Cria Genesis

Ocean Grove, Australia

Cria Genesis

Ocean Grove, Australia
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Vaughan J.,Cria Genesis | Mihm M.,University of Glasgow | Wittek T.,University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna
Animal Reproduction Science | Year: 2013

Embryo transfer offers great advantages to South American camelid farmers to reach their breeding goals but the technology still plays a relatively minor role in comparison to other domestic farm animals like cattle. The aim of the present study was to analyse a data set of 5547 single or multiple ovulation embryo transfers performed in commercial alpaca farms in Australia to determine the factors that influence number and quality of embryos produced, embryo transfer success (percentage of crias born) and gestation length following transfer. Logistic binary regression identified the variables day of flushing after mating, embryo diameter, embryo quality, day of transfer after GnRH, and the age of the recipient to have significant impact on the outcome measure embryo transfer success. Transfer of smaller embryos or lower quality embryos resulted in decreased transfer success rates. Optimal days for obtaining embryos from donors were Days 8 and 9 after mating, optimal days for transfer into recipients were Days 7 and 8 after GnRH treatment. Age (>15 years) and body condition of recipients <2 also lowered transfer success rates, while the summer heat had no adverse impact. However, season did influence gestation length, while cria gender did not. In conclusion, results from the analysis of this very large dataset can underpin new recommendations to improve embryo transfer success in alpacas. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.


Kershaw-Young C.M.,University of Sydney | Druart X.,University of Tours | Vaughan J.,Cria Genesis | Maxwell W.M.C.,University of Sydney
Reproduction, Fertility and Development | Year: 2012

Ovulation in camelids is induced by an unidentified protein in the seminal plasma of the male termed 'ovulation-inducing factor'. This protein has been reportedto be a 14-kDa protein under reducing conditions, which, when purified from seminal plasma, induces ovulation in llamas. The identification of this protein and investigation of its potential to induce ovulation in camelids may aid the development of protocols for the induction of ovulation. In the present study, alpaca seminal plasma proteins were separated using one-dimensional sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and the most abundant protein of 14kDa was identified as β-nerve growth factor (β-NGF) by liquid chromatography mass spectrometry. Female alpacas (n=5 per group) were given intramuscular injections of: (1) 1mL of 0.9% saline; (2) 4 mg buserelin, a gonadotrophin-releasing hormone agonist; (3) 2 mL alpaca seminal plasma; or (4) 1 mg human β-NGF. Ovulation was detected by transrectal ultrasonography 8 days after treatment and confirmed by plasma progesterone concentrations. Ovulation occurred in 0%, 80%, 80% and 80% of animals treated with saline, buserelin, seminal plasma and β-NGF, respectively. Treatment type did not affect the diameter of the corpus luteum, but plasma progesterone concentrations were lower in saline-treated animals than in the other treatment groups owing to the lack of a corpus luteum. The present study is the first to identify the ovulation-inducing factor protein in alpacas. β-NGF successfully induces ovulation in alpacas and this finding may lead to new methods for the induction of ovulation in camelids. © CSIRO 2012.


Stuart C.C.,University of Sydney | Vaughan J.L.,Cria Genesis | Kershaw-Young C.M.,University of Sydney | Wilkinson J.,Baarrooka Alpacas | And 2 more authors.
Reproduction, Fertility and Development | Year: 2015

Ovulation in camelids is induced by the seminal plasma protein ovulation-inducing factor (OIF), recently identified as β-nerve growth factor (β-NGF). The present study measured the total protein concentration in alpaca seminal plasma using a bicinchoninic acid (BCA) protein quantification assay and found it to be 22.2±2.0mgmL-1. To measure the effects of varying doses of β-NGF on the incidence and timing of ovulation, corpus luteum (CL) size and plasma progesterone concentration, 24 female alpacas were synchronised and treated with either: (1) 1mL 0.9% saline (n≤5); (2) 4'g buserelin (n≤5); (3) 1mg β-NGF protein (n≤5); (4) 0.1mg β-NGF (n≤5); or (5) 0.01mg β-NGF (n≤4). Females were examined by transrectal ultrasonography at 1-2-h intervals between 20 and 45h after treatment or until ovulation occurred, as well as on Day 8 to observe the size of the CL, at which time blood was collected to measure plasma progesterone concentrations. Ovulation was detected in 0/5, 5/5, 5/5, 3/5 and 0/4 female alpacas treated with saline, buserelin, 1, 0.1 and 0.01mg β-NGF, respectively. Mean ovulation interval (P≤0.76), CL diameter (P≤0.96) and plasma progesterone concentration (P≤0.96) did not differ between treatments. Mean ovulation interval overall was 26.2±1.0h. In conclusion, buserelin and 1mg β-NGF are equally effective at inducing ovulation in female alpacas, but at doses ≤0.1mg, β-NGF is not a reliable method for the induction of ovulation. © 2015 CSIRO.


