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Journal of Dairy Science

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Gene expression


Objectives were to evaluate the effects of follicular wave and progesterone concentration on growth of the ovulatory follicle, conceptus elongation, uterine IFN-τ concentration, and transcriptome of conceptus and endometrium of pregnant cows on d 17 of gestation. Nonlactating nonpregnant Holstein cows were assigned randomly to one of 3 treatments: ovulation of a first-wave follicle (FW, n = 15); ovulation of a first-wave follicle and progesterone supplementation (FWP4, n = 12); and ovulation of a second-wave follicle (SW, n = 19). Ovulation of a first- or second-wave follicle was achieved by initiating the Ovsynch protocol (d -9 GnRH, d -2 and -1 PGF, d 0 GnRH and artificial insemination, d 0.7 artificial insemination) on d 0 or 6 of a presynchronized estrous cycle, respectively. Cows in FWP4 received 3 intravaginal inserts containing progesterone at 12, 24, and 48 h after the first GnRH injection that were removed on d -2. Cows were killed on d 17 for collection of the reproductive tract. Transcriptome was evaluated by microarray using the Affymetrix Bovine Array. Orthogonal contrasts were built to assess the effects of progesterone concentration during follicle growth (FW vs. FWP4 + SW) and follicular wave (FWP4 vs. SW). Progesterone concentrations (LSM ± SEM) from d -9 to -2 were greater for SW, followed by FWP4 and FW (5.38 ± 0.24, 4.26 ± 0.28, and 1.17 ± 0.27 ng/mL). Diameter of the ovulatory follicle (FW = 19.6 ± 0.6; FWP4 = 15.6 ± 0.6; SW = 15.2 ± 0.5 mm) and concentrations of estradiol from d -2 to 1 (FW = 4.05 ± 0.33; FWP4 = 2.73 ± 0.35; SW = 2.48 ± 0.30 pg/mL) were greater for FW compared with FWP4 and SW. Progesterone concentrations from d 3 to 16 were greater for FW compared with FWP4 and SW. A total of 28 singleton conceptuses were collected (FW, n = 8; FWP4, n = 8; SW, n = 12) and only intact conceptuses were included in the analyses of length (FW, n = 8; FWP4, n = 6; SW, n = 12). Although conceptuses were longer for FW compared with FWP4 and SW (FW = 16.6 ± 2.3; FWP4 = 9.8 ± 2.2; SW = 9.6 ± 2.0 cm), treatment did not affect the amount of IFN-τ in uterine flushing. Transcriptome of conceptuses and endometrium of pregnant cows was not extensively affected by follicular wave (8 and 1 differentially expressed transcripts) or concentration of progesterone during follicle growth (0 and 3 differentially expressed transcripts), showing that these factors did not affect conceptuses and endometrium transcriptome in pregnancies that are maintained to d 17.


© 2022, The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. and Fass Inc. on behalf of the American Dairy Science Association®.

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