Science.gov

Sample records for increased sperm production

  1. Saccharin consumption increases sperm DNA fragmentation and apoptosis in mice

    PubMed Central

    Rahimipour, Marzieh; Talebi, Ali Reza; Anvari, Morteza; Abbasi Sarcheshmeh, Abolghasem; Omidi, Marjan

    2014-01-01

    Background: Saccharin is an artificial non-caloric sweetener that used to sweeten products such as drinks, candies, medicines, and toothpaste, but our bodies cannot metabolize it. Sodium saccharin is considered as an important factor in tumor promotion in male rats but not in humans. Objective: The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of saccharin consumption on sperm parameters and apoptosis in adult mice. Materials and Methods: Totally 14 adult male mice were divided into 2 groups. Group 1 served as control fed on basal diet and group 2 or experimental animals received distilled water containing saccharin (0.2% w/v) for 35 days. After that, the left cauda epididymis of each mouse was cut and placed in Ham’s F10. Swimmed-out spermatozoa were used to analyze count, motility, morphology (Pap-staining) and viability (eosin-Y staining). Sperm DNA integrity, as an indicator of apoptosis, was assessed by SCD (sperm chromatin dispersion) and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (TUNEL) assay. Results: Following saccharin consumption, we had a reduction in sperm motility with respect to control animals (p=0.000). In addition, the sperm count diminished (17.70±1.11 in controls vs. 12.80±2.79 in case group, p=0.003) and the rate of sperm normal morphology decreased from 77.00±6.40 in control animals into 63.85±6.81 in saccharin-treated mice (p=0.001). Also, we saw a statistically significant increase in rates of sperm DNA damage and apoptosis in experimental group when compared to control one (p=0.001, p=0.002 respectively). Conclusion: Saccharin consumption may have negative effects on sperm parameters, and increases the rate of sperm DNA fragmentation and apoptosis in mice. PMID:25031574

  2. A cost for high levels of sperm competition in rodents: increased sperm DNA fragmentation.

    PubMed

    delBarco-Trillo, Javier; García-Álvarez, Olga; Soler, Ana Josefa; Tourmente, Maximiliano; Garde, José Julián; Roldan, Eduardo R S

    2016-03-16

    Sperm competition, a prevalent evolutionary process in which the spermatozoa of two or more males compete for the fertilization of the same ovum, leads to morphological and physiological adaptations, including increases in energetic metabolism that may serve to propel sperm faster but that may have negative effects on DNA integrity. Sperm DNA damage is associated with reduced rates of fertilization, embryo and fetal loss, offspring mortality, and mutations leading to genetic disease. We tested whether high levels of sperm competition affect sperm DNA integrity. We evaluated sperm DNA integrity in 18 species of rodents that differ in their levels of sperm competition using the sperm chromatin structure assay. DNA integrity was assessed upon sperm collection, in response to incubation under capacitating or non-capacitating conditions, and after exposure to physical and chemical stressors. Sperm DNA was very resistant to physical and chemical stressors, whereas incubation in non-capacitating and capacitating conditions resulted in only a small increase in sperm DNA damage. Importantly, levels of sperm competition were positively associated with sperm DNA fragmentation across rodent species. This is the first evidence showing that high levels of sperm competition lead to an important cost in the form of increased sperm DNA damage. PMID:26936246

  3. Male body size and condition affects sperm number and production rates in mosquitofish, Gambusia holbrooki.

    PubMed

    O'Dea, R E; Jennions, M D; Head, M L

    2014-12-01

    Sperm number is an important predictor of paternity when there is sperm competition. Sperm number is often measured as maximum sperm reserves, but in species where mating is frequent, males will often be replenishing their reserves. Thus, variation in how quickly males can produce sperm is likely to be important in determining male success in sperm competition. Despite this, little is known about how male size, body condition or diet affects sperm production rates. We counted sperm number in large and small Gambusia holbrooki (eastern mosquitofish) after 3 weeks on either a high or low food diet. Sperm number was significantly higher in both larger males and in well-fed males. We then stripped ejaculates again either 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 days later to investigate subsequent sperm production. The rate of sperm replenishment was influenced by an interaction between size and diet. Large, well-fed males had consistently high levels of sperm available over the 5 days (i.e. rapid replenishment), whereas small poorly fed males showed consistently low levels of sperm availability over the 5 days (i.e. slow replenishment). In contrast, large, poorly fed and small, well-fed males increased their sperm numbers over the first 3 days (i.e. intermediate replenishment). Our study highlights that when mating is frequent and sperm competition is high, size and condition dependence of maximal sperm number and of sperm production rate might both contribute to variation in male reproductive success. PMID:25403851

  4. Production of live foals via intracytoplasmic injection of lyophilized sperm and sperm extract in the horse.

    PubMed

    Choi, Y H; Varner, D D; Love, C C; Hartman, D L; Hinrichs, K

    2011-10-01

    Work with lyophilized sperm helps delineate the factors required for successful fertilization. We investigated the use of lyophilized sperm in equine embryo production. In Experiment 1, sperm DNA fragmentation index was not affected by three freeze/thaw or lyophilization cycles. In Experiment 2, oocytes injected with lyophilized sperm or with sperm from a treatment in which lyophilized sperm were suspended in sperm cytoplasmic extract (SE) yielded blastocyst development rates of 0 and 28% respectively (P < 0.05). In Experiment 3, blastocyst development rate was 6-11% after injection of sperm lyophilized from fresh or frozen-thawed semen, suspended in SE. In Experiment 4, sperm lyophilized 3.5 months or 1 week previously, suspended in SE, yielded similar blastocyst rates (6 and 3% respectively). Rates of normal pregnancy after transfer were 7/10 and 5/7 for embryos from control and lyophilized sperm treatments respectively. Three pregnancies from the lyophilized sperm treatments were not terminated, resulting in two healthy foals. Parentage testing determined that one foal originated from the lyophilized sperm; the other was the offspring of the stallion providing the sperm extract. Further testing indicated that two of five additional embryos in the lyophilized sperm treatment originated from the stallion providing the sperm extract. We conclude that both lyophilized stallion sperm and stallion sperm processed by multiple unprotected freeze-thaw cycles (as for sperm extract) can support production of viable foals. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on production of live offspring by fertilization with lyophilized sperm in a non-laboratory animal species. PMID:21846810

  5. Inhibition of Mitochondrial Complex I Leads to Decreased Motility and Membrane Integrity Related to Increased Hydrogen Peroxide and Reduced ATP Production, while the Inhibition of Glycolysis Has Less Impact on Sperm Motility

    PubMed Central

    Plaza Davila, María; Martin Muñoz, Patricia; Tapia, Jose A.; Ortega Ferrusola, Cristina; Balao da Silva C, Carolina; Peña, Fernando J.

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondria have been proposed as the major source of reactive oxygen species in somatic cells and human spermatozoa. However, no data regarding the role of mitochondrial ROS production in stallion spermatozoa are available. To shed light on the role of the mitochondrial electron transport chain in the origin of oxidative stress in stallion spermatozoa, specific inhibitors of complex I (rotenone) and III (antimycin-A) were used. Ejaculates from seven Andalusian stallions were collected and incubated in BWW media at 37°C in the presence of rotenone, antimycin-A or control vehicle. Incubation in the presence of these inhibitors reduced sperm motility and velocity (CASA analysis) (p<0.01), but the effect was more evident in the presence of rotenone (a complex I inhibitor). These inhibitors also decreased ATP content. The inhibition of complexes I and III decreased the production of reactive oxygen species (p<0.01) as assessed by flow cytometry after staining with CellRox deep red. This observation suggests that the CellRox probe mainly identifies superoxide and that superoxide production may reflect intense mitochondrial activity rather than oxidative stress. The inhibition of complex I resulted in increased hydrogen peroxide production (p<0.01). The inhibition of glycolysis resulted in reduced sperm velocities (p<0.01) without an effect on the percentage of total motile sperm. Weak and moderate (but statistically significant) positive correlations were observed between sperm motility, velocity and membrane integrity and the production of reactive oxygen species. These results indicate that stallion sperm rely heavily on oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) for the production of ATP for motility but also require glycolysis to maintain high velocities. These data also indicate that increased hydrogen peroxide originating in the mitochondria is a mechanism involved in stallion sperm senescence. PMID:26407142

  6. Inhibition of Mitochondrial Complex I Leads to Decreased Motility and Membrane Integrity Related to Increased Hydrogen Peroxide and Reduced ATP Production, while the Inhibition of Glycolysis Has Less Impact on Sperm Motility.

    PubMed

    Plaza Davila, María; Martin Muñoz, Patricia; Tapia, Jose A; Ortega Ferrusola, Cristina; Balao da Silva C, Carolina; Peña, Fernando J

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondria have been proposed as the major source of reactive oxygen species in somatic cells and human spermatozoa. However, no data regarding the role of mitochondrial ROS production in stallion spermatozoa are available. To shed light on the role of the mitochondrial electron transport chain in the origin of oxidative stress in stallion spermatozoa, specific inhibitors of complex I (rotenone) and III (antimycin-A) were used. Ejaculates from seven Andalusian stallions were collected and incubated in BWW media at 37 °C in the presence of rotenone, antimycin-A or control vehicle. Incubation in the presence of these inhibitors reduced sperm motility and velocity (CASA analysis) (p<0.01), but the effect was more evident in the presence of rotenone (a complex I inhibitor). These inhibitors also decreased ATP content. The inhibition of complexes I and III decreased the production of reactive oxygen species (p<0.01) as assessed by flow cytometry after staining with CellRox deep red. This observation suggests that the CellRox probe mainly identifies superoxide and that superoxide production may reflect intense mitochondrial activity rather than oxidative stress. The inhibition of complex I resulted in increased hydrogen peroxide production (p<0.01). The inhibition of glycolysis resulted in reduced sperm velocities (p<0.01) without an effect on the percentage of total motile sperm. Weak and moderate (but statistically significant) positive correlations were observed between sperm motility, velocity and membrane integrity and the production of reactive oxygen species. These results indicate that stallion sperm rely heavily on oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) for the production of ATP for motility but also require glycolysis to maintain high velocities. These data also indicate that increased hydrogen peroxide originating in the mitochondria is a mechanism involved in stallion sperm senescence. PMID:26407142

  7. Mass-Specific Metabolic Rate Influences Sperm Performance through Energy Production in Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Tourmente, Maximiliano; Roldan, Eduardo R. S.

    2015-01-01

    Mass-specific metabolic rate, the rate at which organisms consume energy per gram of body weight, is negatively associated with body size in metazoans. As a consequence, small species have higher cellular metabolic rates and are able to process resources at a faster rate than large species. Since mass-specific metabolic rate has been shown to constrain evolution of sperm traits, and most of the metabolic activity of sperm cells relates to ATP production for sperm motility, we hypothesized that mass-specific metabolic rate could influence sperm energetic metabolism at the cellular level if sperm cells maintain the metabolic rate of organisms that generate them. We compared data on sperm straight-line velocity, mass-specific metabolic rate, and sperm ATP content from 40 mammalian species and found that the mass-specific metabolic rate positively influences sperm swimming velocity by (a) an indirect effect of sperm as the result of an increased sperm length, and (b) a direct effect independent of sperm length. In addition, our analyses show that species with higher mass-specific metabolic rate have higher ATP content per sperm and higher concentration of ATP per μm of sperm length, which are positively associated with sperm velocity. In conclusion, our results suggest that species with high mass-specific metabolic rate have been able to evolve both long and fast sperm. Moreover, independently of its effect on the production of larger sperm, the mass-specific metabolic rate is able to influence sperm velocity by increasing sperm ATP content in mammals. PMID:26371474

  8. Sound production in neonate sperm whales (L)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madsen, P. T.; Carder, D. A.; Au, W. W. L.; Nachtigall, P. E.; Møhl, B.; Ridgway, S. H.

    2003-06-01

    Acoustic data from two sperm whale neonates (Physeter macrocephalus) in rehabilitation are presented and implications for sound production and function are discussed. The clicks of neonate sperm whale are very different from usual clicks of adult specimens in that neonate clicks are of low directionality [SL anomaly (0°-90°) <8 dB], long duration (2-12 ms), and low frequency (centroid frequency between 300 and 1700 Hz) with estimated SLs between 140 and 162 dB//1 μPa (rms). Such neonate clicks are unsuited for biosonar, but can potentially convey homing information between calves and submerged conspecifics in open ocean waters at ranges of some 2 km. Moreover, it is demonstrated that sperm whale clicks are produced at the anterior placed monkey lips, thereby substantiating a key point in the modified Norris and Harvey theory and supporting the unifying theory of sound production in odontocetes.

  9. Upregulation of uncoupling protein Ucp2 through acute cold exposure increases post-thaw sperm quality in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Wang, Gongfa; Kang, Ning; Gong, Hongmei; Luo, Yan; Bai, Chenglian; Chen, Yuanhong; Ji, Xiaoping; Huang, Changjiang; Dong, Qiaoxiang

    2015-12-01

    Oxidative stress plays an important role in sperm damage during cryopreservation. Mild mitochondrial uncoupling has been shown to reduce excessive reactive oxygen species (ROS) and thus mitigate oxidative stress. Uncoupling protein (Ucp2) regulates mitochondrial uncoupling and can be induced by temperature fluctuation. In the present study, we explored a novel approach of acute cold exposure on Ucp2 activation and its association with oxidative damage and post-thaw sperm quality in zebrafish. Our study revealed that acute cold exposure of zebrafish at 18 °C for 24 h led to significant increase of ucp2 mRNA and Ucp2 protein in zebrafish fresh sperm as well as thawed sperm after cryopreservation. Although cold exposure had no effect on fresh sperm quality except for decreasing lipid peroxidation, sperm collected from cold-exposed zebrafish exhibited higher resistance to cryodamage, which was demonstrated by increased post-thaw motility, decreased lipid peroxidation, increased ATP production, and ultimately increased fertilization success. However, except for reduced lipid peroxidation, we did not observe any significant ROS reduction associated with increased Ucp2 activation in cold-exposed group, suggesting mechanisms other than mitochondrial uncoupling could have contributed to cold exposure associated benefits in post-thaw sperm survival. Nevertheless, our findings indicate that acute cold exposure prior to sperm cryopreservation is beneficial for post-thaw sperm survival in zebrafish, and this novel approach may be used to improve post-thaw sperm quality for other aquatic species. PMID:26408847

  10. Sperm cells as vectors in the production of transgenic animals

    SciTech Connect

    Prince, R.M.

    1993-04-28

    Transgenic animals are used in industry and in biomedical research in order to provide in vivo experimental model systems. Sperm cells have been reported used as vectors in the production of transgenic animals before, however no approach has of yet proven to be successful. Fertilizing eggs with genetically modified sperm would be advantageous in that sperm are readily accessible and stable, and eggs can be fertilized by modified sperm cells in vivo. Recent elucidations regarding the unique manner of DNA packaging in sperm chromatin by protamines has provided us with the insight for developing a method of introducing foreign DNA into sperm which is likely to succeed where others have failed. We have developed a method for mimicking the in vivo system of sperm chromatin toroid subunits in vitro, concentrating these toroids, and fluorescent visualization. Our present work concerns development of a method to successfully deliver DNA across the cell membranes and into the nucleus.

  11. Under-nutrition reduces spermatogenic efficiency and sperm velocity, and increases sperm DNA damage in sexually mature male sheep.

    PubMed

    Guan, Yongjuan; Malecki, Irek A; Hawken, Penelope A R; Linden, Matthew D; Martin, Graeme B

    2014-10-01

    We tested whether the quality of spermatozoa from mature male sheep would be affected during nutrition-induced changes in testicular mass. Merino rams were fed for 65 days with diets that increased, maintained or decreased body and testis mass (n=8 per group). In semen collected on Days 56 and 63, underfed rams had less sperms per ejaculate than well-fed rams (P<0.05) and a lower sperm velocity (computer-assisted semen analysis) than well-fed or maintenance-fed rams (P<0.05). Sperm chromatin structure assay revealed more sperm DNA damage in underfed rams than in well-fed rams (P<0.05). The amount of sperm DNA damage was inversely correlated with change in scrotal circumference (r=-0.6, P<0.05), the percentages of progressive motile sperm (r=-0.8; P<0.01) and motile sperm (r=-0.6, P<0.05), and the numbers of sperms per gram of testis (r=-0.55, P<0.05). In testicular tissue collected on Day 65, underfed rams had fewer sperm per gram of testis than rams in the other two groups (P<0.001). We conclude that, in adult rams, underfeeding reduces spermatogenic efficiency and that this response is associated with a reduction in spermatozoal quality. PMID:25086661

  12. Caspase activation, hydrogen peroxide production and Akt dephosphorylation occur during stallion sperm senescence.

    PubMed

    Gallardo Bolaños, J M; Balao da Silva, C; Martín Muñoz, P; Plaza Dávila, M; Ezquerra, J; Aparicio, I M; Tapia, J A; Ortega Ferrusola, C; Peña, F J

    2014-08-01

    To investigate the mechanisms inducing sperm death after ejaculation, stallion ejaculates were incubated in BWW media during 6 h at 37°C. At the beginning of the incubation period and after 1, 2, 4 and 6 h sperm motility and kinematics (CASA), mitochondrial membrane potential and membrane permeability and integrity were evaluated (flow cytometry). Also, at the same time intervals, active caspase 3, hydrogen peroxide, superoxide anion (flow cytometry) and Akt phosphorylation (flow cytometry) were evaluated. Major decreases in sperm function occurred after 6 h of incubation, although after 1 h decrease in the percentages of motile and progressive motile sperm occurred. The decrease observed in sperm functionality after 6 h of incubation was accompanied by a significant increase in the production of hydrogen peroxide and the greatest increase in caspase 3 activity. Additionally, the percentage of phosphorylated Akt reached a minimum after 6 h of incubation. These results provide evidences that sperm death during in vitro incubation is largely an apoptotic phenomena, probably stimulated by endogenous production of hydrogen peroxide and the lack of prosurvival factors maintaining Akt in a phosphorylated status. Disclosing molecular mechanisms leading to sperm death may help to develop new strategies for stallion sperm conservation. PMID:24924976

  13. Sperm Competition, Sperm Numbers and Sperm Quality in Muroid Rodents

    PubMed Central

    Gómez Montoto, Laura; Magaña, Concepción; Tourmente, Maximiliano; Martín-Coello, Juan; Crespo, Cristina; Luque-Larena, Juan José

    2011-01-01

    Sperm competition favors increases in relative testes mass and production efficiency, and changes in sperm phenotype that result in faster swimming speeds. However, little is known about its effects on traits that contribute to determine the quality of a whole ejaculate (i.e., proportion of motile, viable, morphologically normal and acrosome intact sperm) and that are key determinants of fertilization success. Two competing hypotheses lead to alternative predictions: (a) sperm quantity and quality traits co-evolve under sperm competition because they play complementary roles in determining ejaculate's competitive ability, or (b) energetic constraints force trade-offs between traits depending on their relevance in providing a competitive advantage. We examined relationships between sperm competition levels, sperm quantity, and traits that determine ejaculate quality, in a comparative study of 18 rodent species using phylogenetically controlled analyses. Total sperm numbers were positively correlated to proportions of normal sperm, acrosome integrity and motile sperm; the latter three were also significantly related among themselves, suggesting no trade-offs between traits. In addition, testes mass corrected for body mass (i.e., relative testes mass), showed a strong association with sperm numbers, and positive significant associations with all sperm traits that determine ejaculate quality with the exception of live sperm. An “overall sperm quality” parameter obtained by principal component analysis (which explained 85% of the variance) was more strongly associated with relative testes mass than any individual quality trait. Overall sperm quality was as strongly associated with relative testes mass as sperm numbers. Thus, sperm quality traits improve under sperm competition in an integrated manner suggesting that a combination of all traits is what makes ejaculates more competitive. In evolutionary terms this implies that a complex network of genetic and developmental pathways underlying processes of sperm formation, maturation, transport in the female reproductive tract, and preparation for fertilization must all evolve in concert. PMID:21464956

  14. Reactive oxygen species production and antioxidant enzyme activity during epididymal sperm maturation in Corynorhinus mexicanus bats.

    PubMed

    Edith, Arenas-Ríos; Adolfo, Rosado García; Edith, Cortés-Barberena; Mina, Königsberg; Marcela, Arteaga-Silva; Ahiezer, Rodríguez-Tobón; Gisela, Fuentes-Mascorro; Angel, León-Galván Miguel

    2016-03-01

    Prolonged sperm storage in the epididymis of Corynorhinus mexicanus bats after testicular regression has been associated with epididymal sperm maturation in the caudal region, although the precise factors linked with this phenomenon are unknown. The aim of this work is to determine the role of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and changes in antioxidant enzymatic activity occurring in the spermatozoa and epididymal fluid over time, in sperm maturation and storage in the caput, corpus and cauda of the bat epididymis. Our data showed that an increment in ROS production coincided with an increase in superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity in epididymal fluid and with a decrease in glutathione peroxidase (GPX) activity in the spermatozoa in at different time points and epididymal regions. The increase in ROS production was not associated with oxidative damage measured by lipid peroxidation. The results of the current study suggest the existence of a shift in the redox balance, which might be associated with sperm maturation and storage. PMID:26952757

  15. Fluorescence In-Situ Hybridization Detects Increased Sperm Aneuploidy in Men with Recurrent Pregnancy Loss

    PubMed Central

    Ramasamy, Ranjith; Scovell, Jason M.; Kovac, Jason R.; Cook, Peter J.; Lamb, Dolores J.; Lipshultz, Larry I.

    2015-01-01

    Objective To investigate, in men presenting with recurrent pregnancy loss (RPL), the prevalence of sperm autosome and sex chromosome aneuploidy. Design Retrospective Study. Setting Male infertility clinic at a tertiary referral center. Patients 140 men with recurrent pregnancy loss provided semen samples and five normozoospermic controls provided 140 semen samples for comparison. RPL, documented in the female partners, was defined as a prior miscarriage and/or recurrent IVF/ICSI failure. Interventions Fluorescent In situ hybridization (FISH) was used to detect numerical abnormalities in sex chromosomes (X,Y) and autosomes (13, 18, 21) in ejaculated sperm. Main Outcome Measures Sperm aneuploidy in men with RPL and normozoospermic controls. Results Men with RPL had a greater percentage of sperm aneuploidy within the sex chromosomes, chromosomes 18 and 13/21 (1.04% vs. 0.38%; 0.18% vs. 0.03%; 0.26% vs. 0.08%). In total, 40% of men with normal sperm density and motility had abnormal sperm aneuploidy in the all the chromosomes analyzed. Men with abnormal sperm density and motility had a higher proportion of sperm sex chromosome aneuploidy than men with normal density/motility (62% vs. 45%). Men with normal strict morphology (>4%) had lower rates of sex chromosome and sperm aneuploidy than men with abnormal strict morphology (28% vs. 57%). There was no association between sperm DNA fragmentation and sperm aneuploidy. Conclusions Men with RPL have increased sperm aneuploidy compared to controls. A total of 40% of men with RPL and normal sperm density/motility had abnormal sperm aneuploidy. Men with oligoasthenozoospermia and abnormal strict morphology had greater percentage of sperm aneuploidy compared to men with normal semen parameters. PMID:25707335

  16. Reduction of centrifugation force in discontinuous percoll gradients increases in vitro fertilization rates without reducing bovine sperm recovery.

    PubMed

    Guimarães, A C G; Leivas, F G; Santos, F W; Schwengber, E B; Giotto, A B; Machado, C I U; Gonçalves, C G M; Folchini, N P; Brum, D S

    2014-05-01

    The objective of this study was to determine the effect of different centrifugation forces in bovine sperm separation by discontinuous Percoll gradients for in vitro fertilization IVF. The semen samples from each bull were pooled or each bull were centrifuged separately and centrifuged in discontinuous Percoll gradients (30, 60 and 90%) at different forces: F1 (9000×g), F2 (6500×g), F3 (4500×g) and F4 (2200×g), according experiment. The sperm samples were evaluated to determine the concentration, motility, vigor, morphology, reactive oxygen species (ROS), integrity of the plasma membrane, lipid peroxidation, antioxidants and embryo development were also evaluated. No difference was observed in the concentration of sperm submitted to different centrifugation forces. The total percentage of motile sperm was increased after centrifugation at F3 and F4, and the ROS production at F1 was greater than the other forces. When the bulls semen were processed individually, no significant differences were observed for the sperm quality parameters between F1 and F4, including lipid peroxidation, antioxidants, cleavage rate and average time to the first cleavage. This work demonstrated for the first time that centrifugation at 2200×g enhanced the sperm penetration and fertilization rates without reducing sperm recovery compared to the typical centrifugation force (9000×g) currently used by the commercial bovine IVF industry. PMID:24646635

  17. Bower-building behaviour is associated with increased sperm longevity in Tanganyikan cichlids.

    PubMed

    Morita, M; Awata, S; Yorifuji, M; Ota, K; Kohda, M; Ochi, H

    2014-12-01

    We investigated the evolutionary relationship between spawning behaviour and sperm motility traits among Tanganyikan mouth-brooding cichlid species that have developed diverse mating behaviours and male sexual traits. Mouth-brooding behaviour is common among these fish, but different species demonstrate a range of spawning behaviours, bower construction, male sexual traits and timing of gamete release. We observed spawning behaviours and compared sperm motility traits of 28 Tanganyikan mouth-brooding cichlids to elucidate the evolutionary correlations between these traits. Sperm longevity was considerably longer in bower-building species that construct crater-shaped spawning sites compared with species that do not build bowers. Male bower builders released sperm in the pit of the bower prior to spawning, and the time from ejaculation to fertilization was longer. Conversely, most mouth-brooding cichlids deposited semen directly into the female buccal cavity, and spawned eggs were immediately picked up to be placed inside the cavity; thus, the time from ejaculation to fertilization was short. These observations suggest that increased sperm longevity is favoured in bower builders. Comparative phylogenetic analyses suggested that bower-building behaviour and greater time from ejaculation to fertilization are associated with the extension of sperm longevity, whereas sperm competition rank does not play a major role. In addition, bower-building behaviour preceded the emergence of increased sperm longevity. These results indicate that the extension of sperm longevity as a result of the emergence of bower builders may have acted as an evolutionary attractor for sperm longevity. PMID:25330280

  18. Effect of Purine Nucleoside Analogue-Acyclovir on The Sperm Parameters and Testosterone Production in Rats

    PubMed Central

    Movahed, Elham; Sadrkhanlou, Rajabali; Ahmadi, Abbas; Nejati, Vahid; Zamani, Zahra

    2013-01-01

    Background: Acyclovir (ACV), a synthetic purine nucleoside analogue derived from guanosine, is known to be toxic to gonads and the aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of ACV on the sperm parameters and testosterone production in rat. Materials and Methods: In this experimental study, forty adult male Wistar rats (220 ± 20 g) were randomly divided into five groups (n=8 for each group). One group served as control and one group served as sham control [distilled water was intraperitoneally (i.p.) injected]. ACV was administered intraperitoneally in the drug treatment groups (4, 16 and 48 mg/kg/day) for 15 days. Eighteen days after the last injection, rats were sacrificed by CO2 inhalation. After that, cauda epididymides were removed surgically. At the end, sperm concentrations in the cauda epididymis, sperm motility, morphology, viability, chromatin quality and DNA integrity were analyzed. Serum testosterone concentrations were determined. Results: The results showed that ACV did not affect sperm count, but decreased sperm motility and sperm viability at 16 and 48 mg/kg dose-levels. Sperm abnormalities increased at 48 mg/kg dose-level of ACV. Further, ACV significantly increases DNA damage at 16 and 48 mg/kg dose-levels and chromatin abnormality at all doses. Besides, a significant decrease in serum testosterone concentrations was observed at 16 and 48 mg/ kg doses. Conclusion: The present results highly support the idea that ACV induces testicular toxicity by adverse effects on the sperm parameters and serum level of testosterone in male rats. PMID:24520464

  19. Advancing age increases sperm chromatin damage and impairs fertility in peroxiredoxin 6 null mice

    PubMed Central

    Ozkosem, Burak; Feinstein, Sheldon I.; Fisher, Aron B.; O’Flaherty, Cristian

    2015-01-01

    Due to socioeconomic factors, more couples are choosing to delay conception than ever. Increasing average maternal and paternal age in developed countries over the past 40 years has raised the question of how aging affects reproductive success of males and females. Since oxidative stress in the male reproductive tract increases with age, we investigated the impact of advanced paternal age on the integrity of sperm nucleus and reproductive success of males by using a Prdx6−/− mouse model. We compared sperm motility, cytoplasmic droplet retention sperm chromatin quality and reproductive outcomes of young (2-month-old), adult (8-month-old), and old (20-month-old) Prdx6−/− males with their age-matched wild type (WT) controls. Absence of PRDX6 caused age-dependent impairment of sperm motility and sperm maturation and increased sperm DNA fragmentation and oxidation as well as decreased sperm DNA compaction and protamination. Litter size, total number of litters and total number of pups per male were significantly lower in Prdx6−/− males compared to WT controls. These abnormal reproductive outcomes were severely affected by age in Prdx6−/− males. In conclusion, the advanced paternal age affects sperm chromatin integrity and fertility more severely in the absence of PRDX6, suggesting a protective role of PRDX6 in age-associated decline in the sperm quality and fertility in mice. PMID:25796034

  20. Click production during breathing in a sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wahlberg, Magnus; Frantzis, Alexandros; Alexiadou, Paraskevi; Madsen, Peter T.; Møhl, Bertel

    2005-12-01

    A sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) was observed at the surface with above- and underwater video and synchronized underwater sound recordings. During seven instances the whale ventilated its lungs while clicking. From this observation it is inferred that click production is achieved by pressurizing air in the right nasal passage, pneumatically disconnected from the lungs and the left nasal passage, and that air flows anterior through the phonic lips into the distal air sac. The capability of breathing and clicking at the same time is unique among studied odontocetes and relates to the extreme asymmetry of the sperm whale sound-producing forehead.

  1. Click production during breathing in a sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus).

    PubMed

    Wahlberg, Magnus; Frantzis, Alexandros; Alexiadou, Paraskevi; Madsen, Peter T; Mhl, Bertel

    2005-12-01

    A sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) was observed at the surface with above- and underwater video and synchronized underwater sound recordings. During seven instances the whale ventilated its lungs while clicking. From this observation it is inferred that click production is achieved by pressurizing air in the right nasal passage, pneumatically disconnected from the lungs and the left nasal passage, and that air flows anterior through the phonic lips into the distal air sac. The capability of breathing and clicking at the same time is unique among studied odontocetes and relates to the extreme asymmetry of the sperm whale sound-producing forehead. PMID:16419786

  2. SPERM PRODUCTION IN TARNISHED PLANT BUGS, IRRADIATED AND UNIRRADIATED

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    With recent advances that allow their mass rearing, tarnished plant bugs (TPB), Lygus lineolaris (Palisot de Beauvois) are being considered as subjects for mass sterilization and release. Because sperm production in sterile insects has been cited as an important component of competitiveness, it was ...

  3. Sperm Competition Selects for Sperm Quantity and Quality in the Australian Maluridae

    PubMed Central

    Rowe, Melissah; Pruett-Jones, Stephen

    2011-01-01

    When ejaculates from rival males compete for fertilization, there is strong selection for sperm traits that enhance fertilization success. Sperm quantity is one such trait, and numerous studies have demonstrated a positive association between sperm competition and both testes size and the number of sperm available for copulations. Sperm competition is also thought to favor increases in sperm quality and changes in testicular morphology that lead to increased sperm production. However, in contrast to sperm quantity, these hypotheses have received considerably less empirical support and remain somewhat controversial. In a comparative study using the Australian Maluridae (fairy-wrens, emu-wrens, grasswrens), we tested whether increasing levels of sperm competition were associated with increases in both sperm quantity and quality, as well as an increase in the relative amount of seminiferous tubule tissue contained within the testes. After controlling for phylogeny, we found positive associations between sperm competition and sperm numbers, both in sperm reserves and in ejaculate samples. Additionally, as sperm competition level increased, the proportion of testicular spermatogenic tissue also increased, suggesting that sperm competition selects for greater sperm production per unit of testicular tissue. Finally, we also found that sperm competition level was positively associated with multiple sperm quality traits, including the proportion of motile sperm in ejaculates and the proportion of both viable and morphologically normal sperm in sperm reserves. These results suggest multiple ejaculate traits, as well as aspects of testicular morphology, have evolved in response to sperm competition in the Australian Maluridae. Furthermore, our findings emphasize the importance of post-copulatory sexual selection as an evolutionary force shaping macroevolutionary differences in sperm phenotype. PMID:21283577

  4. Sperm Cryopreservation in Live-Bearing Xiphophorus Fishes: Offspring Production from Xiphophorus variatus and Strategies for Establishment of Sperm Repositories

    PubMed Central

    Cuevas-Uribe, Rafael; Savage, Markita G.; Walter, Ronald B.; Tiersch, Terrence R.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Cryopreservation of sperm from Xiphophorus fishes has produced live young in three species: X. hellerii, X. couchianus, and X. maculatus. In this study, the goal was to establish protocols for sperm cryopreservation and artificial insemination to produce live young in X. variatus, and to identify needs for repository development. The objectives were to: 1) collect basic biological characteristics of males; 2) cryopreserve sperm from X. variatus, 3) harvest live young from cryopreserved sperm, and 4) discuss the requirements for establishment of sperm repositories. The 35 males used in this study had a body weight of 0.298±0.096 g (mean±SD), body length of 2.5±0.2 cm, and testis weight of 6.4±3.4 mg. The sperm production per gram of testis was 2.33±1.32×109 cells. After freezing, the post-thaw motility decreased significantly to 37%±17% (ranging from 5% to 70%) (p=0.000) from 57%±14% (40%–80%) of fresh sperm (N=20). Artificial insemination of post-thaw sperm produced confirmed offspring from females of X. hellerii and X. variatus. This research, taken together with previous studies, provides a foundation for development of strategies for sperm repositories of Xiphophorus fishes. This includes: 1) the need for breeding strategies for regeneration of target populations, 2) identification of minimum fertilization capacity of frozen samples, 3) identification of fish numbers necessary for sampling and their genetic relationships, 4) selection of packaging containers for labeling and biosecurity, 5) assurance of quality control and standardization of procedures, 6) information systems that can manage the data associated with cryopreserved samples, including the genetic data, 7) biological data of sampled fish, 8) inventory data associated with frozen samples, and 9) data linking germplasm samples with other related materials such as body tissues or cells saved for DNA and RNA analyses. PMID:22924335

  5. Large-male advantages associated with costs of sperm production in Drosophila hydei, a species with giant sperm.

    PubMed Central

    Pitnick, S; Markow, T A

    1994-01-01

    Males of the fruit fly Drosophila hydei were found to produce 23.47 +/- 0.46-mm-long spermatozoa, the longest ever described. No relationship was found between male body size and sperm length. We predicted that if these giant gametes are costly for males to produce, then correlations should exist between male body size, rates of sperm production, and fitness attributes associated with the production of sperm. Smaller males were found to make a greater relative investment in testicular tissue growth, even though they have shorter and thinner testes. Smaller males were also found to (i) be maturing fewer sperm bundles within the testes at any point in time than larger males, (ii) require a longer period of time post-eclosion to become reproductively mature, (iii) mate with fewer females, (iv) transfer fewer sperm per copulation, and (v) produce fewer progeny. The significance of these findings for body size-related fitness and the question of sperm size evolution are discussed. PMID:7937755

  6. Cholesterol-Loaded Cyclodextrin Increases the Cholesterol Content of Goat Sperm to Improve Cold and Osmotic Resistance and Maintain Sperm Function after Cryopreservation.

