The regulation and control of reproduction in domestic and wild animals is a critical are of One Health, with outcomes impacting humans, animals and the environment. Optimizing methods and technologies that can improve reproductive outcomes and control population growth requires an in depth knowledge of species-specific reproductive physiology. Currently, advanced reproductive techniques (ART) research within the section includes studies investigating the regulation of the estrous cycle in small ruminants in an effort to better understand the hormonal physiology of superovulation and out of season breeding. Previous studies have applied ART to the production of transgenic and cloned small ruminants. With regard to population control, recent work involves a project aimed at developing novel therapeutics for controlling populations of feral cats (see Nutter, F and McCarthy, R) and dogs. In addition, two ongoing projects within the section are aimed at assessing and implementing population control of wild horses and white tailed deer.
Three aspirated bovine oocytes induced to undergo apoptosis with staurosporine. Cells are stained with YoPro-1, an indicator of membrane changes associated with early apoptosis (green); Polycaspase stain, an intracellular indicator of apoptosis (red); and Hoechst, a nuclear DNA stain (blue). There appears to be a difference in susceptibility to apoptosis between the granulosa cells of the cumulus oophorous and the oocyte itself. (Magnification 200x; K. Meadows and S.L. Ayres, 2014)