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The effect of naloxone on the duration of oestrus ovulation rate and oestradiol 17 beta in crossbred ewes with induced oestrus during seasonal anoestrus


The effect of naloxone on the duration of oestrus ovulation rate and oestradiol 17 beta in crossbred ewes with induced oestrus during seasonal anoestrus



Small Ruminant Research 29(1): 89-92



ISSN/ISBN: 0921-4488

This study was conducted to investigate the effect of high (0.5 mg/kg) and low (1.0 mg) doses of naloxone on sexual behaviour, ovulation rate and blood plasma concentrations of oestradiol 17 beta in Suffolk X Hampshire ewes induced into oestrus during the non-breeding season (May 1993). For this purpose, 60 ewes were allocated at random to four groups of 15 animals. Those animals in group 1 were administered medroxyprogesterone acetate (MAP) per vaginum for 14 days, with eCG (250 IU) injected on the fourteenth day. Group 2 was treated with MAP + eCG, as well as 0.5 mg/kg of naloxone with the eCG. Group 3 also had MAP + eCG with two injections of 0.5 mg of naloxone i.m. given with the eCG and then 24 h later; the first injection was given with sponge withdrawal. Group 4 was used as a control. Four crossbred rains were used as teasers. Naloxone (0.5 mg/kg) did not affect ovulation rate but significantly increased the duration of oestrus and the number of mounts received per ewe, when compared with ewes of group 1. When 1.0 mg of naloxone was given in two i.m. injections of 0.5 mg naloxone/12 h, the measure of oestrous behaviour and mounts received per ewe were significantly increased and ovulation rate was not affected. There were no differences in plasma oestradiol concentrations between groups 1, 2 and 3. It was concluded that naloxone as an opioid antagonist modifies sexual behaviour in the ewe, giving more evidence that endogenous opioids are important modulators of reproduction.

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