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Equine veterinary journal
Volume 56 | Issue 1 (January 2024)

Delayed embryonic development or a long sperm survival in two mares-A registration conundrum.

Equine Vet J. January 2024;56(1):131 - 136.
Patrick M McCue1, Philip M Matthews2, Melissa J Prell3, Rebecca R Bellone4, Heather Allen5
1 Equine Reproduction Laboratory, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA.; 2 Peterson Smith Advanced Fertility Center, Peterson & Smith Equine Hospital, Ocala, Florida, USA.; 3 Peterson Smith Advanced Fertility Center, Peterson & Smith Equine Hospital, Ocala, Florida, USA.; 4 Veterinary Genetics Laboratory, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, California, USA.; 5 Bureau Veritas Laboratories, Guelph, Ontario, Canada.
© 2023 The Authors. Equine Veterinary Journal published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of EVJ Ltd.


BACKGROUND:Genetic testing is required for the registration of foals of most equine breeds.
OBJECTIVES:To describe two clinical cases of marked delayed embryonic development or delayed fertilisation in pregnancies generated by embryo transfer.
STUDY DESIGN:Case report.
METHODS:Donor mares were inseminated with semen from one stallion during one oestrous cycle and semen from a different stallion on the subsequent oestrous cycle. Embryo(s) were collected 8 days after ovulation during the second oestrous cycle and transferred into synchronised recipient mares. Genetic testing was performed to determine parentage of the two foals.
RESULTS:For both foals, DNA parentage testing excluded the second stallion as the genetic sire and confirmed that the first stallion, whose semen was inseminated on the previous oestrous cycle, was the actual genetic sire.
MAIN LIMITATIONS:Rare event in horses; two clinical cases are described.
CONCLUSIONS:It is hypothesised that either marked delayed embryonic development or extended sperm survival occurred in the donor mares. Without genetic testing, parentage assignment based solely on breeding records would have been incorrect.

DNA; delayed; embryonic development; horse; parentage;

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