    PubMed

    Salmon, Vianney M; Leclerc, Pierre; Bailey, Janice L

    2016-04-01

    The success of semen cryopreservation depends on sperm membrane integrity and function after thawing. Cholesterol-loaded cyclodextrin (CLC) is used for in vitro incorporation of cholesterol to protect cells against cold temperatures. We hypothesized that CLC treatment also enhances sperm cholesterol content to increase tolerance to osmotic shock and cryoresistance, thereby improving fertility. We confirmed the fact that treatment of goat semen with 3 mg/ml CLC increases sperm cholesterol content using both the Liebermann-Burchard approach and filipin III labeling of membrane cholesterol. Sperm were then treated with or without CLC and cryopreserved. After thawing, sperm cholesterol dramatically fell, even in the presence of CLC, which explains the mechanism of cryocapacitation. CLC treatment, however, maintained a normal prefreeze cholesterol level in sperm after cryopreservation. Furthermore, fresh sperm treated with CLC and subjected to either cold shock or incubated in hypo-, iso-, and hyperosmotic media, designed to mimic stresses associated with freezing/thawing, displayed increased temperature and osmotic tolerance. CLC treatment also improved sperm viability, motility, and acrosome integrity after thawing. Furthermore, CLC treatment did not affect the sperm's ability to undergo in vitro capacitation according to chlortetracycline fluorescence and protein tyrosine phosphorylation. A pilot field trial demonstrated that artificial insemination with sperm that underwent increased cholesterol levels following CLC treatment yielded higher fertility ( ITALIC! P< 0.1) and proliferation ( ITALIC! P< 0.05) rates in vivo than untreated semen from the same ejaculate samples. These observations suggest that CLC treatment could be used to improve cryoprotection during the freezing and thawing of goat sperm. PMID:26888968

  7. Organophosphorous pesticide exposure increases the frequency of sperm sex null aneuploidy.

    PubMed Central

    Recio, R; Robbins, W A; Borja-Aburto, V; Morán-Martínez, J; Froines, J R; Hernández, R M; Cebrián, M E

    2001-01-01

    It has been estimated that 4 of 1,000 live births and 35% of spontaneous abortions are aneuploid and that an important proportion of embryo and newborn aneuploidy is of paternal origin. Exposure to organophosphorous pesticides (OP) has been associated with sperm hyperploidy/polyploidy. Therefore, we aimed to assess the frequency of sperm aneuploidy (X, Y, and 18) and its relationship with urinary OP metabolites in agricultural workers. We performed multicolor fluorescence in situ hybridization on samples from nine men obtained before and during the pesticide spraying season to assess sperm aneuploidy. We measured urinary OP metabolite levels by gas-liquid chromatography. Aneuploidies were found in 0.67% of total sperm nuclei. The most frequent aneuploidy was the lack of a sexual chromosome or sex null (0.19%), followed by XY18 (0.15%) and XY18-18 (0.06%). OP metabolites detected at higher concentrations were dimethylthiophosphate, dimethyldithiophosphate, and diethylphosphate (DEP). There were no differences in average aneuploidy frequency or urinary metabolite levels between samples collected before and after exposure. However, Poisson regression analysis adjusted for age, alcohol intake, and sperm concentration showed significant associations between OP metabolite concentrations and increased frequency of sperm aneuploidies. The association was more evident between DEP and sex null, and the risk increased further during the spraying season. Thus, OP exposure could interfere with sperm chromosome segregation and increase the risk for genetic syndromes, such as Turner's. Further studies are required to assess the prevalence of spontaneous abortions, birth defects, and genetic syndromes in agricultural communities. PMID:11748030

  8. Reduced metabolic rate and oxygen radicals production in stored insect sperm.

    PubMed

    Ribou, Anne-Cécile; Reinhardt, Klaus

    2012-06-01

    Females of internally fertilizing species can significantly extend sperm lifespan and functionality during sperm storage. The mechanisms for such delayed cellular senescence remain unknown. Here, we apply current hypotheses of cellular senescence developed for diploid cells to sperm cells, and empirically test opposing predictions on the relationship between sperm metabolic rate and oxygen radical production in an insect model, the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus. Using time-resolved microfluorimetry, we found a negative correlation between metabolic rate (proportion of protein-bound NAD[P]H) and in situ intracellular oxygen radicals production in freshly ejaculated sperm. In contrast, sperm stored by females for periods of 1 h to 26 days showed a positive correlation between metabolic rate and oxygen radicals production. At the same time, stored sperm showed a 37 per cent reduced metabolic rate, and 42 per cent reduced reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, compared with freshly ejaculated sperm. Rank differences between males in ROS production and metabolic rate observed in ejaculated sperm did not predict rank differences in stored sperm. Our method of simultaneously measuring ROS production and metabolic rate of the same sample has the advantage of providing data that are independent of sperm density and any extracellular antioxidants that are proteins. Our method also excludes effects owing to accumulated hydrogen peroxide. Our results unify aspects of competing theories of cellular ageing and suggest that reducing metabolic rate may be an important means of extending stored sperm lifespan and functionality in crickets. Our data also provide a possible explanation for why traits of ejaculates sampled from the male may be rather poor predictors of paternity in sexual selection studies and likelihood of pregnancy in reproductive medicine. PMID:22279170

  9. Flow cytometric sexing of spider sperm reveals an equal sperm production ratio in a female-biased species

    PubMed Central

    Vanthournout, B.; Deswarte, K.; Hammad, H.; Bilde, T.; Lambrecht, B.; Hendrickx, F.

    2014-01-01

    Producing equal amounts of male and female offspring has long been considered an evolutionarily stable strategy. Nevertheless, exceptions to this general rule (i.e. male and female biases) are documented in many taxa, making sex allocation an important domain in current evolutionary biology research. Pinpointing the underlying mechanism of sex ratio bias is challenging owing to the multitude of potential sex ratio-biasing factors. In the dwarf spider, Oedothorax gibbosus, infection with the bacterial endosymbiont Wolbachia results in a female bias. However, pedigree analysis reveals that other factors influence sex ratio variation. In this paper, we investigate whether this additional variation can be explained by the unequal production of male- and female-determining sperm cells during sperm production. Using flow cytometry, we show that males produce equal amounts of male- and female-determining sperm cells; thus bias in sperm production does not contribute to the sex ratio bias observed in this species. This demonstrates that other factors such as parental genes suppressing endosymbiont effects and cryptic female choice might play a role in sex allocation in this species. PMID:24850893

  10. Size dependence in non-sperm ejaculate production is reflected in daily energy expenditure and resting metabolic rate.

    PubMed

    Friesen, Christopher R; Powers, Donald R; Copenhaver, Paige E; Mason, Robert T

    2015-05-01

    The non-sperm components of an ejaculate, such as copulatory plugs, can be essential to male reproductive success. But the costs of these ejaculate components are often considered trivial. In polyandrous species, males are predicted to increase energy allocation to the production of non-sperm components, but this allocation is often condition dependent and the energetic costs of their production have never been quantified. Red-sided garter snakes (Thamnophis sirtalis parietalis) are an excellent model with which to quantify the energetic costs of non-sperm components of the ejaculate as they exhibit a dissociated reproductive pattern in which sperm production is temporally disjunct from copulatory plug production, mating and plug deposition. We estimated the daily energy expenditure and resting metabolic rate of males after courtship and mating, and used bomb calorimetry to estimate the energy content of copulatory plugs. We found that both daily energy expenditure and resting metabolic rate were significantly higher in small mating males than in courting males, and a single copulatory plug without sperm constitutes 5-18% of daily energy expenditure. To our knowledge, this is the first study to quantify the energetic expense of size-dependent ejaculate strategies in any species. PMID:25954044

  11. A Specific Transitory Increase in Intracellular Calcium Induced by Progesterone Promotes Acrosomal Exocytosis in Mouse Sperm.

    PubMed

    Romarowski, Ana; Sánchez-Cárdenas, Claudia; Ramírez-Gómez, Héctor V; Puga Molina, Lis Del C; Treviño, Claudia L; Hernández-Cruz, Arturo; Darszon, Alberto; Buffone, Mariano G

    2016-03-01

    During capacitation, sperm acquire the ability to undergo the acrosome reaction (AR), an essential step in fertilization. Progesterone produced by cumulus cells has been associated with various physiological processes in sperm, including stimulation of AR. An increase in intracellular Ca(2+) ([Ca(2+)]i) is necessary for AR to occur. In this study, we investigated the spatiotemporal correlation between the changes in [Ca(2+)]i and AR in single mouse spermatozoa in response to progesterone. We found that progesterone stimulates an [Ca(2+)]i increase in five different patterns: gradual increase, oscillatory, late transitory, immediate transitory, and sustained. We also observed that the [Ca(2+)]i increase promoted by progesterone starts at either the flagellum or the head. We validated the use of FM4-64 as an indicator for the occurrence of the AR by simultaneously detecting its fluorescence increase and the loss of EGFP in transgenic EGFPAcr sperm. For the first time, we have simultaneously visualized the rise in [Ca(2+)]i and the process of exocytosis in response to progesterone and found that only a specific transitory increase in [Ca(2+)]i originating in the sperm head promotes the initiation of AR. PMID:26819478

  12. Sperm competition and the evolution of precopulatory weapons: Increasing male density promotes sperm competition and reduces selection on arm strength in a chorusing frog.

    PubMed

    Buzatto, Bruno A; Roberts, J Dale; Simmons, Leigh W

    2015-10-01

    Sperm competition theory assumes a trade-off between precopulatory traits that increase mating success and postcopulatory traits that increase fertilization success. Predictions for how sperm competition might affect male expenditure on these traits depend on the number of competing males, the advantage gained from expenditure on weapons, and the level of sperm competition. However, empirical tests of sperm competition theory rarely examine precopulatory male expenditure. We investigated how variation in male density affects precopulatory sexual selection on male weaponry and the level of sperm competition in the chorusing frog Crinia georgiana, where males use their arms as weapons in male-male combat. We measured body size and arm girth of 439 males, and recorded their mating success in the field. We found density-dependent selection acting on arm girth. Arm girth was positively associated with mating success, but only at low population densities. Increased male density was associated with higher risk and intensity of sperm competition arising from multimale amplexus, and a reversal in the direction of selection on arm girth. Opposing patterns of pre- and postcopulatory selection may account for the negative covariation between arm girth and testes across populations of this species. PMID:26375605

  13. Disruption of Maternal DNA Repair Increases Sperm-DerivedChromosomal Aberrations

    SciTech Connect

    Marchetti, Francesco; Essers, Jeroun; Kanaar, Roland; Wyrobek,Andrew J.

    2007-02-07

    The final weeks of male germ cell differentiation occur in aDNA repair-deficient environment and normal development depends on theability of the egg to repair DNA damage in the fertilizing sperm. Geneticdisruption of maternal DNA double-strand break repair pathways in micesignificantly increased the frequency of zygotes with chromosomalstructural aberrations after paternal exposure to ionizing radiation.These findings demonstrate that radiation-induced DNA sperm lesions arerepaired after fertilization by maternal factors and suggest that geneticvariation in maternal DNA repair can modulate the risk of early pregnancylosses and of children with chromosomal aberrations of paternalorigin.

  14. Decreased activity of superoxide dismutase in the seminal plasma of infertile men correlates with increased sperm deoxyribonucleic acid fragmentation during the first hours after sperm donation.

    PubMed

    Wdowiak, Artur; Bakalczuk, Szymon; Bakalczuk, Grzegorz

    2015-07-01

    Sperm DNA fragmentation varies between individuals and is more pronounced with increased patient age and time after sperm donation. The intensification of DNA fragmentation depends on the balance of the oxidoreductive system, which is regulated mainly by two enzymes - superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase. The objective of this study was to determine the relationship between sperm DNA fragmentation dynamics, fertility and seminal SOD and catalase activity. The study was conducted in 2013 and 2014 at the Non-Public Health Care Unit 'Ovum Reproduction and Andrology' in Lublin, Lublin, Poland, and covered 218 men aged 25-35 (85 fertile and 133 patients treated for infertility). Percentage of fragmented DNA was measured in a modified chromatin dispersion test at four time points after sperm donation (t = 0, 3, 6, 12 h). SOD and catalase activities were determined spectrophotometrically. We confirmed that the activity of SOD in the seminal plasma of men with reproductive disorders was lower compared with fertile men. Conversely, no significant correlations were found between fertility and catalase activity. Sperm DNA of infertile males was initially more fragmented than fertile male sperm DNA. SOD and catalase activity did not correlate with the degree of DNA fragmentation in fertile men. In men with reproductive disorders, the rate of DNA fragmentation was slow within first 3 h after sperm donation and then increased between 6 and 12 h. In this group of infertile men, those with higher SOD activity had a lower DNA fragmentation index (DFI) after 12 h, and a reduced rate of intensity of fragmentation from 6 to 12 h. Alternatively, higher catalase activity among men treated for infertility was accompanied by higher initial DFI and higher rate of DNA fragmentation from 6 to 12 h. These results highlight the importance of determining a proper time window between sperm donation and procedures of assisted reproductive technology. PMID:26198800

  15. Production of Transgenic Pigs Mediated by Pseudotyped Lentivirus and Sperm

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yongliang; Xi, Qianyun; Ding, Jinghua; Cai, Weiguang; Meng, Fanmin; Zhou, Junyun; Li, Hongyi; Jiang, Qingyan; Shu, Gang; Wang, Songbo; Zhu, Xiaotong; Gao, Ping; Wu, Zhenfang

    2012-01-01

    Sperm-mediated gene transfer can be a very efficient method to produce transgenic pigs, however, the results from different laboratories had not been widely repeated. Genomic integration of transgene by injection of pseudotyped lentivirus to the perivitelline space has been proved to be a reliable route to generate transgenic animals. To test whether transgene in the lentivirus can be delivered by sperm, we studied incubation of pseudotyped lentiviruses and sperm before insemination. After incubation with pig spermatozoa, 62±3 lentiviral particles were detected per 100 sperm cells using quantitative real-time RT-PCR. The association of lentivirus with sperm was further confirmed by electron microscopy. The sperm incubated with lentiviral particles were artificially inseminated into pigs. Of the 59 piglets born from inseminated 5 sows, 6 piglets (10.17%) carried the transgene based on the PCR identification. Foreign gene and EGFP was successfully detected in ear tissue biopsies from two PCR-positive pigs, revealed via in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. Offspring of one PCR-positive boar with normal sows showed PCR-positive. Two PCR-positive founders and offsprings of PCR-positive boar were further identified by Southern-blot analysis, out of which the two founders and two offsprings were positive in Southern blotting, strongly indicating integration of foreign gene into genome. The results indicate that incubation of sperm with pseudotyped lentiviruses can incorporated with sperm-mediated gene transfer to produce transgenic pigs with improved efficiency. PMID:22536374

  16. Testes Mass, but Not Sperm Length, Increases with Higher Levels of Polyandry in an Ancient Sex Model

    PubMed Central

    Vrech, David E.; Olivero, Paola A.; Mattoni, Camilo I.; Peretti, Alfredo V.

    2014-01-01

    There is strong evidence that polyandrous taxa have evolved relatively larger testes than monogamous relatives. Sperm size may either increase or decrease across species with the risk or intensity of sperm competition. Scorpions represent an ancient direct mode with spermatophore-mediated sperm transfer and are particularly well suited for studies in sperm competition. This work aims to analyze for the first time the variables affecting testes mass, ejaculate volume and sperm length, according with their levels of polyandry, in species belonging to the Neotropical family Bothriuridae. Variables influencing testes mass and sperm length were obtained by model selection analysis using corrected Akaike Information Criterion. Testes mass varied greatly among the seven species analyzed, ranging from 1.6±1.1 mg in Timogenes dorbignyi to 16.3±4.5 mg in Brachistosternus pentheri with an average of 8.4±5.0 mg in all the species. The relationship between testes mass and body mass was not significant. Body allocation in testes mass, taken as Gonadosomatic Index, was high in Bothriurus cordubensis and Brachistosternus ferrugineus and low in Timogenes species. The best-fitting model for testes mass considered only polyandry as predictor with a positive influence. Model selection showed that body mass influenced sperm length negatively but after correcting for body mass, none of the variables analyzed explained sperm length. Both body mass and testes mass influenced spermatophore volume positively. There was a strong phylogenetic effect on the model containing testes mass. As predicted by the sperm competition theory and according to what happens in other arthropods, testes mass increased in species with higher levels of sperm competition, and influenced positively spermatophore volume, but data was not conclusive for sperm length. PMID:24736525

  17. Production of female bovine embryos with sex-sorted sperm using intracytoplasmic sperm injection: efficiency and in vitro developmental competence.

    PubMed

    Jo, Hyun-Tae; Bang, Jae-Il; Kim, Seong-Su; Choi, Byung-Hyun; Jin, Jong-In; Kim, Heyng-Lyool; Jung, In-Suk; Suh, Tae-Kwang; Ghanem, Nasser; Wang, Zhongde; Kong, Il-Keun

    2014-03-15

    The production of embryos with a preselected sex sperm is important in the livestock industry. In this study, we examined the efficiency of producing female embryos by intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) with flow cytometry sorted (ssICSI) and unsorted (usICSI) bovine sperm, and their developmental competence in vitro. For comparison, bovine embryos were also produced by in vitro fertilization (IVF) with sorted (ssIVF) and unsorted (usIVF) bovine sperm. The semen used in this study was from a bull selected for its high fertility and blastocyst developmental competence among four bulls. We first examined and compared pronuclear (PN) formation and cleavage rates of the produced embryos among the treatment groups. Our results demonstrated that PN formation rates (judged by two pronucleus [2PN]) and cleavage rates in ssIVF group (23.1% and 43.6%) were lower than those in the usIVF (71.1% and 71.6%), usICSI (73.1% and 92.8%) and ssICSI (75% and 79.1%) groups, respectively (P < 0.05). Moreover, the blastocyst formation rate in the ssIVF group was less than those in the usIVF, usICSI, and ssICSI groups (2.7% vs. 30.2%, 28.7% and 24.7%, respectively; P < 0.05). Importantly, we reported that the blastocyst formation rate in the ssICSI group was similar to that in the usICSI group, which indicated that ICSI can rescue the damage introduced to sperm by flow cytometry-mediated sex-sorting. Of note, we achieved a blastocyst formation rate in the ssICSI group to be comparable with the usIVF group. We then examined embryo quality by counting the number of normal and apoptotic cells in blastocysts. It was found that, despite the fact that blastocyst formation rate in the ssIVF group was significantly lower than those in the usIVF, usICSI and ssICSI groups, there was no difference in total and apoptotic cell numbers among these groups (P > 0.05). Finally, karyotyping analysis demonstrated that the proportion of female embryos in the ssICSI and ssIVF groups was 100%, whereas it was 58.8% and 57.8% in the usIVF and usICSI groups, respectively. In conclusion, ICSI with flow cytometry sorted bovine sperm provides an alternative approach to produce embryos with predetermined sex. PMID:24360289

  18. Mitochondria functionality and sperm quality.

    PubMed

    Amaral, Alexandra; Lourenço, Bárbara; Marques, Mónica; Ramalho-Santos, João

    2013-01-01

    Although mitochondria are best known for being the eukaryotic cell powerhouses, these organelles participate in various cellular functions besides ATP production, such as calcium homoeostasis, generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), the intrinsic apoptotic pathway and steroid hormone biosynthesis. The aim of this review was to discuss the putative roles of mitochondria in mammalian sperm function and how they may relate to sperm quality and fertilisation ability, particularly in humans. Although paternal mitochondria are degraded inside the zygote, sperm mitochondrial functionality seems to be critical for fertilisation. Indeed, changes in mitochondrial integrity/functionality, namely defects in mitochondrial ultrastructure or in the mitochondrial genome, transcriptome or proteome, as well as low mitochondrial membrane potential or altered oxygen consumption, have been correlated with loss of sperm function (particularly with decreased motility). Results from genetically engineered mouse models also confirmed this trend. On the other hand, increasing evidence suggests that mitochondria derived ATP is not crucial for sperm motility and that glycolysis may be the main ATP supplier for this particular aspect of sperm function. However, there are contradictory data in the literature regarding sperm bioenergetics. The relevance of sperm mitochondria may thus be associated with their role in other physiological features, particularly with the production of ROS, which in controlled levels are needed for proper sperm function. Sperm mitochondria may also serve as intracellular Ca²⁺ stores, although their role in signalling is still unclear. PMID:23901129

  19. Sexing sperm of domestic animals.

    PubMed

    Espinosa-Cervantes, Román; Córdova-Izquierdo, Alejandro

    2013-01-01

    The ability to preselect or predetermine the sex of offspring prior to conception is a highly desired technological tool for assisted female breeding programs specifically for milk production, and in males, for meat production and increasing livestock numbers. The current technology is based on the well-known differences in X- and Y-sperm in the amount of DNA. The technology uses modified flow cytometric instrumentation for sorting X- and Y-bearing sperm. The method can be validated on the basis of live births, laboratory reanalysis of sorted sperm for DNA content, and embryo biopsy for sex determination. Currently, the sex of animals has been predetermined with 90 % accuracy by sexing spermatozoa. In the bovine breeding industry, flow cytometric sperm sexing has not fulfilled its original promise. Sexed sperm doses are too expensive for widespread application while the fertility of sexed sperm doses is lower than unsexed ones. Essentially all bovine sexed semen is frozen and then applied through artificial insemination (AI) or in vitro fertilization. There is still a need in the animal breeding industry to develop a technique for sperm sexing that provides sufficient spermatozoa for AI doses, does not compromise sperm fertility, and is widely applicable to a range of species. In this review, we will summarize the current state-of-the-art in sex preselection in domestic animals and some wildlife species using flow cytometric sperm-sorting of X from Y sperm based on DNA differences. PMID:22829354

  20. Ameliorative effect of quercetin against arsenic-induced sperm DNA damage and daily sperm production in adult male rats.

    PubMed

    Jahan, Sarwat; Rehman, Saima; Ullah, Hizb; Munawar, Asma; Ain, Qurat Ul; Iqbal, Tariq

    2016-07-01

    In this study, the protective effect of quercetin was evaluated against arsenic induced reproductive ailments in male rats. For this purpose, male rats (n = 5/group) weighing 180-250 g were used. First group served as control, second group received arsenic (50 ppm) in drinking water. Third group was treated with quercetin (50 mg/kg) alone, while fourth group received arsenic + quercetin. All treatments were carried out for 49 days. After treatment, animals were killed by decapitation; testis and epididymis were dissected out. Right epididymis was minced immediately for comet assay, while left epididymis was processed for histology. Similarly, right testis was homogenized for estimation of daily sperm production (DSP) and detection of metal concentration. The results of our research revealed that arsenic treatment did not cause any significant change in body weight and testicular volume. Quercetin treatment significantly prevented tissue deposition of arsenic within the testis. Arsenic treatment caused a significant reduction in DSP, however, in the arsenic + quercetin-treated group and quercetin alone-treated group, DSP was significantly high as compared to the arsenic-treated group. Histological study of epididymis showed empty lumen in arsenic-treated group while in arsenic + quercetin-treated group and quercetin alone-treated group, lumen were filled with sperm and were comparable to control. Sperm DNA damage, induced by arsenic, was significantly reversed toward control levels by supplementation of quercetin. These results suggest that quercetin not only prevents deposition of arsenic in tissues, but can also protect the sperm DNA damage. PMID:26524343

  1. Effects of metabolic rate and sperm competition on the fatty-acid composition of mammalian sperm.

    PubMed

    delBarco-Trillo, J; Roldan, E R S

    2014-01-01

    The sperm membrane is a key structure affecting sperm function and thus reproductive success. Spermatozoa are highly specialized and differentiated cells that undergo a long series of processes in the male and female reproductive tracts until they reach the site of fertilization. During this transit, the sperm membrane is prone to damage such as lipid peroxidation. The characteristics and performance of the sperm membrane are strongly determined by the fatty-acid composition of membrane phospholipids. Polyunsaturated fatty-acids (PUFAs) are the most prone to lipid peroxidation. Lipid peroxidation and other types of oxidative damage increase with higher metabolism and with higher levels of sperm competition due to the increased ATP production to fuel higher sperm velocities. Consequently, we hypothesized that, in order to avoid oxidative damage, and the ensuing impairment of sperm function, sperm cells exhibit a negative relationship between PUFA content and mass-specific metabolic rate (MSMR). We also hypothesized that higher sperm competition leads to a reduction in the proportion of sperm PUFAs. We performed a comparative study in mammals and found that high MSMR and high levels of sperm competition both promote a decrease in the proportion of PUFAs that are more prone to lipid peroxidation. The negative relationship between MSMR and these PUFAs in sperm cells is surprising, because a positive relationship is found in all other cell types so far investigated. Our results support the idea that the effects of MSMR and sperm competition on sperm function can operate at very different levels. PMID:24251445

  2. Increased N(6)-methyladenosine in Human Sperm RNA as a Risk Factor for Asthenozoospermia.

    PubMed

    Yang, Ying; Huang, Wei; Huang, Jing-Tao; Shen, Fan; Xiong, Jun; Yuan, Er-Feng; Qin, Shan-Shan; Zhang, Ming; Feng, Yu-Qi; Yuan, Bi-Feng; Liu, Song-Mei

    2016-01-01

    Male infertility is a worldwide medical problem. Asthenozoospermia is a common cause of infertility. Epigenetic modifications of DNA and histones have been shown to influence human infertility, but no research has explored whether N(6)-methyladenosine (m(6)A) level in RNA is associated with asthenozoospermia. Here, we collected a total of 52 semen samples, including 20 asthenozoospermia patients and 32 healthy controls. An LC-ESI-MS/MS method was used to detect m(6)A contents in sperm RNA, and real-time PCR was performed to determine the mRNA expression of demethylase (FTO, ALKBH5), methyltransferase (METTL3, METTL14, WTAP) and an m(6)A-selective-binding protein (YTHDF2). We found that m(6)A content (p = 0.033) and the mRNA expression of METTL3 (p = 0.016) and METTL14 (p = 0.025) in asthenozoospermia patients were significantly higher than those of controls. Increased m(6)A content was a risk factor for asthenozoospermia (odds ratio (OR) 3.229, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.178 - 8.853, p = 0.023). Moreover, m(6)A content was correlated with the expression of METTL3 (r = 0.303, p = 0.032) and with sperm motility (progressive motility: r = -0.288, p = 0.038; non-progressive motility: r = -0.293, p = 0.037; immotility: r = 0.387, p = 0.005). Our data suggest that increased m(6)A content is a risk factor for asthenozoospermia and affects sperm motility. Methyltransferases, particularly METTL3, play key roles in increasing m(6)A contents in sperm RNA. PMID:27072590

  3. Increased N6-methyladenosine in Human Sperm RNA as a Risk Factor for Asthenozoospermia

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Ying; Huang, Wei; Huang, Jing-Tao; Shen, Fan; Xiong, Jun; Yuan, Er-Feng; Qin, Shan-shan; Zhang, Ming; Feng, Yu-Qi; Yuan, Bi-Feng; Liu, Song-Mei

    2016-01-01

    Male infertility is a worldwide medical problem. Asthenozoospermia is a common cause of infertility. Epigenetic modifications of DNA and histones have been shown to influence human infertility, but no research has explored whether N6-methyladenosine (m6A) level in RNA is associated with asthenozoospermia. Here, we collected a total of 52 semen samples, including 20 asthenozoospermia patients and 32 healthy controls. An LC-ESI-MS/MS method was used to detect m6A contents in sperm RNA, and real-time PCR was performed to determine the mRNA expression of demethylase (FTO, ALKBH5), methyltransferase (METTL3, METTL14, WTAP) and an m6A-selective-binding protein (YTHDF2). We found that m6A content (p = 0.033) and the mRNA expression of METTL3 (p = 0.016) and METTL14 (p = 0.025) in asthenozoospermia patients were significantly higher than those of controls. Increased m6A content was a risk factor for asthenozoospermia (odds ratio (OR) 3.229, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.178 – 8.853, p = 0.023). Moreover, m6A content was correlated with the expression of METTL3 (r = 0.303, p = 0.032) and with sperm motility (progressive motility: r = −0.288, p = 0.038; non-progressive motility: r = −0.293, p = 0.037; immotility: r = 0.387, p = 0.005). Our data suggest that increased m6A content is a risk factor for asthenozoospermia and affects sperm motility. Methyltransferases, particularly METTL3, play key roles in increasing m6A contents in sperm RNA. PMID:27072590

  4. Sperm competition and sperm length influence the rate of mammalian spermatogenesis.

    PubMed

    Ramm, Steven A; Stockley, Paula

    2010-04-23

    Sperm competition typically favours an increased investment in testes, because larger testes can produce more sperm to provide a numerical advantage in competition with rival ejaculates. However, interspecific variation in testis size cannot be equated directly with variation in sperm production rate--which is the trait ultimately selected under sperm competition--because there are also differences between species in the proportion of spermatogenic tissue contained within the testis and in the time it takes to produce each sperm. Focusing on the latter source of variation, we provide phylogenetically controlled evidence for mammals that species with relatively large testes (and hence a high level of sperm competition) have a shorter duration of the cycle of the seminiferous epithelium and consequently a faster rate of spermatogenesis, enabling males to produce more sperm per unit testis per unit time. Moreover, we identify an independent negative relationship between sperm length and the rate of spermatogenesis, such that spermatogenesis takes longer in species with longer sperm. We conclude that sperm competition selects for both larger testes and a faster rate of spermatogenesis to increase overall sperm production, and that an evolutionary trade-off between sperm size and numbers may be mediated via constraints on the rate of spermatogenesis imposed by selection for longer sperm. PMID:19828495

  5. Increasing Public Library Productivity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Samuelson, Howard

    1981-01-01

    Suggests ways of improving productivity for public libraries faced with increased accountability, dwindling revenues, and continuing inflation. Techniques described include work simplification, work analysis, improved management, and employee motivation. (RAA)

  6. Bupropion treatment increases epididymal contractility and impairs sperm quality with no effects on the epididymal sperm transit time of male rats.

    PubMed

    Cavariani, Marilia Martins; de Almeida Kiguti, Luiz Ricardo; de Lima Rosa, Josiane; de Araújo Leite, Gabriel Adan; Silva, Patrícia Villela E; Pupo, André Sampaio; De Grava Kempinas, Wilma

    2015-09-01

    Bupropion is a dopamine (DA) and norepinephrine (NE) reuptake inhibitor used as smoking cessation and antidepressant drug with a lower incidence of male sexual dysfunction. We showed previously that sibutramine, a norepinephrine/serotonine reuptake inhibitor, reduced male rat fertility. As there are no studies evaluating the impact of bupropion treatment on spermatic parameters and male fertility, we evaluated the effects of bupropion treatment (15 and 30 mg kg(-1), 30 days) on sexual behavior, spermatic parameters and fertility of male Wistar rats and on the epididymal duct in vitro contractility. Bupropion 15 mg kg(-1) increased the serum luteinizing hormone level and the epididymal duct contractility, but the sperm quality was not affected. At 30 mg kg(-1) bupropion impaired sperm quality increasing the incidence of non-progressive sperm. The male sexual behavior and fertility were not modified at both bupropion doses. These results, in rats, suggest the importance of studies evaluating the effects of bupropion on the human male sperm quality. PMID:25645087

  7. Differential investment into testes and sperm production in alternative male reproductive tactics of the African striped mouse (Rhabdomys pumilio).

    PubMed

    Schradin, Carsten; Eder, Susanne; Müller, Karin

    2012-05-01

    Males that follow alternative reproductive tactics might differ in their investment into testis development and sperm production. The resource-allocation hypothesis predicts that males following a sneaker tactic should invest more into sperm production than dominant territorial males which should invest more into mate guarding. This hypothesis is supported by studies in species where individual males cannot switch between tactics (fixed tactics). Here we present the first data for a species where males can switch between tactics (plastic tactics). We studied African striped mice (Rhabdomys pumilio) in captivity, mimicking three tactics observed in the field: philopatric group-living males, singly-housed males representing roaming males, and group-living breeding males. We measured quantitative and qualitative reproductive traits, as well as serum and testis hormone concentrations. We found no support for the resource-allocation hypothesis, since breeding and singly-housed males invested similarly in testes and sperm. However, philopatric males had significantly smaller testes and epididymides, lower sperm counts, lower testosterone and higher corticosterone levels than males of the two other tactics. Philopatric males did not reach a larger body mass than singly-housed males with well developed reproductive traits, indicating that they did not trade investment in sperm production against growth. Interestingly, testis testosterone concentrations of philopatric males did not differ from those of other males. Our data suggest that philopatric males are reproductively suppressed by the breeding male, but might be ready to increase their serum testosterone levels when social and environmental conditions allow for this physiological switch accompanying the behavioral switch between tactics. PMID:22445749

  8. Reinitiation of sperm production in gonadotropin-suppressed normal men by administration of follicle-stimulating hormone

    PubMed Central

    Matsumoto, Alvin M.; Karpas, Anthony E.; Paulsen, C. Alvin; Bremner, William J.

    1983-01-01

    The specific roles of luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in controlling human spermatogenesis are poorly understood. We studied the effect of an experimentally induced, selective LH deficiency on sperm production in normal men. After a 3-mo control period, five men received 200 mg testosterone enanthate (T) i.m./wk to suppress LH, FSH, and sperm counts. Then, while continuing T at the same dosage, human FSH (hFSH) was administered simultaneously to replace FSH activity, leaving LH activity suppressed. Four men received 100 IU hFSH s.c. daily plus T (high dosage hFSH) for 13-14 wk, while one man received 50 IU hFSH s.c. daily plus T (low dosage hFSH) for 5 mo. The effect on sperm production of the selective LH deficiency produced by hFSH plus T administration was assessed. In the four men who received the high dosage hFSH regimen, sperm counts were markedly suppressed during T administration alone (0.30.2 million/cm3, meanSE, compared with 9412 million/cm3 during the control period). Serum LH bioactivity (determined by in vitro mouse Leydig cell assay) was suppressd (1407 ng/ml compared with 37565 ng/ml during control period) and FSH levels (by radioimmunoassay) were reduced to undetectable levels (<25 ng/ml, compared with 9821 ng/ml during control period) during T alone. With the addition of 100 IU hFSH s.c. daily to T, sperm counts increased significantly in all subjects (337 million/cm3, P < 0.02 compared with T alone). However, no subject consistently achieved sperm counts within his control range. Sperm morphology and motility were normal in all four men and in vitro sperm penetration of hamster ova was normal in the two men tested during the hFSH-plus-T period. During high-dosage hFSH administration, serum FSH levels increased to 27344 ng/ml (just above the normal range for FSH, 30-230 ng/ml). Serum LH bioactivity was not significantly changed compared with the T-alone period (1479 ng/ml). After the hFSH-plus-T period, all four men continued to receive T alone after hFSH was stopped. Sperm counts were again severely suppressed (0.20.1 million/cm3), demonstrating the dependence of sperm production on hFSH administration. Serum T and estradiol (E2) levels increased two- to threefold during T administration alone compared with the control period. Both T and E2 levels remained unchanged with the addition of hFSH to T, confirming the lack of significant LH activity in the hFSH preparation. In the one man who received low dosage hFSH treatment, sperm counts were reduced to severely oligospermic levels, serum FSH was suppressed to undetectable levels, and serum LH bioactivity was markedly lowered during the T-alone period. With the addition of 50 IU hFSH s.c. daily to T, sperm counts increased, to a mean of 113 million/cm3. During this period, serum FSH levels increased to a mean of 10511 ng/ml (slightly above this man's control range and within the normal adult range), while LH bioactivity remain suppressed. After hFSH was stopped and T alone was continued, sperm counts were again severely reduced to azoospermic levels. We conclude that FSH alone is sufficient to reinitiate sperm production in man during gonadotropin suppression induced by exogenous T administration. FSH may stimulate sperm production in this setting by increasing intratesticular T through androgenbinding protein production or by increasing the sensitivity of the spermatogenic response to the intratesticular T present during exogenous T administration. PMID:6411766

  9. Productivity increases in science

    SciTech Connect

    Danko, J.E.; Young, J.K.; Molton, P.M.; Dirks, J.A.

    1993-02-01

    The study quantifies the impact on the cost of experimentation of synergistic advancements in instrumentation, theory, and computation over the last two decades. The study finds that the productivity of experimental investigation (experimental results/$) is increasing as science is transformed from a linear, isolated approach to a hierarchical, multidisciplinary approach. Developments such as massively parallel processors coupled with instrumental systems with multiple probes and diverse data analysis capabilities will further this transformation and increase the productivity of scientific studies. The complexities and scale of today's scientific challenges are much greater than in the past, however, so that the costs of research are increasing. Even though science is much more productive in terms of the experimental results, the challenges facing scientific investigators are increasing at an even faster pace. New approaches to infrastructure investments must capitalize on the changing dynamics of research and allow the scientific community to maximize gains in productivity so that complex problems can be attacked cost-effectively. Research strategies that include user facilities and coordinated experimental, computational, and theoretical research are needed.

  10. Productivity increases in science

    SciTech Connect

    Danko, J.E.; Young, J.K.; Molton, P.M.; Dirks, J.A.

    1993-02-01

    The study quantifies the impact on the cost of experimentation of synergistic advancements in instrumentation, theory, and computation over the last two decades. The study finds that the productivity of experimental investigation (experimental results/$) is increasing as science is transformed from a linear, isolated approach to a hierarchical, multidisciplinary approach. Developments such as massively parallel processors coupled with instrumental systems with multiple probes and diverse data analysis capabilities will further this transformation and increase the productivity of scientific studies. The complexities and scale of today`s scientific challenges are much greater than in the past, however, so that the costs of research are increasing. Even though science is much more productive in terms of the experimental results, the challenges facing scientific investigators are increasing at an even faster pace. New approaches to infrastructure investments must capitalize on the changing dynamics of research and allow the scientific community to maximize gains in productivity so that complex problems can be attacked cost-effectively. Research strategies that include user facilities and coordinated experimental, computational, and theoretical research are needed.

