Effects of treatment with LH or FSH from 4 to 8 weeks of age on the attainment of puberty in bull calves

Theriogenology. 2004 Sep 1;62(5):861-73. doi: 10.1016/j.theriogenology.2003.12.021.

Abstract

A transient increase in gonadotropin secretion between 6 and 20 weeks of age is critical for the onset of puberty in bull calves. To try and hasten the onset of puberty, bull calves were treated (s.c.) with 3 mg of bLH (n = 6) or 4 mg of bFSH (n = 6) once every 2 days, from 4 to 8 weeks after birth; control calves received saline (n = 6). At 4 and 8 weeks of age, mean LH concentrations were higher (P < 0.05) in bLH-treated (2.3 +/- 0.04 ng/ml and 1.20 +/- 0.04 ng/ml) as compared to control calves (0.50 +/- 0.1 ng/ml and 0.70 +/- 0.10 ng/ml). Mean serum FSH concentrations at 4 and 8 weeks of age, were higher (P < 0.05) in bFSH-treated (1.60 +/- 0.20 ng/ml and 1.10 +/- 0.2 ng/ml) as compared to control calves (0.38 +/- 0.07 ng/ml and 0.35 +/- 0.07 ng/ml). The age at which scrotal circumference (SC) first reached > or = 28 cm, occurred earlier (P < 0.05) in bFSH-treated calves as compared to saline-treated calves (39.3 +/- 1.3 and 44.8 +/- 1.3 weeks of age, respectively). Based on testicular histology at 56 weeks of age, treatment with bFSH resulted in greater (P < 0.05) numbers of Sertoli cells (5 +/- 0.2, 6 +/- 0.3 and 5 +/- 0.3 in bLH-, bFSH- and saline-treated calves, respectively); elongated spermatids (42 +/- 2, 57 +/- 8 and 38 +/- 5 in bLH-, bFSH- and saline-treated calves, respectively) and spermatocytes (31 +/- 3, 38 +/- 3 and 29 +/- 2 in bLH-, bFSH- and saline-treated calves, respectively) per seminiferous tubule. We concluded that treatment of bull calves with bFSH from 4 to 8 weeks of age increased testicular growth (SC); hastened onset of puberty (SC > or = 28 cm); and enhanced spermatogenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aging*
  • Animals
  • Body Weight
  • Cattle / growth & development*
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / administration & dosage*
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / blood
  • Luteinizing Hormone / administration & dosage*
  • Luteinizing Hormone / blood
  • Male
  • Orchiectomy
  • Sexual Maturation*
  • Spermatogenesis
  • Testis / growth & development

Substances

  • Luteinizing Hormone
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone