Selection for fertility in lactating dairy cows : implications of conceptus-derived signals
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Infertility is a source of major economic loss in the dairy industry. Selection for fertility in dairy cows is difficult because fertility traits based on a genetic evaluation, such as daughter pregnancy rate (DPR), are lowly heritable (h2 ≤ 0.04), influenced by on-farm events, such as services per conception (SPC), and influenced by complex mechanisms that cause embryo mortality (EM). Embryo survival depends on robust interferon tau (IFNT) production and release from the trophectoderm, induction of IFN stimulated genes (ISG) in the endometrium to block the luteolytic, pulsatile release of ...