Vaughan J.,Cria Genesis
Animal Reproduction Science | Year: 2011

Ultrasound technology and hormone assays have provided a better understanding of folliculogenesis and ovulation in South American camelids in the last two decades. Females exhibit waves of ovarian follicular growth and are induced ovulators and therefore do not exhibit oestrous cycles in the manner of spontaneously ovulating species such as sheep and cattle. There is much variation in inter-wave interval among camelid species (alpaca/llama 10-22 days, vicuna 4-11 days), within species and within individual animals as the range of each phase of follicular growth is wide. Ovulation occurs 24-30 h after mating and luteolysis occurs approximately 10 days later if conception fails to occur. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.


Reed K.F.M.,Reed Pasture Science | Vaughan J.L.,Cria Genesis | Cummins L.J.,Ivanhoe | Moore D.D.,Biomin Australia Pty Ltd. | Moore D.D.,University of Queensland
Animal Production Science | Year: 2010

Liveweight gain, animal health and the effectiveness of a mycotoxin deactivator were studied on an old pasture that contained 61% perennial ryegrass. Sixty-seven percent of the ryegrass population was infected with endophyte (Neotyphodium spp.). The pasture was fenced into two halves and two groups of 28 alpaca male weaners were rotated between the two plots. Nine to 10 Suris and 1819 Huacayas were allocated to each group. One group was fed a concentrate supplement (100 g/head per day) and the other was fed the same supplement to which was added the toxin deactivator, Mycofix Plus (5 g/100 g). Mean liveweight gain on the low-quality pasture over late summer and early autumn was not significantly (P 0.05) different between the groups. For the control group it was 41 g/day but individual rates of gain ranged from 67 to 0 g/day, depending on the severity of signs of perennial ryegrass toxicosis (r ≤ 0.82, P 0.001). Liveweight gain was independent of neurotoxic signs in the Mycofix Plus treated group. Ergovaline concentration in perennial ryegrass varied from 0.43 to a peak in early autumn (March) of 1.05 mg/kg. Mean urine lysergol alkaloid concentration peaked in mid-summer (January) at 109 ng/mg creatinine (control group) and was consistently lower in the Mycofix Plus group, although the difference approached significance (P ≤ 0.06) only in March. Lolitrem B concentration in perennial ryegrass varied from 0.78 to 1.57 mg/kg. Neurotoxic signs in alpacas were observed throughout the study and peaked in early autumn, coinciding with peak lolitrem B concentration; at this time, 84% of alpacas exhibited neurotoxic signs. Over the 145-day study, the Mycofix Plus treated group exhibited a lower mean rating of perennial ryegrass toxicosis signs (P 0.05). Variation in liveweight gain and signs of toxicosis were not associated with significant differences in liver enzyme activity. © CSIRO 2010.


Lund K.E.,University of Western Australia | Milton J.T.B.,University of Western Australia | Milton J.T.B.,Independent Laboratory Services | Maloney S.K.,University of Western Australia | And 3 more authors.
Animal Production Science | Year: 2012

There is evidence that alpacas derive most of their glucose for energy from the deamination of amino acids. Consequently, they may have an insufficient supply of amino acids to meet their requirements for fibre growth. To optimise fibre production, it may be necessary to supply alpacas with supplemental protein to meet their requirement for extra amino acids. In this study, we examined if the proportion of rumen-degradable dietary protein (RDP) to undegradable dietary protein (UDP) from canola meal influenced the fibre growth of alpacas. We hypothesised that alpacas fed at maintenance a diet containing canola meal protein high in UDP would produce more fibre and spend less time urinating than peers fed a similar amount of canola meal protein with a low proportion of UDP. Four groups of eight alpacas were fed diets with the following ratios of UDP:RDP: 0:100, 30:70, 60:40 or 100:0 from canola meal protein. The fibre growth of the animals was measured over 2 months and the behaviour of the animals in the two extreme groups (0 and 100% UDP) was measured over 5 days. The alpacas fed the 0% UDP diet produced fibre of finer diameter than the alpacas fed diets containing higher levels of UDP (P = 0.039) and the 0% UDP group also spent more time urinating (P = 0.027). This result suggests that alpacas may have a limited ability to recycle nitrogen to the fermentative chambers of their stomach when fed a diet low in UDP. Consequently, microbial protein synthesis in the fermentative chambers may have limited the supply of amino acids available to the alpacas. © 2012 CSIRO.


