Changes in LH pulse frequency and amplitude in intact mares during the transition into the breeding season

in Reproduction

Summary. Two groups of mares were exposed to an abrupt, artificial increase or a natural increase in daylength. In both groups, mean LH pulse frequency increased with time of year and was accompanied by a reciprocal decrease in LH pulse amplitude. A non-pulsatile pattern of LH secretion was observed in some mares sampled close to the day of ovulation. Maximum mean LH pulse frequency and the onset of the breeding season occurred earlier in those mares exposed to an abrupt artificial increase in daylength. In blood samples collected frequently, mean serum LH concentrations increased in relation to time of year. However, during 60 days before ovulation, when LH pulse frequency increased, mean daily serum LH values only increased on Day – 3 before ovulation. The magnitude of the periovulatory LH rise was greater before the second than the first ovulation of the breeding season. These results support the hypothesis that, in the mare, a photoperiod-induced seasonal alteration in LH pulse frequency and/or amplitude may play a role in the onset of the breeding season.

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    Society for Reproduction and Fertility