Freezing Equine Embryos is Getting More Practical
“If we can get the embryos to survive freezing and thawing in a field setting, we can finally offer this technology as a practical option to breeders and even use it to preserve endangered species over the long term,” said Florence Guignot, PhD, of the French National Institute for Agricultural Research, during a presentation at the 2017 French Equine Research Day, held earlier this year in Paris.
Equine embryos are far more difficult to freeze successfully than other species because of a particularly large liquid structure that becomes destructive when frozen because of its sheer size. A few years ago, researchers discovered the key to success: removing liquid and forcing the embryo to essentially collapse.
While that marked certain scientific triumph, it still wasn’t a practical solution in breeding centers, Guignot said. The liquid removal process is complex, requiring sophisticated, expensive equipment and intense technical
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