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History of the clinic

The ‘Institute of Artificial Insemination and Andrology of Domestic Animals’ was founded in 1955, and emerged from the division of ‘Insemination of Domestic Animals’ of the ‘Clinic for Obstetrics and Cattle Diseases’. The institute was initially located at the ‘Richard-Götze-Haus’ at the Bischofsholer Damm. The institute provided lectures and practical courses on Artificial Insemination (AI) of domestic animals, andrology, and semen analysis.


The first director of the institute was Prof. Dr. med. vet. Johannes Liess. In 1965, he was followed up by Prof. Dr. med. vet. h. c. mult. Hans Merkt. Under his supervision, in 1978, the institute was renamed ‘Clinic for Andrology and AI of Domestic Animals’. Furthermore, in 1968, a separate division on spermatology was established, led by Prof. Dr. med. vet. Dietrich Krause. Since its foundation, the clinic nourishes extensive cooperation with regional cattle breeding stations. In addition, since 1973, the clinic has been strongly involved in developments in equine AI together with the ‘National Stud of Lower Saxony’ in Celle. Prof. Merkt retired in 1992, before which the clinic moved to its present/current location at Bünteweg 15 where the cattle breeding station ‘Rinderproduktion Niedersachsen’ (RPN) was originally located.


The clinic was restructured in 1993, and named ‘Institute for Reproductive Medicine’. The institute was responsible for reproductive medicine at the ‘University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover’. It included divisions on andrology and female reproduction headed by. Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Edda Töpfer-Petersen and Prof. Dr. vet. med. Burkhard Meinecke, respectively, as well as a division on reproduction of small animals headed by . Prof. Dr. med. vet. Anne-Rose Günzel Apel.


In 2006, the scientific discipline reproductive medicine at the University was reorganized, and the ‘Institute of Reproductive Medicine’ was split into two institutions, namely the ‘Institute for Reproductive Biology’ (director: Prof. Dr. med. vet. Burkhard Meinecke) and ‘Unit for Reproductive Medicine’ (director: Prof. Dr. med vet Harald Sieme).


The ‘Unit for Reproductive Medicine’ represents an interdisciplinary center, with research and teaching responsibilities, pursuing both fundamental and applied approaches. Furthermore, it functions as a service unit for the clinics belonging to the ‘University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover’.

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