  11. Proenkephalin products are stored in the sperm acrosome and may function in fertilization.

    PubMed Central

    Kew, D; Muffly, K E; Kilpatrick, D L

    1990-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that spermatogenic cells are a major source of testicular RNA encoding the opioid peptide precursor proenkephalin, suggesting that proenkephalin-derived peptides may function as intratesticular paracrine factors produced by male germ cells. However, direct evidence for the production of proenkephalin by spermatogenic cells has been lacking. In this report, we have used polysome profile analysis, peptide quantitation, and immunocytochemistry to show that proenkephalin products are synthesized during spermatogenesis and are retained within spermatozoa of humans, hamsters, rats, and sheep. We further show that these peptides are stored in the sperm acrosome and are depleted from sperm following the acrosome reaction, an exocytotic event required for fertilization. Proenkephalin products thus may serve a dual function as sperm acrosomal factors released during the fertilization process as well as intratesticular regulators secreted by spermatogenic cells. Images PMID:1701253

  12. Anopheles arabiensis sperm production after genetic manipulation, dieldrin treatment, and irradiation.

    PubMed

    Damiens, D; Vreysen, M J B; Gilles, J R L

    2013-03-01

    The use of the sterile insect technique relies on the release of sterilized mass-reared male insects which, before field releases, endure several unnatural treatments. In the case of Anopheles arabiensis (Patton) sterile insect technique program in Sudan, the genetic background of the original strain was first changed to create a genetic sexing strain that is based on a dieldrin-resistant mutation. Secondly, the eggs of the genetic sexing strain require treatment with dieldrin to allow complete elimination of female L1 larvae to enable the release of males only. Finally, male mosquitoes receive an irradiation dose of 70 Gy as pupae for sterilization. The effects of these treatments on sperm production were tested separately and in combination. Irradiation alone significantly decreased the initial sperm number and prevented new sperm production. However, the dieldrin treatment, aimed at eliminating females, appears to have an unexpected radioprotectant effect. PMID:23540119

  13. Role of increased male age in IVF and egg donation: is sperm DNA fragmentation responsible?

    PubMed

    Humm, Kathryn C; Sakkas, Denny

    2013-01-01

    The well documented increase in age that women conceive their first child has detracted from a similar change observed in males. As both males and females decide to conceive later, the question of whether this may impact their fertility individually and as a couple becomes even more crucial. A paternal age of over 40 years at the time of conception is a frequently quoted male age threshold, however, currently there is no clearly accepted definition of advanced paternal age or even a consensus on the implications of advancing male age. In this paper, we review some of the potential risks to the offspring of advancing male age and examine. The data available regarding pregnancy outcomes based on paternal age in both the fertile and infertile populations. Within the infertile population specifically, we examine the association between male age and outcomes based on treatment modality, including intrauterine insemination (IUI), in vitro fertilization (IVF), and donor oocyte IVF. Finally, we discuss the various mechanisms by which male age may impact sperm and fertility potential, including sperm DNA damage. PMID:23273987

  14. Zebrafish Reproduction: Revisiting In Vitro Fertilization to Increase Sperm Cryopreservation Success

    PubMed Central

    Hagedorn, Mary; Carter, Virginia L.

    2011-01-01

    Although conventional cryopreservation is a proven method for long-term, safe storage of genetic material, protocols used by the zebrafish community are not standardized and yield inconsistent results, thereby putting the security of many genotypes in individual laboratories and stock centers at risk. An important challenge for a successful zebrafish sperm cryopreservation program is the large variability in the post-thaw in vitro fertilization success (0 to 80%). But how much of this variability was due to the reproductive traits of the in vitro fertilization process, and not due to the cryopreservation process? These experiments only assessed the in vitro process with fresh sperm, but yielded the basic metrics needed for successful in vitro fertilization using cryopreserved sperm, as well. We analyzed the reproductive traits for zebrafish males with a strict body condition range. It did not correlate with sperm volume, or motility (P>0.05), but it did correlate with sperm concentration. Younger males produced more concentrated sperm (P<0.05). To minimize the wastage of sperm during the in vitro fertilization process, 106 cells/ml was the minimum sperm concentration needed to achieve an in vitro fertilization success of ≥ 70%. During the in vitro process, pooling sperm did not reduce fertilization success (P>0.05), but pooling eggs reduced it by approximately 30 to 50% (P<0.05). This reduction in fertilization success was due not to the pooling of the females' eggs, but to the type of tools used to handle the eggs. Recommendations to enhance the in vitro process for zebrafish include: 1) using males of a body condition closer to 1.5 for maximal sperm concentration; 2) minimizing sperm wastage by using a working sperm concentration of 106 motile cells/ml for in vitro fertilization; and 3) never using metal or sharp-edged tools to handle eggs prior to fertilization. PMID:21698162

  15. SPERM PRODUCTION IN TARNISHED PLANT BUGS, LYGUS LINEOLARIS (PALISOT DE BEAUVOIS), FOLLOWING IRRADIATION

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    With recent advances that allow their mass rearing, tarnished plant bugs (TPB), Lygus lineolaris (Palisot de Beauvois) are being considered as subjects for mass sterilization and release. Because sperm production in sterile insects has been cited as an important component of competitiveness, it was ...

  16. Effects of increased paternal age on sperm quality, reproductive outcome and associated epigenetic risks to offspring.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Rakesh; Agarwal, Ashok; Rohra, Vikram K; Assidi, Mourad; Abu-Elmagd, Muhammad; Turki, Rola F

    2015-01-01

    Over the last decade, there has been a significant increase in average paternal age when the first child is conceived, either due to increased life expectancy, widespread use of contraception, late marriages and other factors. While the effect of maternal ageing on fertilization and reproduction is well known and several studies have shown that women over 35 years have a higher risk of infertility, pregnancy complications, spontaneous abortion, congenital anomalies, and perinatal complications. The effect of paternal age on semen quality and reproductive function is controversial for several reasons. First, there is no universal definition for advanced paternal ageing. Secondly, the literature is full of studies with conflicting results, especially for the most common parameters tested. Advancing paternal age also has been associated with increased risk of genetic disease. Our exhaustive literature review has demonstrated negative effects on sperm quality and testicular functions with increasing paternal age. Epigenetics changes, DNA mutations along with chromosomal aneuploidies have been associated with increasing paternal age. In addition to increased risk of male infertility, paternal age has also been demonstrated to impact reproductive and fertility outcomes including a decrease in IVF/ICSI success rate and increasing rate of preterm birth. Increasing paternal age has shown to increase the incidence of different types of disorders like autism, schizophrenia, bipolar disorders, and childhood leukemia in the progeny. It is thereby essential to educate the infertile couples on the disturbing links between increased paternal age and rising disorders in their offspring, to better counsel them during their reproductive years. PMID:25928123

  17. Gamete Therapeutics: Recombinant Protein Adsorption by Sperm for Increasing Fertility via Artificial Insemination

    PubMed Central

    Alvarez-Gallardo, Horacio; Kjelland, Michael E.; Moreno, Juan F.; Welsh, Thomas H.; Randel, Ronald D.; Lammoglia, Miguel A.; Prez-Martnez, Mario; Lara-Sagahn, Alma V.; Espern-Sumano, A. Enrique; Romo, Salvador

    2013-01-01

    A decrease in fertility can have a negative economic impact, both locally and over a broader geographical scope, and this is especially the case with regard to the cattle industry. Therefore, much interest exists in evaluating proteins that might be able to increase the fertility of sperm. Heparin binding proteins (HBPs), specifically the fertility associated antigen (FAA) and the Type-2 tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP-2), act to favor the capacitation and acrosome reaction and perhaps even modulate the immune systems response toward the sperm. The objective of this research was to determine the effect on fertility of adding recombinant FAA (rFAA) and recombinant TIMP-2 (rTIMP-2) to bovine semen before cryopreservation for use in an artificial insemination (AI) program in a tropical environment. For this experiment, 100 crossbred (Bos taurus x Bos indicus) heifers were selected based on their estrus cycle, body condition score (BCS), of 4 to 6 on a scale of 1 to 9, and adequate anatomical conformation evaluated by pelvic and genital (normal) measurements. Heifers were synchronized using estradiol benzoate (EB), Celosil (PGF2?) (Shering-Plough) and a controlled internal drug release (CIDR) device was inserted that contained progesterone. Inseminations were performed in two groups at random, 50 animals per group. The control group was inseminated with conventional semen. The treatment group was inseminated with semen containing rFAA (25 g/mL) and rTIMP-2 (25 g/mL). In the control group a 16% pregnancy rate was obtained versus a 40% pregnancy rate for the HBP treatment group, resulting in a significant difference (P?=?0.0037). Given the results herein, one may conclude that the HBPs can increase fertility and could be an option for cattle in tropical conditions; however, one needs to consider the environment, nutrition, and the genetic interaction affecting the final result in whatever reproductive program that is implemented. PMID:23762288

  18. The role of mitochondria in energy production for human sperm motility.

    PubMed

    Piomboni, P; Focarelli, R; Stendardi, A; Ferramosca, A; Zara, V

    2012-04-01

    Mitochondria of spermatozoa are different from the corresponding organelles of somatic cells, in both their morphology and biochemistry. The biochemical differences are essentially related to the existence of specific enzyme isoforms, which are characterized by peculiar kinetic and regulatory properties. As mitochondrial energy metabolism is a key factor supporting several sperm functions, these organelles host critical metabolic pathways during germ cell development and fertilization. Furthermore, spermatozoa can use different substrates, and therefore activate different metabolic pathways, depending on the available substrates and the physico-chemical conditions in which they operate. This versatility is critical to ensure fertilization success. However, the most valuable aspect of mitochondria function in all types of cells is the production of chemical energy in the form of ATP which can be used, in the case of spermatozoa, for sustaining sperm motility. The latter, on the other hand, represents one of the major determinants of male fertility. Accordingly, the presence of structural and functional alterations in mitochondria from asthenozoospermic subjects confirms the important role played by these organelles in energy maintenance of sperm motility. The present study gives an overview of the current knowledge on the energy-producing metabolic pathways operating inside human sperm mitochondria and critically analyse the differences with respect to somatic mitochondria. Such a comparison has also been carried out between the functional characteristics of human sperm mitochondria and those of other mammalian species. A deeper understanding of mitochondrial energy metabolism could open up new avenues of investigation in bioenergetics of human sperm mitochondria, both in physiological and pathological conditions. PMID:21950496

  19. SIGNIFICANCE OF INCORPORATING MEASURES OF SPERM PRODUCTION AND FUNCTION INTO RAT TOXICOLOGY STUDIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The rat is the preferred species for reproductive toxicity testing. The inclusion of measures of rat sperm quality, such as motility and morphology, into reproductive test protocols often increases the sensitivity of the test to detect effects, and provides the toxicologist and ...

  20. Effects of thymoquinone on testicular structure and sperm production in male obese rats.

    PubMed

    Tfek, Nur Hande; Altunkaynak, Muhammad Eyp; Altunkaynak, Berrin Zuhal; Kaplan, Sleyman

    2015-01-01

    Thymoquinone (TQ) is a phytochemical compound found in the plant Nigella sativa. It has antioxidant and anti-cancer effects. This study investigated the effects of TQ on obesity and testicular structure of high-fat-diet (HFD) fed rats. Obese control (OC) and obese thymoquinone (OT) groups were fed a special diet containing 40% of total calories from fat. Non-obese control (NC) and non-thymoquinone (NT) groups were fed a standard diet for nine weeks. Then, intraperitoneal TQ injections were carried out to the OT and NT groups for six weeks and testes were removed. Catalase and myeloperoxidase activity were determined in rat testis tissue. Stereological, histopathological, and immunohistochemical changes were evaluated in the testes of the rats. In stereological studies, mean volumes of testis and seminiferous tubules, the number of spermatogenic cells and also Leydig cells in the OC group were reduced, but these values significantly increased in the OT group. Apoptotic cells were observed in the OC group in comparison to the OT group. The number of healthy sperms were reduced in the OC group, whereas the majority showed anomalies in the head, neck, and tail. The number of healthy sperm was increased and the anomalies significantly reduced by using TQ in both the NT, and especially the OT group. TQ like antioxidants may improve fertility by means of increasing the healthy sperm number and preventing sperm anomalies. PMID:26043060

  1. Sperm competition leads to functional adaptations in avian testes to maximize sperm quantity and quality.

    PubMed

    Lüpold, Stefan; Wistuba, Joachim; Damm, Oliver S; Rivers, James W; Birkhead, Tim R

    2011-05-01

    The outcome of sperm competition (i.e. competition for fertilization between ejaculates from different males) is primarily determined by the relative number and quality of rival sperm. Therefore, the testes are under strong selection to maximize both sperm number and quality, which are likely to result in trade-offs in the process of spermatogenesis (e.g. between the rate of spermatogenesis and sperm length or sperm energetics). Comparative studies have shown positive associations between the level of sperm competition and both relative testis size and the proportion of seminiferous (sperm-producing) tissue within the testes. However, it is unknown how the seminiferous tissue itself or the process of spermatogenesis might evolve in response to sperm competition. Therefore, we quantified the different germ cell types and Sertoli cells (SC) in testes to assess the efficiency of sperm production and its associations with sperm length and mating system across 10 species of New World Blackbirds (Icteridae) that show marked variation in sperm length and sperm competition level. We found that species under strong sperm competition generate more round spermatids (RS)/spermatogonium and have SC that support a greater number of germ cells, both of which are likely to increase the maximum sperm output. However, fewer of the RS appeared to elongate to mature spermatozoa in these species, which might be the result of selection for discarding spermatids with undesirable characteristics as they develop. Our results suggest that, in addition to overall size and gross morphology, testes have also evolved functional adaptations to maximize sperm quantity and quality. PMID:21307271

  2. Increasing mobile radiography productivity.

    PubMed

    Wong, Edward; Lung, Ngan Tsz; Ng, Kris; Jeor, Patrick

    2013-01-01

    Mobile radiography using computed radiography (CR) cassettes is a common equipment combination with a workflow bottleneck limited by location of CR readers. Advent of direct digital radiography (DDR) mobile x-ray machines removes this limitation by immediate image review and quality control. Through the use of key performance indicators (KPIs), the increase in efficiency can be quantified. PMID:23986937

  3. Small testicles with impaired production of sperm in adult male survivors of childhood malignancies

    SciTech Connect

    Siimes, M.A.; Rautonen, J. )

    1990-03-15

    Testicular size has been studied in 66 adult men who survived leukemia (n = 14) or cancer (n = 52) in childhood. Mean follow-up time was 14.5 years. The testicular size was measured as the length and breadth in mm; testicular volume index was calculated. Serum concentrations of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), testosterone, and prolactin were measured. A sperm sample was obtained from 46 men. The patients had smaller testicles than healthy medical students; 51 had small testicles. The size was the smallest in patients who survived leukemia. Multivariate analysis showed that the variables with independent effects on testicular size were cranial and testicular irradiation and therapy with cyclophosphamide. Sperm production was dependent on testicular size. We conclude that determination of serum FSH combined with testicular size may offer a practical approach for predicting the subsequent testicular damage in boys with malignancies.

  4. Performance of Rodent Spermatozoa Over Time Is Enhanced by Increased ATP Concentrations: The Role of Sperm Competition.

    PubMed

    Tourmente, Maximiliano; Villar-Moya, Pilar; Varea-Sánchez, María; Luque-Larena, Juan J; Rial, Eduardo; Roldan, Eduardo R S

    2015-09-01

    Sperm viability, acrosome integrity, motility, and swimming velocity are determinants of male fertility and exhibit an extreme degree of variation among closely related species. Many of these sperm parameters are associated with sperm ATP content, which has led to predictions of trade-offs between ATP content and sperm motility and velocity. Selective pressures imposed by sperm competition have been proposed as evolutionary causes of this pattern of diversity in sperm traits. Here, we examine variation in sperm viability, acrosome integrity, motility, swimming velocity, and ATP content over time, among 18 species of closely related muroid rodents, to address the following questions: (a) Do sperm from closely related species vary in ATP content after a period of incubation? (b) Are these differences in ATP levels related to differences in other sperm traits? (c) Are differences in ATP content and sperm performance over time explained by the levels of sperm competition in these species? Our results revealed a high degree of interspecific variability in changes in sperm ATP content, acrosome integrity, sperm motility and swimming velocity over time. Additionally, species with high sperm competition levels were able to maintain higher levels of sperm motility and faster sperm swimming velocity when they were incubated under conditions that support sperm survival. Furthermore, we show that the maintenance of such levels of sperm performance is correlated with the ability of sperm to sustain high concentrations of intracellular ATP over time. Thus, sperm competition may have an important role maximizing sperm metabolism and performance and, ultimately, the fertilizing capacity of spermatozoa. PMID:26157072

  5. Offspring production with cryopreserved sperm from a live-bearing fish Xiphophorus maculatus and implications for female fecundity✰

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Huiping; Savage, Markita G.; Hazlewood, Leona; Walter, Ronald B.; Tiersch, Terrence R.

    2011-01-01

    Xiphophorus fishes are well-established models for biomedical research of spontaneous or induced tumors, and their use in research dates back to the 1930’s. Currently, 58 well-pedigreed lines exist among 24 Xiphophorus species housed as live animals at the Xiphophorus Genetic Stock Center. The technique of sperm cryopreservation has been applied to preserve these valuable genetic resources, and production of offspring has been reported with cryopreserved sperm in two species (X. helleri and X. couchianus). The goal of this research was to establish protocols for sperm cryopreservation and artificial insemination that yield live young in X. maculatus, a widely used research species. The objectives were to: 1) collect basic biological characteristics of males, and quantify the sperm production yield after crushing of dissected testis; 2) cryopreserve sperm from X. maculatus by adapting as necessary the protocols for sperm cryopreservation of X. helleri and X. couchianus; 3) use cryopreserved sperm to inseminate virgin females of X maculatus and other species (X. helleri and X. couchianus), and 4) compare experimental trials over a 3-year period to identify opportunities for improving female fecundity. In total, 117 males were used in this study with a standard length of 2.5 ± 0.3 cm (mean ± SD), body weight of 0.474 ± 0.149 g, and dissected testis weight of 7.1 ± 3.7 mg. Calculation of sperm availability showed 5.9 ± 2.8 × 106 sperm cells per mg of testis weight. Offspring were produced from cryopreserved sperm. Male-to-male variation (1-70%) was observed in post-thaw motility despite little variation in motility before freezing (60-90%) or genetic variation (~100 generations of sib-mating). Comparisons of biological factors of males did not have significant correlations with the production of live young, and the influence of females on production of young were identified from the comparison of artificial insemination over the 3 yr. Overall, this study describes offspring production from cryopreserved sperm in a third species of Xiphophorus fishes, and identifies the opportunities for improving female fecundity which is essential for establishment of germplasm repositories for Xiphophorus fishes. PMID:21616165

  6. Nerve growth factor promotes human sperm motility in vitro by increasing the movement distance and the number of A grade spermatozoa.

    PubMed

    Lin, Kai; Ding, Xue-Feng; Shi, Cui-Ge; Zeng, Dan; QuZong, SuoLang; Liu, Shu-Hong; Wu, Yan; LuoBu, GeSang; Fan, Ming; Zhao, Y-Q

    2015-11-01

    Nerve growth factor (NGF) was first found in the central nervous system and is now well known for its multiple pivotal roles in the nervous system and immune system. However, more and more evidences showed that NGF and its receptors TrkA and p75 were also found in the head and tail of spermatozoa, which indicate the possible effect of NGF on the sperm motility. Nevertheless, the exact role of NGF in the human sperm motility remains unclear until now. In this study, we investigated the effect of NGF on human sperm motility, and the results showed that NGF could promote human sperm motility in vitro by increasing the movement distance and the number of A grade spermatozoa. Further analysis demonstrated that NGF promoted the sperm motility in a dose-dependent manner in vitro. These results may facilitate the further studies on human fertility and assisted reproduction techniques. PMID:25418418

  7. Sperm competition and the evolution of sperm design in mammals

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The influence of sperm competition upon sperm size has been a controversial issue during the last 20 years which remains unresolved for mammals. The hypothesis that, when ejaculates compete with rival males, an increase in sperm size would make sperm more competitive because it would increase sperm swimming speed, has generated contradictory results from both theoretical and empirical studies. In addition, the debate has extended to which sperm components should increase in size: the midpiece to accommodate more mitochondria and produce more energy to fuel motility, or the principal piece to generate greater propulsion forces. Results In this study we examined the influence of sperm competition upon sperm design in mammals using a much larger data set (226 species) than in previous analyses, and we corrected for phylogenetic effects by using a more complete and resolved phylogeny, and more robust phylogenetic control methods. Our results show that, as sperm competition increases, all sperm components increase in an integrated manner and sperm heads become more elongated. The increase in sperm length was found to be associated with enhanced swimming velocity, an adaptive trait under sperm competition. Conclusions We conclude that sperm competition has played an important role in the evolution of sperm design in mammals, and discuss why previous studies have failed to detect it. PMID:21232104

  8. Treatment of GnRHa-implanted Senegalese sole (Solea senegalensis) with 11-ketoandrostenedione stimulates spermatogenesis and increases sperm motility.

    PubMed

    Agulleiro, Maria J; Scott, Alexander P; Duncan, Neil; Mylonas, Constantinos C; Cerdà, Joan

    2007-08-01

    The effect of 11-ketoandrostenedione (OA) on plasma concentrations of sexual steroids and spermatogenesis of Senegalese sole (Solea senegalensis) implanted with gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) was investigated. Males were treated with saline (control) or with GnRHa implants (50 mug kg(-1)) in the presence or absence of OA (2 or 7 mg kg(-1)) during twenty eight days. Treatment with GnRHa alone slightly stimulated spermatogenesis and milt production with respect to controls, and this was associated with a transient elevation of plasma 11-ketotestosterone (11-KT) at day seven and an increase of 5beta-reduced metabolite(s) of 17,20beta-dihydroxy-pregn-4-en-3-one (17,20betaP) at day twenty eight. However, treatment with GnRHa+OA increased plasma concentrations of 11-KT and free+sulphated 5beta-reduced metabolites of 17,20betaP at days seven, fourteen and twenty one. After twenty eight days, the testis of GnRHa+OA-treated fish showed a lower number of spermatogonia B and spermatocytes I, and a higher number of spermatids, than fish treated with GnRHa alone. In addition, the motility of spermatozoa produced by GnRHa+OA males was enhanced by 2-fold with respect to controls or GnRHa males. These results suggest that treatment of Senegalese sole with GnRHa+OA stimulates spermatogenesis resulting in more motile sperm. Such effects could be mediated by an increased synthesis of 11-KT and/or 17,20betaP in the testis but further studies will be required to elucidate the specific mechanism involved. PMID:17360211

  9. Application of a microfluidic sperm sorter to in vitro production of dairy cattle sex-sorted embryos.

    PubMed

    Li, Jingchun; Zhu, Sibing; He, Xianjing; Sun, Rui; He, Qianyu; Gan, Yi; Liu, Shengjun; Funahashi, Hiroaki; Li, Yanbing

    2016-04-15

    Viable sperm from sex-sorted semen without centrifugal treatment was separated by a microfluidic sperm sorter (MFSS) for IVF to improve in vitro embryo production of dairy cattle. The MFSS was originally developed to isolate motile human sperm by two laminar flows in the micro-channel (there are four chambers in an MFSS. Chamber A is the inlet for semen, chamber B is the inlet for the medium, chamber C is the exit chamber for motile sperm, and chamber D is the outlet for nonmotile sperm). Sex-sorted sperm were adjusted to 1 × 10(7) spermatozoa/mL (2 million cells/dose, sperm motility was 30% above after thawing). In a first experiment, diluted sex-sorted semen was mixed with modified Medium199(mM199) containing 5-mM caffeine for 5 minutes, resulting in variations in sperm concentration and quality parameters at chambers A, C, and D. In a second experiment, medium containing sperm from three MFSS chambers was collected and mitochondrial activity of the sperm was determined by flow cytometry, the relative activity of sperm mitochondria in chamber C (1.56 ± 0.03) was the highest in three observation areas (P < 0.05). Thus, sperm motility and mitochondrial activity of sperm was high in chamber C. In a third experiment, different concentrations of sperm were added to chamber A and dairy cattle IVM oocytes were placed in chamber C, where motile spermatozoa will accumulate, with mM199 containing 5-mM caffeine for 5 minutes, and then cultured in caffeine-free mM199 for 8 hours. The results showed that sperm penetration rate, the monospermic penetration rate, and blastocyst rate of the 10 × 10(6) group (10 × 10(6) sperm/mL) were higher than in the 1 × 10(6) and 5 × 10(6) groups (P < 0.05). In the last experiment, we compared sperm penetration in the MFSS-IVF system with a modified standard IVF method (cocultured in droplets for 8 hours). The normal fertilization index (the ratio of monospermic oocytes to the number of oocytes examined) 8 hours after insemination was higher in the MFSS-IVF system than the modified standard IVF system (P < 0.05). Developmental competence of fertilized oocytes to the blastocyst stage was also higher in the MFSS-IVF system (40.12% ± 2.61%) than the modified standard IVF technique (24.55% ± 4.54%). These results demonstrate that a short coculture of dairy cattle oocytes with isolated motile sex-sorted spermatozoa gradually accumulated in the MFSS device improves the efficiencies of normally produced fertilized embryos and blastocyst formation. PMID:26768540

  10. Electroejaculation increases low molecular weight proteins in seminal plasma modifying sperm quality in Corriedale rams.

    PubMed

    Ledesma, A; Manes, J; Cesari, A; Alberio, R; Hozbor, F

    2014-04-01

    This study was conducted to evaluate the effect of seminal collection method (artificial vagina or electroejaculation) on the protein composition of seminal plasma and sperm quality parameters in Corriedale rams. To address this question, we assessed the effect of seminal collection method on motility, plasma membrane integrity and functionality, mitochondrial functionality and the decondensation state of nuclear chromatin in sperm cells. Volume, pH, osmolarity, protein concentration, total protein content and protein profile using sodium dodecyl sulphate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) and 2-D polyacrylamide electrophoresis of seminal plasma collected with artificial vagina and electroejaculation were also analysed. The main findings from this study were that ejaculates obtained with electroejaculation had (i) a higher number of spermatozoa with intact plasma membrane and functional mitochondria and (ii) a higher proportion of seminal plasma, total protein content and relative abundance of low molecular weight proteins than ejaculates obtained with artificial vagina. Five of these proteins were identified by mass spectrometry: binder of sperm 5 precursor; RSVP14; RSVP22; epididymal secretory protein E1 and clusterin. One protein spot with molecular weight of approximately 31 kDa and isoelectric point of 4.8 was only found in the seminal plasma from electroejaculation. PMID:24494601

  11. Sperm morphology and sperm velocity in passerine birds.

    PubMed

    Lüpold, Stefan; Calhim, Sara; Immler, Simone; Birkhead, Tim R

    2009-03-22

    Sperm velocity is one of the main determinants of the outcome of sperm competition. Since sperm vary considerably in their morphology between and within species, it seems likely that sperm morphology is associated with sperm velocity. Theory predicts that sperm velocity may be increased by enlarged midpiece (energetic component) or flagellum length (kinetic component), or by particular ratios between sperm components, such as between flagellum length and head size. However, such associations have rarely been found in empirical studies. In a comparative framework in passerine birds, we tested these theoretical predictions both across a wide range of species and within a single family, the New World blackbirds (Icteridae). In both study groups, sperm velocity was influenced by sperm morphology in the predicted direction. Consistent with theoretical models, these results show that selection on sperm morphology and velocity are likely to be concomitant evolutionary forces. PMID:19129098

  12. Experimental evidence that female ornamentation increases the acquisition of sperm and signals fecundity

    PubMed Central

    Cornwallis, Charlie K; Birkhead, Tim R

    2006-01-01

    Mate choice can lead to the evolution of sexual ornamentation. This idea rests on the assumption that individuals with more elaborate ornaments than competitors have higher reproductive success due to gaining greater control over mating decisions and resources provided by partners. Nevertheless, how the resources and quality of sexual partners that individuals gain access to are influenced by the ornamentation of rival individuals remains unclear. By experimentally concealing and subsequently revealing female ornaments to males, we confirm in the fowl, Gallus gallus, that female ornamentation influences male mating decisions. We further show, by manipulating the relative ornament size of females, that when females had larger ornaments than competitors they were more often preferred by males and obtained more sperm, especially from higher quality males, as measured by social status. Males may benefit by investing more sperm in females with larger ornaments as they were in better condition and produced heavier eggs. Female ornament size also decreased during incubation, providing a cue for males to avoid sexually unreceptive females. This study reveals how inter-sexual selection can lead to the evolution of female ornaments and highlights how the reproductive benefits gained from mate choice and bearing ornaments can be dependent upon social context. PMID:17476780

  13. Defining the mechanisms by which the reactive oxygen species by-product, 4-hydroxynonenal, affects human sperm cell function.

    PubMed

    Baker, Mark A; Weinberg, Anita; Hetherington, Louise; Villaverde, Ana-Izabel; Velkov, Tony; Baell, Jonathan; Gordon, Christopher P

    2015-04-01

    Lipid peroxidation products such as the naturally occurring aldehyde 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE) are known to be cytotoxic toward different cell types, including spermatozoa. In order to understand this at the molecular level, we have employed a proteomic approach to characterize direct 4-HNE adducts on human spermatozoa. Several proteins were identified to be of particular interest, including aldehyde labeling of histone methyltransferase and dynein heavy chain. In addition, we found that 4-HNE bound to part of the activation segment, cysteine residue 199, of protein kinase A (PKA). Interestingly, at low levels, addition of 4-HNE had a stimulatory effect on PKA. However, this did not correlate to increased phosphotyrosine levels during capacitation. This data explains the link between reactive oxygen species and sperm toxicity. Given that epigenetic regulation is likely affected in oxidative-stressed spermatozoa, this data show that spermatozoa appear to shut down under these conditions before reaching the egg. PMID:25673561

  14. Processive Pulses of Retinoic Acid Propel Asynchronous and Continuous Murine Sperm Production1

    PubMed Central

    Hogarth, Cathryn A.; Arnold, Samuel; Kent, Travis; Mitchell, Debra; Isoherranen, Nina; Griswold, Michael D.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT The asynchronous cyclic nature of spermatogenesis is essential for continual sperm production and is one of the hallmarks of mammalian male fertility. While various mRNA and protein localization studies have indirectly implicated changing retinoid levels along testis tubules, no quantitative evidence for these changes across the cycle of the seminiferous epithelium currently exists. This study utilized a unique mouse model of induced synchronous spermatogenesis, localization of the retinoid-signaling marker STRA8, and sensitive quantification of retinoic acid concentrations to determine whether there are fluctuations in retinoid levels at each of the individual stages of germ cell differentiation and maturation to sperm. These data show that processive pulses of retinoic acid are generated during spermatogonial differentiation and are the likely trigger for cyclic spermatogenesis and allow us, for the first time, to understand how the cycle of the seminiferous epithelium is generated and maintained. In addition, this study represents the first direct quantification of a retinoid gradient controlling cellular differentiation in a postnatal tissue. PMID:25519186

  15. Why mammalian lineages respond differently to sexual selection: metabolic rate constrains the evolution of sperm size.

    PubMed

    Gomendio, Montserrat; Tourmente, Maximiliano; Roldan, Eduardo R S

    2011-10-22

    The hypothesis that sperm competition should favour increases in sperm size, because it results in faster swimming speeds, has received support from studies on many taxa, but remains contentious for mammals. We suggest that this may be because mammalian lineages respond differently to sexual selection, owing to major differences in body size, which are associated with differences in mass-specific metabolic rate. Recent evidence suggests that cellular metabolic rate also scales with body size, so that small mammals have cells that process energy and resources from the environment at a faster rate. We develop the 'metabolic rate constraint hypothesis' which proposes that low mass-specific metabolic rate among large mammals may limit their ability to respond to sexual selection by increasing sperm size, while this constraint does not exist among small mammals. Here we show that among rodents, which have high mass-specific metabolic rates, sperm size increases under sperm competition, reaching the longest sperm sizes found in eutherian mammals. By contrast, mammalian lineages with large body sizes have small sperm, and while metabolic rate (corrected for body size) influences sperm size, sperm competition levels do not. When all eutherian mammals are analysed jointly, our results suggest that as mass-specific metabolic rate increases, so does maximum sperm size. In addition, species with low mass-specific metabolic rates produce uniformly small sperm, while species with high mass-specific metabolic rates produce a wide range of sperm sizes. These findings support the hypothesis that mass-specific metabolic rates determine the budget available for sperm production: at high levels, sperm size increases in response to sexual selection, while low levels constrain the ability to respond to sexual selection by increasing sperm size. Thus, adaptive and costly traits, such as sperm size, may only evolve under sexual selection when metabolic rate does not constrain cellular budgets. PMID:21389027

  16. Why mammalian lineages respond differently to sexual selection: metabolic rate constrains the evolution of sperm size

    PubMed Central

    Gomendio, Montserrat; Tourmente, Maximiliano; Roldan, Eduardo R. S.

    2011-01-01

    The hypothesis that sperm competition should favour increases in sperm size, because it results in faster swimming speeds, has received support from studies on many taxa, but remains contentious for mammals. We suggest that this may be because mammalian lineages respond differently to sexual selection, owing to major differences in body size, which are associated with differences in mass-specific metabolic rate. Recent evidence suggests that cellular metabolic rate also scales with body size, so that small mammals have cells that process energy and resources from the environment at a faster rate. We develop the ‘metabolic rate constraint hypothesis’ which proposes that low mass-specific metabolic rate among large mammals may limit their ability to respond to sexual selection by increasing sperm size, while this constraint does not exist among small mammals. Here we show that among rodents, which have high mass-specific metabolic rates, sperm size increases under sperm competition, reaching the longest sperm sizes found in eutherian mammals. By contrast, mammalian lineages with large body sizes have small sperm, and while metabolic rate (corrected for body size) influences sperm size, sperm competition levels do not. When all eutherian mammals are analysed jointly, our results suggest that as mass-specific metabolic rate increases, so does maximum sperm size. In addition, species with low mass-specific metabolic rates produce uniformly small sperm, while species with high mass-specific metabolic rates produce a wide range of sperm sizes. These findings support the hypothesis that mass-specific metabolic rates determine the budget available for sperm production: at high levels, sperm size increases in response to sexual selection, while low levels constrain the ability to respond to sexual selection by increasing sperm size. Thus, adaptive and costly traits, such as sperm size, may only evolve under sexual selection when metabolic rate does not constrain cellular budgets. PMID:21389027

  17. Production of F1 Offspring with Vitrified Sperm from a Live-Bearing Fish, the Green Swordtail Xiphophorus hellerii

    PubMed Central

    Cuevas-Uribe, Rafael; Yang, Huiping; Daly, Jonathan; Savage, Markita G.; Walter, Ronald B.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract This study reports the first production of offspring with vitrified sperm from a live-bearing fish Xiphophorus hellerii. The overall goal of this study was to develop streamlined protocols for integration into a standardized approach for vitrification of aquatic species germplasm. The objectives were to (1) estimate acute toxicity of cryoprotectants, (2) evaluate vitrification solutions, (3) compare different thawing methods, (4) evaluate membrane integrity of post-thaw sperm vitrified in different cryoprotectants, and (5) evaluate the fertility of vitrified sperm. Nine cryoprotectants and two commercial vitrification additives were tested for acute toxicity and glass forming ability, alone and in combination. Two vitrification solutions, 40% glycerol (Gly) and 20% Gly+20% ethylene glycol (EG) in 500 mOsmol/kg Hanks' balanced salt solution (HBSS), were selected for vitrification of 10 μL sperm samples using inoculating loops plunged into liquid nitrogen. Samples were thawed at 24°C (one loop in 5 μL of HBSS or three loops in 500 μL of HBSS). Samples thawed in 500 μL were concentrated by centrifugation (1000 g for 5 min at 4°C) into 5 μL for artificial insemination. Offspring were produced from virgin females inseminated with sperm vitrified with 20% Gly+20% EG and concentrated by centrifugation. PMID:21883000

  18. Testis morphometry, seminiferous epithelium cycle length, and daily sperm production in domestic cats (Felis catus).

    PubMed

    Frana, Luiz R; Godinho, Christiane L

    2003-05-01

    There is very little information regarding the testis structure and function in domestic cats, mainly data related to the cycle of seminiferous epithelium and sperm production. The testis weight in cats investigated in the present study was 1.2 g. Compared with most mammalian species investigated, the value of 0.08% found for testes mass related to the body mass (gonadosomatic index) in cats is very low. The tunica albuginea volume density (%) in these animals was relatively high and comprised about 19% of the testis. Seminiferous tubule and Leydig cell volume density (%) in cats were approximately 90% and 6%, respectively. The mean tubular diameter was 220 microm, and 23 m of seminiferous tubule were found per testis and per gram of testis. The frequencies of the eight stages of the cycle, characterized according to the tubular morphology system, were as follows: stage 1, 24.9%; stage 2, 12.9%; stage 3, 7.7%; stage 4, 17.6%; stage 5, 7.2%; stage 6, 11.9%; stage 7, 6.8%; and stage 8, 11 %. The premeiotic and postmeiotic stage frequency was 46% and 37%, respectively. The duration of each cycle of seminiferous epithelium was 10.4 days and the total duration of spermatogenesis based on 4.5 cycles was 46.8 days. The number of round spermatids for each pachytene primary spermatocytes (meiotic index) was 2.8, meaning that significant cell loss (30%) occurred during the two meiotic divisions. The total number of germ cells and the number of round spermatids per each Sertoli cell nucleolus at stage 1 of the cycle were 9.8 and 5.1, respectively. The Leydig cell volume was approximately 2000 microm3 and the nucleus volume 260 microm3. Both Leydig and Sertoli cell numbers per gram of testis in cats were approximately 30 million. The daily sperm production per gram of testis in cats (efficiency of spermatogenesis) was approximately 16 million. To our knowledge, this is the first investigation to perform a more detailed and comprehensive study of the testis structure and function in domestic cats. Also, this is the first report in the literature showing Sertoli and Leydig cell number per gram of testis and the daily sperm production in any kind of feline species. In this regard, besides providing a background for comparative studies with other fields, the data obtained in the present work might be useful in future studies in which the domestic cat could be utilized as an appropriate receptor model for preservation of genetic stock from rare or endangered wild felines using the germ cell transplantation technique. PMID:12606460

  19. Procurement of exogenous ammonia by the swallowtail butterfly, Papilio polytes, for protein biosynthesis and sperm production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Honda, Keiichi; Takase, Hiroyuki; Ômura, Hisashi; Honda, Hiroshi

    2012-09-01

    How to acquire sufficient quantity of nitrogen is a pivotal issue for herbivores, particularly for lepidopterans (butterflies and moths) of which diet quality greatly differs among their life stages. Male Lepidoptera often feed from mud puddles, dung, and carrion, a behavior known as puddling, which is thought to be supplementary feeding targeted chiefly at sodium. During copulation, males transfer a spermatophore to females that contains, besides sperm, nutrients (nuptial gifts) rich in sodium, proteins, and amino acids. However, it is still poorly understood how adults, mostly nectarivores, extract nitrogen from the environment. We examined the availability of two ubiquitous inorganic nitrogenous ions in nature, viz. ammonium (or ammonia) and nitrate ions, as nutrients in a butterfly, and show that exogenous ammonia ingested by adult males of the swallowtail, Papilio polytes, can serve as a resource for protein biosynthesis. Feeding experiments with 15N-labeled ammonium chloride revealed that nitrogen was incorporated into eupyrene spermatozoa, seminal protein, and thoracic muscle. Ammonia uptake by males significantly increased the number of eupyrene sperms in the reproductive tract tissues. The females also had the capacity to assimilate ammonia into egg protein. Consequently, it is evident that acquired ammonia is utilized for the replenishment of proteins allocable for reproduction and somatic maintenance. The active exploitation of exogenous ammonia as a nutrient by a butterfly would foster better understanding of the foraging and reproductive strategies in insects.

