This study was carried out to determine ovine pregnancy-associated glycoprotein (oPAG) levels in the plasma of Sarda and Lacaune ewes throughout gestation and in the first month postpartum, using two heterologous radioimmunoassays (RIA-706 and RIA-srPool) and to study the correlations between PAG levels and fetal gender and number. On Day 18 of pregnancy, PAG concentrations were detected in 90.1% and 80.8% of Sarda pregnant ewes with RIA-706 and RIA-srPool, respectively; and in 90% and in 75% of Lacaune pregnant ewes with RIA-706 and RIA-srPool, respectively. From Day 30, PAG concentrations were detected in all pregnant ewes by using both RIA methods. In the postpartum period, the PAG concentrations in Sarda ewes decreased rapidly reaching minimal levels (<1 ng/mL) on day 28 using both RIA-706 and RIA-srPool. In Lacaune ewes, PAG-706 levels were higher than PAG-srPool from parturition until the last day of observation (Day 28 postpartum). It was also observed that mean concentrations were higher in multiple than in single pregnancies in Sarda and Lacaune ewes. Moreover, due to the rapid disappearance of PAG concentration following lambing, a cut-off limit in postpartum animals was not required as a means for detecting a new pregnancy.
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