U.S. Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, Nebraska


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Published in Beef Research Program Progress Report (1993) No. 4 (Part 1): 6


Any contribution or influence on offspring phenotype attributable to its dam, exceeding the inherited sample half of the dam's nuclear genes, is a maternal effect. Maternal effects can be classified into prenatal (e.g., cytoplasmic and uterine components) and postnatal [e.g., lactation, method of rearing (early weaning), plus other postnatal maternal components]. This experiment was designed with two objectives. The first objective was to determine the relative contributions of ovum cytoplasm and uterine influences on prenatal maternal effects by use of embryo transfer (ET). The second objective was to estimate breed differences in prenatal and postnatal maternal effects combined by evaluating differences between reciprocal crosses and the effects of early weaning and to separate the effects of prenatal maternal influences from postnatal maternal influences.