Artificial control of reproduction of an animal species is an important aspect of domestication. Breeding of super-producing livestock would not be successful without an efficient way of controlling reproduction, such as artificial insemination, superovulation, embryo transfer, sexing and cloned animals.
The Laboratory of Animal Reproduction is carrying out the basic reproductive biology to provide the theoretical rationale for the above-mentioned means of reproductive engineering.
Mammalian reproduction is controlled by a functional unit called the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal axis. Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) is a decapeptide situated at the highest place in the axis and constitutes the final common pathway of the brain control of the reproduction.
Our current research focuses on the analysis of neural circuits controlling the activity of GnRH-producing neurons to understand the neuroendocrine mechanism of reproduction using rat and mouse models.