PubMed | Cria Genesis
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Animal reproduction science | Year: 2011

Ultrasound technology and hormone assays have provided a better understanding of folliculogenesis and ovulation in South American camelids in the last two decades. Females exhibit waves of ovarian follicular growth and are induced ovulators and therefore do not exhibit oestrous cycles in the manner of spontaneously ovulating species such as sheep and cattle. There is much variation in inter-wave interval among camelid species (alpaca/llama 10-22 days, vicuna 4-11 days), within species and within individual animals as the range of each phase of follicular growth is wide. Ovulation occurs 24-30h after mating and luteolysis occurs approximately 10 days later if conception fails to occur.


PubMed | University of Sydney, Baarrooka Alpacas and Cria Genesis
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Reproduction, fertility, and development | Year: 2016

Ovulation in camelids is induced by the seminal plasma protein ovulation-inducing factor (OIF), recently identified as -nerve growth factor (-NGF). The present study measured the total protein concentration in alpaca seminal plasma using a bicinchoninic acid (BCA) protein quantification assay and found it to be 22.22.0mgmL(-1). To measure the effects of varying doses of -NGF on the incidence and timing of ovulation, corpus luteum (CL) size and plasma progesterone concentration, 24 female alpacas were synchronised and treated with either: (1) 1mL 0.9% saline (n=5); (2) 4g buserelin (n=5); (3) 1mg -NGF protein (n=5); (4) 0.1mg -NGF (n=5); or (5) 0.01mg -NGF (n=4). Females were examined by transrectal ultrasonography at 1-2-h intervals between 20 and 45h after treatment or until ovulation occurred, as well as on Day 8 to observe the size of the CL, at which time blood was collected to measure plasma progesterone concentrations. Ovulation was detected in 0/5, 5/5, 5/5, 3/5 and 0/4 female alpacas treated with saline, buserelin, 1, 0.1 and 0.01mg -NGF, respectively. Mean ovulation interval (P=0.76), CL diameter (P=0.96) and plasma progesterone concentration (P=0.96) did not differ between treatments. Mean ovulation interval overall was 26.21.0h. In conclusion, buserelin and 1mg -NGF are equally effective at inducing ovulation in female alpacas, but at doses 0.1mg, -NGF is not a reliable method for the induction of ovulation.


PubMed | Cria Genesis and University of New South Wales
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Australian veterinary journal | Year: 2015

The aim of this study was to investigate if there was any serological evidence of Neospora caninum in alpaca populations in south-eastern Australia.Serum samples from 100 alpacas were collected from four farms. All serum samples were screened for N. caninum antibodies using a commercially available competitive ELISA. Of the 100 alpacas sampled, 3 were suspect seropositive for N. caninum.There is natural N. caninum seroprevalence in alpacas in south-eastern Australia; however, it remains undetermined whether or not this infection is currently contributing to reproductive failure in alpacas in Australia.


PubMed | Cria Genesis
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Animal reproduction science | Year: 2013

Embryo transfer offers great advantages to South American camelid farmers to reach their breeding goals but the technology still plays a relatively minor role in comparison to other domestic farm animals like cattle. The aim of the present study was to analyse a data set of 5547 single or multiple ovulation embryo transfers performed in commercial alpaca farms in Australia to determine the factors that influence number and quality of embryos produced, embryo transfer success (percentage of crias born) and gestation length following transfer. Logistic binary regression identified the variables day of flushing after mating, embryo diameter, embryo quality, day of transfer after GnRH, and the age of the recipient to have significant impact on the outcome measure embryo transfer success. Transfer of smaller embryos or lower quality embryos resulted in decreased transfer success rates. Optimal days for obtaining embryos from donors were Days 8 and 9 after mating, optimal days for transfer into recipients were Days 7 and 8 after GnRH treatment. Age (>15 years) and body condition of recipients <2 also lowered transfer success rates, while the summer heat had no adverse impact. However, season did influence gestation length, while cria gender did not. In conclusion, results from the analysis of this very large dataset can underpin new recommendations to improve embryo transfer success in alpacas.

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