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Modification of endometrial fatty acid concentrations by the pre-implantation conceptus in pasture-fed dairy cows

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 April 2011

Susanne Meier*
Affiliation:
DairyNZ Limited, Hamilton 3240, New Zealand
Caroline G Walker
Affiliation:
DairyNZ Limited, Hamilton 3240, New Zealand Liggins Institute, The University of Auckland, Grafton 1142, New Zealand
Murray D Mitchell
Affiliation:
Liggins Institute, The University of Auckland, Grafton 1142, New Zealand National Research Centre for Growth and Development, The University of Auckland, Grafton 1142, New Zealand University of Queensland, Centre for Clinical Research, Brisbane 4072, Australia
Mathew D Littlejohn
Affiliation:
DairyNZ Limited, Hamilton 3240, New Zealand
John R Roche
Affiliation:
DairyNZ Limited, Hamilton 3240, New Zealand
*
*For correspondence: Susanne.Meier@dairynz.co.nz

Abstract

The current study determined whether the pre-implantation conceptus modified endometrial fatty acid concentrations. Oestrus was synchronized in 14 mature lactating cows and embryos were transferred on day 7. Cows were slaughtered 10 d later, with each uterine horn flushed, the pre-implantation conceptus located, and inter-caruncular endometrial tissue collected from the gravid horn (containing the pre-implantation conceptus) and non-gravid horn. Endometrial fatty acid concentrations in the gravid and non-gravid horn were compared using linear models in restricted maxiumum likelihood. Investigations of the correlations among selected fatty acids and trophoblast weight or uterine fluid interferon-tau (IFN-τ) concentrations were also undertaken. The presence of the pre-implantation conceptus had relatively minor effects on endometrial fatty acid concentrations, but the ω6:ω3 ratio was greater and concentrations of stearic and oleic acid were slightly increased in the gravid horn. In the gravid horn, a negative linear relationship between the concentration of arachidonic acid and conceptus weight and IFN-τ concentration in the uterine luminal fluid were observed. In contrast, there was a positive relationship between concentrations of dihomo-γ-linolenic acid in the non-gravid horn and conceptus weight. In conclusion, the presence of the pre-implantation conceptus appears to modulate endometrial fatty acids, as indicated by the differences in endometrial fatty acid concentrations in the gravid and non-gravid uterine horns. The physiological implication of these local effects of the pre-implantation conceptus, on reproductive success requires further investigation.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Proprietors of Journal of Dairy Research 2011

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