Animal Science Department


Date of this Version



Published in Biology of Reproduction31, 771-778 (1984). Copyright © 1984 by the Society for the Study of Reproduction. Used by permission.


Twenty-two mature pluriparous beef cows were randomly assigned to one of six treatments in a 2 x 3 factorial experiment in order to study the role of suckling and ovarian factors on control of the tonic and episodic release of luteinizing hormone (LH). Twelve cows remained intact (INT) and 10 were ovariectomized (OVX) within 4 days following the day of parturition (Day 0). The suckling intensities were nonsuckled (0), suckled once daily for 30 mm (1) and suckled ad libitum by two calves (2). Blood samples were collected at 1 5-mm intervals for 6 h weekly, from Days 6 to 76 postpartum. The postpartum intervals to initiation of ovarian luteal function were 31 ± 3, 41 ± 4 and 67 ± 1 days (X ± SEM) for INT cows with 0, 1 and 2 suckling intensities, respectively. Mean LH concentrations and frequency of LH pulses increased as time of ovulation approached in INT cows. In OVX animals, both mean LH concentrations and frequency of LH pulses increased as time postovariectomy progressed. No differences were detected in mean LH concentrations or frequency of LH pulses between the two suckled OVX groups. Mean LH in the OVX-O cows was greater on Days 13, 20 and 27 postpartum when compared to the respective days in suckled OVX cows. Frequency of LH pulses tended to be lower (P