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Control of the estrous cycle in guinea-pig (Cavia porcellus)

Grégoire, A., Allard, A., Huamán, E., León, S., Silva, R.M., Buff, S., Berard, M., Joly, T.
Theriogenology 2012 v.78 no.4 pp. 842-847
animal welfare, estrous cycle, estrus synchronization, farming systems, females, guinea pigs, oral administration, ovulation, pregnancy, progesterone, prostaglandins
The aim of this work was to look for a simple method to obtain synchronized ovulation in guinea pigs under farming conditions while respecting animal welfare. The luteolytic activity of three different prostaglandins F2alpha (PGF2α) analogs (D-cloprostenol, D,L-cloprostenol and luprostiol) and a daily treatment with oral progestagen (altrenogest) was tested successively at different stages of the estrous cycle on the same group of females during a period of 8 mo. The estrous cycle length was not modified by the administration of PGF2α analogs, whatever the stage of the estrous cycle when the treatment was initiated. Our results led us to reject the use of PGF2α analog to induce practical synchronization of the estrus in this species. In females (n = 29), given 15 days with altrenogest (0.1 mL po once a day), ovulation occurred 4.43 ± 0.13 days after the end of the treatment. Altrenogest treatment was followed by mating. No negative impacts of the treatment on the pregnancy rates, delivery rates and litter sizes were observed. This standard method of guinea-pig estrus synchronization is less stressful for the animals compared to techniques using progesterone tubing.