What is the reason behind the infertility in a free martin calf ?

What is the reason behind the infertility in a free martin calf ?


2 Answers

Simran Vinaik
askIITians Faculty 1230 Points
5 years ago
Freemartinism is defined as a sterile female bovine calf born twin with a male.The female's reproductive system does not properly develop due to the exposure to the twin male’s blood and hormones.
25757 Points
5 years ago
Dear student

Freemartinism is one of the most severe forms of sexual abnormality among cattle. It causes infertility in the female calf born with a male twin. 

Freemartinism occurs when a female twin shares the uterus with a male. The placental membranes connect the fetus to the dam are shared, and the placental fluids are exchanged between the two fetuses. The exchange of fluid and blood between the two calves mixes the antigens responsible for carrying the unique sex characteristics of each calf. The twins develop with some sex characteristics of both the male and female. 

This transfer of hormones and antigens causes the female's reproductive tract to be severely underdeveloped, and in some cases they express characteristics of a male reproductive system. Often the ovaries are underdeveloped and are not capable of producing eggs. The uterus is also underdeveloped, and the reproductive tract does not supply sufficient hormones necessary to maintain a pregnancy.

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