Effect of ketoprofen treatment on the uterine inflammatory response after AI of jennies with frozen semen

K. Vilés, R. Rabanal, M. Rodríguez-Prado, J. Miró

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24 Citations (Scopus)


Artificial insemination (AI) involving the placing of frozen-thawed semen directly into the jenny uterine body is associated with very low pregnancy rates. This might be because of an exacerbation of the acute response of the endometrium to sperm, as seen in mares with persistent induced mating endometritis. Pregnancy rates can be increased in such mares, however, by including anti-inflammatory treatments in the insemination protocol (Bucca S, Carli A, Buckley T, Dolci G, Fogarty U. The use of dexamethasone administered to mares at breeding time in the modulation of persistent mating induced endometritis. Theriogenology 2008;70:1093-100; Rojer H, Aurich C. Treatment of persistent mating-induced endometritis in mares with the non-steroid anti-inflammatory drug vedaprofen. Reprod Domest Anim 2010;45:e458-60). To investigate the endometritis caused by the use of frozen-thawed semen in jennies, and to assess the response to ketoprofen treatment, endometrial cytological samples and biopsies from six healthy jennies were examined in a crossover design experiment. Samples were taken from jennies in estrus (E; control) and at 6 hours after AI with or without ketoprofen (+K and -K, respectively). Ketoprofen was administered iv 24 hours before and for 4 days after insemination (total = 2.2 mg/kg/24 hours for 5 days). All animals showed a severe inflammatory response to semen deposition. Polymorphonuclear neutrophil numbers in the cytological smears and biopsies differed significantly between the +K and E animals. No significant differences were recorded, however, between the +K and -K treatments. Eosinophils were observed in all sample types from all groups; these cells appear to be a feature of the normal jenny endometrium. Slight fibrosis was observed in some biopsies, but no significant relationship with inflammation was found. Intense cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) immunohistochemical labeling was detected in the -K biopsies. Less intense labeling was seen in those of the +K animals, and mainly localized in the stratum compactum. No differences in COX-2 labeling were observed between the +K and E animals. Plasma concentrations of ketoprofen remained detectable until 2 hours after administration, after which the compound was rapidly eliminated. In summary, jennies are susceptible to endometritis after insemination with frozen-thawed semen. Ketoprofen reduces this inflammation by inhibiting COX-2; no reduction in the number of polymorphonuclear neutrophils occurs. The physiological and pharmacological characteristics of jennies should be taken into account when designing treatments for acute endometritis aimed at enhancing pregnancy rates after insemination with frozen-thawed sperm. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1019-1026
Publication statusPublished - 15 Apr 2013


  • Donkey
  • Frozen-thawed semen
  • Jenny
  • Ketoprofen
  • Sperm-induced endometritis


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