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Article << Previous     |         Contents Vol 28(4)

Variation in seminal plasma alters the ability of ram spermatozoa to survive cryopreservation

J. P. Rickard A C, R. E. Schmidt A, J. W. Maddison A, R. Bathgate A, G. W. Lynch A, X. Druart B and S. P. de Graaf A

A RMC Gunn Building, Regimental Drive, Faculty of Veterinary Science, The University of Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia.
B UMR 6175 INRA, CNRS-Université de Tours-Haras Nationaux, Station de Physiologie de la Reproduction et des Comportements, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, 37380 Nouzilly, France.
C Corresponding author. Email: jessica.rickard@sydney.edu.au

Reproduction, Fertility and Development 28(4) 516-523 http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/RD14123
Submitted: 10 April 2014  Accepted: 31 July 2014   Published: 20 August 2014

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Variation in the effect of seminal plasma on sperm function and fertility has been hypothesised to be due to differences between males and their seminal plasma composition. The freezing resilience of individual rams (n = 17) was investigated to characterise inter-male variation. This was determined by measuring the degree of change in motility induced by cryopreservation (Experiment 1). Experiment 2 examined the effect of pooled seminal plasma from rams identified as having high or low resilience to freezing on the cryosurvival of washed spermatozoa from either high (n = 3) or low (n = 3) sperm freezing resilience rams. Immediately after thawing and throughout the incubation period (0–4 h), spermatozoa from high-resilience rams frozen with high-resilience seminal plasma demonstrated superior motility to spermatozoa from high-resilience rams frozen with low-resilience seminal plasma (P < 0.001). Similarly, spermatozoa from low-resilience rams frozen with high-resilience seminal plasma exhibited higher motility than spermatozoa from low-resilience rams frozen with low-resilience seminal plasma immediately after thawing (0 h; P < 0.001). The present study shows that variation in freezing resilience of ram spermatozoa is related to the source and composition of the seminal plasma.

Additional keywords: freezing resilience, semen, sheep.


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