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Salamanders and newts worldwide are in danger of extinction; nearly half the species are classified as threatened or endangered. Sustainable captive breeding populations are critical to species survival, but captive salamanders suffer from poor reproductive rates and high mortality. Researchers at Mississippi State University and the Memphis Zoo will collaboratively evaluate various supplemental hormone protocols to improve sperm and egg collection for in vitro fertilization efforts. The investigators will refine cryopreservation techniques of sperm and eggs, and will evaluate the development of offspring produced by these efforts. The development of assisted-reproductive technologies for salamanders will help retain genetic diversity, reduce inbreeding effects, and provide sustainable populations that can eventually be reintroduced to the wild. This Fellowship Training Grant also supports a veterinarian seeking a PhD in animal conservation research.

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Mississippi State University
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United States
Ruth M. Marcec, DVM
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