Strategies for ovulation induction and oocyte retrieval in the lowland gorilla
- Cite this article as:
- Hatasaka, H.H., Schaffer, N.E., Chenette, P.E. et al. J Assist Reprod Genet (1997) 14: 102. doi:10.1007/BF02765779
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Purpose: Ovulation induction and oocyte retrieval were performed in a lowland gorilla in an attempt to propagate and potentially cryopreserve embryos from an infertile animal and to advance techniques to help preserve this endangered species.
Results: Following 34 days of leuprolide acetate suppression, human menopausal gonadotropins were administered for 14-days in a 32-year-old wild-born lowland gorilla. Ten oocytes were retrieved by transrectal ultrasound-guided aspiration. Other approaches to oocyte recovery were not feasible in this case. A serum estradiol concentration of 4700 pg/ml at the time of human chorionic gonadotropin administration did not induce ovarian hyperstimulation. Mature oocytes were recovered from follicles measuring 14 to 24 mm in diameter, with a corresponding average serum estradiol concentration of approximately 300 pg/ml for each mature follicle. Cryopreservation of a gorilla embryo was effected from cryopreserved gorilla spermatozoa.
Conclusions: Parameters for monitoring ovulation induction in the gorilla appear to be similar to those for humans. The results indicate that the use of a gonadotropin releasing hormone agonist and higher doses of gonadotropins than previously used in gorillas appear to improve oocyte recovery.