Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology test can lead to more milk yield
Hyderabad: In a significant development for the Rs 1.07 lakh crore dairy industry and seven crore dairy farmers in the country, the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology's Laboratory for Conservation of Endangered Species has developed an early pregnancy detection kit for cattle, cows and buffaloes that will shorten the interval between pregnancies and increase milk production.
Adopting the same scientific methodology used for pregnancy detection in wild cats such as tigers and lions, the 'paper based affordable microfluidic kit' developed by Lacones tests dung samples.
CCMB director Dr Rakesh K. Mishra said, “Using this non-invasive method we can detect pregnancy in cattle as early as three to four weeks after inception as against three to four months with methods currently in use which require veterinary expertise.”
With the new kit, farmers need not take the cattle to a veterinary hospital; any ordinary farm worker can do the test as it is easy and quick. Farmers will save two months with early detection and it will help in milk production, he said.
The kit, developed by Dr G. Umapathy, Dr Amit Asthana and Dr Mohan Rao, will be available after six months.
Mr Umapathy said the kit would cost about Rs 4 for each test. “We have identified a progestogen metabolite in faecal samples, which is a potential biomarker for pregnancy detection. For the estimated cattle population, at least 90 million devices will be needed,” he said.
Milk yield per animal is much less in India due to poor and unscientific management of livestock.