGUH (45/143 vs. 60/141; P<0.05), but not in the ovary ipsilateral to the PGUH. The presence of a follicle >8 mm diameter in the ovary ipsilateral to the PGUH was associated with a shorter calving to conception interval compared with animals without such a follicle (99.0 +/- 5.6 days, n=74, vs. 112.8 +/- 4.4 days, n=210; P<0.05). These observations raise an intriguing issue: how does this follicle affect subsequent fertility--does the follicle exert a local influence on the uterus, or vice versa?[1]


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