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In vivo and in vitro embryo production in goats

Paramio, M.T.
Small ruminant research 2010 v.89 no.2-3 pp. 144-148
artificial insemination, embryo transfer, females, genetic improvement, goats, in vitro culture, in vitro fertilization, oocytes, ovulation, reproductive efficiency, research and development, spermatozoa
Assisted reproductive technologies (ART) such as artificial insemination (AI) and multiple ovulation and embryo transfer (MOET) have been used to increase reproductive efficiency and accelerate genetic gain. The principal limitations of MOET are due to variable female response to hormonal treatment, fertilization failures and premature regression of Corpora luteum. The in vitro production (IVP) of embryos offers the possibility of overcoming MOET limitations. The method of IVP of embryos involves three main steps: in vitro maturation of oocytes (IVM), in vitro fertilization of oocytes (IVF) with capacitated sperm and in vitro culture (IVC) of embryos up to blastocyst stage. Recovering oocytes from live selected females by laparoscopic ovum pick-up (LOPU) and breeding prepubertal females by juvenile in vitro embryo technology (JIVET) will allow a greater production of valuable goats. Also, IVP of goat embryos will provide an excellent source of embryos for basic research on development biology and for commercial applications of transgenic and cloning technologies. Different protocols of IVP of embryos have been used in goats. However oocyte quality is the main factor for embryos reaching blastocyst stage from IVM/IVF/IVC oocytes. One of the principal determinant factors in the results of blastocyst development is the age of the oocyte donor females. In goats, oocytes from prepubertal and adult females do not show differences in in vitro maturation and in vitro fertilization; however the percentage of oocytes reaching blastocyst stage ranges from 12 to 36% with oocytes from prepubertal and adult goats, respectively.