About this Research Topic
Successful and efficient reproduction is the goal of those involved in companion animal and livestock enterprises, as well as those with personal companion animals and livestock worldwide. Infertility and reproductive losses due to embryonic and fetal deaths are responsible for crucial economic constraints resulting in the loss of genetically important animals and endangered genetic resources, reducing generation intervals for genetic improvement of animals harboring the potential for providing economic and added values for quality of life for humans and animals.
Several infectious and non-infectious diseases affect the efficiency of reproduction in most domestic and wild animal species. Curiously, the etiology of 67% of fetal deaths has not been identified, at least in the cattle industry. The immune system must be considered a critical component of the physiology, whose interactions with the behavioral, endocrine, nervous, and reproductive systems, are responsible for the homeostasis required for efficient reproduction in humans and animals. Accordingly, cells of the immune system, through direct effects or via their cytokines and growth factors, participate in a well-coordinated manner to modulate reproductive function. This modulation includes their interaction with neurons responsible for communication between the hypothalamus and anterior pituitary and then downstream signaling between the anterior pituitary and the gonads, the gonads, and secondary reproductive tissues and the uterus. Similarly, intricate mechanisms of communication between the immune system, the gastrointestinal systems, and the reproductive system account for the adequate transport of nutrients into the pregnant uterus that is required for growth, development, and survival of the conceptus (embryo/fetus and placenta) during pregnancy. The study of the mechanisms responsible for interactions among essential systems of the organism is critical for understanding the pathophysiology of several poorly characterized diseases resulting from abnormal interactions among the immune system and the behavioral, endocrine, nervous, and reproductive systems.
For this reason, this Research Topic aims to provide scientists and clinical practitioners a state-of-the-art platform to interact through the publication and discussion of significant issues and the most recent advances in the understanding of these interactions in laboratory animals, wild animals, companion animals and livestock concerning reproductive health and reproductive efficiencies. The primary goal is to provide the scientific community with an appropriate platform for sharing results of their basic research, clinical research, and translational research to inform those who work with animals the impact of the immune system on reproductive health and successful outcomes of pregnancy in animals. Research focusing on the following themes, each of which is of great interest to basic and clinical sciences, as well as clinical practitioners and those engaged in the management of animal production enterprises, are welcomed:
• Research linking the immune and reproductive systems
• Immunogenetics of the major histocompatibility complex
• Gamete interactions with their stromal cells
• Early embryonic development
• Maternal-fetal interactions
• Pregnancy maintenance
• Mammogenesis and lactogenesis
• Colostrum-based passive immunity
Keywords: Reproduction, Immunology, Companion Animals, Livestock, Fertility
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.