A freemartin or free-martin (sometimes martin heifer) is an infertile female mammal with Freemartinism is the normal outcome of mixed-sex twins in all cattle species that have been studied, and it also occurs occasionally in other mammals. J Am Vet Med Assoc. May 15;(10) Diagnosis of freemartinism in cattle: the need for clinical and cytogenic evaluation. Zhang T(1), Buoen LC. Freemartinism is recognized as one of the most severe forms of sexual abnormality among cattle. This condition causes infertility in the female.

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Molecular and Developmental Evolution. A freemartin or free-martin sometimes martin heifer is an infertile female mammal with masculinized behavior and non-functioning ovaries.

Reduced fertility sometimes occurs in the male twin, but in ninety percent of the cases the female twin is completely infertile. Often the ovaries are underdeveloped and are not capable of producing eggs. This page was last edited on 23 Octoberat Cytogenetic evaluation for freemartinism thus offers the added value of simultaneous surveillance for cytogenetic aberrations in male and female cells of a sample.

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Genetic testing for the Y-chromosome can be performed within days of birth and can aid in the early identification of a sterile female bovine. The ovaries of the freemartin do not develop correctly, and they remain very small. The male twin is largely unaffected by the fusion, although the size of the testicles may be slightly reduced. Journal of Agricultural Research. The 18th-century physician John Hunter discovered that a freemartin always has a male twin.


What Is A Freemartin – The Cattle Site

The freemartin model allows one to analyze perfectly healthy and unmanipulated animals, without resorting to transplantation often used in stem cell research. Events Latest Events Submit Event. This combination of procedures could prevent unnecessary economic losses and preserve important genetic material.

Retrieved from ” https: New Zealand Veterinary Journal. Views Read Edit View history. Male-derived cells and their progeny can be easily freemarginism in the freemartin tissues, as only they contain the male Y chromosome.

Although the male twin in this case is only affected by reduced fertility, in over ninety percent of the cases, the female twin is completely infertile.

Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. However, the reproductive organs of the male fetus develop earlier than those of a female fetus, which results in the female genitalia being affected.

All pages needing factual verification Wikipedia articles needing factual verification from May This transfer of hormones and antigens causes the freemartinsim reproductive tract to be severely underdeveloped, and in some cases they express characteristics of a male reproductive system.

When a heifer twin shares the uterus with a bull fetus, they also share the placental membranes connecting the fetuses with the dam.

Diagnosis of freemartinism in cattle: the need for clinical and cytogenic evaluation.

About About 5m Publishing Our Editors. Testicle size is associated with fertility, so there may be some reduction in bull fertility.


Can freemartinism be seen externally? Also, the ovaries of a freemartin do not produce the hormones necessary to induce the behavioral signs of heat. We concluded that some obvious freemartins were eliminated prior to submission of samples for confirmatory cytogenetic cahtle, and that only a small percentage of the estimated 93, female calves born co-twin to male calves annually are so examined.

Freemartin – Wikipedia

Usually, the vulva is normal treemartinism that in some animals an enlarged clitoris and large tufts of vulvar hair exist. What are the economic implications?

A freemartin is the normal outcome of mixed twins in all cattle species which have been studied. The etymology of the term “freemartin” is uncertain: The animal originates as a female XXbut acquires the male XY component in utero by exchange of some cellular material from a male twin, via vascular connections between placentas: Estimates of the percentage of natural beef cattle births that produce twins vary.

Therefore, probably a large number of female co-twins that are not truly freemartins are sold to slaughter every year.