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Equine Target Progesterone Kit

Target Test Kit ( 12 tests): $118.00

On-farm Aid to Determine Your Mare's Blood Progesterone Level

Neither ultrasound or palpation can tell whether a corpus luteum is functional (i.e.: producing progesterone), meaning normal cycling has begun. Because a corpus luteum becomes more tissue-like throughout diestrus, a mature or persistent corpus luteum is not easily detected by either technique.

Not all mares fit a predictable palpation pattern. Many times it is difficult to determine whether or not a mare has ovulated and formed a corpus luteum. Because the size and texture of the ovaries, as well as the number and size of follicle varies from mare to mare, cycle to cycle and even day to day, ultrasound or palpation must be done repeatedly to accurately diagnose the pattern of ovarian changes.

Within minutes right on the farm, each test in the TARGET Progesterone Kit easily determines both the presence and functional status of the corpus luteum and permits the most accurate and timely diagnosis.

Relationship of Progesterone to Estrus and Pregnancy

When a mare is in estrus, typically her blood progesterone levels are below 1 nanogram/ml. Upon ovulation, a structure known as the corpus luteum forms at the site on the ovary from which the egg was released. The corpus luteum secretes the hormone progesterone, resulting in the stoppage of "heat behavior." It also cause the uterus to tone and prepare for implantation of a fertilized egg. If the egg has been fertilized, the corpus luteum remains functional and the progesterone level remains elevated. If fertilization has not occurred, prostaglandins are produced by the uterus, triggering the corpus luteum to regress. The regression of the corpus luteum results is decreased progesterone levels in the blood, allowing the mare to come back into heat.

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How the Target Progesterone Kit Helps

Diagnose a Persistent Corpus Luteum
One of the important breeding problems in mares is the spontaneous persistence of the luteal phase in nonpregnant mares. When mares fail to exhibit signs of estrus during the breeding season, it is often due to prolonged life of the corpus luteum. Because this occurs with relatively high incidence and averages two months in duration, it can delay the time of breeding or reduce the number of breeding opportunities. If there is a persistent luteal problem, high progesterone levels are present. Before treating this condition with prostaglandin therapy, determining the progesterone level with TARGET provides a more accurate diagnosis and a more predictable outcome. After treatment, testing progesterone levels helps verify the effectiveness of treatment.

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Progesterone Testing Confirms Ovulation

Color of Test
Progesterone Level
Significance and Interpretation
> 5 ng/ml
High progesterone levels indicate mid-cycle or persistent luteal syndrome. While results obtained on Day 19 or 21 and on Day 22 or 23 indicates pregnancy
Light Blue
1 - 5 ng/ml
Progesterone level beginning to rise; functional corpus luteum is present and ovulation occurred 1-2 days previously
Bright Blue
< 1 ng/ml
Low progesterone level indicates a functional corpus luteum in not present; ovulation has not occurred.

Note: Color in chart is for graphic purposes only and should not be used for reading test results.

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Achieve a Successful and Uncomplicated Transported Semen Program
Coordinating an artificial insemination can be done effectively by knowing the progesterone level of the mare. Also, a progesterone test after breeding can help determine if rebreeding is necessary. TARGET identifies mares whose progesterone levels have dropped back below one nanogram, and thus determine if the mare is not in foal. While some mares may show elevated progesterone levels even if they are not in foal (see above), any mare whose progesterone has returned to levels below one nanogram/ml are definitively not pregnant. This prevents unnecessary ultrasound tests and saves money!

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Test Procedure Summary

Remove the TARGET kit from the refrigerator at least 2 hours prior to testing to allow contents to come to room temperature.

After obtaining a blood sample from the mare, the TARGET test requires only 7 steps to compete.

  • A blood or serum sample is first added to the test cup.
  • Add Whole Blood Wash the test cup.
  • Add Enzyme the test cup.
  • Add Wash solution the test cup.
  • Prepare Substrate mixture.
  • Add Subtrate mixture to the test cup.
  • Read test results after 7 minutes.

Click here to see a detailed protocol of the TARGET test.

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What the Target Kit Includes

The Target Progesterone Kit includes:

  • Twelve Test Cups
  • Twelve Sample Pipets
  • One Bottle Whole Blood Wash (White Cap, Red Label)
  • One Bottle Enzyme (Red Cap, White Label)
  • One Bottle Wash Solution (White Cap, White Label)
  • One Mixing Bottle (Blue Cap, White Label)
  • One Bottle Substrate A with dropper top
  • One Bottle Substrate B with dropper top
  • Test Instructions
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Target Test Kit ( 12 tests): $118.00