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Bacolod City, Philippines Wednesday, March 7, 2018
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PVO studies embryo transplant,
semen processing technologies
BY MARK L. GARCIA

 

The Provincial Veterinary Office is now working on adopting embryo transplant and semen processing technologies from Canada and Japan, respectively, to boost the livestock production in Negros Occidental.

Provincial Veterinarian, Dr. Renante Decena, said yesterday that these technologies will be brought to the province to increase livestock production and produce more desirable and quality animals, that might make Negros the first to integrate these programs.

Last week, representative from a Canadian biosciences company visited the province to introduce the semen sexing technology to PVO, while the farm veterinarian of Negros First Ranch, Dr. Johnny Tacuban, was sent to Japan to train on how to operate semen processing equipment.

Semen sexing is part of the embryo transplant procedures offered by the Canadian company Acea Biosciences Inc., whose representative, Stephanie Ting, presented the concept to PVO last Friday, Tacuban said.

Tacuban had his training at the Fujihira Industry (FHK) Co. LTD on semen processing equipment operation, from Feb. 27 to March 2 in Japan.

PVO has acquired semen processing equipment from this Japanese company, worth P5 million, and it has already been delivered to the semen laboratory at the Negros First Ranch in Murcia.

THE TECHNOLOGY

Decena said the technologies presented to them by Ting, called semen sexing, could specify the sex of the livestock offspring through various laboratory procedures.

He said this could be utilized with any kinds of livestock, especially ruminants, to increase their population, for those who might want to have more female to increase the production.

Tacuban said the equipment to be used for sexing is the NovoCyte Flow Cytometer. Ting also presented the technology to him yesterday during their video conference, he added.

Semen sexing has two kinds, sexing determinator and sexing sorter, he said, adding that sexing determination could determine the quality of sperm through identifying the bacteria present in it, while sexing sorting procedure could identify what kind of sex the sperm is carrying.

“Semen determination could boost the quality of offspring a livestock could produce as it could determine if a sperm cell carries bacteria that could cause deformities to the animal,” Tacuban said.

Sex sorting is the more complicated kind of semen sexing as it demands delicate procedures to choose the sex of the offspring, he said, adding that more trainings and studies on it should be done before performing it in the lab.

During his training in Japan, he said, he learned the procedure in semen processing where the equipment could help identify functional semen.

Tacuban said this was the requirement of FHK before delivering the equipment purchased by PVO.

EQUIPMENT COST

The provincial government has already acquired the semen processing equipment and it is now at the semen laboratory in the Negros First Ranch, Tacuban said. It costs about P5 million, Decena said.

The cost of a simple equipment for semen sexing from Canada is about P3 million while the modified version is about P5 million, Tacuban said, adding that it could only process semen determination.

The NovoCyte Flow Cytometer, with the capability of sorting sperm cells, has an estimated cost of P30 million, he added.

Decena said he will present this to Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. and to the Provincial Development Council.

He also said he hopes that this innovation will gain support from the provincial government as they are now in the process of learning the technology from Japan.

MORE SKILLED VETS

Decena also said that while they do not have the technology offered by the Canadian company, they will first train more veterinarians in the province, and study further about this innovation in livestock production.

Tacuban said more staff is needed to perfect the procedures of the two technologies, given that they require crucial and sensitive processes.

“There is a need to have a stable laboratory for these intricate processes. More staff should be designated in the laboratory in NFR who are skilled on the procedures,” he said.

Decena said it might take 2 years for the semen sexing technology to be established in the province, but he is optimistic that they will learn these new technologies through the proper training of more veterinarians.*MLG

 

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