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Top Vets Present AI Case At Sydney Symposium

Thursday, 10th December 2009

World veterinary leaders will put cases for the use of artificial insemination & embryo transfer in thoroughbred breeding at a symposium at Sydney University’s Veterinary Science Conference Centre on January 22. The symposium (2 days before the beginning of the Inglis Sydney Classic Yearling Sale) is being organised by Dr Angus McKinnon (founding owner of the Goulburn Valley Equine Hospital at Shepparton in Victoria) in association with leading English-based vets Professor William “Twink” Allen & Dr Sandra Wilsher (both from the Paul Mellon Laboratory Of Equine Reproduction at Newmarket). Allen recently triggered heated debate among world breeding leaders when he advocated adoption by the thoroughbred industry of breeding through artificial insemination & embryo transfers; horses bred by these methods are currently banned from registration by the world’s major Stud Books. Allen contends artificial insemination (used in other commercial animal breeding, including standard-bred horses) could improve conception rates & through embryo transfers top mares could have more than one foal a year. He commented: “Our intended audience in Sydney is as wide as possible a selection of thoroughbred mare, stallion & stud farm owners & equine stud veterinary surgeons. Our intention is to stimulate an informal & hopefully lively debate on these contentious topics, with the longer term aim of forcing both the International Breeders Conference & the International Breeders meeting to place the subjects on their respective agendas & debate them properly, with adequate scientific, veterinary, legal & management inputs.”

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