MEAT SCIENCE, vol.86, no.3, pp.692-698, 2010 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)
The aims of the study were to investigate the effects of immunization against GnRH using OL protein (Ovalbumin-LHRH-7) on feedlot performance, carcass, meat quality and some reproductive traits in Kivircik ram lambs. Ram lambs in the immunization (I, n = 7) group were immunized against GnRH using OL protein and boosted 2 weeks later. Control (C, n = 7) group was not treated. The animals were kept at pasture for 6 weeks after the first immunization, subjected to a 70 day fattening program, and then slaughtered. Growth performance, various carcass and meat quality characteristics were not affected from the immunization. GnRH immunization induced GnRH antibody production, suppressed testosterone production and testicular growth (P<0.01). Testicular structure was negatively affected from the immunization, but not pituitary. These results suggest that immunization against GnRH with OL could be an alternative castration technique in ram lambs without negatively affecting carcass and meat quality characteristics. (C) 2010 The American Meat Science Association. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.