  20. Porcine embryo production following in vitro fertilization and intracytoplasmic sperm injection from vitrified immature oocytes matured with a granulosa cell co-culture system.

    PubMed

    Casillas, Fahiel; Ducolomb, Yvonne; Lemus, Ana E; Cuello, Cristina; Betancourt, Miguel

    2015-10-01

    This study was designed to evaluate the capacity of vitrified-warmed porcine immature oocytes to mature and to be fertilized using in vitro fertilization or intracytoplasmic sperm injection, and to determine the subsequent embryo development. Immature oocytes were vitrified using ethylene glycol and dimethylsulphoxide as cryoprotectants and the Cryolock method. After warming oocytes were cultured 44 h for maturation. Oocytes were randomly distributed in three treatment groups and subjected to in vitro fertilization (Experiment 1) or intracytoplasmic sperm injection (Experiment 2) procedures. The results indicate that the embryo development was higher in denuded oocytes co-cultured with granulosa cells (NkO-CC group) fertilized by in vitro fertilization or intracytoplasmic sperm injection compared to cumulus-cell oocyte complexes (COCs group), showing no significant differences with control. Vitrified denuded oocytes matured with a co-culture system NkO-CC group, displayed higher cleavage rate and blastocyst production than vitrified COCs group. Blastocysts were successfully obtained after IVF and ICSI procedures; however, the development to the blastocyst stage was better after IVF. These results show that the vitrification-warming media, the employment of a granulosa cell co-culture system and the Cryolock method during vitrification, increased the nuclear and cytoplasmic maturation of vitrified porcine immature oocytes. Further experiments are required to enhance porcine embryo production after vitrification. PMID:26254037

  1. [How to increase food production?].

    PubMed

    Gahamanyi, L

    1984-12-01

    Pressure of population on cultivable land, serious soil erosion, and low productivity due to scarcity of inputs have hampered efforts to provide an adequate diet for the population of Rwanda. Until the present, production has increased about as rapidly as population, but Rwanda is not totally self-sufficient in food, future climatic conditions may be less favorable than those of the past, technical and resource constraints are likely to increase, and little new land will be available for cultivation. Between 1970-80, hectares devoted to bananas and beans have increased considerably, but the marginal nature of much new land has seriously lowered productivity. Sweet potatoes are more extensively grown but their productivity is limited, and productivity of manioc has stagnated despite efforts to increase it. Peas are less frequently cultivated because the fallow land on they they are grown has almost disappeared due to population pressure. Agriculture in Rwanda has always been associated with herding, but population pressure is eliminating pastureland. Firewood for cooking is also becoming more scarce and reforestation is not proceeding rapidly enough to fill projected demand. Between 1978-80 and the year 2000, preliminary goals are to increase production in tons from 2,005,900 to 3,375,000 for bananas, from 177,400 to 330,000 for beans, from 15,200 to 45,500 for ground nuts, from 4000 to 25,000 for soybeans, from 174,800 to 288,000 for sorghum, from 81,300 to 250,000 for maize, from 3700 to 45,000 for rice, from 837,100 to 2,148,000 for sweet potatoes, from 506,600 to 1,200,000 for manioc, and from 216,000 to 600,000 for potatoes. Reaching these goals will require doubling of overall productivity per hectare. Different strategies will be required for increasing the yields of the principal crops. Priority should be given to developing strains of beans that will grow well in the poor soils, dry or cold regions, and acidic soils where they are usually planted in Rwanda. Beans requiring less labor-intensive cultivation and able to grow in association with other crops or under banana trees are needed. The new varieties should be resistent to disease and pests. Bananas, with an annual production of over 2 million tons, are the most important crop in Rwanda, but 80-90% is used for beer, an important indicator of family wealth and symbolic object in social relations. The average yield of bananas declined by 19% between 1970-80. 3 very productive varieties of table bananas have been introduced recently, but research is needed in different ecologic regions of Rwanda focusing on cultivation of bananas in association with other crops, improved varieties of bananas, and better cultivation methods. Research should also be directed toward developing the best varieties of high, medium, and low altitude sorghum, the traditional cereal crop, of maize and of sweet potatoes, the 2nd most important crop, as well as toward identifying the best cultivation methods for each. PMID:12267714

  2. Job stress and productivity increase.

    PubMed

    Adaramola, Samson Sunday

    2012-01-01

    This paper examines mental and physical pressures that workers bear at work. The authors discuss how on the-job stress affects a person's capabilities and productivity, and how such pressures lend to higher incidences of accidents at work. The paper also discuss methods of reducing job-related stress and increasing productivity. An intervention was conducted amongst workers in a private firm. It shows mental and emotional pressure can affect performance and productivity of a worker on the job. One of the biggest influences of today's worker is on the-job stress. Job stress occurs when the requirements of the job do not match the capabilities, resources, or needs of the worker. This consequently affects how a person would normally deal with customer service problems, grievances, violence, conflict, and decisions on the job. Stress is an inevitable part of everyday life, and is therefore a distinct part of a person's job. To properly control the outcome of stress, there are certain precautions and methods that should be taken that will boost productivity. PMID:22317168

  3. Effect of Supplementation with Agro-industrial By-products and Khat (Catha edulis) leftovers on testicular growth and sperm production in Ogaden bucks.

    PubMed

    Mekasha, Y; Tegegne, A; Rodriguez-Martinez, H

    2007-04-01

    The aim of this study was to characterize growth and sperm production parameters in Ogaden bucks fed a basal diet of hay and supplemented with agro-industrial by-products and Khat leftovers in Ethiopia. Thirty-five bucks with a mean (+/-SD) initial live body weight (BW) of 15.5 +/- 1.5 kg were randomly assigned to one of four dietary treatments for a period of 13 weeks. Treatments consisted of native hay fed ad libitum (control; C), native hay supplemented with a 1% of BW agro-industrial by-products (treatment 1; T1), native hay supplemented with Khat (Catha edulis) leftovers at a rate of 1% of BW (treatment 2; T2) and Khat leftovers fed ad libitum (treatment 3; T3). Bucks fed on T1-T3 had higher BW, body condition score, scrotal circumference (SC), testicular width and testicular length, compared to controls (P < 0.05). Also, bucks in T1-T3 had higher sperm progressive motility, sperm concentration per ml and total number of spermatozoa per ejaculate compared to controls (P < 0.05). Between treatments, bucks in T3 recorded the highest BW (17.2 +/- 0.16) and testicular size (21.1 +/- 0.17 cm). Both testicular and epididymal weight and dimensions were significantly affected (P < 0.05) by supplementation compared to controls. Testicular size was positively correlated to live BW (r = 0.53, P < 0.001). SC was positively correlated with ejaculate volume (r = 0.37, P < 0.001), sperm mass activity (r = 0.65, P < 0.001) and individual sperm progressive motility (r = 0.40; P < 0.001). Supplementation with Khat leftovers induced the highest improvement in live BW, testicular size, semen production and sperm motility in Ogaden bucks and can possibly be considered as a feed supplement to enhance goat production under smallholder livestock farming system in Ethiopia. PMID:17381680

  4. Comparative responses of sperm cells and embryos of Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas) to exposure to metolachlor and its degradation products.

    PubMed

    Mai, Huong; Gonzalez, Patrice; Pardon, Patrick; Tapie, Nathalie; Budzinski, Hélène; Cachot, Jérôme; Morin, Bénédicte

    2014-02-01

    Metolachlor is one of the most intensively used chloroacetanilide herbicides in agriculture. Consequently, it has been frequently detected in coastal waters as well as its major degradation products, metolachlor ethane sulfonic acid (MESA) and metolachlor oxanilic acid (MOA) which are encountered at higher concentrations than metolachlor. Although a few studies of metolachlor toxicity have been conducted on marine organisms, little is known about the environmental toxicity of metolachlor degradation products. In this study, the deleterious effects of metolachlor and its degradation products on spermatozoa and embryos of Crassostrea gigas have been compared using biomarkers of developmental defects, DNA damage and gene transcription levels. After 24h exposure, significant increases in the percentage of abnormal D-larvae and DNA damage were observed from 0.01 μg L(-1) for S-metolachlor and 0.1 μg L(-1) for MESA and MOA. Results showed that S-metolachlor was more embryotoxic and genotoxic than its degradation products. Oyster sperm was also very sensitive to metolachlor exposure and followed the pattern: metolachlor (0.01 μg L(-1))>MOA (0.1 μg L(-1))>MESA (1 μg L(-1)). Metolachlor and MESA mainly triggered variations in the transcription level of genes encoding proteins involved in oxidative stress responses (mitochondrial superoxide dismutase and catalase). Overall, no significant variation in transcription levels could be detected in C. gigas embryos exposed to MOA. This study demonstrates that metolachlor and its main degradation products have the potential to impact several steps of oyster development and therefore recruitment in coastal areas exposed to chronic inputs of pesticides. PMID:24378469

  5. Effects of pulse-modulated microwave radiation and conventional heating on sperm production

    SciTech Connect

    Lebovitz, R.M.; Johnson, L.; Samson, W.K.

    1987-01-01

    The effects on testicular function of pulse-modulated microwave radiation (PM MWR, 1.3 GHz) and of conventional heating were studied in the rat. Anesthetized adult males (Sprague-Dawley, 400-500 g) were treated then killed at specific intervals with respect to the 13-day cycle of the seminiferous epithelium. PM MWR at 7.7 mW/g (90 min) yielded a modest decline in daily sperm production (DSP) that derived primarily from effects on primary spermatocytes. PM MWR at 4.2 mW/g was ineffective. The mean intratesticular temperature during the former reached 40 degrees C and did not exceed 38 degrees C during the latter. MWR considerably in excess of 7.7 mW/g yielded decrements in virtually all germ cell types, with primary spermatocytes again being most markedly affected. Using conventional heating, intratesticular temperatures in excess of 39 degrees C for 60 min were required for significant decrements in DSP. Levels of circulating follicle-stimulating hormone and of leutinizing hormone were resistant to either treatment. We conclude that the damage threshold and the differential sensitivity of immature germ cells to PM MWR can be adequately explained by the consequent macroscopic heating.

  6. Spermatogenic cycle length and sperm production in a feral pig species (collared peccary, Tayassu tajacu).

    PubMed

    Costa, Guilherme M J; Leal, Marcelo C; Silva, Jurupytan V; Ferreira, Ana Cássia S; Guimarães, Diva A; França, Luiz Renato de

    2010-01-01

    Although the collared peccary (Tayassu tajacu) is found throughout the Americas, with a high potential for domestication and commercial exploitation, there are few data on the reproductive biology of this mammalian species. The aim of the present study was to investigate testis structure, spermatogenic cycle length, Sertoli cell efficiency, and spermatogenic efficiency. Twelve adult peccaries were used for biometrical, histological, and stereological analyses; 3 of these peccaries received intratesticular injections of (3)H-thymidine for the determination of the duration of spermatogenesis. Testis weight and gonadosomatic index were 23.7 +/- 1.8 g and 0.2% +/- 0.1%, respectively. Seminiferous tubule volume density was 77.4% +/- 1.7%. Leydig cells occupied 12.8% +/- 1.8% of the testis parenchyma and presented a peculiar cytoarchitecture in the periphery of the seminiferous tubule lobes. The premeiotic, meiotic, and postmeiotic stage frequencies were very similar to those found for wild and domestic boars. The spermatogenic cycle and entire spermatogenic process (based on 4.5 cycles) lasted approximately 12.3 +/- 0.2 and 55.1 +/- 0.7 days, respectively. Daily sperm production per gram of testis in the collared peccary was approximately 23.4 +/- 2 x 10(6), which is similar to that of domestic and wild boars. The knowledge generated in the present study could be used in reproduction and animal improvement programs and provides important information that may be used for comparative reproductive biology with previously investigated mammalian species. PMID:19745218

  7. Accelerated aging of reproductive capacity in male rat offspring of protein-restricted mothers is associated with increased testicular and sperm oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-González, Guadalupe L; Reyes-Castro, Luis A; Vega, Claudia C; Boeck, Lourdes; Ibáñez, Carlos; Nathanielsz, Peter W; Larrea, Fernando; Zambrano, Elena

    2014-01-01

    Maternal protein restriction (MPR) in pregnancy causes life course organ dysfunction, but few studies link the developmental origins of disease hypothesis to early aging. Suboptimal developmental nutrition increases oxidative stress (OS) and male infertility, damaging sperm function. We hypothesized that MPR in pregnancy accelerates age-related changes in testicular and sperm function related to both maternal diet and increased testicular OS in rat offspring. We studied male rats whose pregnant mothers ate either control (C, 20 % casein) or restricted (R, 10 % casein) isocaloric diet. After birth, mothers and offspring ate C diet. Testes were retrieved at 19 days gestation and across the life course (postnatal day (PND) 21, 36, 110, and 850) to measure OS markers, antioxidant enzymes, serum FSH, LH, and testosterone, and PND 110 sperm OS and quality. Fertility rate was evaluated at PND 110, 450, and 850. Offspring showed age- and MPR-related changes in testosterone, testicular OS markers and antioxidant enzymes and fertility, and maternal diet-related OS and sperm antioxidant enzyme changes. Developmental programming is considered a key factor in predisposing to chronic disease. Our data show that programming also plays an important role in aging trajectory. This interaction is a little studied area in aging biology that merits more investigation. PMID:25354645

  8. In vitro production of cattlexbuffalo hybrid embryos using cattle oocytes and African buffalo (Syncerus caffer caffer) epididymal sperm.

    PubMed

    Owiny, O D; Barry, D M; Agaba, M; Godke, R A

    2009-04-01

    Interspecies hybridization of bovids occurs between domestic cattle and at least three other species; American bison (Bison bison), yak (Bos grunniens) and banteng (Bos banteng). Birth of a cattlexbuffalo (Bubalus bubalis) hybrid has reportedly occurred in Russia and in China, but these reports were not authenticated. Such hybrids could be important in improving livestock production and management of diseases that impede production in tropical Africa. This study investigated hybridization between cattle and its closest African wild bovid relative, the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer caffer). In an attempt to produce cattlexbuffalo hybrid embryos in vitro, matured cattle oocytes were subjected to a standard in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedure with either homologous cattle (n=1166 oocytes) or heterologous African buffalo (n=1202 oocytes) frozen-thawed epididymal sperm. After IVF, 67.2% of the oocytes inseminated with the homologous cattle sperm cleaved. In contrast, fertilization with buffalo sperm resulted in only a 4.6% cleavage rate. The cleavage intervals were also slower in hybrid embryos than in the IVF-derived cattle embryos. Of the cleaved homologous cattle embryos 52.2% progressed to the morula stage compared with 12.7% for the buffalo hybrid embryos. No hybrid embryos developed beyond the early morula stage, while 40.1% of the cleaved cattlexcattle embryos developed to the blastocyst stage. Transfer of buffalo hybrid IVF embryos to domestic cattle surrogates resulted in no pregnancies at 60 days post-transfer. This study indicates that interspecies fertilization of cattle oocytes with African buffalo epididymal sperm can occur in vitro, and that a barrier to hybridization occurs in the early stages of embryonic development. Chromosomal disparity is likely the cause of the fertilization abnormalities, abnormal development and subsequent arrest impairing the formation of hybrid embryos beyond the early morula stage. Transfer of the buffalo hybrid embryos did not rescue the embryos from development arrest. PMID:19118889

  9. Sex-Sorted Boar Sperm - An Update on Related Production Methods.

    PubMed

    Rath, D; Tiedemann, D; Gamrad, L; Johnson, L A; Klein, S; Kues, W; Mancini, R; Rehbock, C; Taylor, U; Barcikowski, S

    2015-07-01

    As in other mammals, sex sorting of pig sperm is based on quantitative flow cytometry. A major disadvantage of the technique is the relatively low efficiency to produce enough sorted sperm for artificial insemination. However, several approaches are on the way to make sexed pig sperm available for commercial application. In this context, for example, the growing field of nanotechnology may significantly contribute to these developments, as it provides highly efficient bio-nanoprobes, for example, based on plasmonic nanoparticles. Independent of the method, further development requires enormous investments and set-up of logistics to get the technology into the practical pig market. Only global players will be able to establish the necessary research projects, but in the end, a significant shift of sex ratios will be available for pig producers as it is already the case for the dairy industry. PMID:26174920

  10. Off-axis effects on the multipulse structure of sperm whale usual clicks with implications for sound production.

    PubMed

    Zimmer, Walter M X; Madsen, Peter T; Teloni, Valeria; Johnson, Mark P; Tyack, Peter L

    2005-11-01

    Sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) produce multipulsed clicks with their hypertrophied nasal complex. The currently accepted view of the sound generation process is based on the click structure measured directly in front of, or behind, the whale where regular interpulse intervals (IPIs) are found between successive pulses in the click. Most sperm whales, however, are recorded with the whale in an unknown orientation with respect to the hydrophone where the multipulse structure and the IPI do not conform to a regular pulse pattern. By combining far-field recordings of usual clicks with acoustic and orientation information measured by a tag on the clicking whale, we analyzed clicks from known aspects to the whale. We show that a geometric model based on the bent horn theory for sound production can explain the varying off-axis multipulse structure. Some of the sound energy that is reflected off the frontal sac radiates directly into the water creating an intermediate pulse p1/2 seen in off-axis recordings. The powerful p1 sonar pulse exits the front of the junk as predicted by the bent-horn model, showing that the junk of the sperm whale nasal complex is both anatomically and functionally homologous to the melon of smaller toothed whales. PMID:16334703

  11. Off-axis effects on the multipulse structure of sperm whale usual clicks with implications for sound production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zimmer, Walter M. X.; Madsen, Peter T.; Teloni, Valeria; Johnson, Mark P.; Tyack, Peter L.

    2005-11-01

    Sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) produce multipulsed clicks with their hypertrophied nasal complex. The currently accepted view of the sound generation process is based on the click structure measured directly in front of, or behind, the whale where regular interpulse intervals (IPIs) are found between successive pulses in the click. Most sperm whales, however, are recorded with the whale in an unknown orientation with respect to the hydrophone where the multipulse structure and the IPI do not conform to a regular pulse pattern. By combining far-field recordings of usual clicks with acoustic and orientation information measured by a tag on the clicking whale, we analyzed clicks from known aspects to the whale. We show that a geometric model based on the bent horn theory for sound production can explain the varying off-axis multipulse structure. Some of the sound energy that is reflected off the frontal sac radiates directly into the water creating an intermediate pulse p1/2 seen in off-axis recordings. The powerful p1 sonar pulse exits the front of the junk as predicted by the bent-horn model, showing that the junk of the sperm whale nasal complex is both anatomically and functionally homologous to the melon of smaller toothed whales.

  12. Daily sperm production and evaluation of morphological reproductive parameters of Murrah buffaloes in an extensive breeding system

    PubMed Central

    da Luz, Patrícia A.C.; Andrighetto, Cristiana; Santos, Paulo R.S.; Jorge, André; Constantino, Maria Vitória P.; Pereira, Flávia T.V.; Mess, Andrea; Neto, Antônio C. Assis

    2012-01-01

    The development of male sexual maturity varies among buffaloes. The Murrah buffalo is considered the most important and efficient milk and fat producer, but aspects of its reproductive biology are still unknown. The present study aimed to evaluate the daily sperm production (DSP) and spermatogenesis in developing Murrah buffalo bulls by evaluation of the seminiferous tubules, testicular morphometry and using light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. The testes of Murrah buffalo bulls at 18 mo was immature and at 24 mo could still be considered an average-efficiency breed based on their DSP. At 24 mo, the DSP rate was 0.97 billion sperm per testis and 13 million sperm per gram of testis. However, the animals had superior morphometric parameters compared with those of other livestock animals, except for the seminiferous tubule volume and diameter, which were inferior. In conclusion, our data support former views that the testes of the Murrah breed does not reach sexual maturity before 2 y of age and that important developmental steps occur later than Murrah crossbreeds from Brazil. PMID:22670218

  13. Testis stereology, seminiferous epithelium cycle length, and daily sperm production in the ocelot (Leopardus pardalis).

    PubMed

    Silva, R C; Costa, G M J; Andrade, L M; Frana, L R

    2010-01-15

    Similar to most wild felids, the ocelot (Leopardus pardalis) is an endangered species. However, knowledge regarding reproductive biology of the ocelot is very limited. Germ cell transplantation is an effective technique for investigating spermatogenesis and stem cell biology in mammals, and the morphologic characterization of germ cells and knowledge of cycle length are potential tools for tracking the development of transplanted germ cells. Our goal was to investigate basic aspects related to testis structure, particularly spermatogenesis, in the ocelot. Four adult males were used. After unilateral orchiectomy, testis samples were routinely prepared for histologic, stereologic, and autoradiographic analyses. Testis weight and the gonadosomatic index were 11+/-0.6g and 0.16+/-0.01%, respectively, whereas the volume density of seminiferous tubules and Leydig cells was 83.2+/-1.6% and 9.8+/-1.5%. Based on the acrosomic system, eight stages of spermatogenesis were characterized, and germ cell morphology was very similar to that of domestic cats. Each spermatogenic cycle lasted 12.5+/-0.4 d, and the entire spermatogenic process lasted 56.3+/-1.9 d. Individual Leydig cell volume was 2522mum(3), whereas the number of Leydig and Sertoli cells per gram of testis was 38+/-5x10(6) and 46+/-3x10(6). Approximately 4.5 spermatids were found per Sertoli cell, whereas daily sperm production per gram of testis was 18.3+/-1x10(6), slightly higher than values reported for other felids. The knowledge obtained in this study could be very useful to the preservation of the ocelot using domestic cat testes to generate and propagate the ocelot genome. PMID:19853903

  14. Laser radiation and motility patterns of human sperm

    SciTech Connect

    Lenzi, A.; Claroni, F.; Gandini, L.; Lombardo, F.; Barbieri, C.; Lino, A.; Dondero, F. )

    1989-01-01

    Human sperm were exposed in vitro to laser radiation. An increase in progressive sperm motility was associated with a faster rate of sperm ATP consumption. Computer-assisted analysis of sperm motility confirmed the positive effect of laser irradiation on velocity and linearity of sperm.

  15. In vitro production of haploid sperm cells from male germ cells of foetal cattle.

    PubMed

    Dong, Wu-Zi; Hua, Jin-Lian; Shen, Wen-Zheng; Dou, Zhong-Ying

    2010-04-01

    The purpose of this study was to isolate the foetal cattle male germ cells (mGCs) and then induce them into sperm cells. The mGCs were purified and enriched by a two-step plating method based on the different adherence velocities of mGCs and somatic cells. The percentage of the vasa and the c-kit positive cells were 95.34+/-2.25% and 53.3+/-1.03% by using flow cytometry analysis (FCA), respectively. In feeder-free culture system, the half-suspending cells appeared and formed a 16-cell rosary in medium after the mGCs were cultured for 6-8 days. On immunocytochemical staining during the second passage, some single cells adhering to the plate appeared to be both Oct-4 and alpha6-integrin positive. During the third passage, the mGCs were induced for 48 h by retinol acid (RA) on Sertoli cell-feeder layer, followed by 5-7 days culture in an RA-free medium. Some elongated sperm-like cells appeared in the medium at this stage. We found that the most effective concentration of RA for the inducement was 10(-7)moll(-1) (P<0.01). The haploid cells in suspension were identified by FCA. The elongated sperm-like cells showed proacrosome-like structure and the flagellum with fibre construct under electron microscopy. The mRNA of outer dense fibre-3 (ODF-3) and transcription protein-1 (TP-1) could be detected in the suspended cells by using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). About 23.1% bovine oocytes could be activated to perform cleavage by intracytoplasmic injection with the sperm-like cells, but embryos did not further develop. Our investigation further demonstrated that foetal cattle mGCs could be induced in vitro into haploid sperm in the short term. PMID:19632794

  16. Effects of intratesticular zinc gluconate treatment on testicular dimensions, echodensity, histology, sperm production, and testosterone secretion in American black bears (Ursus americanus).

    PubMed

    Brito, Leonardo F C; Sertich, Patricia L; Rives, William; Knobbe, Marc; Del Piero, Fabio; Stull, Gordon B

    2011-05-01

    Eight adult American black bears were used to evaluate the effects of chemical castration by intratesticular zinc gluconate treatment on testicular dimensions, echodensity, histology, sperm production, and testosterone secretion. Treatment did not affect testicular dimensions and did not result in decreased resting or GnRH-stimulated testosterone secretion. Multifocal hyperchoic areas in the testicular parenchyma were observed on ultrasound examination, and white foci were observed on gross pathology examination after zinc gluconate treatment. Histologically, there were normal seminiferous tubules containing either round or elongated spermatids, along with abnormal tubules in all bears after treatment. Vacuolation of the seminiferous epithelium, sloughing of germ cells into the tubules' lumen, presence of multinuclear giant cells, and reduced height of the seminiferous epithelium with missing generations of germ cells were commonly observed. The most severe testicular changes were multifocal and included fibrosis, complete degeneration of the seminiferous epithelium with shrinkage of the tubule, and sperm stasis. Epididymal sperm reserve was 982.74 ± 654.16 × 10(6) sperm (mean ± SEM) and motile sperm were observed in the epididymis of all but one of the bears. In conclusion, although intratesticular zinc gluconate treatment in black bears resulted in testicular degenerative changes detected by ultrasound and histology examinations, sperm production was not completely ablated. We inferred that normal fertility might have been compromised, but treatment unlikely resulted in sterility. PMID:21356548

  17. Experimental evolution of sperm count in protandrous self-fertilizing hermaphrodites.

    PubMed

    Murray, Rosalind L; Cutter, Asher D

    2011-05-15

    Sperm count evolution is driven by sexual selection, with an added role of selection on gamete resource allocation for hermaphrodite spermatogenesis. However, self-fertilization by hermaphrodites retards sexual selection and results in the evolution of reduced investment in sperm or pollen. In contrast to reproduction limited by female gametes (Bateman's Principle), self-fertilizing Caenorhabditis elegans hermaphrodites exhibit sperm-limited reproduction. Caenorhabditis elegans hermaphrodites are thought to experience a fitness trade-off between lifetime fecundity and generation time: longer sperm production decreases the risk of self-sperm depletion, but at the same time delays the onset of selfing and thus increases egg-to-egg generation time. Theory predicts that shorter larval development will favor lower sperm counts and longer development will favor more sperm. To investigate how developmental trajectories affect the evolution of sperm production, we performed experimental evolution by directly competing alleles controlling hermaphrodite sperm count, conducted under different environmental conditions that alter development time. Results are partially consistent with theory: rapid larval development generally favored alleles encoding production of few sperm. However, we identify some previously unrecognized simplifications of the theory and its application to our experimental system. In addition, we evaluated the generality of sperm limitation in C. elegans. Although optimal growth conditions yield sperm limitation, non-optimal conditions induce oocyte limitation, suggesting that this species might conform to Bateman's Principle under many natural settings. These findings demonstrate how developmental trajectories can shape the fitness landscape for the evolution of reproduction and sperm traits, even without sexual selection. PMID:21525321

  18. In boar sperm capacitation L-lactate and succinate, but not pyruvate and citrate, contribute to the mitochondrial membrane potential increase as monitored via safranine O fluorescence.

    PubMed

    Paventi, Gianluca; Lessard, Christian; Bailey, Janice L; Passarella, Salvatore

    2015-07-01

    Having ascertained using JC-1 as a probe that, in distinction with the controls, during capacitation boar sperm maintains high mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨ), to gain some insight into the role of mitochondria in capacitation, we monitored ΔΨ generation due to externally added metabolites either in hypotonically-treated spermatozoa (HTS) or in intact cells by using safranine O as a probe. During capacitation, the addition to HTS of L-lactate and succinate but not those of pyruvate, citrate and ascorbate + TMPD resulted in increase of ΔΨ generation. Accordingly, the addition of L-lactate and succinate, but not that of citrate, to intact sperm resulted in ΔΨ generation increased in capacitation. PMID:25956060

  19. Sperm preparation for ART

    PubMed Central

    Henkel, Ralf R; Schill, Wolf-Bernhard

    2003-01-01

    The onset of clinical assisted reproduction, a quarter of a century ago, required the isolation of motile spermatozoa. As the indication of assisted reproduction shifted from mere gynaecological indications to andrological indications during the years, this urged andrological research to understand the physiology of male germ cell better and develop more sophisticated techniques to separate functional spermatozoa from those that are immotile, have poor morphology or are not capable to fertilize oocytes. Initially, starting from simple washing of spermatozoa, separation techniques, based on different principles like migration, filtration or density gradient centrifugation evolved. The most simple and cheapest is the conventional swim-up procedure. A more sophisticated and most gentle migration method is migration-sedimentation. However, its yield is relatively small and the technique is therefore normally only limited to ejaculates with a high number of motile spermatozoa. Recently, however, the method was also successfully used to isolate spermatozoa for intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Sperm separation methods that yield a higher number of motile spermatozoa are glass wool filtration or density gradient centrifugation with different media. Since Percoll® as a density medium was removed from the market in 1996 for clinical use in the human because of its risk of contamination with endotoxins, other media like IxaPrep®, Nycodenz, SilSelect®, PureSperm® or Isolate® were developed in order to replace Percoll®. Today, an array of different methods is available and the selection depends on the quality of the ejaculates, which also includes production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) by spermatozoa and leukocytes. Ejaculates with ROS production should not be separated by means of conventional swim-up, as this can severely damage the spermatozoa. In order to protect the male germ cells from the influence of ROS and to stimulate their motility to increase the yield, a number of substances can be added to the ejaculate or the separation medium. Caffeine, pentoxifylline and 2-deoxyadenosine are substances that were used to stimulate motility. Recent approaches to stimulate spermatozoa include bicarbonate, metal chelators or platelet-activating factor (PAF). While the use of PAF already resulted in pregnancies in intrauterine insemination, the suitability of the other substances for the clinical use still needs to be tested. Finally, the isolation of functional spermatozoa from highly viscous ejaculates is a special challenge and can be performed enzymatically to liquefy the ejaculate. The older method, by which the ejaculate is forcefully aspirated through a narrow-gauge needle, should be abandoned as it can severely damage spermatozoa, thus resulting in immotile sperm. PMID:14617368

  20. No evidence of trade-offs in the evolution of sperm numbers and sperm size in mammals.

    PubMed

    Tourmente, M; Delbarco Trillo, J; Roldan, E R S

    2015-10-01

    Post-copulatory sexual selection, in the form sperm competition, has influenced the evolution of several male reproductive traits. However, theory predicts that sperm competition would lead to trade-offs between numbers and size of spermatozoa because increased costs per cell would result in a reduction of sperm number if both traits share the same energetic budget. Theoretical models have proposed that, in large animals, increased sperm size would have minimal fitness advantage compared with increased sperm numbers. Thus, sperm numbers would evolve more rapidly than sperm size under sperm competition pressure. We tested in mammals whether sperm competition maximizes sperm numbers and size, and whether there is a trade-off between these traits. Our results showed that sperm competition maximizes sperm numbers in eutherian and metatherian mammals. There was no evidence of a trade-off between sperm numbers and sperm size in any of the two mammalian clades as we did not observe any significant relationship between sperm numbers and sperm size once the effect of sperm competition was taken into account. Maximization of both numbers and size in mammals may occur because each trait is crucial at different stages in sperm's life; for example size-determined sperm velocity is a key determinant of fertilization success. In addition, numbers and size may also be influenced by diverse energetic budgets required at different stages of sperm formation. PMID:26190170

  1. Sperm competition: linking form to function

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background Using information from physics, biomechanics and evolutionary biology, we explore the implications of physical constraints on sperm performance, and review empirical evidence for links between sperm length and sperm competition (where two or more males compete to fertilise a female's eggs). A common theme in the literature on sperm competition is that selection for increased sperm performance in polyandrous species will favour the evolution of longer, and therefore faster swimming, sperm. This argument is based on the common assumption that sperm swimming velocity is directly related to sperm length, due to the increased thrust produced by longer flagella. Results We critically evaluate the evidence for links between sperm morphology and swimming speed, and draw on cross-disciplinary studies to show that the assumption that velocity is directly related to sperm length will rarely be satisfied in the microscopic world in which sperm operate. Conclusion We show that increased sperm length is unlikely to be driven by selection for increased swimming speed, and that the relative lengths of a sperm's constituent parts, rather than their absolute lengths, are likely to be the target of selection. All else being equal, we suggest that a simple measure of the ratio of head to tail length should be used to assess the possible link between morphology and speed. However, this is most likely to be the case for external fertilizers in which females have relatively limited opportunity to influence a sperm's motility. PMID:19032741

  2. Variability in sperm form and function in the context of sperm competition risk in two Tupinambis lizards

    PubMed Central

    Blengini, Cecilia S; Sergio, Naretto; Gabriela, Cardozo; Giojalas, Laura C; Margarita, Chiaraviglio

    2014-01-01

    In polyandrous species, sperm morphometry and sperm velocity are under strong sexual selection. Although several hypotheses have been proposed to explain the role of sperm competition in sperm trait variation, this aspect is still poorly understood. It has been suggested that an increase in sperm competition pressure could reduce sperm size variation or produce a diversity of sperm to maximize male fertilization success. We aim at elucidating the variability of sperm morphometric traits and velocity in two Tupinambis lizards in the context of sperm competition risk. Sperm traits showed substantial variation at all levels examined: between species, among males within species, and within the ejaculate of individual males. Sperm velocity was found to be positively correlated with flagellum: midpiece ratio, with relatively longer flagella associated with faster sperm. Our results document high variability in sperm form and function in lizards. PMID:25505535

  3. Variability in sperm form and function in the context of sperm competition risk in two Tupinambis lizards.

    PubMed

    Blengini, Cecilia S; Sergio, Naretto; Gabriela, Cardozo; Giojalas, Laura C; Margarita, Chiaraviglio

    2014-11-01

    In polyandrous species, sperm morphometry and sperm velocity are under strong sexual selection. Although several hypotheses have been proposed to explain the role of sperm competition in sperm trait variation, this aspect is still poorly understood. It has been suggested that an increase in sperm competition pressure could reduce sperm size variation or produce a diversity of sperm to maximize male fertilization success. We aim at elucidating the variability of sperm morphometric traits and velocity in two Tupinambis lizards in the context of sperm competition risk. Sperm traits showed substantial variation at all levels examined: between species, among males within species, and within the ejaculate of individual males. Sperm velocity was found to be positively correlated with flagellum: midpiece ratio, with relatively longer flagella associated with faster sperm. Our results document high variability in sperm form and function in lizards. PMID:25505535

  4. Stress and dietary factors modify boar sperm for processing.

    PubMed

    Radomil, L; Pettitt, M J; Merkies, K M; Hickey, K D; Buhr, M M

    2011-09-01

    This paper reviews stresses boar sperm undergo during processing and presents preliminary results of dietary modification that minimize this damage. Processing for artificial insemination (AI) stresses boar sperm by osmotic effects; altering cell size, shape and membranes; intracellular ice formation; and production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Sperm response to ROS is concentration-dependent, with low levels activating the ERK pathway to stimulate tyrosine phosphorylation (Tyr-P) and capacitation, but high concentrations or inappropriately timed onset of ROS pathways can harm sperm. Fresh boar sperm exposed to ROS increased intracellular hydrogen peroxide (H(2) O(2) ) phospholipase and lipid peroxidation, maintained viability but lost motility and underwent acrosome reactions (AR). Direct incorporation of lipids ± the antioxidant Vitamin E improves the survival of liquid- and frozen-stored semen. Boars fed dietary flaxseed for 8 weeks to increase n-3 fatty acids displayed improved sperm morphology (p < 0.05), increased membrane fluidity (p < 0.05) and better retention of motility and viability during 5-7 day storage (p < 0.05). Processes reducing oxidative damage to stored sperm should be evaluated. PMID:21884275

  5. An Extract of Pomegranate Fruit and Galangal Rhizome Increases the Numbers of Motile Sperm: A Prospective, Randomised, Controlled, Double-Blinded Trial

    PubMed Central

    Fedder, Maja D. K.; Jakobsen, Henrik B.; Giversen, Ina; Christensen, Lars P.; Parner, Erik T.; Fedder, Jens

    2014-01-01

    Pomegranate fruit (Punica granatum) and galangal (Alpinia galanga) have separately been shown to stimulate spermatogenesis and to increase sperm counts and motility in rodents. Within traditional medicine, pomegranate fruit has long been used to increase fertility, however studies on the effect on spermatogenesis in humans have never been published. With this study we investigated whether oral intake of tablets containing standardised amounts of extract of pomegranate fruit and powder of greater galangal rhizome (Punalpin) would increase the total number of motile spermatozoa. The study was designed as a prospective, randomized, controlled, double-blinded trial. Enrolment was based on the mean total number of motile spermatozoa of two ejaculates. The participants delivered an ejaculate after 4–8 days of tablet intake and two ejaculates just before they stopped taking the tablets. Seventy adult men with a semen quality not meeting the standards for commercial application at Nordic Cryobank, but without azoospermia, were included in the study. Participants were randomized to take tablets containing extract of pomegranate fruit (standardised with respect to punicalagin A+B, punicalin and ellagic acid) and freeze-dried rhizome of greater galangal (standardised with respect to 1′S-1′-acetoxychavicol acetate) or placebo on a daily basis for three months. Sixty-six participants completed the intervention (active treatment: n = 34; placebo: n = 32). After the intervention the total number of motile spermatozoa was increased in participants treated with plant extracts compared with the placebo group (p = 0.026). After three months of active treatment, the average total number of motile sperm increased by 62% (from 23.4 to 37.8 millions), while for the placebo group, the number of motile sperm increased by 20%. Sperm morphology was not affected by the treatment. Our findings may help subfertile men to gain an improved amount of motile ejaculated sperm by taking tablets containing preparations of pomegranate fruit extract and rhizome of greater galangal. Trial Registration ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01357044 PMID:25275520

  6. Diploid males, diploid sperm production, and triploid females in the ant Tapinoma erraticum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cournault, Laurent; Aron, Serge

    2009-12-01

    Under complementary sex determination (CSD), females of Hymenoptera arise from diploid, fertilized eggs and males from haploid, unfertilized eggs. Incidentally, fertilized eggs that inherit two identical alleles at the CSD locus will develop into diploid males. Diploid males are usually unviable or sterile. In a few species, however, they produce diploid sperm and father a triploid female progeny. Diploid males have been reported in a number of social Hymenoptera, but the occurrence of triploid females has hardly ever been documented. Here, we report the presence of triploid females, diploid males, and diploid sperm (produced by diploid males and stored in queen spermathecae) in the ant Tapinoma erraticum. Moreover, we show variations in the frequency of triploids among female castes: Triploid females are more frequent among workers than virgin queens; they are absent among mated, reproductive queens. The frequency of triploid workers also varies between populations and between nests within populations.

