Uterine Infection Influences Size and Follicular Fluid Composition of the Largest Follicle in Buffalo (Bubalus bubalis)


Author’s address (for correspondence): FA Khan, Department of Pathobiological Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1656 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53706, USA. E-mail: firdousivri@gmail.com


The effect of uterine infection on size and follicular fluid composition of the largest follicle was studied in buffalo. Reproductive tracts were collected from 102 graded Murrah buffaloes at an abattoir. Uterine infection was diagnosed by physical examination of uterine mucus, white side test and uterine cytology. Samples with pus-containing mucus, positive reaction on white side test and/or >5% neutrophils were considered to be positive for uterine infection. Diameter of the largest follicle was measured, and follicular fluid was aspirated and assayed for nitric oxide (NO), ascorbic acid (AA), cholesterol, oestradiol (E2) and progesterone (P4). Infected buffaloes had smaller-sized (p < 0.0001) largest follicles than non-infected buffaloes. Follicular fluid collected from the largest follicle in infected buffaloes had greater (p < 0.0001) NO and P4 concentrations coincident with lesser AA (p < 0.001), cholesterol (p < 0.0001) and E2 (p < 0.0001) concentrations. Results indicated that uterine infection has an inhibitory effect on growth of the largest follicle in buffalo. The changes in follicular fluid composition in infected buffaloes suggest that the direct effect of uterine infection on ovarian function may be mediated through an alteration in the follicular microenvironment. Greater NO and lesser AA concentrations in the follicular fluid of infected animals are novel findings.