BIWFC supports projects that are aligned with the Institute’s mission to advance the use of effective, sustainable fertility control methods to mitigate human – wildlife conflicts and promote coexistence worldwide.  Jason Bruemmer, PhD, Program Leader, Fertility Control, National Wildlife Research Center, USDA APHIS Wildlife Services received a BIWFC grant in 2021.

“Identification of a long-lasting adjuvant for immunocontraceptives in horses.”

The recently tested oocyte growth factor (OGF) vaccine may provide multi-year and potentially permanent contraception from a single injection when formulated with an appropriate adjuvant. The proof-of-concept study for the OGF vaccine employed boosters in the first year with a mild adjuvant resulting in 100% contraception. Importantly, greater than 80% of these mares remained anovulatory during the second year although no additional boosters were administered. We propose to test longevity of antibody production and contraception (through weekly titer and progesterone testing, respectively) in mares treated with one of at least three adjuvants demonstrated efficacious and safe in pregnant mares.

The proposed work will provide foundational (or fundamental) data on the efficacy of multiple adjuvants used in combination with OGF in addition to the time course and longevity of contraception. The development of vaccines capable of producing multi-year contraception will significantly reduce the need for multiple gathers of wild horses.