  7. The effects of four insect growth-regulating (IGR) insecticides on honeybee (Apis mellifera L.) colony development, queen rearing and drone sperm production.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Helen M; Wilkins, Selwyn; Battersby, Alastair H; Waite, Ruth J; Wilkinson, David

    2005-10-01

    This study assessed the effects of exposure to IGRs on the long-term development of the honeybee colony, viability of queens and sperm production in drones and integrated the data into a honeybee population model. Colonies treated with diflubenzuron resulted in a short-term reduction in the numbers of adult bees and brood. Colonies treated with fenoxycarb declined during the season earlier and started the season slower. The number of queens that successfully mated and laid eggs was affected in the fenoxycarb treatment group but there were no significant differences in the drone sperm counts between the colonies. An existing honeybee population model was modified to include exposure to IGRs. In the model, fenoxycarb reduced the winter size of the colony, with the greatest effects following a June or an August application. Assuming a 'larvae per nurse bee' ratio of 1.5 for brood rearing capability, the reduction in winter size of a colony following a fenoxycarb application was at its worst about 8%. However, even if only those bees reared within 2 weeks of the IGR being applied are subject to premature ageing, this might significantly reduce the size of over-wintering colonies, and increase the chance of the bee population dwindling and dying in late winter or early spring. PMID:16160749

  8. Sperm studies in anesthesiologists

    SciTech Connect

    Wyrobek, A.J.; Brodsky, J.; Gordon, l.; Moore, D.H., II; Watchmaker, G.; Cohen, E.N.

    1981-11-01

    Semen samples were collected from 46 anesthesiologists each of whom had worked a minimum of one year in hospital operating rooms ventilated with modern gas-scavenging devices. Samples collected from 26 beginning residents in anesthesiology served as controls. Concentrations of sperm and percentage of sperm having abnormal head shapes were determined for each sample. No significant differences were found between anesthesiologists and beginning residents. Limiting the analyses to men having no confounding factors (varicocele, recent illness, medications, heavy smoking, frequent sauna use) did not change the results. The sperm concentration and morphology in 13 men did not change signficantly after one year of exposure to anesthetic gases. However, the group of men who had one or more confounding factors (excluding exposure to anesthetic gases) showed significantly higher percentages of sperm abnormalities than did the group of men without such factors. These results suggest that limited exposure to anesthetic gases does not significantly affect sperm production as judged by changes in sperm concentration and morphology. These data are reassuring, but since the hospitals surveyed used modern gas-scavenging devices, men who are occupationally exposed to anesthetic gases without this protection should be studied for fuller assessment of the possible human spermatotoxic effects.

  9. Relationship between sperm quality parameters and the fatty acid composition of the muscle, liver and testis of European eel.

    PubMed

    Baeza, R; Mazzeo, I; Vílchez, M C; Gallego, V; Peñaranda, D S; Pérez, L; Asturiano, J F

    2015-03-01

    This study looks at the correlations that fatty acids have with different tissues in the European eel (Anguilla anguilla L.) during hormonally-induced sexual maturation, with different sperm quality parameters. In order to evaluate the different dynamics of the use of fatty acids, a categorization of the results from each sperm quality parameter (volume, concentration, motility and velocity) was performed. Low and moderate correlations were observed between muscle tissue and some sperm quality parameters but no high correlations were found. Eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5n3, EPA) in the liver seems to have a role in determining the volume of sperm produced. This can be explained by the fact that EPA is a major requirement in the early phases of sperm production (probably as a component of the spermatozoal membrane). In addition, the levels of α-linolenic acid (18:3-n3, ALA) and linoleic acid (18:2-n6, LA) in the liver decreased when sperm motility increased. In all the tissues, a negative correlation was observed between arachidonic acid (20:4n-6, ARA) and the different sperm velocity parameters. The fact that an increase in the consumption of ARA coincides with an increase in the speed of spermatozoa, highlights the important role that this fatty acid plays not only in sperm production, but also in sperm velocity. All this information could prove useful in the development of suitable broodstock diets to improve sperm quality and subsequently, the larval development of this species. PMID:25483240

  10. Sperm shape abnormalities in carbaryl-exposed employees.

    PubMed

    Wyrobek, A J; Watchmaker, G; Gordon, L; Wong, K; Moore, D; Whorton, D

    1981-08-01

    Semen was collected from 50 men occupationally exposed to carbaryl (1-naphthyl methyl carbamate) in a produciton plant for durations of 1 to 18 years and compared to semen from a control group of 34 unexposed, newly-hired workers. Employment, fertility, health, personal data, and blood samples were collected for each individual. Semen samples were analyzed for changes in sperm count, morphology, and frequency of sperm carrying double flourescent bodies (YFF). As a group, the exposed workers showed a significantly higher proportion of sperm with abnormal head shapes than did the control group (p < 0.005). Age, smoking habits, and medical problems did not appear to affect this result. This finding appears to be limited to men working in the carbaryl production area at the time of sampling. Sperm count and YFF did not show similar differences, which may be because they are known to be statistically less sensitive to small changes. Formerly exposed workers (away from carbaryl for an average of 6.3 years) showed a marginally significant elevation in sperm abnormalities compared to controls (p < .05, one-tailed statistical analyses) suggesting that the increase in abnormal morphology may not be reversible. However, the question of reversibility is sensitive to confounding factors and small sample sizes and, therefore, requires further study. With these data a definitive link between carbaryl exposure and human seminal defects cannot be established. Although a distinct effect on sperm morphology was seen in the exposed group, the increases in sperm shape abnormalities were not related to exposure dose (estimated by number of years on the job or job classification during the year prior to semen collection). Inexplicably, the increases in sperm abnormalities were seen primarily in currently exposed men who had worked with carbaryl for less than approximately 6 years. These findings suggest the need for further study since other workplace-related factor(s) may be responsible for the elevated sperm abnormalities seen in this study. PMID:6791917

  11. Cryopreservation of Greenshell™ mussel (Perna canaliculus) sperm.

    PubMed

    Adams, Serean L; Smith, John F; Taylor, Jolene; McGowan, Lindsay T; Tervit, H Robin

    2015-01-01

    Cryopreservation is a valuable technique for aquaculture as it enables a library or bank of genetically valuable animals to be maintained in a cost-effective manner. Here, we describe a method to cryopreserve the sperm of the Greenshell™ mussel (Perna canaliculus) and how to use the sperm post-thawing to maximize larval production from thawed sperm in selective breeding. PMID:25428014

  12. Lipids and calcium uptake of sperm in relation to cold shock and preservation: a review.

    PubMed

    White, I G

    1993-01-01

    When sperm of the ram, bull, boar and stallion are cold-shocked by rapid cooling to near freezing point, motility and metabolic activity are irreversibly depressed and the acrosome and plasma membrane disrupted. Ram sperm become susceptible to cold shock in the proximal corpus region of the epididymis when the cytoplasmic droplet has moved backwards to the distal portion of the sperm midpiece. The membrane constituents phospholipids and cholesterol are important in cold shock which causes loss of lipid from sperm. The susceptibility of sperm to cold shock is linked with a high ratio of unsaturated:saturated fatty acids in the phospholipids and a low cholesterol content. The high unsaturated fatty acid content of sperm also makes them susceptible to damage from peroxidation which adversely affects motility, metabolism, ultrastructure and fertility. Hydroxynonenal, a product of fatty acid peroxidation, depresses the motility and oxygen uptake of ram sperm in vitro and may react with the -SH groups of the axonemal microtubules. High calcium concentrations in the external medium may decrease the motility and metabolism of sperm and 'calcium intoxication' may be a factor in cold shock. Lowering the environmental temperature increases calcium uptake by sperm and the effect is aggravated if the rate of cooling is rapid. Phospholipids, particularly those in egg yolk, protect sperm to some extent from cold shock and also prevent increased calcium flux into the sperm. Suggestions are made for increasing the life span of sperm during preservation and microencapsulation by adding agents that may stabilize membranes, counter peroxidation and decrease calcium uptake. PMID:9627725

  13. Sperm motility and MSP.

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Harold

    2006-01-01

    Form follows function, and this maxim is particularly true for the nematode sperm cell. Motility is essential for fertilization, and the process of spermatogenesis culminates in the production of a crawling spermatozoon with an extended pseudopod. However, the morphological similarity to amoeboid cells of other organisms is not conserved at the molecular level. Instead of utilizing the actin cytoskeleton and motor proteins, the pseudopod moves via the regulated assembly and disassembly of filaments composed of the major sperm protein (MSP). The current work reviews the structure and dynamics of MSP filament formation, the critical role of pH in MSP assembly, and the recent identification of components that regulate this process. The combination of cytological, biochemical, and genetic approaches in this relatively simple system make nematode sperm an attractive model for investigating the mechanics of amoeboid cell motility. PMID:18050481

  14. Responses of testis, epididymis, and sperm of pubertal rats exposed to functionalized multiwalled carbon nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Farombi, Ebenezer O; Adedara, Isaac A; Forcados, Gilead E; Anao, Osemudiamen O; Agbowo, Agatha; Patlolla, Anita K

    2016-05-01

    The present study investigated the response of testes, epididymides and sperm in pubertal Wistar rats following exposure to 0, 0.25, 0.5, 0.75, and 1.0 mg kg(-1) functionalized multi-walled carbon nanotubes (f-MWCNTs) for 5 days. The results showed that administration of (f-MWCNTs) significantly increased the activities of superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase in a dose-dependent manner in both testes and sperm compared with control group. Moreover, the significant decrease in the activity of glutathione-S-transferase and glutathione level was accompanied with significant elevation in the levels of hydrogen peroxide and malondialdehyde in both testes and sperm of (f-MWCNTs)-treated rats. The spermiogram of (f-MWCNTs)-treated rats indicated significant decrease in epididymal sperm number, sperm progressive motility, testicular sperm number and daily sperm production with elevated sperm abnormalities when compared with the control. Exposure to (f-MWCNTs) decreased plasma testosterone level and produced marked morphological changes including decreased geminal epithelium, edema, congestion, reduced spermatogenic cells and focal areas of tubular degeneration in the testes. The lumen of the epididymides contained reduced sperm cells and there was mild to severe hyperplasia epithelial cells lining the duct of the epididymis. Collectively, pubertal exposure of male rats to (f-MWCNTs) elicited oxidative stress response resulting in marked testicular and epididymides dysfunction. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol 31: 543-551, 2016. PMID:25410135

  15. Sperm competition games: the risk model can generate higher sperm allocation to virgin females.

    PubMed

    Ball, M A; Parker, G A

    2007-03-01

    We examine the risk model in sperm competition games for cases where female fertility increases significantly with sperm numbers (sperm limitation). Without sperm competition, sperm allocation increases with sperm limitation. We define 'average risk' as the probability q that females in the population mate twice, and 'perceived risk' as the information males gain about the sperm competition probability with individual females. If males obtain no information from individual females, sperm numbers increase with q unless sperm limitation is high and one of the two competing ejaculates is strongly disfavoured. If males can distinguish between virgin and mated females, greater sperm allocation to virgins is favoured by high sperm limitation, high q, and by the second male's ejaculate being disfavoured. With high sperm limitation, sperm allocation to virgins increases and to mated females decreases with q at high q levels. With perfect information about female mating pattern, sperm allocation (i) to virgins that will mate again exceeds that to mated females and to virgins that will mate only once, (ii) to virgins that mate only once exceeds that for mated females if q is high and there is high second male disadvantage and (iii) to each type of female can decrease with q if sperm limitation is high, although the average allocation increases at least across low q levels. In general, higher sperm allocation to virgins is favoured by: strong disadvantage to the second ejaculate, high sperm limitation, high average risk and increased information (perceived risk). These conditions may apply in a few species, especially spiders. PMID:17305842

  16. Exposure to sperm competition risk improves survival of virgin males.

    PubMed

    Moatt, Joshua P; Dytham, Calvin; Thom, Michael D F

    2013-04-23

    Sperm competition between the ejaculates of multiple males for the fertilization of a given set of ova is taxonomically widespread. Males have evolved remarkable adaptations to increase their reproductive success under postcopulatory sexual selection, which in many species includes the ability to modify behaviour and ejaculate characteristics plastically to match the perceived level of sperm competition. Males of the model species Drosophila melanogaster increase mating duration and modify seminal fluid composition in response to short-term changes in sperm competition risk. If these responses increase a male's total investment in reproduction, he must either trade-off this cost against other life-history traits or suffer reduced survival. We tested whether mounting a plastic sperm competition response bears an instantaneous survival cost, and instead found that male D. melanogaster exposed to a high risk of sperm competition survive 12 per cent longer than those at low risk, equating to a 49 per cent reduction in the hourly hazard of death. This striking effect was found only among virgins: the high cost of mating in this species eliminates any such benefit among non-virgin males. Our results suggest that the improvement in survival found among virgins may be a product of males' tactical responses to sperm competition. PMID:23445944

  17. The adverse effects of low-dose exposure to Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate during adolescence on sperm function in adult rats.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Ping-Chi; Kuo, Ya-Ting; Leon Guo, Yueliang; Chen, Jenq-Renn; Tsai, Shinn-Shyong; Chao, How-Ran; Teng, Yen-Ni; Pan, Min-Hsiung

    2016-06-01

    Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) is the most crucial phthalate derivative added to polyvinyl chloride as a plasticizer. This study examined the effects of low-dose exposure to DEHP during adolescence on sperm function in adult rats. The male rats were daily gavaged with 30, 100, 300, and 1000 µg kg(-1) of DEHP or corn oil from postnatal day (PND) 42 until PND 105. The selection of DEHP doses ranged from the mean daily intake by the normal-population exposure levels to no-observed-adverse-effect level of DEHP for the endpoints evaluated until adulthood. Significant increases in the percentage of sperm with tail abnormality, tendency for sperm DNA fragmentation index (DFI) and percentage of sperm with DFI were found in those exposed to 100, 300, and 1000 µg kg(-1) (P < 0.05). We observed a significant increase of hydrogen peroxide (H2 O2 ) generation in the sperm of the 1000 µg kg(-1) group compared with the control group (P < 0.05). The excessive production of sperm H2 O2 coincided with an increase in sperm DFI. In this study, the lowest-observed-adverse-effect level for sperm toxicity was considered to be 100 µg DEHP/kg/day in sperm morphology and chromatin DNA damage. Further research is necessary to clarify the mechanisms of DEHP-related sperm ROS generation on sperm DNA damage. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol 31: 706-712, 2016. PMID:25410017

  18. Decoding mechanisms of loss of fertilization ability of cryopreserved mouse sperm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gray, Jeffrey Earl

    Cryopreservation of mouse sperm is an important technology for management of biomedical research resources. Dramatic progress has been made recently in the development of protocols that combat mouse-strain specific reduction of IVF after cryopreservation. Equal emphasis, however, has not been placed on investigating the biological mechanisms underlying these improvements to IVF. This dissertation broadly investigates the basic question of how mouse-strain specific reduction of IVF occurs after cryopreservation, and how recently developed protocols prevent this process. My research investigated the effects of antioxidants, the cholesterol-acceptor CD, reduced calcium media, and TYH capacitation media on sperm function and oxidative stress after cryopreservation in a variety of mouse strains. I found that reduced IVF was associated with loss of capacitation-dependent sperm function in three strains, B6/J, B6/N, and 129X1, and CD improved sperm function and IVF in all three strains. These findings suggest that cryopreservation inhibits cholesterol efflux resulting in reduced IVF of many mouse strains. I also found that cryopreservation induces uniquely high production of mitochondrial H2O2 by B6/J sperm. H2O2 present in other cellular compartments of B6/J sperm was not elevated compared to other strains. High levels of mitochondrial H2O2 were associated with lipid peroxidation of the sperm head and inability to acrosome react. Antioxidants reduced mitochondrial H2O2 production, decreased sperm head lipid peroxidation, and improved acrosome reaction. The cryopreservation-induced increase in mitochondrial H2O2 production of B6/J and B6129XF1 sperm was associated with elevation of intracellular calcium after cryopreservation and dependent on mitochondrial metabolic substrates. Reducing intracellular calcium levels or removing mitochondrial metabolic substrates decreased mitochondrial H2O2 production and increased IVF rates of cryopreserved B6/J sperm. Many of the strains I tested exhibited increased H2O2 production after cryopreservation, but cryopreservation-induced H2O2 only interfered with IVF of B6/J sperm. This dissertation describes two means to improve IVF of cryopreserved sperm, mitigation of oxidative stress in B6/J sperm and improvement of capacitation-dependent sperm function for several mouse strains.

  19. Fracturing high-permeability reservoirs increases productivity

    SciTech Connect

    Dusterhoft, R.G. ); Chapman, B.J. )

    1994-06-20

    Hydraulic fracturing of high-permeability reservoirs has increased long-term hydrocarbon production and reduced sand production in many areas of the world. A key element is the reduction of near well bore drawdown during production. Drawdown, the difference between reservoir and production pressures, is the driving force for flow into the well bore. As drawdown increases because of higher production rates or depletion, formation instability may cause fines and sand to migrate into the well bore region. A greater well bore radius reduces both radial velocity and drawdown. Fracturing beyond the well bore region effectively bypasses the damaged zone, increasing the effective radius of the well bore and enabling higher flow rates with lower drawdown pressures. In essence, the reservoir energy is used more efficiently because the conductive proppant bed bypasses the near well bore restrictions. The paper discusses candidate well selection; proppant selection; sand control; minifrac procedures; spurt losses; fracture design; equipment; case histories in West Africa and offshore Louisiana.

  20. Sperm functional parameters and erythrocytes oxidant-antioxidant imbalance during municipal landfill leachate treatment withdrawal in rats.

    PubMed

    Adedara, Isaac A; Lawal, Tajudeen A; Adesina, Adebayo A; Oyebiyi, Oluwatosin O; Ebokaiwe, Azubike P; Farombi, Ebenezer O

    2014-01-01

    Adequate information on how leachates affect hematological and reproductive functions is necessary to help in linking causality with predictable response. The present study investigated the effects of Olushosun municipal landfill leachate (OMLL) exposure and withdrawal on sperm characteristics and erythrocytes oxidant-antioxidant balance in rats. Adult male Wistar rats were exposed to 0%, 12.5% and 25% OMLL in drinking water for 28 days. One-half of the rats in each group were sacrificed on day 29 while the remaining one-half stayed an additional 28 days without treatment. OMLL exposure significantly decreased sperm functional parameters, disrupted antioxidant systems with concomitant elevation in hydrogen peroxide and malondialdehyde levels in erythrocytes and sperm. Following withdrawal of treatment, OMLL-mediated decrease in sperm count and daily sperm production were reversed to near control. However, erythrocytes and sperm oxidative damage, increased sperm abnormalities, decreased epididymis weight, sperm progressive motility and testicular sperm number persisted and were consistent with results obtained from rats sacrificed immediately after OMLL treatment. Collectively, OMLL-induced irreversible oxidative damage to erythrocytes and sperm in rats within the time course of investigation. These findings highlight potential adverse effects of OMLL on individuals unduly exposed to leachates contaminated substances. PMID:24486716

  1. Differences in ATP Generation Via Glycolysis and Oxidative Phosphorylation and Relationships with Sperm Motility in Mouse Species.

    PubMed

    Tourmente, Maximiliano; Villar-Moya, Pilar; Rial, Eduardo; Roldan, Eduardo R S

    2015-08-14

    Mouse sperm produce enough ATP to sustain motility by anaerobic glycolysis and respiration. However, previous studies indicated that an active glycolytic pathway is required to achieve normal sperm function and identified glycolysis as the main source of ATP to fuel the motility of mouse sperm. All the available evidence has been gathered from the studies performed using the laboratory mouse. However, comparative studies of closely related mouse species have revealed a wide range of variation in sperm motility and ATP production and that the laboratory mouse has comparatively low values in these traits. In this study, we compared the relative reliance on the usage of glycolysis or oxidative phosphorylation as ATP sources for sperm motility between mouse species that exhibit significantly different sperm performance parameters. We found that the sperm of species with higher oxygen consumption/lactate excretion rate ratios were able to produce higher amounts of ATP, achieving higher swimming velocities. Additionally, we show that the species with higher respiration/glycolysis ratios have a higher degree of dependence upon active oxidative phosphorylation. Moreover, we characterize for the first time two mouse species in which sperm depend on functional oxidative phosphorylation to achieve normal performance. Finally, we discuss that sexual selection could promote adaptations in sperm energetic metabolism tending to increase the usage of a more efficient pathway for the generation of ATP (and faster sperm). PMID:26048989

  2. Fires increase Amazon forest productivity through increases in diffuse radiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rap, A.; Spracklen, D. V.; Mercado, L.; Reddington, C. L.; Haywood, J. M.; Ellis, R. J.; Phillips, O. L.; Artaxo, P.; Bonal, D.; Restrepo Coupe, N.; Butt, N.

    2015-06-01

    Atmospheric aerosol scatters solar radiation increasing the fraction of diffuse radiation and the efficiency of photosynthesis. We quantify the impacts of biomass burning aerosol (BBA) on diffuse radiation and plant photosynthesis across Amazonia during 1998-2007. Evaluation against observed aerosol optical depth allows us to provide lower and upper BBA emissions estimates. BBA increases Amazon basin annual mean diffuse radiation by 3.4-6.8% and net primary production (NPP) by 1.4-2.8%, with quoted ranges driven by uncertainty in BBA emissions. The enhancement of Amazon basin NPP by 78-156 Tg C a-1 is equivalent to 33-65% of the annual regional carbon emissions from biomass burning. This NPP increase occurs during the dry season and acts to counteract some of the observed effect of drought on tropical production. We estimate that 30-60 Tg C a-1 of this NPP enhancement is within woody tissue, accounting for 8-16% of the observed carbon sink across mature Amazonian forests.

  3. Transcript levels of the soluble sperm factor protein phospholipase C zeta 1 (PLCζ1) increase through induced spermatogenesis in European eel.

    PubMed

    Morini, Marina; Peñaranda, David S; Vílchez, María C; Gallego, Víctor; Nourizadeh-Lillabadi, Rasoul; Asturiano, Juan F; Weltzien, Finn-Arne; Pérez, Luz

    2015-09-01

    Activation at fertilization of the vertebrate egg is triggered by Ca(2+) waves. Recent studies suggest the phospholipase C zeta (PLCζ), a sperm-specific protein, triggers egg activation by an IP3-mediated Ca(2+) release and allow Ca(2+) waves at fertilization. In the present study we cloned, characterized, and phylogenetically positioned the European eel PLCζ (PLCζ1). It is 1521 bp long, with 10 exons encoding an open reading frame of 506 amino acids. The amino acid sequence contains an EF-hand domain, X and Y catalytic domains, and a carboxy-terminal C2 domain, all typical of other PLCζ orthologous. The tissue distribution was studied, and the gene expression was determined in testis during induced sexual maturation at three different thermal regimes. Also, brain and pituitary expression was studied through sex maturation at constant temperature. plcζ1 was expressed in brain of male and female, in testis but not in ovaries. By first time in vertebrates, it is reported plcζ1 expression in the pituitary gland. Testis plcζ1 expression increased through spermatogenesis under all the thermal regimes, but being significantly elevated at lower temperatures. It was very low when testis contained only spermatogonia or spermatocytes, while maximum expression was found during spermiogenesis. These results support the hypothesis for an eel sperm-specific PLCζ1 inducing egg activation, similarly to mammals and some teleosts, but different from some other teleost species, which express this protein in ovaries, but not in testes. PMID:26051612

  4. Production of androgenetic diploid loach by cold-shock of eggs fertilized with diploid sperm.

    PubMed

    Hou, Jilun; Fujimoto, Takafumi; Yamaha, Etsuro; Arai, Katsutoshi

    2013-07-15

    Diploid androgenotes were produced without egg irradiation in the loach, Misgurnus anguillicaudatus. Eggs of wild-type diploid females were fertilized with diploid sperm of a neo-tetraploid male and then cold-shock treated at 3 °C (range, ±0.5 °C) for 30 minutes just after fertilization to eliminate the female nucleus. After hatching, ploidy status of the hatched larvae was analyzed by flow cytometry, which revealed putative diploid androgenotes as well as larvae possessing other ploidies. Five independent microsatellite DNA markers were genotyped to confirm all-male inheritance of the resultant diploid larvae. The mean ± SD yield rate of diploid androgenetic larvae to total eggs used was 12.29 ± 3.25% in the cold-shock group and 22.23 ± 13.42% in the UV-irradiated group (P > 0.05). No diploid androgenetic larvae were detected in the intact control group. To our knowledge, this is the first report demonstrating successful induction of diploid androgenotes without egg irradiation in fish. PMID:23602217

  5. Adiponectin lowers glucose production by increasing SOGA.

    PubMed

    Cowherd, Rachael B; Cowerd, Rachael B; Asmar, Melissa M; Alderman, J McKee; Alderman, Elizabeth A; Garland, Alaina L; Busby, Walker H; Bodnar, Wanda M; Rusyn, Ivan; Medoff, Benjamin D; Tisch, Roland; Mayer-Davis, Elizabeth; Swenberg, James A; Zeisel, Steven H; Combs, Terry P

    2010-10-01

    Adiponectin is a hormone that lowers glucose production by increasing liver insulin sensitivity. Insulin blocks the generation of biochemical intermediates for glucose production by inhibiting autophagy. However, autophagy is stimulated by an essential mediator of adiponectin action, AMPK. This deadlock led to our hypothesis that adiponectin inhibits autophagy through a novel mediator. Mass spectrometry revealed a novel protein that we call suppressor of glucose by autophagy (SOGA) in adiponectin-treated hepatoma cells. Adiponectin increased SOGA in hepatocytes, and siRNA knockdown of SOGA blocked adiponectin inhibition of glucose production. Furthermore, knockdown of SOGA increased late autophagosome and lysosome staining and the secretion of valine, an amino acid that cannot be synthesized or metabolized by liver cells, suggesting that SOGA inhibits autophagy. SOGA decreased in response to AICAR, an activator of AMPK, and LY294002, an inhibitor of the insulin signaling intermediate, PI3K. AICAR reduction of SOGA was blocked by adiponectin; however, adiponectin did not increase SOGA during PI3K inhibition, suggesting that adiponectin increases SOGA through the insulin signaling pathway. SOGA contains an internal signal peptide that enables the secretion of a circulating fragment of SOGA, providing a surrogate marker for intracellular SOGA levels. Circulating SOGA increased in parallel with adiponectin and insulin activity in both humans and mice. These results suggest that adiponectin-mediated increases in SOGA contribute to the inhibition of glucose production. PMID:20813965

  6. Male-derived cuticular hydrocarbons signal sperm competition intensity and affect ejaculate expenditure in crickets.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Melissa L; Simmons, Leigh W

    2009-01-22

    Female sexual promiscuity can have significant effects on male mating decisions because it increases the intensity of competition between ejaculates for fertilization. Because sperm production is costly, males that can detect multiple matings by females and allocate sperm strategically will have an obvious fitness advantage. The presence of rival males is widely recognized as a cue used by males to assess sperm competition. However, for species in which males neither congregate around nor guard females, other more cryptic cues might be involved. Here, we demonstrate unprecedented levels of sperm competition assessment by males, which is mediated via the use of chemical cues. Using the cricket Teleogryllus oceanicus, we manipulated male perception of sperm competition by experimentally coating live unmated females with cuticular compounds extracted from males. We found that males adjusted their ejaculate allocation in response to these compounds: the viability of sperm contained within a male's ejaculate decreased as the number of male extracts applied to his virgin female partner was increased. We further show that males do not respond to the relative concentration of male compounds present on females, but rather to the number of distinct signature odours of individual males. Our results conform to sperm competition theory, and show for the first time, to our knowledge, that males can detect different intensities of sperm competition by using distinct chemical cues of individual males present on females. PMID:18854298

  7. Aspermy, Sperm Quality and Radiation in Chernobyl Birds

    PubMed Central

    Møller, Anders Pape; Bonisoli-Alquati, Andrea; Mousseau, Timothy A.; Rudolfsen, Geir

    2014-01-01

    Background Following the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident, large amounts of radionuclides were emitted and spread in the environment. Animals living in such contaminated areas are predicted to suffer fitness costs including reductions in the quality and quantity of gametes. Methodology/Principal Findings We studied whether aspermy and sperm quality were affected by radioactive contamination by examining ejaculates from wild caught birds breeding in areas varying in background radiation level by more than three orders of magnitude around Chernobyl, Ukraine. The frequency of males with aspermy increased logarithmically with radiation level. While 18.4% of males from contaminated areas had no sperm that was only the case for 3.0% of males from uncontaminated control areas. Furthermore, there were negative relationships between sperm quality as reflected by reduced sperm velocity and motility, respectively, and radiation. Conclusions/Significance Our results suggest that radioactive contamination around Chernobyl affects sperm production and quality. We are the first to report an interspecific difference in sperm quality in relation to radioactive contamination. PMID:24963711

  8. Increasing productivity through Total Reuse Management (TRM)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schuler, M. P.

    1991-01-01

    Total Reuse Management (TRM) is a new concept currently being promoted by the NASA Langley Software Engineering and Ada Lab (SEAL). It uses concepts similar to those promoted in Total Quality Management (TQM). Both technical and management personnel are continually encouraged to think in terms of reuse. Reuse is not something that is aimed for after a product is completed, but rather it is built into the product from inception through development. Lowering software development costs, reducing risk, and increasing code reliability are the more prominent goals of TRM. Procedures and methods used to adopt and apply TRM are described. Reuse is frequently thought of as only being applicable to code. However, reuse can apply to all products and all phases of the software life cycle. These products include management and quality assurance plans, designs, and testing procedures. Specific examples of successfully reused products are given and future goals are discussed.

  9. Why production keeps increasing in China

    SciTech Connect

    Pu, W.R. )

    1990-12-01

    China National Petroleum Corp., which is responsible for all onshore production operations in the country, has surprisingly been able to post annual increases in the national oil production rate since 1981. This achievement has been remarkable considering output comes from mostly aging fields with steadily accelerating water production and that few new discoveries of significance have been brought onstream in recent years. This paper details the country's production history over the past 11 years. Mainly, production performance is attributable to careful management of massive waterflood operations and a marked growth in artifically lifted wells. Also, a number of thermal EOR projects using steam in heavy, viscous reservoirs that won't respond to conventional recovery techniques have contributed to some extent.

  10. Cryoprotective effect of phosphorous-containing phenolic anti-oxidant for the cryopreservation of beluga sperm.

    PubMed

    Osipova, V P; Kolyada, M N; Berberova, N T; Milaeva, E R; Ponomareva, E N; Belaya, M M

    2014-12-01

    A cryoprotective effect of an addition of a new synthetic antioxidant - a representative of phosphorus-containing sterically hindered phenols is presented. The efficiency of the compound was shown to exceed the effect of lipid-soluble antioxidants butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) and trolox in the conditions of cryopreservation of beluga sperm in the presence of the modified Stein's medium. It was shown that the level of carbonyl oxidation by-products, which can react with thiobarbituric acid (TBARS), in beluga sperm was inversely proportional to the motility time of sperm cells. The fertility of beluga sperm increased 2 times upon the addition of phosphorus-containing phenol to a modified Stein's medium. The prospects of the new antioxidant application to improve cryoresistance of beluga sperm in the conditions of cryopreservation for its efficient protection from the peroxidation processes are discussed. PMID:25445463

  11. Facultative sperm storage in response to nutritional status in a female insect.

    PubMed

    Roth, S; Reinhardt, K

    2003-08-01

    We investigated sperm storage by females of a predatory bug, Nabis rugosus, before and after hibernation and with regard to nutritional status. In the field, females had more sperm available before than after hibernation. Food-deprived females maintained fewer sperm than fed females before but not after hibernation. However, after hibernation food-deprived females suppressed egg production rather than decreasing sperm-storage efficiency. Because mated females did not exhibit increased overwinter survival relative to virgin females there is a low likelihood of direct benefits in the form of ejaculate-derived nutrients. If nutrition-dependent sperm storage by females is widespread in the animal kingdom, our findings may have important implications for the understanding of postcopulatory sexual selection and the evolution of food gifts. PMID:12952635

  12. Continued increases in Arctic Ocean primary production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arrigo, Kevin R.; van Dijken, Gert L.

