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LH-DETECT® in Theriogenology, 2006 / 65 (7) 1265–1278

R. BONI, R. SANTILLO, G. MACCHIA, P. SPINELLI, G. FERRANDINO, A. D'ANIELLO 2006 d-Aspartate and reproductive activity in sheep. Theriogenology, 2006 / 65 (7) 1265-1278.
d-Aspartic acid (d-Asp) has been isolated from neuroendocrine tissues of many invertebrates and vertebrates. Recently, it has been demonstrated that this d-amino acid may be converted to N-methyl-d-aspartic acid (NMDA), a neuromodulator associated with sexual activity. In this study, we determined d-Asp and NMDA concentrations in endocrine glands and other tissues in ewes after d-Asp administration and in controls. We also evaluated the effects of d-Asp administration on the reproductive activity of ewes by determining either progesterone concentrations or LH pulses in the presence or absence of estradiol benzoate.
The pineal gland showed the highest natural content of d-Asp (1.47 ± 0.22 μmol/g tissue), whereas the pituitary gland had the highest capability to store d-Asp, with a peak value (9.7 ± 0.81 μmol/g tissue) 6 h after its administration. NMDA increased sharply 12 h following d-Asp administration, reaching values three times higher than the baseline in both the pituitary and brain. d-Asp was quickly adsorbed after subcutaneous administration, with a peak in plasma levels 2 h after administration and a return to baseline values after 6 h. d-Asp administration achieved a significant (P < 0.001) increase in LH values with respect to estradiol or estradiol + d-Asp treatments. d-Asp treatment once or twice a week did not successfully drive acyclic ewes into reproductive activity.
In conclusion, the results obtained in this study demonstrated that d-Asp is endogenously present in sheep tissues and electively stored in endocrine glands and brain after its administration. NMDA and LH increase following d-Asp administration suggesting a role of this d-amino acid in the reproductive activity of sheep.

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