Relationship of Surrogate Vitellogenin with Selected
Reproduction Parameters in Philippine Mallard
(Anas platyrhynchos demesticus L.)


Arnolfo M. Monleon1,3, Renato SA Vega2,3, and Angel L. Lambio2,3

1School of Agriculture, Marinduque State College, Torrijos, Marinduque
2Animal and Dairy Sciences Cluster, College of Agriculture,
University of the Philippines Los Baños, Laguna
3National Research Council of the Philippines,
DOST Complex, Bicutan, Taguig City

corresponding author: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



The vitellogenin (Vtg) profile is hypothesized as a nonlethal physiological index of reproductive state in Philippine mallard (Anas platyrhynchos domesticus Linn.). The circulating total serum zinc as surrogate Vtg at pre-lay period (17 to 22 week old) and sexual maturity (or age at first egg lay with mean±SD of 22.14±0.22 week old) were determined from blood sera of 340 ducks. The sera were assayed for Vtg zinc in duplicate using 96–well microplate and read the optical density at 415nm in a microplate reader (Model 680, S/N 123669). The total serum zinc concentration of the sample was calculated using the nonlinear regression formula ΔOD = a x [Zn2+] / b + [Zn2+] and used in evaluating relationships with body weight, liver weight and selected reproductive parameters, namely: ovary and oviduct weights (in wet basis), and gonadosomatic and oviductosomatic indices. Results show that the circulating Vtg follows nonlinearity indicating independence in Vtg production with respect to the age but the surge was prominent at onset of sexual maturity. This finding conforms to the demand for Vtg of developing ovarian follicles necessary for yolk development and maturation. This shows that the circulating Vtg follows a dynamic pattern common in all egg-laying (oviparous) species depending on biochemical, physiological, and metabolic requirements and utilization.



The duck industry is a major contributor to the agricultural sector of the Philippines. Many Filipino families directly benefit from growing of ducks, egg production, and selling of hard boiled embryonated egg or balut (a Filipino delicacy) and culled layers. The earnings of the industry primarily come from egg and meat production. Nevertheless, the industry still posted an average decline of 2.11% and 3.58% in egg and meat production, respectively, from 2005 to 2015 ( The decline in production was attributed to the problems in flock performance, management, and natural calamities. . . . .  read more

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