    2015-08-01

    Dramatic declines in sea-ice cover in the Arctic Ocean in recent decades have the potential to fundamentally alter marine ecosystems. Here we investigate changes in sea ice between the years 1998 and 2012 at regional and basin scales and how these have impacted rates of phytoplankton net primary production (NPP). Annual NPP increased 30% over the Arctic Ocean during our study period, with the largest increases on the interior shelves and smaller increases on inflow shelves. Increased annual NPP was often, but not always, associated with reduced sea-ice extent and a longer phytoplankton growing season (fewer days of ice cover). Spatial patterns of increased annual NPP suggest that increased nutrient fluxes may also play an important role. Outflow shelves either exhibited no change in annual NPP during our study period or a significant decline, perhaps indicating that nutrients had been consumed by increased NPP farther upstream.

  13. Exploring Increased Productivity Through Employee Engagement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, Wayne K., Jr.

    Disengaged employees cost U.S. companies billions of dollars annually in lowered productivity, a cost which has been compounded by the difficult economic situations in the country. The potential for increasing productivity through increased employee engagement was examined in this study. Using personal engagement theory and the theory of planned behavior, the purpose of this phenomenological study was to explore how the experiences of salaried aerospace employees affected productivity and the financial performance of an organization. Interviews were conducted with a purposive sample of 20 aerospace employees whose responses were codified and analyzed to identify themes. The analysis indicated that (a) the lived experiences of employees influenced employee engagement, (b) employee engagement affects organizational commitment and performance, and (c) trust and respect and leadership are essential components to keep employees engaged. Eighty percent of the participants indicated that as employee engagement increases so too does organizational performance. The implications for positive social change include new insights for leaders seeking to increase productivity and financial performance, and to support employee engagement for maintaining sustainability, retaining talent, increasing profits, and improving the economy.

  14. Diabetes mellitus and sperm parameters.

    PubMed

    La Vignera, Sandro; Condorelli, Rosita; Vicari, Enzo; D'Agata, Rosario; Calogero, Aldo E

    2012-01-01

    Because of the paucity of studies and inconsistencies regarding the impact of diabetes mellitus (DM) on semen quality, this disease is seldom looked for in the infertile patient. Recently, this view has been challenged by findings showing that DM induces subtle molecular changes that are important for sperm quality and function. This brief review shows the main sperm parameters in patients with DM and presents the mechanisms hypothesized to explain the changes observed in these patients. The data available suggest that DM alters conventional sperm parameters. In addition, DM causes histologic damage of the epididymis, with a negative impact on sperm transit. Various mechanisms may explain the sperm damage observed in patients with DM. These include endocrine disorders, neuropathy, and increased oxidative stress. Many authors suggest that DM decreases serum testosterone levels. This is associated with a steroidogenetic defect in Leydig cells. In addition, diabetic neuropathy seems to cause atonia of seminal vesicles, bladder, and urethra. Furthermore, DM is associated with an increased oxidative stress, which damages sperm nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. Finally, spermatogenesis derangement and germ cell apoptosis in type 1 DM may relate to a local autoimmune damage, whereas insulin resistance, obesity, and other related comorbidities may impair sperm parameters and decrease testosterone serum levels in patients with type 2 DM. PMID:21474785

  15. Chromosomal abnormalities in human sperm

    SciTech Connect

    Martin, R.H.

    1985-01-01

    The ability to analyze human sperm chromosome complements after penetration of zona pellucida-free hamster eggs provides the first opportunity to study the frequency and type of chromosomal abnormalities in human gametes. Two large-scale studies have provided information on normal men. We have studied 1,426 sperm complements from 45 normal men and found an abnormality rate of 8.9%. Brandriff et al. (5) found 8.1% abnormal complements in 909 sperm from 4 men. The distribution of numerical and structural abnormalities was markedly dissimilar in the 2 studies. The frequency of aneuploidy was 5% in our sample and only 1.6% in Brandriff's, perhaps reflecting individual variability among donors. The frequency of 24,YY sperm was low: 0/1,426 and 1/909. This suggests that the estimates of nondisjunction based on fluorescent Y body data (1% to 5%) are not accurate. We have also studied men at increased risk of sperm chromosomal abnormalities. The frequency of chromosomally unbalanced sperm in 6 men heterozygous for structural abnormalities varied dramatically: 77% for t11;22, 32% for t6;14, 19% for t5;18, 13% for t14;21, and 0% for inv 3 and 7. We have also studied 13 cancer patients before and after radiotherapy and demonstrated a significant dose-dependent increase of sperm chromosome abnormalities (numerical and structural) 36 months after radiation treatment.

  16. Sperm DNA fragmentation is related to sperm morphological staining patterns.

    PubMed

    Sá, Rosália; Cunha, Mariana; Rocha, Eduardo; Barros, Alberto; Sousa, Mário

    2015-10-01

    In this prospective comparative study, sperm DNA fragmentation (sDNAfrag) was compared at each step of a sequential semen preparation, with semen parameters according to their degree of severity. At each step (fractions) of the sequential procedure, sDNAfrag was determined: fresh (Raw), after gradient centrifugation, washing, and swim-up (SU) for 70 infertile men enrolled in intracytoplasmic sperm injection cycles. sDNAfrag significantly (P = 0.04; P < 0.0001) decreased throughout the steps of semen preparation, with centrifugation and washing not increasing it. A negative correlation to sperm motility was observed in Raw and SU fractions, and a higher sDNAfrag was observed in samples with lower semen quality. Our results confirm that the steps of the sequential procedure do not compromise sperm DNA integrity and progressively decreased sDNAfrag regardless of the sperm abnormality and that semen parameters with lower quality present higher sDNAfrag. Four distinct patterns were observed, of which the entire sperm head staining was the pattern most expressed in all studied fractions. Additionally, the sperm head gene-rich region staining pattern was reduced by the procedure. This suggests that pattern quantification might be a useful adjunct when performing sDNAfrag testing for male infertility. PMID:26278809

  17. Parameters of the reproductive tract, spermatogenesis, daily sperm production and major seminal plasma proteins of tropically adapted morada nova rams.

    PubMed

    Sousa, F M L; Lobo, C H; Menezes, E S B; Rego, J P A; Oliveira, R V; Lima-Souza, A C; Fioramonte, M; Gozzo, F C; Pompeu, R C F F; Cândido, M J D; Oliveira, J T; Moura, A A

    2014-06-01

    This study describes the reproductive parameters of Morada Nova rams, a breed of hair sheep from Brazil and with unique adaption to tropical environments. At 42 weeks of age, 15 rams were subjected to semen collection and, 1 week later, animals were slaughtered for collection of testes, epididymis and accessory sex glands. We conducted 2-D electrophoresis of seminal plasma proteins and major spots of stained gels were identified by LC-MS/MS. Total RNA was isolated from testis, epididymis and vesicular glands and subjected to qPCR. At slaughter, scrotal circumference and testicular weight were 27.5 ± 0.5 cm and 109.5 ± 6.0 g, respectively. Seminiferous tubule (ST) diameter was 188.3 ± 4.0 μm and each testis contained 1.9 ± 0.1 Sertoli cells (×10(9) ). Each Sertoli cell supported 0.1 ± 0.01 A spermatogonia, 3.0 ± 0.2 pachytene spermatocytes and 7.7 ± 0.5 round spermatids/tubule cross section. Daily sperm production reached 5.6 × 10(6)  cells/g of testis parenchyma. Testis size appeared as indicative of ST diameter and associated with epididymal measurements, as well as with the population of round spermatids and Sertoli cells/testis. Rams with heavier testes had greater daily sperm production and more Sertoli cells/testis. We detected 90.9 ± 9.6 spots per 2-D gel of seminal plasma. Major seminal proteins were identified as ram seminal vesicle proteins at 14 and 22 kDa, representing 16.2% and 12.8% of the total intensity of valid spots in the gels, respectively. Expression of both genes was greater in the vesicular glands as compared to testis and epididymis. Pixel intensity for those proteins in the 2-D gels was significantly correlated with seminal vesicle weight. This is the first description of the basic reproductive aspects of Morada Nova rams, including protein profiles of their seminal plasma. These findings will allow a better understanding of their reproductive physiology. PMID:24716618

  18. Copulation Activity, Sperm Production and Conidia Transfer in Aedes aegypti Males Contaminated by Metarhizium anisopliae: A Biological Control Prospect

    PubMed Central

    Russell, Tanya L.; Braks, Marieta A. H.

    2015-01-01

    Background Dengue is the most prevalent arboviral disease transmitted by Aedes aegypti worldwide, whose chemical control is difficult, expensive, and of inconsistent efficacy. Releases of Metarhizium anisopliae—exposed Ae. aegypti males to disseminate conidia among female mosquitoes by mating represents a promising biological control approach against this important vector. A better understanding of fungus virulence and impact on reproductive parameters of Ae. aegypti, is need before testing auto-dissemination strategies. Methodology/Principal Findings Mortality, mating competitiveness, sperm production, and the capacity to auto-disseminate the fungus to females up to the 5thcopulation, were compared between Aedes aegypti males exposed to 5.96 x 107 conidia per cm2 of M. anisopliae and uninfected males. Half (50%) of fungus-exposed males (FEMs) died within the first 4 days post-exposure (PE). FEMs required 34% more time to successively copulate with 5 females (165 ± 3 minutes) than uninfected males (109 ± 3 minutes). Additionally, fungus infection reduced the sperm production by 87% at 5 days PE. Some beneficial impacts were observed, FEMs were able to successfully compete with uninfected males in cages, inseminating an equivalent number of females (about 25%). Under semi-field conditions, the ability of FEMs to search for and inseminate females was also equivalent to uninfected males (both inseminating about 40% females); but for the remaining females that were not inseminated, evidence of tarsal contact (transfer of fluorescent dust) was significantly greater in FEMs compared to controls. The estimated conidia load of a female exposed on the 5th copulation was 5,200 mL-1 which was sufficient to cause mortality. Conclusion/Significance Our study is the first to demonstrate auto-dissemination of M. anisopliae through transfer of fungus from males to female Ae. aegypti during mating under semi-field conditions. Our results suggest that auto-dissemination studies using releases of FEMs inside households could successfully infect wild Ae. aegypti females, providing another viable biological control tool for this important the dengue vector. PMID:26473490

  19. The effects of male age on sperm DNA damage in healthy non-smokers

    SciTech Connect

    Schmid, T; Eskenazi, B; Baumgartner, A; Marchetti, F; Young, S; Weldon, R; Anderson, D; Wyrobek, A

    2006-03-08

    The trend for men to have children at older ages raises concerns that advancing age may increase the production of genetically defective sperm, increasing the risks of transmitting germ-line mutations. We investigated the associations between male age and sperm DNA damage and the influence of several lifestyle factors in a healthy non-clinical group of 80 non-smokers (age: 22-80) with no known fertility problems using the sperm Comet analyses. The average percent of DNA that migrated out of the sperm nucleus under alkaline electrophoresis increased with age (0.18% per year, p=0.006); but there was no age association for damage measured under neutral conditions (p=0.7). Men who consumed >3 cups coffee per day had {approx}20% higher % tail DNA under neutral but not alkaline conditions compared to men who consumed no caffeine (p=0.005). Our findings indicate that (a) older men have increased sperm DNA damage associated with alkali-labile sites or single-strand DNA breaks, and (b) independent of age, men with substantial daily caffeine consumption have increased sperm DNA damage associated with double-strand DNA breaks. DNA damage in sperm can be converted to chromosomal aberrations and gene mutations after fertilization increasing the risks for developmental defects and genetic diseases among offspring.

  20. Computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA): capabilities and potential developments.

    PubMed

    Amann, Rupert P; Waberski, Dagmar

    2014-01-01

    Computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA) systems have evolved over approximately 40 years, through advances in devices to capture the image from a microscope, huge increases in computational power concurrent with amazing reduction in size of computers, new computer languages, and updated/expanded software algorithms. Remarkably, basic concepts for identifying sperm and their motion patterns are little changed. Older and slower systems remain in use. Most major spermatology laboratories and semen processing facilities have a CASA system, but the extent of reliance thereon ranges widely. This review describes capabilities and limitations of present CASA technology used with boar, bull, and stallion sperm, followed by possible future developments. Each marketed system is different. Modern CASA systems can automatically view multiple fields in a shallow specimen chamber to capture strobe-like images of 500 to >2000 sperm, at 50 or 60 frames per second, in clear or complex extenders, and in <2 minutes, store information for ≥ 30 frames and provide summary data for each spermatozoon and the population. A few systems evaluate sperm morphology concurrent with motion. CASA cannot accurately predict 'fertility' that will be obtained with a semen sample or subject. However, when carefully validated, current CASA systems provide information important for quality assurance of semen planned for marketing, and for the understanding of the diversity of sperm responses to changes in the microenvironment in research. The four take-home messages from this review are: (1) animal species, extender or medium, specimen chamber, intensity of illumination, imaging hardware and software, instrument settings, technician, etc., all affect accuracy and precision of output values; (2) semen production facilities probably do not need a substantially different CASA system whereas biology laboratories would benefit from systems capable of imaging and tracking sperm in deep chambers for a flexible period of time; (3) software should enable grouping of individual sperm based on one or more attributes so outputs reflect subpopulations or clusters of similar sperm with unique properties; means or medians for the total population are insufficient; and (4) a field-use, portable CASA system for measuring one motion and two or three morphology attributes of individual sperm is needed for field theriogenologists or andrologists working with human sperm outside urban centers; appropriate hardware to capture images and process data apparently are available. PMID:24274405

  1. Ejaculated Mouse Sperm Enter Cumulus-Oocyte Complexes More Efficiently In Vitro than Epididymal Sperm

    PubMed Central

    Suarez, Susan S.

    2015-01-01

    The mouse is an established and popular animal model for studying reproductive biology. Epididymal mouse sperm, which lack exposure to secretions of male accessory glands and do not precisely represent ejaculated sperm for the study of sperm functions, have been almost exclusively used in studies. We compared ejaculated and epididymal sperm in an in vitro fertilization setting to examine whether ejaculated sperm enter cumulus-oocyte complexes more efficiently. In order to prepare sperm for fertilization, they were incubated under capacitating conditions. At the outset of incubation, ejaculated sperm stuck to the glass surfaces of slides and the incidences of sticking decreased with time; whereas, very few epididymal sperm stuck to glass at any time point, indicating differences in surface charge. At the end of the capacitating incubation, when sperm were added to cumulus-oocyte complexes, the form of flagellar movement differed dramatically; specifically, ejaculated sperm predominantly exhibited increased bending on one side of the flagellum (a process termed pro-hook hyperactivation), while epididymal sperm equally exhibited increased bending on one or the other side of the flagellum (pro-hook or anti-hook hyperactivation). This indicates that accessory sex gland secretions might have modified Ca2+ signaling activities in sperm, because the two forms of hyperactivation are reported to be triggered by different Ca2+ signaling patterns. Lastly, over time, more ejaculated than epididymal sperm entered the cumulus oocyte complexes. We concluded that modification of sperm by male accessory gland secretions affects the behavior of ejaculated sperm, possibly providing them with an advantage over epididymal sperm for reaching the eggs in vivo. PMID:25996155

  2. Increasing the availability of national mapping products.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Roney, J.I.; Ogilvie, B.C.

    1981-01-01

    A discussion of the means employed by the US Geological Survey to facilitate map usage, covering aspects of project Map Accessibility Program including special rolled and folded map packaging, new market testing, parks and campgrounds program, expanded map dealer program, new booklet-type State sales index and catalog and new USGS map reference code. The USGS is seen as the producer of a tremendous nation-wide inventory of topographic and related map products available in unprecedented types, formats and scales, and as endeavouring to increase access to its products. The new USGS map reference code is appended. -J.C.Stone

  3. Engineering Rhodosporidium toruloides for increased lipid production.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Shuyan; Skerker, Jeffrey M; Rutter, Charles D; Maurer, Matthew J; Arkin, Adam P; Rao, Christopher V

    2016-05-01

    Oleaginous yeast are promising organisms for the production of lipid-based chemicals and fuels from simple sugars. In this work, we explored Rhodosporidium toruloides for the production of lipid-based products. This oleaginous yeast natively produces lipids at high titers and can grow on glucose and xylose. As a first step, we sequenced the genomes of two strains, IFO0880, and IFO0559, and generated draft assemblies and annotations. We then used this information to engineer two R. toruloides strains for increased lipid production by over-expressing the native acetyl-CoA carboxylase and diacylglycerol acyltransferase genes using Agrobacterium tumefaciens mediated transformation. Our best strain, derived from IFO0880, was able to produce 16.4 ± 1.1 g/L lipid from 70 g/L glucose and 9.5 ± 1.3 g/L lipid from 70 g/L xylose in shake-flask experiments. This work represents one of the first examples of metabolic engineering in R. toruloides and establishes this yeast as a new platform for production of fatty-acid derived products. Biotechnol. Bioeng. 2016;113: 1056-1066. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26479039

  4. Increased productivity in flight with voice commanding

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jordan, W. T.

    1985-01-01

    Automatic Speech Recognition technology has matured to the point where it can provide a viable means of increasing productivity by naturalizing the man-machine interface. With ever increasing workloads being placed on astronauts, speech recognition may provide an alternative means of system controlling that would reduce the task burden. Voice commanding, allowing hands-free operation, can be especially effective during operations requiring simultaneous system control. A flight experiment is under development to demonstrate the operational effectiveness of voice control by commanding the Space Shuttle's Closed Circuit Television (CCIV) system. This experiment will help direct future applications of voice entry to space operations.

  5. Hypercholesterolemia increases endothelial superoxide anion production.

    PubMed Central

    Ohara, Y; Peterson, T E; Harrison, D G

    1993-01-01

    Indirect evidence suggests accelerated degradation of endothelium-derived nitric oxide (ENDO) by superoxide anion (O2-) in hypercholesterolemic vessels (HV). To directly measure O2- production by normal vessels (NV) and HV, we used an assay for O2- based on the chemiluminescence (CL) of lucigenin (L). HV (1 mo cholesterol-fed rabbits) produced threefold more O2- than NV (1.47 +/- 0.20 nM/mg tissue/min, n = 7 vs. 0.52 +/- 0.05 nmol/mg tissue/min, n = 8, P < 0.001). Endothelial removal increased O2- production in NV (0.73 +/- 0.08, n = 6, P < 0.05), while decreasing it in HV (0.76 +/- 0.15, n = 5, P < 0.05). There was no difference between denuded HV and denuded NV. Oxypurinol, a noncompetitive inhibitor of xanthine oxidase, normalized O2- production in HV, but had no effect in NV. In separate isometric tension studies treatment with oxypurinol improved acetylcholine induced relaxations in HV, while having no effect on responses in normal vessels. Oxypurinol did not alter relaxations to nitroprusside. Thus, the endothelium is a source of O2- in hypercholesterolemia probably via xanthine oxidase activation. Increased endothelial O2- production in HV may inactivate endothelium-derived nitric oxide and provide a source for other oxygen radicals, contributing to the early atherosclerotic process. PMID:8390482

  6. Artificial insemination with donor sperm (AID): heterogeneity in sperm banking facilities in a single country (Belgium)

    PubMed Central

    Thijssen, A.; Dhont, N.; Vandormael, E.; Cox, A.; Klerkx, E.; Creemers, E.; Ombelet, W.

    2014-01-01

    Due to the high inflow of foreign patients seeking cross-border reproductive care in Belgium and the increased number of lesbian couples and single women who call for artificial insemination with donor sperm (AID), Belgian sperm banks nowadays face a shortage in donor sperm. However, since there is no central registration system for sperm donors in Belgium, no figures are currently available supporting this statement. Therefore a study was performed to obtain a detailed overview of the sperm banking facilities in Belgium. Questionnaires were sent to all Belgian centres for assisted reproduction with laboratory facilities (n = 18) to report on their sperm banking methods. The results showed that 82% of the centres rely partially or completely on foreign donor sperm. Moreover, four of the thirteen centres that have their own sperm bank use imported donor sperm in > 95% AID cycles. Our results show that in 63% of the Belgian AID cycles imported Danish donor sperm is being used. Donor recruitment is mainly performed through the centre’s website (61%) or by distributing flyers in the centre (46%) and 9 to 180 potential donors have been recruited per centre in 2013. Eventually, 15 to 50% of these candidate donors were accepted. Different criteria for donor acceptance are handled by the centres: donor age limits range from 18-25 to 36-46 years old, and thresholds for sperm normality differ considerably. We can conclude that a wide variation in methods associated with sperm banking is observed in Belgian centres. PMID:25009728

  7. Artificial insemination with donor sperm (AID): heterogeneity in sperm banking facilities in a single country (Belgium).

    PubMed

    Thijssen, A; Dhont, N; Vandormael, E; Cox, A; Klerkx, E; Creemers, E; Ombelet, W

    2014-01-01

    Due to the high inflow of foreign patients seeking cross-border reproductive care in Belgium and the increased number of lesbian couples and single women who call for artificial insemination with donor sperm (AID), Belgian sperm banks nowadays face a shortage in donor sperm. However, since there is no central registration system for sperm donors in Belgium, no figures are currently available supporting this statement. Therefore a study was performed to obtain a detailed overview of the sperm banking facilities in Belgium. Questionnaires were sent to all Belgian centres for assisted reproduction with laboratory facilities (n = 18) to report on their sperm banking methods. The results showed that 82% of the centres rely partially or completely on foreign donor sperm. Moreover, four of the thirteen centres that have their own sperm bank use imported donor sperm in > 95% AID cycles. Our results show that in 63% of the Belgian AID cycles imported Danish donor sperm is being used. Donor recruitment is mainly performed through the centre's website (61%) or by distributing flyers in the centre (46%) and 9 to 180 potential donors have been recruited per centre in 2013. Eventually, 15 to 50% of these candidate donors were accepted. Different criteria for donor acceptance are handled by the centres: donor age limits range from 18-25 to 36-46 years old, and thresholds for sperm normality differ considerably. We can conclude that a wide variation in methods associated with sperm banking is observed in Belgian centres. PMID:25009728

  8. Recombinant Hamster Oviductin Is Biologically Active and Exerts Positive Effects on Sperm Functions and Sperm-Oocyte Binding

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Xiaojing; Zhao, Yuewen; Yang, Xiaolong; Kan, Frederick W. K.

    2015-01-01

    Studies carried out in several mammalian species suggest that oviductin, also known as oviduct-specific glycoprotein or OVGP1, plays a key role in sperm capacitation, fertilization, and development of early embryos. In the present study, we used recombinant DNA technology to produce, for the first time, recombinant hamster OVGP1 (rHamOVGP1) in human embryonic kidney 293 (HEK293) cells. rHamOVGP1 secreted in the culture medium was purified by affinity chromatography. The resulting protein migrated as a poly-dispersed band of 160-350 kDa on SDS-PAGE corresponding to the molecular mass of the native HamOVGP1. Subsequent mass spectrometric analysis of the purified rHamOVGP1 confirmed its identity as HamOVGP1. Immunocytochemistry demonstrated binding of rHamOVGP1 to the mid-piece and head of hamster sperm and to the zona pellucida (ZP) of ovarian oocytes. In vitro functional experiments showed that addition of rHamOVGP1 in the capacitation medium further enhanced tyrosine phosphorylation of two sperm proteins of approximately 75 kDa and 83 kDa in a time-dependent manner. After 3 hours of incubation in the presence of rHamOVGP1, a significant increase in acrosome reaction was measured. Pretreatment of either sperm or oocyte with 20 μg/ml of rHamOVGP1 prior to sperm-egg binding assay significantly increased the number of sperm bound to the ZP. Addition of rHamOVGP1 in the medium during sperm-egg binding with either oocyte or sperm pretreated with rHamOVGP1 also saw an increase in the number of sperm bound to ZP. In all experimental conditions, the effect of rHamOVGP1 on sperm-oocyte binding was negated by the addition of monoclonal anti-HamOVGP1 antibody. The successful production and purification of a biologically active rHamOVGP1 will allow further exploration of the function of this glycoprotein in reproductive function. PMID:25849110

  9. Sexual selection and mating advantages in the giant sperm species, Drosophila bifurca

    PubMed Central

    Luck, Nathalie; Joly, Dominique

    2005-01-01

    Mate choice may be exercised by either sex; however, females are generally choosier than males because they invest more in their gametes. Female choice is often based on direct benefits, such as better reproductive output, whereas male choice appears to be based on differences in female fecundity. However, when gamete production is limited, sexual selection theories predict that mate choice will be decisive for reproductive success in both sexes. Here, we investigate how mating advantage is achieved in Drosophila bifurca, a giant sperm species in which both sexes produce only a few gametes. Our initial expectations were as follows: (1) females would discriminate against sperm-depleted males to avoid fertility cost; and (2) males would discriminate against inseminated females to reduce sperm competition and increase the assurance of paternity of individual gametes. Differences in courtship behaviors were analyzed with regard to the sexual maturity, which is reached after 22 days in males at 21°C, and the reproductive history of both sexes (inseminated versus virgin for females, and sperm-depleted versus sperm-loaded for males). Our results show that: (1) sexual immaturity precludes mating in both sexes; (2) virgin females do not discriminate between sperm-loaded and sperm-depleted males, and (3) males mate preferentially with virgin females, because inseminated females fend off the male, which tended to bring male courtship to an end. Female remating was limited, but increased significantly when the first male was sperm-depleted. Contrary to our initial expectations, these findings suggest that male sperm depletion does not affect female mating preference, whereas the success of male courtship is driven by female behavior. The possibility that female remating was only promoted in response to low sperm transfer is discussed in relation to the gametic system of this species. PMID:16299600

  10. Maturity stage and plasma testosterone levels are related to sperm production in blue catfish Ictalurus furcatus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recently, the channel catfish, Ictalurus puntatus' X blue catfish, I.furcatus ' F1 hybrid has demonstrated good potential for commercial production compared to the commonly raised channel catfish. Efforts by researchers and commercial producers in the last 40 years have improved hybrid fry product...

  11. Sperm viability - Determination of sperm viability using fluorescence microscopy

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    To determine the percentage of viable sperm in a semen sample using stains that differentiates viable (live) sperm from nonviable (dead) sperm. Viable sperm are detected by SYBR-14, which stains the sperm nuclei green. Nonviable sperm are detected by propidium iodide (PI), which stains the sperm red...

  12. Feed intake and sperm morphology in Ogaden bucks supplemented with either agro-industrial by-products or khat (Catha edulis) leftover.

    PubMed

    Mekasha, Y; Tegegne, A; Rodriguez-Martinez, H

    2008-08-01

    In this study, feed intake and sperm morphology were evaluated in Ogaden bucks supplemented with either agro-industrial by-products or khat leftover. Thirty-five bucks at about 1 year of age, and 15 +/- 1.5 kg initial body weight, were involved in a 12-week feeding programme that had four diet groups. The control (C) diet comprised grass hay alone, fed ad libitum; treatment 1 (T1) comprised grass hay ad libitum supplemented with a mix of agro-industrial by-products at 1% of body weight (BW); treatment 2 (T2) comprised grass hay ad libitum supplemented with khat leftovers at 1% of BW; and treatment 3 (T3) comprised khat leftover alone, fed ad libitum. Bucks in T1-T3 consumed the highest (p < 0.001) dry matter (DM), crude protein (CP), organic matter (OM) and gross energy (GE) compared with control. Among the treatment groups, DM, OM and GE intakes were higher (p < 0.05) in T3 and T2, while CP intake was highest (p < 0.05) in T1. T1 and T3 improved (p < 0.001) the percentage of morphologically-normal spermatozoa in comparison with C, with bucks in T3 being best. The proportion of total abnormal sperm head shapes and proximal cytoplasmic droplets was lowest (p < 0.01) in T1 and T3 and highest in C. Although feeding with T1 improved feed intake and sperm morphology, feeding with T3 showed the highest response. Thus, we conclude that T3 and T1 could be utilized as feedstuff to improve sperm morphology in goats under the smallholder farming system in Ethiopia. PMID:18208444

  13. Exposure to bisphenol A (BPA) in Wistar rats reduces sperm quality with disruption of ERK signal pathway.

    PubMed

    Li, Juan; Mao, Rui; Zhou, Qin; Ding, Ling; Tao, Jin; Ran, Mao-Mei; Gao, Er-Sheng; Yuan, Wei; Wang, Jin-Tao; Hou, Li-Fang

    2016-03-01

    Bisphenol A (BPA) is an estrogenic environmental toxin widely used in the production of plastics and ubiquitous human exposure to this chemical has been proposed to be a potential risk to human health. Exposure to BPA can negatively impact sperm quality. However, the mechanism remains largely unknown. The objectives of this study were to assess the role of BPA on sperm quality and explore the possible mechanisms. The Wistar male rats (aged 28 days) were administered BPA by oral gavage for 28 days at dose of 50, 100 and 200 mg/kg/day; meanwhile, the negative control with corn oil (0 mg/kg/day BPA) and positive control with E2 at the dose of 100 μg/kg/day. The sperm density, sperm activity and sperm survival rate were analyzed byCASA system, and the sperm abnormality rate was analyzed by improved Papanicolaou stained. The protein expression levels of Src/p-Src, ERK1/2, p-ERK1/2 and CREB/p-CREB were detected by Western bolt. The results showed that the body weight gain, testes weight, testis coefficient, sperm density, sperm activity, sperm survival rate and protein expression levels of p-ERK1, p-ERK2 and p-CREB decreased, but the sperm abnormality rate increased with increasing BPA concentrations. There were positive correlations between sperm density, sperm activity and sperm survival rate with protein expression levels of p-ERK1, p-ERK2 and p-CREB, and negative correlations between sperm abnormality rate with the protein expression levels of p-ERK1, p-ERK2 and p-CREB. Results from the structural equation model demonstrated that BPA retained a significant negative effect to p-ERK, whereas p-ERK retained a significant positive effect to sperm quality and acted as the mediate variable. This study provides a novel insight regarding the potential role of p-ERK1 and p-ERK2 protein kinase on reproductive toxicity of BPA. The adverse effects of BPA on adult male sperm quality may be through the induction of the disruption of ERK signal pathway. However, additional research is needed to confirm our findings and to further test the suggested potential mechanisms. PMID:26862991

  14. Effect of cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum) bark oil on heat stress-induced changes in sperm production, testicular lipid peroxidation, testicular apoptosis, and androgenic receptor density in developing Japanese quails.

    PubMed

    Türk, Gaffari; Şimşek, Ülkü G; Çeribaşı, Ali O; Çeribaşı, Songül; Özer Kaya, Şeyma; Güvenç, Mehmet; Çiftçi, Mehmet; Sönmez, Mustafa; Yüce, Abdurrauf; Bayrakdar, Ali; Yaman, Mine; Tonbak, Fadime

    2015-08-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of cinnamon bark oil (CBO) on heat stress (HS)-induced changes in sperm production, testicular lipid peroxidation, testicular apoptosis, and androgenic receptor (AR) density in developing Japanese quails. Fifteen-day-old 90 male chicks were assigned to two main groups. The first group (45 chicks) was kept in a thermoneutral room at 22 °C for 24 h/day. The second group (45 chicks) was kept in a room with high ambient temperature at 34 °C for 8 h/day (from 9 AM-5 PM) and at 22 °C for 16 h/day. Each of these two main groups was then divided into three subgroups (CBO groups 0, 250, 500 ppm) consisting of 15 chicks (six treatment groups in 2 × 3 factorial order). Each of subgroups was replicated for three times and each replicate included five chicks. Heat stress caused significant decreases in body weight, spermatid and testicular sperm numbers, the density of testicular Bcl-2 (antiapoptotic marker) and AR immunopositivity, and significant increases in testicular lipid peroxidation level, the density of testicular Bax (apoptotic marker) immunopositivity, and a Bax/Bcl-2 ratio along with some histopathologic damages. However, 250 and 500 ppm CBO supplementation provided significant improvements in HS-induced increased level of testicular lipid peroxidation, decreased number of spermatid and testicular sperm, decreased densities of Bcl-2 and AR immunopositivity, and some deteriorated testicular histopathologic lesions. In addition, although HS did not significantly affect the testicular glutathione level, addition of both 250 and 500 ppm CBO to diet of quails reared in both HS and thermoneutral conditions caused a significant increase when compared with quails without any consumption of CBO. In conclusion, HS-induced lipid peroxidation causes testicular damage in developing male Japanese quails and, consumption of CBO, which has antiperoxidative effect, protects their testes against HS. PMID:25913274

  15. Vacuum mixing increases productivity saves energy

    SciTech Connect

    Haring, B.I.

    1985-11-01

    Rexnord Chemical Products, Inc. produces clear caulking, architectural sealants and other commercial building materials at its 42,000 sq ft plant in Pottstown, PA. Clear caulking is made by mixing together thermoplastic rubber, powdered resins, stabilizers, adhesion promoters and other additives. The materials have a high viscosity, more than 500,000 centipoise. The older manufacturing technology required more than 16 hours of mixing to produce a 150 gallon batch. It took hours of continuous mixing to break down agglomerates formed during the initial mixing cycle. The plant discussed the problem with mixer manufacturers and one suggested processing the batch with a double planetary mixer under vacuum. Mixing materials under vacuum produces a more thorough dispersion, with fewer and smaller agglomerates. Mixing under vacuum can also decrease processing time. The 200-gallon double planetary mixer chosen can mix highly viscous materials because of its stirrer blade design and rotation. Plant personnel developed a successful procedure for processing the caulking under vacuum. The mixer tank is charged with 100 lb of thermoplastic rubber and an equal quantity of resin. After charging, a full vacuum of 29 inches is pulled. The vacuum of valve is closed, the pump shut off and the variable-speed, 40-hp motor set on the slow speed. Rexnord increased production of clear window caulking by approximately 50% by switching from an older manufacturing process to vacuum mixing technology. The vacuum processing sharply decreased the amount of mixing time and produced substantial energy savings. Mixing under vacuum also helped improve product quality.

  16. Epigallocatechin-3-Gallate (EGCG) Reduces Rotenone Effect on Stallion Sperm-Zona Pellucida Heterologous Binding.

    PubMed

    Plaza Dávila, M; Bucci, D; Galeati, G; Peña, F J; Mari, G; Giaretta, E; Tamanini, C; Spinaci, M

    2015-12-01

    Stallion spermatozoa are highly dependent on oxidative phosphorylation for ATP production to achieve normal sperm function and to fuel the motility. The aim of this study was to evaluate the response of equine sperm under capacitating conditions to the inhibition of mitochondrial complex I by rotenone and to test whether epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a natural polyphenol component of green tea, could counteract this effect. After 2-h incubation of stallion spermatozoa in modified Tyrode's medium, rotenone (100 nm, 500 nm and 5 μm) and EGCG (10, 20 and 60 μm), alone or in combination, did not induce any significant difference on the percentage of viable cells, live sperm with active mitochondria and spermatozoa with intact acrosome. The inhibition of complex I of mitochondrial respiratory chain of stallion sperm with rotenone exerted a negative effect on heterologous ZP binding ability. EGCG at the concentrations of 10 and 20 μm (but not of 60 μm) induced a significant increase in the number of sperm bound to the ZP compared with that for control. Moreover, when stallion sperm were treated with rotenone 100 nm, the presence of EGCG at all the concentrations tested (10, 20 and 60 μm) significantly increased the number of sperm bound to the ZP up to control levels, suggesting that this green tea polyphenol is able to reduce the toxicity of rotenone. PMID:26482419

  17. Cryopreservation of Fish Sperm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurokura, Hisashi

    Present status of research activities in cryopreservation of fish gamete in aquaculture field was introduced. More than 59 fish species have been reported in the research histories and nearly half of them were studied during recent 10 years. This means that the research activities are increasing, though commercial profit have not obtained yet. Fish species of which sperm can successfully cryopreserved is still limited comparing to numerous species in telost. One of the major obstacle for improvement of the technique is existence of wide specie specific variance in the freezing tolerance of fish sperm. The varianc can possibly be explaind thorugh the informations obtained by the studies in comparative spermatology, which is recently activated field in fish biology.

  18. Sperm motility of externally fertilizing fish and amphibians.

    PubMed

    Browne, R K; Kaurova, S A; Uteshev, V K; Shishova, N V; McGinnity, D; Figiel, C R; Mansour, N; Agney, D; Wu, M; Gakhova, E N; Dzyuba, B; Cosson, J

    2015-01-01

    We review the phylogeny, sperm competition, morphology, physiology, and fertilization environments of the sperm of externally fertilizing fish and amphibians. Increased sperm competition in both fish and anurans generally increases sperm numbers, sperm length, and energy reserves. The difference between the internal osmolarity and iconicity of sperm cells and those of the aquatic medium control the activation, longevity, and velocity of sperm motility. Hypo-osmolarity of the aquatic medium activates the motility of freshwater fish and amphibian sperm and hyperosmolarity activates the motility of marine fish sperm. The average longevity of the motility of marine fish sperm (~550 seconds) was significantly (P < 0.05) greater than that of freshwater fish sperm (~150 seconds), with the longevities of both marine and freshwater fish being significantly (P < 0.05) lower than that of anuran sperm (~4100 seconds). The average velocity of anuran sperm (25 μm/s) was significantly (P < 0.05) lower than that of marine fish (140 μm/s) or freshwater fish (135 μm/s) sperm. The longevity of the sperm of giant salamanders (Cryptobranchoidea) of approximately 600 seconds was greater than that of freshwater fish sperm but much lower than anuran sperm. Our research and information from the literature showed that higher osmolarities promote greater longevity in anuran sperm, and some freshwater fish sperm, and that anuran and cryptobranchid sperm maintained membrane integrity long after the cessation of motility, demonstrating a preferential sharing of energy reserves toward the maintenance of membrane integrity. The maintenance of the membrane integrity of anuran sperm in fresh water for up to 6 hours showed an extremely high osmotic tolerance relative to fish sperm. The very high longevity and osmotic tolerance of anuran sperm and high longevity of cryptobranchid sperm, relative to those of freshwater fish, may reflect the complex fertilization history of amphibian sperm in general and anurans reversion from internal to external fertilization. Our findings provide a greater understanding of the reproductive biology of externally fertilizing fish and amphibians, and a biological foundation for the further development of reproduction technologies for their sustainable management. PMID:25442393

  19. Fire increases dust production from chaparral soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gabet, Emmanuel J.

