Reproductive procedures for cattle were adapted to American bison (Bison bison) to evaluate the potential preservation of germ plasm from bison infected with Brucella abortus without transmission of the pathogen to the recipient or offspring. Two of four experimentally inoculated bison bulls excreted B. abortus in the semen. Four healthy calves were produced from non-infected, un-vaccinated bison cows by natural breeding with a bison bull excreting B. abortus in the semen. There was no seroconversion of the cows or their calves. Two culture negative bison calves were produced by superovulation of infected bison donor cows followed by artificial insemination and embryo transfer without transmitting B. abortus to recipient cows or calves. These limited data indicate that embryo manipulatory procedures and natural breeding in bison may facilitate preservation of valuable germ plasm from infected bison while reducing the risk of transmission of B. abortus to recipients and progeny.
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Vol. 34 • No. 3