Ovarian characteristics and in vitro nuclear and cytoplasmic oocyte maturation in Duroc and Landrace pigs
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionVeterinary Medicine and Science. 2021, . 10.1002/vms3.498
Differences in total number of piglets born per litter are observed between the Norwegian Duroc (ND) sire and Norwegian Landrace (NL) dam line. The aim of this study was to evaluate ovarian characteristics, and in vitro nuclear and cytoplasmic oocyte maturation in both breeds. One day after weaning, follicular phase ovaries were collected. Ovary length and weight were measured and the number of follicles (< 3 mm and 3–8 mm) was counted. Cumulus-oocyte complexes (COCs) were collected and matured for 48 hr. To assess cumulus expansion, COC area was analysed at 0 and 20 hr. Nuclear maturation and cortical granule (CG) distribution were analysed at 20 and 48 hr, and total glutathione (GSH) was measured at 48 hr to further elucidate cytoplasmic maturation. In first parity sows, a smaller ovary length and fewer 3 to 8 mm follicles were observed in ND compared to NL. For all sows, ND COCs covered a significantly smaller area at 0 hr, but a higher cumulus expansion ratio was observed at 20 hr compared to NL (364 ± 46% versus. 278 ± 27%, p < 0.001). At 20 hr, more ND oocytes exhibited advanced stages of nuclear maturation, while more NL oocytes showed advanced stages of CG distribution. Nuclear maturation to MII stage at 48 hr did not differ between ND and NL oocytes (90.1% and 87.7%, respectively). Moreover, no significant differences were observed for GSH content or CG distribution after maturation. In conclusion, differences with regard to ovarian characteristics as well as to cumulus expansion, and nuclear and cytoplasmic oocyte maturation at 20 hr were observed between the breeds. Further studies are required to determine if this subsequently affects in vitro fertilization and embryo development.