Dr. Brad Heins, an Associate Professor of Dairy Management at the University of Minnesota's West Central Research Center in Morris, Minnesota, discussed crossbreeding dairy cattle with beef bulls during the March 15, 2019. During his presentation Dr. Heins weighed the pros and cons of beef breeds crossing with dairy cattle.
Dr. Cupp’s laboratory focuses on how to improve male and female fertility by understanding major problems that cause infertility. In the female, a major problem is not ovulating or ovulating at an inappropriate time that leads to problems with implantation and embryo development. Her laboratory has determined that within the UNL physiology herd there is a population of females (High A4) that have increased androgens in follicular fluid, irregular reproductive cycles (they either do display estrus and ovulate; or they ovulate without displaying estrus; or neither ovulate or display estrus). Interesting, when they do not ovulate they develop follicles that persist for extended periods of time and potentially have aged eggs which may not be able to be fertilized. These females have a 17% reduction in calving rate and also have gene expression profiles that are similar to women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome.