First Ever! Cheetah Surrogate Delivers Twins

0
1003

In a First, Cheetah Cubs Born Through Surrogacy at the Columbus Zoo

by Nadine Daher/Smithsonianmag.com

A surrogate cheetah gave birth to two cubs at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium in Columbus, Ohio, on February 19, 2020. This birth marks a scientific breakthrough; it is the first successful embryo transfer to have ever been performed on a cheetah.

Cheetahs are an endangered species with naturally low genetic diversity. The biologists at The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) have been attempting artificial inseminations in cheetahs for decades, but they haven’t witnessed a successful birth since 2003. Switching their focus to in vitro fertilization (IVF)—a process where eggs are retrieved from ovaries and fertilized by sperm in a lab to obtain embryos—and the transfer of these embryos, this was their third attempt at the process.

“This is a really big breakthrough for us with cheetah reproductive physiology but also with cheetah management,” says Adrienne Crosier, a cheetah biologist at the SCBI. “It gives us a tool in our toolbox that we didn’t have before, where we can reproduce these individuals that are unable or unwilling to breed naturally.”

The SCBI team has been exploring embryo transfer in cheetahs since 2005, when they began studying egg physiology in the lab. Although older female cheetahs face difficulties reproducing, the team’s research…

ATTENTION READERS
Due to the nature of independent content, VT cannot guarantee content validity.
We ask you to Read Our Content Policy so a clear comprehension of VT's independent non-censored media is understood and given its proper place in the world of news, opinion and media.

All content is owned by author exclusively. Expressed opinions are NOT necessarily the views of VT, other authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners or technicians. Some content may be satirical in nature. All images within are full responsibility of author and NOT VT.

About VT - Read Full Policy Notice - Comment Policy