Effect of cattle-specific estrus molecules on libido and semen production of zebu bulls under tropical climate
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Zebu bulls are a shy breeder and they exhibit optimum libido in the presence of females with estrus phase. Continuous semen collection with the use of male dummy leads to lack of adequate sexual stimulation. Therefore, the present study was designed to test the effect of estrus-specific molecule(s) for effective sexual preparation of donor bulls. The bulls were divided into normal and poor libido group, five bulls in each group by taking 1-month control study data after collecting the information of individual bull’s sexual behaviour during semen collection by regular semen collector. The bulls were never being exposed to female animals and semen was collected by an artificial vagina. The ten animals were exposed to a glycerol-water solution (50/50 v:v) as control and then exposed to estrus-specific molecules one by one. The estrus-specific molecules like squalene, 1-iodoundecane, acetic acid, coumarin, propionic acid, oleic acid, and 2-butanone were purchased from Sigma-Aldrich Company, USA, and the molecules were solubilised individually in a non-pressurised aerosol dispenser as 1.0% concentration in glycerol-water solution (50/50, v:v). Identical bulls were used as the control and exposed to each molecule one by one by giving a refractory period of 14 days. A nasal spray of acetic acid or 2-butanone significantly (p < 0.05) reduced reaction time (RT) and total time taken to ejaculate (TTTE) in normal libido bull group. Semen volume, sperm concentration, and the total number of sperm per ejaculation obtained did not show significant improvement in the normal libido group of bulls after the application of estrus-specific molecules as compared to the control. In poor libido group, acetic acid, oleic acid, and 2-butanone application showed significant (p < 0.01) improvement in RT and TTTE as compared to the control group, whereas semen production variables like sperm concentration and total sperm output per ejaculation increased significantly (p < 0.05) except semen volume. There was significant (p < 0.01) reduction in RT (%) and TTTE (%) after the application of acetic acid followed by 2-butanone and oleic acid. The sperm concentration and total sperm output per ejaculation were more after the application of each molecule but significant increase (p < 0.05) in sperm concentration was observed with 2-butanone (11.42%), acetic acid (11.42%), and oleic acid (10.13%), whereas total sperm output per ejaculation increased significantly (p < 0.05) only after the application of acetic acid and 2-butanone (24.75% and 26.84%). Hence, it can be concluded that acetic acid, 2-butanone, and oleic acid are effective for better sexual preparation of Sahiwal bulls and total sperm output per ejaculation.
KeywordsEstrus-specific synthetic molecules Libido Semen production Zebu bulls
Authors are thankful to Director, ICAR-NDRI, Karnal, for providing the infrastructure to carry out the research work.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Our experimental procedure on animals was approved by the Institutional Animal Ethics Committee (IAEC) constituted as per the article number 13 of the Committee for the Purpose of Control, and Supervision on Experiments on Animals (CPCSEA) rules laid down by the Government of India.
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