Abstract #99

Section: Embryo Transfer
Session: Embryo Transfer
Format: Poster
Location: Rio Exhibit Hall B
# 99
B. Behluli1, M. Jahnke2, J. K. West2, C. R. Youngs*2, 1University of Prishtina, Prishtina, Kosovo;, 2Iowa State University, Ames, IA, USA.

The objective of this applied field study was to assess the feasibility of successfully performing bovine embryo transfer in the Republic of Kosova—a feat that had not yet been accomplished in this newly independent (2008) eastern European country. Three Holstein heifers at the Iowa State University dairy farm were superovulated with a conventional descending dose regimen of FSH (Folltropin). Approximately 12 and 24 h after the observed onset of oestrus, heifers were inseminated with semen from a single Red Holstein bull. Embryos were non-surgically collected and washed in accordance with IETS procedures for sanitary handling of embryos. Embryos were cryopreserved for subsequent direct transfer. After obtaining an import permit from the Kosovo Food and Veterinary Agency, embryos were approved for export to the Republic of Kosova by the US Department of Agriculture, Animal Plant Health Inspection Service. Embryos were shipped via an express courier service. A total of 19 embryos were received in the Republic of Kosova. Recipients were monitored for signs of naturally occurring oestrus, and immediately before transfer, embryos were thawed by holding in air for 3 to 5 s followed by placement into a 37°C water bath for 25 to 30 s. The first-ever bovine embryo transfer calf in the Republic of Kosova was born July 6, 2015. A total of 9 calves were born from the 19 embryos transferred (47.4% embryo survival rate). Results of this applied field study show that bovine embryo transfer is feasible in the Republic of Kosova. Embryo transfer will be used to improve the quality of dairy cattle genetics in the Republic of Kosova and to subsequently increase the national supply of milk, decrease dependence on milk imports, and increase food security of the nation.