    2014-07-01

    By altering the physical and chemical properties of a landscape, fire may increase its vulnerability to erosive processes. Whereas sediment transport by surface runoff after fires has been often investigated, less is known about the role of wind erosion in burned terrain. To examine how fire might increase a soil's vulnerability to aeolian transport, intact soil samples were collected from a chaparral landscape in southern California and heated with a propane torch with temperatures ranging from 250 to 1025 °C and for durations of 5-60 min to simulate a variety of burn severities. The samples were then subjected to simulated wind and the amounts of eroded sediment were measured. Results indicate a linear increase in the production of wind-erodible sediment with applied heat up to ~ 10 MJ/m2. The increase was not due to a reduction in the threshold shear velocity of the soil surface but, instead, to the role of heat in detaching erodible material. In these soils, organic material may be an important binding agent destroyed at high temperatures. The relationship between fire and erodibility is complex, however, because heating may also help to aggregate soil particles. Experiments performed here also suggest a synergistic effect between fire and rain whereby heated soils are more vulnerable to the erosive power of raindrop impacts. Additionally, the soil heating experiments were used to measure and compare the thermal conductivities of intact and disturbed soils. Finally, it is concluded that soil heating may increase the emission of dust through the detachment of erodible particles, a result that may help in the anticipation of respiratory problems for those living downwind of burned areas.

  20. Sperm Trajectories Form Chiral Ribbons

    PubMed Central

    Su, Ting-Wei; Choi, Inkyum; Feng, Jiawen; Huang, Kalvin; McLeod, Euan; Ozcan, Aydogan

    2013-01-01

    We report the discovery of an entirely new three-dimensional (3D) swimming pattern observed in human and horse sperms. This motion is in the form of ‘chiral ribbons’, where the planar swing of the sperm head occurs on an osculating plane creating in some cases a helical ribbon and in some others a twisted ribbon. The latter, i.e., the twisted ribbon trajectory, also defines a minimal surface, exhibiting zero mean curvature for all the points on its surface. These chiral ribbon swimming patterns cannot be represented or understood by already known patterns of sperms or other micro-swimmers. The discovery of these unique patterns is enabled by holographic on-chip imaging of >33,700 sperm trajectories at >90–140 frames/sec, which revealed that only ~1.7% of human sperms exhibit chiral ribbons, whereas it increases to ~27.3% for horse sperms. These results might shed more light onto the statistics and biophysics of various micro-swimmers' 3D motion. PMID:23588811

  1. Hypercholesterolemia Impaired Sperm Functionality in Rabbits

    PubMed Central

    Monclus, Maria A.; Cabrillana, Maria E.; Clementi, Marisa A.; Espínola, Leandro S.; Cid Barría, Jose L.; Vincenti, Amanda E.; Santi, Analia G.; Fornés, Miguel W.

    2010-01-01

    Hypercholesterolemia represents a high risk factor for frequent diseases and it has also been associated with poor semen quality that may lead to male infertility. The aim of this study was to analyze semen and sperm function in diet-induced hypercholesterolemic rabbits. Twelve adult White New Zealand male rabbits were fed ad libitum a control diet or a diet supplemented with 0.05% cholesterol. Rabbits under cholesterol-enriched diet significantly increased total cholesterol level in the serum. Semen examination revealed a significant reduction in semen volume and sperm motility in hypercholesterolemic rabbits (HCR). Sperm cell morphology was seriously affected, displaying primarily a “folded head”-head fold along the major axe-, and the presence of cytoplasmic droplet on sperm flagellum. Cholesterol was particularly increased in acrosomal region when detected by filipin probe. The rise in cholesterol concentration in sperm cells was determined quantitatively by Gas chromatographic-mass spectrometric analyses. We also found a reduction of protein tyrosine phosphorylation in sperm incubated under capacitating conditions from HCR. Interestingly, the addition of Protein Kinase A pathway activators -dibutyryl-cyclic AMP and iso-butylmethylxanthine- to the medium restored sperm capacitation. Finally, it was also reported a significant decrease in the percentage of reacted sperm in the presence of progesterone. In conclusion, our data showed that diet-induced hypercholesterolemia adversely affects semen quality and sperm motility, capacitation and acrosomal reaction in rabbits; probably due to an increase in cellular cholesterol content that alters membrane related events. PMID:20976152

  2. Cytometry of mammalian sperm

    SciTech Connect

    Gledhill, B.L.

    1983-10-11

    Male germ cells respond dramatically to a variety of insults and are important reproductive dosimeters. Semen analyses are very useful in studies on the effects of drugs, chemicals, and environmental hazards on testicular function, male fertility and heritable germinal mutations. The accessibility of male cells makes them well suited for analytical cytology. We might automate the process of determining sperm morphology but should not do so solely for increased speed. Rather, richer tangible benefits will derive from cytometric evaluation through increased sensitivity, reduced subjectivity, standardization between investigators and laboratories, enhanced archival systems, and the benefits of easily exchanged standardized data. Inroads on the standardization of assays for motility and functional integrity are being made. Flow cytometric analysis of total DNA content of individual sperm is an insensitive means to detect exposure to reproductive toxins because of the small size and low frequency of the DNA content errors. Flow cytometry can be applied to determine the proportions of X- and Y-sperm in semen samples.

  3. The effect of sperm-oocyte incubation time on in vitro embryo development using sperm from a tetraparental chimeric bull.

    PubMed

    Sumantri, C; Boediono, A; Ooe, M; Murakami, M; Saha, S; Suzuki, T

    1997-08-01

    The present study was designed as 5 x 4 factorial to investigate the effects of using sperm from 5 bulls, and varied sperm-oocyte incubation times (5, 10, 15 and 20 h) on the fertilization, cleavage rates and blastocyst formation on an in vitro bovine embryo production system. The bulls included a tetraparental Chimera, its sires (Japanese Black and Limousin), its maternal grand-sires (Japanese Brown and Holstein). The proportion of polyspermy, 2-pronuclei formation, fertilization, cleavage and development to blastocyst were affected (P < 0.001) by the duration of sperm-oocyte incubation, as well as by the interaction between bulls and their corresponding sperm-oocyte incubation time. Blastocyst rate observed after 5 h in oocytes inseminated with Chimera, Japanese Black and Limousin were higher (p < 0.05) than those observed at 20 h incubation. The proportion of blastocysts from oocytes inseminated with Japanese Black observed at 10 h of incubation did not differ from that of Chimera, but both were higher (p < 0.05) than those observed for the Limousin, Japanese Brown and Holstein sires. The present study showed that there was an effect by the duration of sperm-oocyte incubation on in vitro embryo development. The optimal time of sperm-oocyte incubation for the Chimera was similar to that of its sires (Japanese Black and Limousin) but differed from its maternal grand-sires (Japanese Brown and Holstein). The fertilization rates for the sperm from the Holstein bull increased up to 15 h suggesting that this might be the only bull that would benefit from a long incubation period for insemination. PMID:9452872

  4. Why It's Difficult to Increase Productivity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Birnbaum, Robert

    1991-01-01

    Calculating the productivity of a college or university is more complex than determining a machine's productivity. Sixteen rational, cultural, political, and cognitive constraints that influence institutional productivity are outlined and their mediation by institutional culture and history is noted. (MSE)

  5. Mass-Specific Metabolic Rate and Sperm Competition Determine Sperm Size in Marsupial Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Tourmente, Maximiliano; Gomendio, Montserrat; Roldan, Eduardo R. S.

    2011-01-01

    Two complementary hypotheses have been proposed to explain variation in sperm size. The first proposes that post-copulatory sexual selection favors an increase in sperm size because it enhances sperm swimming speed, which is an important determinant of fertilization success in competitive contexts. The second hypothesis proposes that mass-specific metabolic rate acts as a constraint, because large animals with low mass-specific metabolic rates will not be able to process resources at the rates needed to produce large sperm. This constraint is expected to be particularly pronounced among mammals, given that this group contains some of the largest species on Earth. We tested these hypotheses among marsupials, a group in which mass-specific metabolic rates are roughly 30% lower than those of eutherian mammals of similar size, leading to the expectation that metabolic rate should be a major constraint. Our findings support both hypotheses because levels of sperm competition are associated with increases in sperm size, but low mass-specific metabolic rate constrains sperm size among large species. We also found that the relationship between sperm size and mass-specific metabolic rate is steeper among marsupials and shallower among eutherian mammals. This finding has two implications: marsupials respond to changes in mass-specific metabolic rate by modifying sperm length to a greater extent, suggesting that they are more constrained by metabolic rate. In addition, for any given mass-specific metabolic rate, marsupials produce longer sperm. We suggest that this is the consequence of marsupials diverting resources away from sperm numbers and into sperm size, due to their efficient sperm transport along the female tract and the existence of mechanisms to protect sperm. PMID:21731682

  6. Protein and carbohydrate intake influence sperm number and fertility in male cockroaches, but not sperm viability

    PubMed Central

    Bunning, Harriet; Rapkin, James; Belcher, Laurence; Archer, C. Ruth; Jensen, Kim; Hunt, John

    2015-01-01

    It is commonly assumed that because males produce many, tiny sperm, they are cheap to produce. Recent work, however, suggests that sperm production is not cost-free. If sperm are costly to produce, sperm number and/or viability should be influenced by diet, and this has been documented in numerous species. Yet few studies have examined the exact nutrients responsible for mediating these effects. Here, we quantify the effects of protein (P) and carbohydrate (C) intake on sperm number and viability in the cockroach Nauphoeta cinerea, as well as the consequences for male fertility. We found the intake of P and C influenced sperm number, being maximized at a high intake of diets with a P : C ratio of 1 : 2, but not sperm viability. The nutritional landscapes for male fertility and sperm number were closely aligned, suggesting that sperm number is the major determinant of male fertility in N. cinerea. Under dietary choice, males regulate nutrient intake at a P : C ratio of 1 : 4.95, which is midway between the ratios needed to maximize sperm production and pre-copulatory attractiveness in this species. This raises the possibility that males regulate nutrient intake to balance the trade-off between pre- and post-copulatory traits in this species. PMID:25608881

  7. Protein and carbohydrate intake influence sperm number and fertility in male cockroaches, but not sperm viability.

    PubMed

    Bunning, Harriet; Rapkin, James; Belcher, Laurence; Archer, C Ruth; Jensen, Kim; Hunt, John

    2015-03-01

    It is commonly assumed that because males produce many, tiny sperm, they are cheap to produce. Recent work, however, suggests that sperm production is not cost-free. If sperm are costly to produce, sperm number and/or viability should be influenced by diet, and this has been documented in numerous species. Yet few studies have examined the exact nutrients responsible for mediating these effects. Here, we quantify the effects of protein (P) and carbohydrate (C) intake on sperm number and viability in the cockroach Nauphoeta cinerea, as well as the consequences for male fertility. We found the intake of P and C influenced sperm number, being maximized at a high intake of diets with a P : C ratio of 1 : 2, but not sperm viability. The nutritional landscapes for male fertility and sperm number were closely aligned, suggesting that sperm number is the major determinant of male fertility in N. cinerea. Under dietary choice, males regulate nutrient intake at a P : C ratio of 1 : 4.95, which is midway between the ratios needed to maximize sperm production and pre-copulatory attractiveness in this species. This raises the possibility that males regulate nutrient intake to balance the trade-off between pre- and post-copulatory traits in this species. PMID:25608881

  8. Induced lipid peroxidation in ram sperm: semen profile, DNA fragmentation and antioxidant status.

    PubMed

    Hamilton, Thais Rose Dos Santos; Castro, Letícia Signori de; Delgado, Juliana de Carvalho; de Assis, Patrícia Monken; Siqueira, Adriano Felipe Perez; Mendes, Camilla Mota; Goissis, Marcelo Demarchi; Muiño-Blanco, Teresa; Cebrián-Pérez, José Álvaro; Nichi, Marcílio; Visintin, José Antonio; D'Ávila Assumpção, Mayra Elena Ortiz

    2016-04-01

    Action of reactive oxygen species, protamination failures and apoptosis are considered the most important etiologies of sperm DNA fragmentation. This study evaluated the effects of induced lipid peroxidation susceptibility on native semen profile and identified the mechanisms involved in sperm DNA fragmentation and testicular antioxidant defense on Santa Ines ram sperm samples. Semen was collected from 12 adult rams (Ovis aries) performed weekly over a 9-week period. Sperm analysis (motility, mass motility, abnormalities, membrane and acrosome status, mitochondrial potential, DNA fragmentation, lipid peroxidation and intracellular free radicals production); protamine deficiency; PRM1, TNP1 and TNP2 gene expression; and determination of glutathione peroxidase (GPx), glutathione reductase, catalase (CAT) and superoxide dismutase activity and immunodetection in seminal plasma were performed. Samples were distributed into four groups according to the sperm susceptibility to lipid peroxidation after induction with ascorbate and ferrous sulfate (low, medium, high and very high). The results were analyzed by GLM test and post hoc least significant difference. We observed an increase in native GPx activity and CAT immunodetection in groups with high susceptibility to induced lipid peroxidation. We also found an increase in total sperm defects, acrosome and membrane damages in the group with the highest susceptibility to induced lipid peroxidation. Additionally, the low mitochondrial membrane potential, susceptible to chromatin fragmentation and the PRM1 mRNA were increased in the group showing higher susceptibility to lipid peroxidation. Ram sperm susceptibility to lipid peroxidation may compromise sperm quality and interfere with the oxidative homeostasis by oxidative stress, which may be the main cause of chromatin damage in ram sperm. PMID:26811546

  9. Generation of reactive oxygen species in sperms of rats as an earlier marker for evaluating the toxicity of endocrine-disrupting chemicals.

    PubMed

    Minamiyama, Yukiko; Ichikawa, Hiroshi; Takemura, Shigekazu; Kusunoki, Hiroshi; Naito, Yuji; Yoshikawa, Toshikazu

    2010-12-01

    Bisphenol A (BPA) and diethylstilbestrol (DES) have been reported to cause sperm toxicity. To identify an earlier marker of toxicity of environmental substances or food additives, this study determined whether the levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in sperms could serve as indices for the prediction of sperm toxicity and quality. Male Wistar rats were given drinking water containing various doses of BPA or DES for 8 weeks. Some rats were treated with 0.45% N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) for 2 days prior to the administration of DES or BPA. Administration of BPA or DES to rats for 1 week dose-dependently increased the production of ROS, even at doses and time points which had no effect on sperm motility. 4-Hydroxy-2-nonenal modified proteins increased in sperms 8 weeks after BPA or DES treatment. NAC reversed oxidative stress and prevented the loss of sperm function in the DES or BPA-treated group. During observation, changes in the sperm motility, sperm count and morphology were not correlated to the increase in ROS levels. These results suggest that ROS levels may be used as an early indicator of sperm count and quality decreases which result from chronic toxicity. PMID:20815788

  10. Does anonymous sperm donation increase the risk for unions between relatives and the incidence of autosomal recessive diseases due to consanguinity?

    PubMed

    Serre, Jean-Louis; Leutenegger, Anne-Louise; Bernheim, Alain; Fellous, Marc; Rouen, Alexandre; Siffroi, Jean-Pierre

    2014-03-01

    In France gamete donation and notably sperm donation are anonymous. It has been claimed that anonymous artificial insemination by donor (AID) could highly contribute to an increase in the level of consanguinity and the incidence of autosomal recessive diseases, due to the unions between offspring of anonymous donors, unaware of their biological kinship, with the special case of unions between half-siblings. The actual incidence of consanguinity due to AID was compared with that resulting from the two other main sources of consanguinity and recessive diseases, i.e. voluntary unions between related individuals or inadvertent unions between the offspring of a common unknown male ancestor (false paternity). From these data, we estimated that expected unions in France between half sibs per year are 0.12 between offspring of sperm donors (1.2 every 10 years) and 0.5 between offspring of common male ancestors through false paternity (5 every 10 years). More generally, the inadvertent unions between false paternity offspring are roughly four times more frequent than those resulting from anonymous AID. We estimated that in the future, when AID has been in practice for several generations, out the 820 000 annual births in France, respectively, 6 and 25 births will be consanguineous through an unknown common ancestor related to anonymous AID and to a false paternity, both of which are negligible when compared with the 1256 children born from first-degree cousins. About 672 children per year are born with a recessive genetic disease due to the panmictic risk and additional affected cases due to consanguinity would be 34.54 for first-cousin offspring, 0.33 for offspring of individuals related due to false paternity and 0.079 for offspring of individuals related due to anonymous AID. Anonymous AID would therefore be responsible for 0.46% of consanguineous births and for 0.01% of recessive diseases. Therefore, the effect of anonymous AID on half-sibling unions, consanguinity and recessive disease incidence can be regarded as marginal. PMID:24345578

  11. LONG-TERM EFFECTS OF TRIETHYLENEMELAMINE EXPOSURE ON MOUSE TESTIS CELLS AND SPERM CHROMATIN STRUCTURE ASSAYED BY FLOW CYTOMETRY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The toxic and potentially mutagenic actions of triethylenemelamine (TEM) on mouse body and testis weights, testicular cell kinetics, sperm production, sperm head morphology, and sperm chromatin structure were assessed in two experiments. he first experiment examined effects of fo...

  12. Depletion of Intracellular Thiols and Increased Production of 4-Hydroxynonenal that Occur During Cryopreservation of Stallion Spermatozoa Lead to Caspase Activation, Loss of Motility, and Cell Death.

    PubMed

    Martin Muñoz, Patricia; Ortega Ferrusola, Cristina; Vizuete, Guillermo; Plaza Dávila, Maria; Rodriguez Martinez, Heriberto; Peña, Fernando J

    2015-12-01

    Oxidative stress has been linked to sperm death and the accelerated senescence of cryopreserved spermatozoa. However, the molecular mechanisms behind this phenomenon remain poorly understood. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are considered relevant signaling molecules for sperm function, only becoming detrimental when ROS homeostasis is lost. We hereby hypothesize that a major component of the alteration of ROS homeostasis in cryopreserved spermatozoa is the exhaustion of intrinsic antioxidant defense mechanisms. To test this hypothesis, semen from seven stallions was frozen using a standard technique. The parameters of sperm quality (motility, velocity, and membrane integrity) and markers of sperm senescence (caspase 3, 4-hydroxynonenal, and mitochondrial membrane potential) were assessed before and after cryopreservation. Changes in the intracellular thiol content were also monitored. Cryopreservation caused significant increases in senescence markers as well as dramatic depletion of intracellular thiols to less than half of the initial values (P < 0.001) postthaw. Interestingly, very high and positive correlations were observed among thiol levels with sperm functionality postthaw: total motility (r = 0.931, P < 0.001), progressive motility (r = 0.904, P < 0.001), and percentage of live spermatozoa without active caspase 3 (r = 0.996, P < 0.001). In contrast, negative correlations were detected between active caspase 3 and thiol content both in living (r = -0.896) and dead (r = -0.940) spermatozoa; additionally, 4-hydroxynonenal levels were negatively correlated with thiol levels (r = -0.856). In conclusion, sperm functionality postthaw correlates with the maintenance of adequate levels of intracellular thiols. The accelerated senescence of thawed spermatozoa is related to oxidative and electrophilic stress induced by increased production of 4-hydroxynoneal in thawed samples once intracellular thiols are depleted. PMID:26536905

  13. Time series analysis of sperm concentration in fertile men in Toulouse, France between 1977 and 1992.

    PubMed Central

    Bujan, L.; Mansat, A.; Pontonnier, F.; Mieusset, R.

    1996-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: To investigate whether sperm production has changed during the past 16 years in the Toulouse area of France. DESIGN: Time series analysis of sperm donors' specimens between 1977 and 1992. SETTING: Sperm bank of university hospital in Toulouse, France. SUBJECTS: 302 healthy fertile men candidate sperm donors more than 20 and up to 45 years old and without any infertile brothers. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: Spermatozoa concentration. RESULTS: Donors' mean age at time of donation was 34.05 (SD 5.13), but this increased significantly (P<0.001) during the study, from 32.4 in 1977 to 36 in 1992. Mean sperm count of samples was 83.12x10(6)/ml (SD 68.42x10(6)/ml). Sperm concentration was positively linked to the year of donation (Pearson's coefficient r=0.12, P<0.05), but this correlaton disappeared after adjustment for age of donors (r=0.09,P>0.05). CONCLUSION: Sperm concentration has not changed with time in the Toulouse area. PMID:8597677

  14. Development of computer-assisted sperm analysis plugin for analyzing sperm motion in microfluidic environments using Image-J.

    PubMed

    Elsayed, Mohamed; El-Sherry, Taymour M; Abdelgawad, Mohamed

    2015-11-01

    We modified a previously reported computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA) plugin for Image-J to enable analyzing motion of sperm cells in microfluidic environments. Microfluidics is increasingly being used in sperm-related applications such as sperm selection, IVF, and sperm motion behavior. Current CASA systems are not capable of analyzing motion of sperm cells in microfluidic devices where both sperm cells and the liquid itself are constantly moving, contrary to the conventional situation of sperm cells moving in a stationary liquid. We resolved this deficiency in the modified plugin reported here and built an image processing pipeline to enhance object detection, which increased CASA accuracy considerably. More importantly, particle tracking was improved and modified to accommodate sperm cells going out of focus for short periods during swimming on the same track. This last feature is particularly important in microfluidics where height of the microchannel is larger than that of CASA custom chambers to avoid channel blockage; this increased height causes sperm cells to frequently come in and out of focus. New parameters were introduced to allow studying new aspects of sperm motion behavior such as rheotaxis and wall tracking. The new plugin was able to detect and analyze motion of human, bull, and chicken sperm. A preliminary study using this tool agreed well with previously reported studies on rheotaxis and wall tracking behavior of sperm. PMID:26318232

  15. Metabolism, sperm and fluid production of the isolated perfused testis of the sheep and goat

    PubMed Central

    Linzell, J. L.; Setchell, B. P.

    1969-01-01

    1. A total of nineteen ram and three goat testes have been perfused in isolation at 34-35° C for 3½-9 hr with heparinized blood and an added 5-HT antagonist (bromolysergic acid diethylamide) and their function compared with that of the normal ram testes in vivo. 2. The metabolism of the perfused testes and the testes in vivo was similar but blood flow through the perfused testes was two to three times normal. 3. Vasoconstriction was produced by adrenaline and noradrenaline (10-20 μg I.A.) and by electrical stimulation of nerves in the spermatic cord or of the lumbar sympathetic chain; these responses were abolished or reduced by phenoxybenzamine. 4. Flow of fluid from the rete testis continued only if ischaemia was reduced to a minimum and glucose concentration in the blood perfusing the testis was kept above about 25 mg/100 ml.; the fluid secreted during perfusion was of normal composition. 5. The perfused testis showed no evidence of autoregulation and the flow of fluid was not affected by changes in perfusion pressure. 6. When the temperature of three testes was raised to 40° C for 2 hr, metabolism increased but blood flow was unaltered; the flow of fluid and the concentration of spermatozoa decreased during heating. 7. The testes perfused at normal scrotal temperatures (34-35° C) were histologically normal but some abnormalities were observed in the heated testes. ImagesFig. 3Fig. 4 PMID:5773547

  16. Epoxiconazole causes changes in testicular histology and sperm production in the Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica).

    PubMed

    Grote, Konstanze; Niemann, Lars; Selzsam, Britta; Haider, Wolfgang; Gericke, Christine; Herzler, Matthias; Chahoud, Ibrahim

    2008-11-01

    The fungicide epoxiconazole (Epox), a triazole, belongs to the group of azole compounds that are extensively used as fungicides in various fruit crops. The frequent use of agricultural lands for wintering by migrating birds can be the source of their increased dietary intake of agricultural pesticides. We investigated whether exposure to Epox causes effects on avian fertility and reproduction, using the Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica) as a model species for the assessment of reproductive effects of pesticides in wild birds. Epox was administered to adult Japanese quail for three weeks at dietary levels of 10, 50, and 500 ppm, and possible effects on reproduction were investigated. Epox administration resulted in a significantly decreased number of spermatids in the 50- and 500-ppm dose groups. Histopathology showed a reduced number of testicular canaliculi with visible germ cells and a reduction in spermatid number. However, testis weight was not affected up to the highest dose level. No impact was observed on hormone levels, fertility, and reproductive outcome, as laying rate and percentage of fertile eggs were not altered. Likewise, treatment had no influence on the egg or chick parameters evaluated. A time- and dose-related transfer of Epox into the eggs was determined in all treatment groups. We conclude that dietary treatment of Japanese quail with 50 and 500 ppm of the triazole fungicide Epox resulted in a clear impact on the testis. The evaluation of the additional endpoints spermatid count and testicular histology have proven useful and are recommended for future studies on avian reproduction. PMID:18522476

  17. Seasonal occurrence of sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) around Kelvin Seamount in the Sargasso Sea in relation to oceanographic processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, Sarah N. P.; Whitehead, Hal

    2014-09-01

    Sperm whales (Physeter macrocephalus) are widely distributed in all oceans, but they are clumped geographically, generally in areas associated with high primary and secondary productivity. The warm, clear waters of the Sargasso Sea are traditionally thought to be low in productivity, however recent surveys have found large numbers of sperm whales there. The New England Seamount Chain bisects the north-western portion of the Sargasso Sea, and might influence the mesoscale eddies associated with the Gulf Stream; creating areas of higher productivity within the Sargasso Sea. We investigated the seasonal occurrence of sperm whales over Kelvin Seamount (part of the New England Seamount Chain) and how it is influenced by oceanographic variables. An autonomous recording device was deployed over Kelvin Seamount from May to June 2006 and November 2006 to June 2007. A total of 6505 hourly two-minute recordings were examined for the presence of sperm whale echolocation clicks. Sperm whales were more prevalent around Kelvin in the spring (April to June: mean=51% of recordings contained clicks) compared to the winter (November to March: mean=16% of recordings contained clicks). Sperm whale prevalence at Kelvin was related to chlorophyll-a concentration four weeks previous, eddy kinetic energy and month. The mesoscale activity associated with the Gulf Stream and the Gulf Stream's interaction with the New England Seamount Chain likely play an important role in sperm whale occurrence in this area, by increasing productivity and perhaps concentration of cephalopod species.

  18. Increasing efficiency in production of cloned piglets.

    PubMed

    Callesen, Henrik; Liu, Ying; Pedersen, Hanne S; Li, Rong; Schmidt, Mette

    2014-12-01

    The low efficiency in obtaining piglets after production of cloned embryos was challenged in two steps-first by performing in vitro culture for 5-6 days after cloning to obtain later-stage embryos for more precise selection for transfer, and second by reducing the number of embryos transferred per recipient sow. The data set consisted of combined results from a 4-year period where cloning was performed to produce piglets that were transgenic for important human diseases. For this, different transgenes and cell types were used, and the cloning work was performed by several persons using oocytes from different pig breeds, but following a standardized and optimized protocol. Results showed that in vitro culture is possible with a relatively stable rate of transferable embryos around 41% and a pregnancy rate around 90%. Furthermore, a reduction from around 80 embryos to 40 embryos transferred per recipient was possible without changing the efficiency of around 14% (piglets born out of embryos transferred). It was concluded that this approach can increase the efficiency in obtaining piglets by means of in vitro culture and selection of high-quality embryos with subsequent transfer into more recipients. Such changes can also reduce the need for personnel, time, and material when working with this technology. PMID:25333333

  19. Production of lion (Panthera leo) blastocysts after in vitro maturation of oocytes and intracytoplasmic sperm injection.

    PubMed

    Fernandez-Gonzalez, Lorena; Hribal, Romy; Stagegaard, Julia; Zahmel, Jennifer; Jewgenow, Katarina

    2015-04-01

    Assisted reproductive techniques are becoming widely applied to the breeding of endangered species, but establishing reliable protocols for the production of embryos in vitro is challenging because of the scarcity of sample material. In our study, we applied an assisted reproductive technique protocol for IVM and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), developed in the domestic cat, to oocytes retrieved from ovaries of four 2-year-old lionesses (Panthera leo) eight hours postmortem. In total, 68 cumulus-oocyte complexes of good quality were randomly distributed and cultured for 32 to 34 hours in two different maturation culture media, consisting of Medium 199 with Earle's salts, 3 mg/mL BSA, 0.1 mg/mL cysteine, 1.4 mg/mL sodium pyruvate, 0.6 mg/mL sodium lactate, 0.15 mg/mL l-glutamine, and 0.055 mg/mL gentamicin. Hormonal supplementation of IVM_1 was 0.02 IU/mL FSH and 0.05 IU/mL LH; IVM_2 consisted of 1.64 IU/mL FSH, 1.06 IU/mL LH, and 1 μg/mL 17ß-estradiol. Differences in hormonal supplementation did not produce significant differences in oocyte maturation rates, which were 39.4% in IVM_1 and 34.3% in IVM_2. Matured oocytes were microinjected with homologous frozen-thawed spermatozoa, and subsequent cleavage rates were 30.8% and 58.3%, respectively. Half of the embryos derived from oocytes matured in IVM_1 developed into blastocysts, whereas only 28.6% of embryos from oocytes matured in IVM_2 reached the blastocyst stage. Morula stages were present from Day 6 onward, and blastocyst stages from Day 9 on, indicating a slower developmental speed in comparison with domestic cats. This is the first report of in vitro-produced blastocysts using ICSI in the lion, and the results report that IVM and ICSI can be successfully performed with cumulus-oocyte complexes retrieved from ovaries after eight hours of shipping, obtaining competent embryos in culture. PMID:25586639

  20. Experimental evolution of sperm competitiveness in a mammal

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background When females mate with multiple partners, sperm from rival males compete to fertilise the ova. Studies of experimental evolution have proven the selective action of sperm competition on male reproductive traits. However, while reproductive traits may evolve in response to sperm competition, this does not necessarily provide evidence that sperm competitive ability responds to selection. Indeed, a study of Drosophila failed to observe divergence in sperm competitive ability of males in lines selected for enhanced sperm offence and defence. Results Adopting the naturally polygamous house mouse (Mus domesticus) as our vertebrate model, we performed an experimental evolution study and observed genetic divergence in sperm quality; males from the polygamous selection lines produced ejaculates with increased sperm numbers and greater sperm motility compared to males from the monogamous lines. Here, after 12 generations of experimental evolution, we conducted competitive matings between males from lineages evolving under sperm competition and males from lineages subject to relaxed selection. We reduced variation in paternity arising from embryo mortality by genotyping embryos in utero at 14 days gestation. Our microsatellite data revealed a significant paternity bias toward males that evolved under the selective regime of sperm competition. Conclusion We provide evidence that the sperm competitiveness phenotype can respond to selection, and show that improved sperm quality translates to greater competitive fertilisation success in house mice. PMID:21251249

  1. Turkey Sperm Reside in the Tubular Glands in the Urodeum Following Artificial Insemination

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A turkey hen in egg production requires 48 hr after the last insemination to maximize the number of sperm in the uterovaginal junction sperm-storage tubules. Where the sperm that continue to fill the oviductal sperm-storage sites during this 48 hr period reside remains unknown. Histological sectio...

  2. Pathway of sperm (image)

    MedlinePlus

    ... the testis and stores it several days. When ejaculation occurs, sperm is forcefully expelled from the tail ... the prostate and empties into the urethra. When ejaculation occurs, rhythmic muscle movements propel the sperm forward.

  3. Antioxidant Effects of Brown Algae Sargassum on Sperm Parameters: CONSORT-Compliant Article.

    PubMed

    Sobhani, Alireza; Eftekhaari, Tasnim Eghbal; Shahrzad, Mohammad Esmaeil; Natami, Mohammad; Fallahi, Soghra

    2015-12-01

    The occurrence of oxidative stress during the sperm freeze-thaw cycles affects the sperm parameters and eventually leads to a decrease in its reproductive potential. Sperm protection against oxidative reactions during freezing is done by antioxidants. Since the selection of a suitable sperm cryopreservation bank is effective in maintaining acceptable reproductive potential and motility of sperm during cryopreservation.This study aimed to evaluate the antioxidant effects of different doses of the extract of brown algae Sargassum on oxidative stress and frozen human sperm parameters.We conducted a randomized controlled trial on the semen samples from 11 healthy men in the age group of 25 to 36 years. The samples were collected by masturbation after 3 to 5 days of abstinence from ejaculation. The specimens were divided into 3 equal parts, including 1 control group and 2 experimental groups.The 2 experimental groups were frozen using the rapid solidification technique with Sargassum extract at doses of 250 and 500 μg/mL.Motility and morphology of sperms were measured using a computer system and CASA software and the amount of reactive oxygen species was determined using Oxisperm kit.Sargassum extract significantly decreased the amount of reactive oxygen species (P < 0.005) and at doses of 250 and 500 μg/mL, significantly increased the overall motility (P < 0.006) and progressive motility (P < 0.007) after solidification, but did not affect the normal morphology of sperms.The addition of ethanol extract of Sargassum prevents reactive oxygen species production during the solidification process and improves sperm motility at doses of 250 and 500 μg/mL. PMID:26717354

  4. Consequences of autoimmunity to sperm antigens in vasectomized men.

    PubMed

    Anderson, D J; Alexander, N J

    1979-12-01

    The development by a large percentage of vasectomized men of sperm autoantibodies is discussed in this monograph chapter. The production of anti-sperm antibodies is attributed to: 1) granuloma formation; 2) increased permeability of epithelial barriers in the rete testis and epididymis; and 3) transport of phagocytic cells to regional lymph nodes. Individual variation in type of antibodies and response to antibody production is documented and is thought to depend on such factors as rate of sperm production, the structure of the blood-testis barrier, surgical technique, and expression of immune response genes. Morphological changes in spermatozoa and testes occurring after vasectomy may be induced by immunological mechanisms. Tests of cell-mediated immunity to sperm antigens are described, and more accurate tests are needed. Animal studies provide evidence that chronic immune stimulation can result in formation of circulating immune complexes, resulting in deleterious systemic effects, including damage to kidneys, blood vessels, and cells of the immune system. Further studies of the autoimmune orchitis phenomenon may aid in avoidance of immunologically mediated side effects of vasectomy. PMID:92384

  5. Technical progress and increasing production quality

    SciTech Connect

    Petrenko, V.G.; Antonov, A.V.

    1984-01-01

    Various developments aimed toward improved technology and laboratory control and improved production quality in the coking by-product industry over the past 20 years are highlighted. Different aspects of coal charges for coking, such as composition of charge, properties of coal(s) being used in charge, and effects of storage of coal, and the effect of these variables on coke quality are discussed briefly. The treatment of wastes from coking plants and purification of coking gas are also among subjects included.

  6. Flow cytometry of sperm

    SciTech Connect

    Gledhill, B.L.

    1987-09-21

    This brief paper summarizes automated flow cytometric determination of sperm morphology and flow cytometry/sorting of sperm with application to sex preselection. In the latter context, mention is made of results of karyotypic determination of sex chromosome ratios in albumin-processed human sperm. 23 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab.

  7. Turbidity as a method of preparing sperm dilutions in the echinoid sperm/egg bioassay

    SciTech Connect

    Hall, T.J.; Haley, R.K.; Battan, K.J. )

    1993-11-01

    The use of turbidimeter for preparing sperm dilutions used in the echinoid sperm/egg bioassay was evaluated. Regression analyses of the relationship between sperm density and turbidity for the sea urchins Strongylocentrotus purpuratus and Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis and the sand dollar Dendraster excentricus indicated that although there were slope differences for each species, each coefficient of determination was highly significant. For Dendraster excentricus, triplicate hemacytometer counts over a range of turbidities as well as repeated preparations of a single sperm turbidity indicated similar variability for each. The use of the turbidimeter has time-saving advantages over conventional hemacytometer methods without sacrificing precision. Sperm dilutions can be prepared rapidly, minimizing seawater sperm preactivation before test initiation, and may therefore contribute to increased test precision.

