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Review
, 85 (1), 83-93

Artificial Insemination in Pigs Today

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Review

Artificial Insemination in Pigs Today

R V Knox. Theriogenology.

Abstract

Use of artificial insemination (AI) for breeding pigs has been instrumental for facilitating global improvements in fertility, genetics, labor, and herd health. The establishment of AI centers for management of boars and production of semen has allowed for selection of boars for fertility and sperm production using in vitro and in vivo measures. Today, boars can be managed for production of 20 to 40 traditional AI doses containing 2.5 to 3.0 billion motile sperm in 75 to 100 mL of extender or 40 to 60 doses with 1.5 to 2.0 billion sperm in similar or reduced volumes for use in cervical or intrauterine AI. Regardless of the sperm dose, in liquid form, extenders are designed to sustain sperm fertility for 3 to 7 days. On farm, AI is the predominant form for commercial sow breeding and relies on manual detection of estrus with sows receiving two cervical or two intrauterine inseminations of the traditional or low sperm doses on each day detected in standing estrus. New approaches for increasing rates of genetic improvement through use of AI are aimed at methods to continue to lower the number of sperm in an AI dose and reducing the number of inseminations through use of a single, fixed-time AI after ovulation induction. Both approaches allow greater selection pressure for economically important swine traits in the sires and help extend the genetic advantages through AI on to more production farms.

Keywords: Artificial insemination; Breeding; Fertility; Pig; Sperm.

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