Scroll Top

Innovative equine breeding techniques for high-value stallions


The latest techniques in equine assisted reproduction, make it possible to achieve embryos from your high-value stallion or mare. OPU-ICSI is a procedure that we carry out in our Ovohorse laboratories, and has more advantages than the reproduction techniques that are currently used, such as insemination and embryo transfer. OPU (Ovum Pick Up) is the aspiration of the mare’s follicles, or in other words, the extraction of oocytes for fertilization in the laboratory (ICSI).

The estrous cycle or interovulatory interval in the mare, allows us to monitor and select the most suitable moment for ovum pick up (OPU). This means that the mare does not have to be in her ovulatory phase, as this can be achieved by the synchronization of the process and the medication administered by the veterinarian.

OPU-ICSI can be carried out in any phase and up to twice a month to maximize the number of embryos per year. Once the embryos are generated, they can be vitrified and preserved indefinitely in liquid nitrogen in a genetic bank. Vitrification allows us to perform embryo transfer at any moment while maintaining the quality of any leftover embryos for use in future gestations.


OPU-ICSI is an ideal reproductive procedure for stallions or mares who are subfertile or have any reproductive problems. Furthermore, one of the main advantages is that only one sperm cell is needed per egg to achieve fertilization (ICSI) which then gives rise to the equine embryo. This is in contrast with other traditional techniques where more of the biological material is needed, for example a whole semen straw.

Straws are the support, or holder, that veterinarians use to freeze and store the sperm that will be used for fertilization. If only a small amount of semen is available from a single horse that has reproductive problems (for example, poor semen quality or problems with sperm motility) or has already died, dividing the straw is the best option to be able to carry out artificial fertilization and create high-value foals. In this sense, one of the main advantages of this procedure is that is that it makes more and better use of the biological material (semen) than with other traditional reproduction techniques such as Artificial Insemination, where a complete straw needs to be thawed.

Do you have a stud farm and want to obtain offspring from your most prized stallion? At Ovohorse we have one of the largest and most prestigious sperm banks in Spain. Contact our team at and we will give you all the information you need.