Effectivness of the GnRH analogue deslorelin as a reversible contraceptive in a neotropical primate, the Common Marmoset Callithrix Jacchus (Mammalia: Primates: Callitrichidae)

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Derek A. Rosenfield
P. Viau
C. A. Oliveira
Cristiane Schilbach Pizzutto


Deslorelin is a synthetic GnRH analogue, which is being used as a contraceptive in animals by acting as a gonadal suppressant.  The product Suprelorin (Virbac, Australia) contains deslorelin as a biocompatible, slow release subcutaneous implant. The continuous release of deslorelin provokes a down-regulation of GnRH receptors, and subsequently, inhibition of the synthesis and release of the gonadotropins FSH and LH, necessary for gonadal activities.  The intention of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of a subcutaneous deslorelin acetate implant (2,35mg) in suppressing ovarian cyclic activity and inhibiting ovulation in captive Common Marmoset Callithrix jacchus, and investigate the reversibility of the treatment.  Two experimental groups were formed, group deslorelin (D) with three couples and control group (C) with two couples.  To monitor the effect of the implants, hormones indicating ovarian cyclic activity were monitored non-invasively by enzyme immunoassay (fecal monoclonal antibody anti-progesterone CL 425).  Fecal samples were collected three times a week from all females during three trial phases (phase I: month 1,2,3 and 4; phase II: month: 5,6 and 7 and phase III: month 8,9 and 10).  In contrast to expectations the results of this trial indicated that there was no suppression of the ovarian cyclic activity, nor inhibition of the ovulation after the application of the implants.  The outcome of our trial can possibly be explained by the fact that the dosage of 2.35mg of deslorelin is not effective in C. jacchus.  We confirmed significant changes (p<0.05) of P4 metabolites from phase I to phase II due to the treatment after the implantation of the GnRH analogue Deslorelin.  The employed non-invasive fecal progesterone monitoring could be biologically validated and proved to be efficient in the detection of ovarian cyclic activity in this neotropical primate species, C. jacchus.


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Author Biographies

Derek A. Rosenfield, University of Sao Paulo, School of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Department of Animal Reproduction (VRA), Brazil

D.V.M., M.Sc., and D.Sc.-Student. Postgraduate Researcher in Wildlife Reproduction, Department of Animal Reproduction, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science at the University of Sao Paulo, with focus on Wildlife population control, employing non-lethal and reversible contraceptive methods.

P. Viau, University of Sao Paulo, School of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Department of Animal Reproduction (VRA), Brazil

Bachelor's at Medicina Veterinária from Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco (2000), master's at Medicina veterinária from Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia- Universidade de São Paulo (2003) and doctorate at Medicina Veterinária from FMVZ (2007).

C. A. Oliveira, University of Sao Paulo, School of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Department of Animal Reproduction (VRA), Brazil

Graduate at Medicina Veterinária from Universidade de São Paulo (1981), master's at Veterinary Medicine from Universidade de São Paulo (1985) and ph.d. at Veterinary Medicine from Universidade de São Paulo (1993).

Cristiane Schilbach Pizzutto, University of Sao Paulo, School of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Department of Animal Reproduction (VRA), Brazil

Veterinarian, and post doctorate from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, University of São Paulo, currently working with animal welfare and environmental enrichment; she is regional coordinator of The Shape of Enrichment (Shape Brazil).


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