  8. Effects of the Czech Propolis on Sperm Mitochondrial Function

    PubMed Central

    Cedikova, Miroslava; Miklikova, Michaela; Stachova, Lenka; Grundmanova, Martina; Tuma, Zdenek; Vetvicka, Vaclav; Zech, Nicolas; Kralickova, Milena; Kuncova, Jitka

    2014-01-01

    Propolis is a natural product that honeybees collect from various plants. It is known for its beneficial pharmacological effects. The aim of our study was to evaluate the impact of propolis on human sperm motility, mitochondrial respiratory activity, and membrane potential. Semen samples from 10 normozoospermic donors were processed according to the World Health Organization criteria. Propolis effects on the sperm motility and mitochondrial activity parameters were tested in the fresh ejaculate and purified spermatozoa. Propolis preserved progressive motility of spermatozoa in the native semen samples. Oxygen consumption determined in purified permeabilized spermatozoa by high-resolution respirometry in the presence of adenosine diphosphate and substrates of complex I and complex II (state OXPHOSI+II) was significantly increased in the propolis-treated samples. Propolis also increased uncoupled respiration in the presence of rotenone (state ETSII) and complex IV activity, but it did not influence state LEAK induced by oligomycin. Mitochondrial membrane potential was not affected by propolis. This study demonstrates that propolis maintains sperm motility in the native ejaculates and increases activities of mitochondrial respiratory complexes II and IV without affecting mitochondrial membrane potential. The data suggest that propolis improves the total mitochondrial respiratory efficiency in the human spermatozoa in vitro thereby having potential to improve sperm motility. PMID:25104965

  9. A Work Schedule to Increase Productivity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Atwood, Caleb S.

    1979-01-01

    Outlines a technique for making a tight economy and energy shortages more palatable by supplementing employee wage increases with benefits such as alternative three and four day "weekends" without loss of regular pay and by enabling business to increase profits. (Author/IRT)

  10. Detection of structural and numerical chomosomal abnormalities by ACM-FISH analysis in sperm of oligozoospermic infertility patients

    SciTech Connect

    Schmid, T E; Brinkworth, M H; Hill, F; Sloter, E; Kamischke, A; Marchetti, F; Nieschlag, E; Wyrobek, A J

    2003-11-10

    Modern reproductive technologies are enabling the treatment of infertile men with severe disturbances of spermatogenesis. The possibility of elevated frequencies of genetically and chromosomally defective sperm has become an issue of concern with the increased usage of intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), which can enable men with severely impaired sperm production to father children. Several papers have been published about aneuploidy in oligozoospermic patients, but relatively little is known about chromosome structural aberrations in the sperm of these patients. We examined sperm from infertile, oligozoospermic individuals for structural and numerical chromosomal abnormalities using a multicolor ACM FISH assay that utilizes DNA probes specific for three regions of chromosome 1 to detect human sperm that carry numerical chromosomal abnormalities plus two categories of structural aberrations: duplications and deletions of 1pter and 1cen, and chromosomal breaks within the 1cen-1q12 region. There was a significant increase in the average frequencies of sperm with duplications and deletions in the infertility patients compared with the healthy concurrent controls. There was also a significantly elevated level of breaks within the 1cen-1q12 region. There was no evidence for an increase in chromosome-1 disomy, or in diploidy. Our data reveal that oligozoospermia is associated with chromosomal structural abnormalities suggesting that, oligozoospermic men carry a higher burden of transmissible, chromosome damage. The findings raise the possibility of elevated levels of transmissible chromosomal defects following ICSI treatment.

  11. Predictive capacity of sperm quality parameters and sperm subpopulations on field fertility after artificial insemination in sheep.

    PubMed

    Santolaria, P; Vicente-Fiel, S; Palacín, I; Fantova, E; Blasco, M E; Silvestre, M A; Yániz, J L

    2015-12-01

    This study was designed to evaluate the relevance of several sperm quality parameters and sperm population structure on the reproductive performance after cervical artificial insemination (AI) in sheep. One hundred and thirty-nine ejaculates from 56 adult rams were collected using an artificial vagina, processed for sperm quality assessment and used to perform 1319 AI. Analyses of sperm motility by computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA), sperm nuclear morphometry by computer-assisted sperm morphometry analysis (CASMA), membrane integrity by acridine orange-propidium iodide combination and sperm DNA fragmentation using the sperm chromatin dispersion test (SCD) were performed. Clustering procedures using the sperm kinematic and morphometric data resulted in the classification of spermatozoa into three kinematic and three morphometric sperm subpopulations. Logistic regression procedures were used, including fertility at AI as the dependent variable (measured by lambing, 0 or 1) and farm, year, month of AI, female parity, female lambing-treatment interval, ram, AI technician and sperm quality parameters (including sperm subpopulations) as independent factors. Sperm quality variables remaining in the logistic regression model were viability and VCL. Fertility increased for each one-unit increase in viability (by a factor of 1.01) and in VCL (by a factor of 1.02). Multiple linear regression analyses were also performed to analyze the factors possibly influencing ejaculate fertility (N=139). The analysis yielded a significant (P<0.05) relationship between sperm viability and ejaculate fertility. The discriminant ability of the different semen variables to predict field fertility was analyzed using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis. Sperm viability and VCL showed significant, albeit limited, predictive capacity on field fertility (0.57 and 0.54 Area Under Curve, respectively). The distribution of spermatozoa in the different subpopulations was not related to fertility. PMID:26507945

  12. Premises for fowl sperm preservation based on applied bioenergetics.

    PubMed

    Froman, D P

    2014-02-01

    The primary goal of this work was to test whether the sperm mobility assay could be used to derive mathematical relationships from which predictions could be made about sperm cell function. A precondition was random sampling from a pool of sperm. This precondition was met by centrifuging mobile sperm through 12% (wt/vol) Accudenz containing the Ca(2+) chelator 1,2-bis-(o-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid (BAPTA) and then holding washed sperm at 20°C within buffered potassium chloride. These 2 conditions rendered washed sperm immobile at 20°C. Resumption of sperm mobility was independent of time (P > 0.8558) when sperm were reactivated at body temperature with 2 mM Ca(2+) in isotonic sodium chloride at pH 7.4. Reactivated sperm mobility was 93% of the prewash control. Subsequent experiments served to define a dose response, predict optimal conditions for in vitro sperm mobility, and show how sperm can recover from an imposed non-physiological condition. Thus, functions were derived from which predictions were made. Whereas the utility of BAPTA treatment was confirmed in a new context, such utility did not address the question of whole-cell Ca(2+) flux during sperm cell manipulation. This issue is pivotal for the application of bioenergetics to fowl sperm preservation. Therefore, the secondary goal of this research was to investigate sperm cell Ca(2+) flux using a simulation of conditions encountered by sperm during centrifugation through 12% (wt/vol) Accudenz. These conditions included a temperature of 30°C, a Ca(2+) sink, and no exogenous substrate. Sperm motion was measured with a Hobson SpermTracker. Data points conformed to parabolic functions when motile concentration and velocity were plotted as functions of time. In each case, maximums were observed, e.g., 26 min for motile concentration. The upswing was attributed to a redistribution of intracellular Ca(2+) whereas the downswing was attributed to sperm cell Ca(2+) depletion. A pronounced isothermal increase was observed for each variable when the Ca(2+) sink was overcome with exogenous Ca(2+). Experimental outcomes supported four testable premises applicable to fowl sperm preservation research: 1) the importance of sperm mobility phenotype, 2) the relationship between mitochondrial Ca(2+) cycling and sperm mobility, 3) the utility of the sperm mobility assay for predicting experimental outcomes, and 4) understanding mitochondrial Ca(2+) cycling in terms of whole-cell Ca(2+) flux. PMID:24398832

  13. In vitro embryo production in buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) using sexed sperm and oocytes from ovum pick up.

    PubMed

    Liang, X W; Lu, Y Q; Chen, M T; Zhang, X F; Lu, S S; Zhang, M; Pang, C Y; Huang, F X; Lu, K H

    2008-04-15

    The objective was to explore the use of sexed sperm and OPU-derived oocytes in an IVP system to produce sex-preselected bubaline embryos. Oocytes were recovered from 20 fertile Murrah and Nili-Ravi buffalo cows by repeated (twice weekly) ultrasound-guided transvaginal ovum pick up (OPU), or by aspiration of abbatoir-derived bubaline ovaries, and subjected to IVF, using frozen-thawed sexed or unsexed bubaline semen. On average, 4.6 oocytes were retrieved per buffalo per session (70.9% were Grades A or B). Following IVF with sexed sperm, oocytes derived from OPU had similar developmental competence as those from abattoir-derived ovaries, in terms of cleavage rate (57.6 vs. 50.4%, P=0.357) and blastocyst development rate (16.0 vs. 23.9%, P=0.237). Furthermore, using frozen-thawed sexed versus unsexed semen did not affect rates of cleavage (50.5 vs. 50.9%, P=0.978) or blastocyst development (15.3 vs. 19.1%, P=0.291) after IVF using OPU-derived oocytes. Of the embryos produced in an OPU-IVP system, 9 of 34 sexed fresh embryos (26.5%) and 5 of 43 sexed frozen embryos (11.6%) transferred to recipients established pregnancies, whereas 7 of 26 unsexed fresh embryos (26.9%) and 6 out of 39 unsexed frozen embryos (15.4%) transferred to recipients established pregnancies. Eleven sex-preselected buffalo calves (10 females and one male) and 10 sexed buffalo calves (six females and four males) were born following embryo transfer. In the present study, OPU, sperm sexing technology, IVP, and embryo transfer, were used to produce sex-preselected buffalo calves. This study provided proof of concept for further research and wider field application of these technologies in buffalo. PMID:18336893

  14. Microfluidics for sperm research.

    PubMed

    Knowlton, Stephanie M; Sadasivam, Magesh; Tasoglu, Savas

    2015-04-01

    One in six couples of reproductive age worldwide are affected at least once by some form of infertility. In vitro fertilization (IVF) and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) are widely-available assisted reproductive technologies (ART). The identification and isolation of the most-motile sperm with DNA integrity are essential to IVF and ICSI, ultimately affecting treatment consequences and the health of offspring. Recently, microfluidic technologies been developed to sort sperm according to sperm morphology, motility, DNA integrity, and functionality for IVF techniques. There have also been emerging applications in wildlife conservation, high-throughput single-sperm genomics, sperm-driven robotics, and in-home fertility testing. We review a broad range of studies applying the principles of microfluidics to sperm research. PMID:25798781

  15. Ovarian fluid of receptive females enhances sperm velocity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gasparini, Clelia; Andreatta, Gabriele; Pilastro, Andrea

    2012-05-01

    The females of several internal fertilizers are able to store sperm for a long time, reducing the risk of sperm limitation. However, it also means that males can attempt to mate outside females' receptive period, potentially increasing the level of sperm competition and exacerbating sexual conflict over mating. The guppy ( Poecilia reticulata), an internally fertilizing fish, is a model system of such competition and conflict. Female guppies accept courtship and mate consensually only during receptive periods of the ovarian cycle but receive approximately one (mostly forced) mating attempt per minute both during and outside their sexually receptive phase. In addition, females can store viable sperm for months. We expected that guppy females would disfavour sperm received during their unreceptive period, possibly by modulating the quality and/or quantity of the components present in the ovarian fluid (OF) over the breeding cycle. Ovarian fluid has been shown to affect sperm velocity, a determinant of sperm competition success in this and other fishes. We found that in vitro sperm velocity is slower in OF collected from unreceptive females than in OF from receptive females. Visual stimulation with a potential partner prior to collection did not significantly affect in vitro sperm velocity. These results suggest that sperm received by unreceptive females may be disfavoured as sperm velocity likely affects the migration process and the number of sperm that reach storage sites.

  16. Rapid adjustments of sperm characteristics in relation to social status

    PubMed Central

    Rudolfsen, Geir; Figenschou, Lars; Folstad, Ivar; Tveiten, Helge; Figenschou, Marie

    2005-01-01

    Sperm competition models predict that males typically mating in disfavoured roles should be selected to compensate for their disadvantage by investing more into sperm. We studied the effect of rapid changes in social status on ejaculate investments during experimental trials with an externally fertilizing teleost—the Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus). We document that males becoming dominant produce less sperm with lower velocity, but have higher sex steroid concentrations than subordinate males. These differences in sperm characteristics seem mainly to result from a decreased investment in sperm among fish that become dominant compared to pre-trial levels. Moreover, these adjustments of sperm production and sperm velocity seem not to be traded against sperm longevity. Our results support theoretical models of sperm competition, as males forced to mate in disfavoured roles seem to invest more into ejaculate quality than males in favoured roles. Additionally, we are the first to report that males, in a species with status-dependent shifts in reproductive tactics, have evolved rapid tactic specific adjustments of sperm production and sperm velocity corresponding to what could be predicted from their reproductive roles. PMID:16543175

  17. Coal liquefaction to increase jet fuel production

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1979-01-01

    Processing concept that increases supply of jet fuel has been developed as part of study on methods for converting coal to hydrogen, methane, and jet fuel. Concept takes advantage of high aromatic content of coal-derived liquids to make high-octane gasoline, instead of destroying aromatics to make jet fuel.

  18. Sperm macromolecules associated with bull fertility.

    PubMed

    Kaya, Abdullah; Memili, Erdoğan

    2016-06-01

    Bull fertility, ability of the sperm to fertilize and activate the egg that sustain embryo development, is vitally important for effective and efficient production of cattle. Fertility is a complex trait with low heritability. Despite recent advances in genomic selection and possibility of enormous paternal benefits to profitable cattle production, there exist no reliable tests for evaluating semen quality and predicting bull fertility. This review focuses on sperm macromolecules such as transcripts, proteins and the epigenome, i.e., the functional genome that are associated with bull fertility. Generating new information in these systems is important beyond agriculture because such progress advances the fundamental science of the mammalian male gamete while at the same time introduces biotechnology into livestock production. Sperm macromolecules and epigenome markers associated with bull fertility can be used alone or in combination with the current SNP microarrays to determine sperm quality and to indicate bull fertility. PMID:26925808

  19. Sensors Increase Productivity in Harsh Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    California's San Juan Capistrano-based Endevco Corporation licensed three patents covering high-temperature, harsh-environment silicon carbide (Si-C) pressure sensors from Glenn Research Center. The company is exploring their use in government markets, as well as in commercial markets, including commercial jet testing, deep well drilling applications where pressure and temperature increase with drilling depth, and in automobile combustion chambers.

  20. Immune activation decreases sperm viability in both sexes and influences female sperm storage

    PubMed Central

    Radhakrishnan, Preethi; Fedorka, Kenneth M.

    2012-01-01

    All animals are under the constant threat of pathogenic infection. However, little is known regarding the influence of acute infection on sperm viability, particularly in female insects. This information is crucial for our understanding of mating and immune system coevolution, considering that females store sperm and serve as the site of sperm competition. Using the fruitfly, Drosophila melanogaster, we examined the influence of infection on sperm viability and storage. Twenty-four hours after haemocoel inoculation with a pathogen mimic (peptidoglycan, PGN) both sexes exhibited reduced sperm viability, indicating that systemic immune activation played a significant role in gamete survival. Surprisingly, sperm death did not appear to result from a reproductive-immune system trade-off, considering that sperm survived 24 h in vitro once removed from their somatic resources. Instead, our results are most consistent with death owing to immune effector collateral damage. We also examined the potential for sexually transmitted pathogens to influence sperm storage. Females mated with ‘infected’ males (created by dipping genitalia into a PGN solution) exhibited a higher proportion of empty sperm stores 48 h after mating compared to their controls. Remarkably, these data indicate that females may increase their fitness by removing ‘infected’ ejaculates from storage over time. PMID:22696524

  1. Increasing Efficiency in Photoelectrochemical Hydrogen Production

    SciTech Connect

    Warren, S.; Turner, J.

    2002-01-01

    Photoelectrochemical hydrogen production promises to be a renewable, clean, and efficient way of storing the sun's energy for use in hydrogen-powered fuel cells. We use p-type Ga.51In.49P semiconductor (henceforth as GaInP2) to absorb solar energy and produce a photocurrent. When the semiconductor is immersed in water, the photocurrent can break down water into hydrogen and oxygen. However, before the GaInP2 can produce hydrogen and oxygen, the conduction band and the Fermi level of the semiconductor must overlap the water redox potentials. In an unmodified system, the conduction band and Fermi level of GaInP2 do not overlap the water redox potentials. When light shines on the semiconductor, electrons build up on the surface, shifting the bandedges and Fermi level further away from overlap of the water redox potentials. We report on surface treatments with metallated porphyrins and transition metals that suppress bandedge migration and allow bandedge overlap to occur. Coating ruthenium octaethylporphyrin carbonyl (RuOEP CO) on the GaInP2 surface shifted bandedges in the positive direction by 270 mV on average, allowing the bandedges to frequently overlap the water redox potentials. Coating the GaInP2 surface with RuCl3 catalyzed charge transfer from the semiconductor to the water, lessening bandedge migration under light irradiation. Future work will focus on the long-term surface stability of these new treatments and quantitative applications of porphyrins.

  2. Melatonin intake since weaning ameliorates steroidogenic function and sperm motility of streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats.

    PubMed

    da Costa, C F P; Gobbo, M G; Taboga, S R; Pinto-Fochi, M E; Góes, R M

    2016-05-01

    Melatonin may be used as an antioxidant in therapy against systemic sequelae caused by oxidative stress in diabetes. However, as melatonin has a major role in regulating reproductive activity, its consequence on reproductive parameters under diabetes needs to be better clarified. We have studied whether prior and concomitant treatment of juvenile Wistar rats with low doses of melatonin interferes in reproductive damage induced by experimental diabetes after 1 and 8 weeks. The consequences of melatonin administration since weaning on reproductive parameters of healthy rats at adulthood were also evaluated. Melatonin was provided in drinking water (10 μg/kg b.w./day) after weaning (5-week-old). Diabetes was induced by streptozotocin injection (4.5 mg/100 g b.w.) at 13-week-old rats, and rats were euthanized 1 and 8 weeks after disease onset. Diabetes decreased circulating testosterone levels (~35% to 1 week; ~62% to 2 months; p < 0.01) but did not affect testes sperm counts. Two months of diabetes reduced the sperm reserve and led to atrophy of epididymal cauda. Both 1-week and 2-month diabetes impaired sperm motility, decreased the number of spermatozoa with progressive movement, and increased the number of immotile sperm. Melatonin intake reduced serum testosterone levels ~29% in healthy 14-week-old and ~23% in 21-week-old rats and reduced daily testicular sperm production ~26% in the latter disease stage, but did not interfere in sperm reserves and transit time for both experimental periods. Exogenous melatonin prevented the serum testosterone decrease and damage to sperm motility in diabetic rats and attenuated reduction in sperm counts and transit time induced by 1-week diabetes but did not avoid this decrease at 2-month diabetes. Low doses of melatonin administered prior to and during experimental diabetes attenuated damage to testicular steroidogenic activity and preserved sperm motility, but not sperm reserves in the rat. Our data indicated a differential action of melatonin in normoglycemic and hyperglycemic conditions, particularly in sperm motility and testosterone production by Leydig cells. PMID:27037637

  3. Sperm activation by heat shock protein 70 supports the migration of sperm released from sperm storage tubules in Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica).

    PubMed

    Hiyama, Gen; Matsuzaki, Mei; Mizushima, Shusei; Dohra, Hideo; Ikegami, Keisuke; Yoshimura, Takashi; Shiba, Kogiku; Inaba, Kazuo; Sasanami, Tomohiro

    2014-02-01

    Systems for maintaining the viability of ejaculated sperm in the female reproductive tract are widespread among vertebrates and invertebrates. In birds, this sperm storage function is performed by specialized simple tubular invaginations called sperm storage tubules (SSTs) in the uterovaginal junction (UVJ) of the oviduct. Although the incidence and physiological reasons for sperm storage in birds have been reported extensively, the mechanisms of sperm uptake by the SSTs, sperm maintenance within the SSTs, and control of sperm release from the SSTs are poorly understood. In this study, we demonstrated that the highly conserved heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) stimulates sperm motility in vitro and also that HSP70 expressed in the UVJ may facilitate the migration of sperm released from the SSTs. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis demonstrated that the expression of HSP70 mRNA in the UVJ increases before ovulation/oviposition. Gene-specific in situ hybridization and immunohistochemical analysis with a specific antibody to HSP70 demonstrated that HSP70 is localized in the surface epithelium of the UVJ. Furthermore, injection of anti-HSP70 antibody into the vagina significantly inhibited fertilization in vivo. In addition, we found that recombinant HSP70 activates flagellar movement in the sperm and that the binding of recombinant HSP70 to the sperm surface is mediated through an interaction with voltage-dependent anion channel protein 2 (VDAC2). Our results suggest that HSP70 binds to the sperm surface by interacting with VDAC2 and activating sperm motility. This binding appears to play an important role in sperm migration within the oviduct. PMID:24194572

  4. The dynamics of sperm cooperation in a competitive environment

    PubMed Central

    Fisher, Heidi S.; Giomi, Luca; Hoekstra, Hopi E.; Mahadevan, L.

    2014-01-01

    Sperm cooperation has evolved in a variety of taxa and is often considered a response to sperm competition, yet the benefit of this form of collective movement remains unclear. Here, we use fine-scale imaging and a minimal mathematical model to study sperm aggregation in the rodent genus Peromyscus. We demonstrate that as the number of sperm cells in an aggregate increase, the group moves with more persistent linearity but without increasing speed. This benefit, however, is offset in larger aggregates as the geometry of the group forces sperm to swim against one another. The result is a non-monotonic relationship between aggregate size and average velocity with both a theoretically predicted and empirically observed optimum of six to seven sperm per aggregate. To understand the role of sexual selection in driving these sperm group dynamics, we compared two sister-species with divergent mating systems. We find that sperm of Peromyscus maniculatus (highly promiscuous), which have evolved under intense competition, form optimal-sized aggregates more often than sperm of Peromyscus polionotus (strictly monogamous), which lack competition. Our combined mathematical and experimental study of coordinated sperm movement reveals the importance of geometry, motion and group size on sperm velocity and suggests how these physical variables interact with evolutionary selective pressures to regulate cooperation in competitive environments. PMID:25056618

  5. Increasing Labour Productivity in Agriculture and Its Implications

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van den Ban, Anne

    2011-01-01

    In order to profit from the economic growth in their society farmers can (1) increase the yields of their crops and animals, (2) switch to the production of high value products for which there is an increasing demand in the market, (3) increase the labour productivity on their farm, (4) find non-farm sources of income for some or all of their

  6. Increasing Labour Productivity in Agriculture and Its Implications

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van den Ban, Anne

    2011-01-01

    In order to profit from the economic growth in their society farmers can (1) increase the yields of their crops and animals, (2) switch to the production of high value products for which there is an increasing demand in the market, (3) increase the labour productivity on their farm, (4) find non-farm sources of income for some or all of their…

  7. Long-term effects of triethylenemelamine exposure on mouse testis cells and sperm chromatin structure assayed by flow cytometry

    SciTech Connect

    Evenson, D.P.; Baer, R.K.; Jost, L.K. )

    1989-01-01

    The toxic and potentially mutagenic actions of triethylenemelamine (TEM) on mouse body and testis weights, testicular cell kinetics, sperm production, sperm head morphology, and sperm chromatin structure were assessed in two experiments. The first experiment examined effects of four dose levels of TEM, assayed 1, 4, or 10 wk after toxic exposure. In the second study, effects from five dosage levels were measured at 1, 4, and 10 wk, and the highest dosage level was evaluated over 44 wk. TEM produced an expected dose related loss of spermatogenic activity and subsequent recovery as determined by dual-parameter (DNA, RNA) flow cytometry (FCM) measurements of testicular cells. Both testicular weights and caudal sperm reserves remained generally below controls after 44 wk recovery following exposure to the highest dosage. Chromatin structure alterations, defined as increased susceptibility to DNA denaturation in situ, and sperm head morphology were highly correlated with dose and with each other. Sperm head morphology and sperm chromatic structure remained abnormal at 44 wk for the 1.0 mg/kg TEM dosage, suggesting that the abnormalities, present long after the initial toxic response, may be a result of mutation. This study demonstrates that flow cytometry provides a unique, rapid, and efficient means to measure effects of reproductive toxins and potential mutagens.

  8. Elevated frequencies of hyperhaploid sperm were detected in a man with a history of multiple aneuploid pregnancies

    SciTech Connect

    Chuu, Y.J.; Wyrobek, A.J.; Kidd, S.

    1997-10-01

    The goal of this research is to determine the heritable risk associated with elevations in the proportion of hyperhaploid human sperm. A case family presented with a history of four aneuploid pregnancies: two with autosomal trisomies (47,+ 22 and 47, +15) which were non-viable and two children with sex chromosomal aneuploidies (47, XYY and Klinefelter syndrome, 47, XXY). The father consumed {approximately}{1/2} pack of cigarettes and 1 alcoholic drink per day. He had no notable occupational or environmental exposures. Paternal origin of extra X chromosomes in the boy with Klinefelter syndrome was confirmed by DNA analyses of blood using polymorphic X-linked microsatellite markers. The inheritance pattern was established by {ge}2 informative loci using PCR products analyzed on an automatic DNA sequencer. Multi-probe sperm FISH was employed to determine the proportion of sperm with aneuploidies involving chromosome 21, X, and Y. Sperm aneuploidy frequencies of hyper-haploid sperm; XY ({approximately}6 fold, p < 0.001), 21-21 ({approximately}6 fold, p< 0.001), XX and YY ({approximately}2 fold, p<0.02). These findings suggest that elevated proportions of aneuploid sperm may be associated with an increased risk of fathering an aneuploid offspring. These findings are also relevant for future studies of heritable risk for men with elevations in sperm aneuploidy after exposures to therapeutic or environmental agents.

  9. Seminal plasma effects on sex-sorting bovine sperm.

    PubMed

    Burroughs, C A; Graham, J K; Lenz, R W; Seidel, G E

    2013-02-01

    The objective was to determine which characteristics of bovine ejaculates affected efficacy of sex sorting bovine sperm by flow cytometry. The effects of first versus second ejaculates, seminal plasma content, addition of BSA, and seminal plasma from different bulls during staining were all studied, as was the effect of 8-hour storage with and without seminal plasma. Semen collected by artificial vagina was centrifuged at 1000 ×g for 15 minutes to separate sperm from seminal plasma; seminal plasma was clarified by 10 minutes of additional centrifugation at 2000 ×g. Sperm were rediluted to 160 × 10(6) sperm per mL with: Tyrode's medium plus albumin, lactate, and pyruvate (TALP) containing 0%, 5%, 10%, or 20% homologous seminal plasma, TALP containing 10% heterologous seminal plasma, or TALP containing 0.3% (control), 0.6%, or 1.2% BSA. After incubation with Hoechst 33342 for 45 minutes, an equal volume of TALP containing red food dye was added, and sperm were analyzed by flow cytometry/cell sorting to determine percent of live-oriented sperm, X sort rate, percent of membrane-impaired sperm, and split (degree of separation between X- and Y-bearing sperm populations). The percent of live-oriented sperm was higher for sperm incubated with 0% seminal plasma (64%) than for sperm incubated with 5%, 10%, or 20% seminal plasma (60%, 59%, and 58%, respectively; P < 0.05). The X sort rate was higher for sperm incubated with 0% seminal plasma than sperm with 20% seminal plasma (4.26 vs. 3.61 × 10(3) sperm per second). When seminal plasma was exchanged between bull ejaculates, only one bull had seminal plasma that was detrimental to sperm, resulting in 31% membrane-impaired sperm compared with a range of 16% to 19% for seminal plasmas from other bulls (P < 0.05). The addition of BSA did not affect sort efficiency at the concentrations studied. Sperm from six bulls stored for 8 hours without seminal plasma had more membrane-impaired sperm (which were discarded) during sorting (28%) than with seminal plasma (19%; P < 0.01), but higher postthaw motility postsorting (63%) than with seminal plasma (52%; P < 0.05). In conclusion, the presence of seminal plasma during staining and sorting decreased sort rates and percent of live-oriented sperm, and storing sperm without seminal plasma increased postthaw motility. PMID:23244767

  10. Sodium affects the sperm motility in the European eel.

    PubMed

    Vílchez, M Carmen; Morini, Marina; Peñaranda, David S; Gallego, Víctor; Asturiano, Juan F; Pérez, Luz

    2016-08-01

    The role of seminal plasma sodium and activation media sodium on sperm motility was examined by selectively removing the element from these two media, in European eel sperm. Sperm size (sperm head area) was also measured using an ASMA (Automated Sperm Morphometry Analyses) system, in the different conditions. Intracellular sodium [Na(+)]i was quantitatively analyzed by first time in the spermatozoa from a marine fish species. Measurement of [Na(+)]i was done before and after motility activation, by Flow Cytometry, using CoroNa Green AM as a dye. Sperm motility activation induced an increase in [Na(+)]i, from 96.72mM in quiescent stage to 152.21mM post-activation in seawater. A significant decrease in sperm head area was observed post-activation in seawater. There was a notable reduction in sperm motility when sodium was removed from the seminal plasma, but not when it was removed from the activation media. Sodium removal was also linked to a significant reduction in sperm head area in comparison to the controls. Our results indicate that the presence of the ion Na(+) in the seminal plasma (or in the extender medium) is necessary for the preservation of sperm motility in European eel, probably because it plays a role in maintaining an appropriate sperm cell volume in the quiescent stage of the spermatozoa. PMID:27085371

  11. Microscopic analysis of MTT stained boar sperm cells

    PubMed Central

    van den Berg, B.M.

    2015-01-01

    The ability of sperm cells to develop colored formazan by reduction of MTT was used earlier to develop a spectrophotometric assay to determine the viability of sperm cells for several mammalian species. It was the objective of the present study to visualize microscopically the location of the formazan in boar sperm cells. The MTT staining process of boar sperm cells can be divided into a series of morphological events. Incubation of the sperm cells in the presence of MTT resulted after a few min in a diffuse staining of the midpiece of the sperm cells. Upon further incubation the staining of the midpiece became more intense, and gradually the formation of packed formazan granules became more visible. At the same time, a small formazan stained granule appeared medially on the sperm head, which increased in size during further incubation. After incubation for about 1 h the midpiece granules were intensely stained and more clearly distinct as granules, while aggregation of sperm cells occurred. Around 90% of the sperm cells showed these staining events. At the end of the staining the formazan granules have disappeared from both the sperm cells and medium, whereas formazan crystals appeared as thin crystal threads, that became heavily aggregated in the incubation medium. It was concluded that formazan is taken up by lipid droplets in the cytoplasm. Further, the use of the MTT assay to test for sperm viability should be regarded as a qualitative assay, whereas its practical use at artificial insemination (AI) Stations is limited. PMID:26623368

  12. Oxidative stress in zebrafish (Danio rerio) sperm.

    PubMed

    Hagedorn, Mary; McCarthy, Megan; Carter, Virginia L; Meyers, Stuart A

    2012-01-01

    Laboratories around the world have produced tens of thousands of mutant and transgenic zebrafish lines. As with mice, maintaining all of these valuable zebrafish genotypes is expensive, risky, and beyond the capacity of even the largest stock centers. Because reducing oxidative stress has become an important aspect of reducing the variability in mouse sperm cryopreservation, we examined whether antioxidants might improve cryopreservation of zebrafish sperm. Four experiments were conducted in this study. First, we used the xanthine-xanthine oxidase (X-XO) system to generate reactive oxygen species (ROS). The X-XO system was capable of producing a stress reaction in zebrafish sperm reducing its sperm motility in a concentration dependent manner (P<0.05). Second, we examined X-XO and the impact of antioxidants on sperm viability, ROS and motility. Catalase (CAT) mitigated stress and maintained viability and sperm motility (P>0.05), whereas superoxide dismutase (SOD) and vitamin E did not (P<0.05). Third, we evaluated ROS in zebrafish spermatozoa during cryopreservation and its effect on viability and motility. Methanol (8%) reduced viability and sperm motility (P<0.05), but the addition of CAT mitigated these effects (P>0.05), producing a mean 2.0 to 2.9-fold increase in post-thaw motility. Fourth, we examined the effect of additional cryoprotectants and CAT on fresh sperm motility. Cryoprotectants, 8% methanol and 10% dimethylacetamide (DMA), reduced the motility over the control value (P<0.5), whereas 10% dimethylformamide (DMF) with or without CAT did not (P>0.05). Zebrafish sperm protocols should be modified to improve the reliability of the cryopreservation process, perhaps using a different cryoprotectant. Regardless, the simple addition of CAT to present-day procedures will significantly improve this process, assuring increased and less variable fertilization success and allowing resource managers to dependably plan how many straws are needed to safely cryopreserve a genetic line. PMID:22724013

  13. Cryopreservation of Sperm from the Endangered Colorado Pikeminnow

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tiersch, T.R.; Figiel, C.R., Jr.; Wayman, W.R.; Williamson, J.H.; Gorman, O.T.; Carmichael, G.J.

    2004-01-01

    We developed methods for the cryopreservation of sperm of the endangered Colorado pikeminnow Ptychocheilus lucius. Sperm were collected from a captive broodstock population of Colorado pikeminnow reared and maintained at the Dexter National Fish Hatchery and Technology Center. Our objectives were to (1) evaluate the effects on sperm motility of 24-h storage in Hanks' balanced salt solution (HBSS); (2) characterize sperm motility and duration; (3) examine the relationship between sperm motility and osmotic pressure; (4) examine the effect of four cryoprotectants (dimethyl sulfoxide [DMSO], dimethyl acetamide [DMA], glycerol, and methanol [MeOH] at two concentrations [5% and 10%]) on postthaw motility; and (5) compare the effect of two cooling rates (40??C/ min and 4??C/min) on postthaw motility. The sperm samples diluted with HBSS retained higher motility (mean ??SD, 77 ?? 22%; n = 9) than did undiluted samples (12 ?? 30%; n = 9) after 24 h of storage. When exposed to HBSS at 274 mosmols/kg or more, few sperm became motile (???1%). Exposure to HBSS at 265 mosmols/kg elicited threshold activation (defined as 10% motility), and maximum motility (>95%) was observed at 93 mosmols/ kg. The maximum motility of sperm was observed within 10 s after activation with deionized water, and sperm remained motile for 57 s. The sperm that were cooled at a rate of 40??C/min and cryopreserved with 5% MeOH retained higher postthaw motility (56 ?? 13%) than did sperm cryopreserved with DMSO, DMA, or glycerol (at 5% and 10%). When the sperm samples were cooled at a rate of 4??C/min, sperm cryopreserved with MeOH (5% or 10%) or DMSO (5% or 10%) retained the highest postthaw motilities (???14%). The use of cryopreserved sperm can assist hatchery managers in the production of fish, provide for the long-term conservation of genetic resources, and assist in the recovery of endangered species such as the Colorado pikeminnow.

  14. Evaluation of Lasting Effects of Heat Stress on Sperm Profile and Oxidative Status of Ram Semen and Epididymal Sperm

    PubMed Central

    Hamilton, Thais Rose dos Santos; Mendes, Camilla Mota; de Castro, Letícia Signori; de Assis, Patrícia Monken; Siqueira, Adriano Felipe Perez; Delgado, Juliana de Carvalho; Goissis, Marcelo Demarchi; Muiño-Blanco, Teresa; Cebrián-Pérez, José Álvaro; Nichi, Marcílio; Visintin, José Antonio; Assumpção, Mayra Elena Ortiz D'Ávila

    2016-01-01

    Higher temperatures lead to an increase of testicular metabolism that results in spermatic damage. Oxidative stress is the main factor responsible for testicular damage caused by heat stress. The aim of this study was to evaluate lasting effects of heat stress on ejaculated sperm and immediate or long-term effects of heat stress on epididymal sperm. We observed decrease in motility and mass motility of ejaculated sperm, as well as an increase in the percentages of sperm showing major and minor defects, damaged plasma and acrosome membranes, and a decrease in the percentage of sperm with high mitochondrial membrane potential in the treated group until one spermatic cycle. An increased enzymatic activity of glutathione peroxidase and an increase of stressed cells were observed in ejaculated sperm of the treated group. A decrease in the percentage of epididymal sperm with high mitochondrial membrane potential was observed in the treated group. However, when comparing immediate and long-term effects, we observed an increase in the percentage of sperm with low mitochondrial membrane potential. In conclusion, testicular heat stress induced oxidative stress that led to rescuable alterations after one spermatic cycle in ejaculated sperm and also after 30 days in epididymal sperm. PMID:26881013

  15. Sperm motility-initiating substance in newt egg-jelly induces differential initiation of sperm motility based on sperm intracellular calcium levels.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Akihiko; Takayama-Watanabe, Eriko; Vines, Carol A; Cherr, Gary N

    2011-01-01

    Sperm motility-initiating substance (SMIS), a novel motility inducer from newt egg-jelly, is activated by the release from associated jelly substances at the beginning of internal fertilization and affects female-stored sperm. We examined motility initiation kinetics of newt sperm in response to SMIS by monitoring the changes of sperm intracellular calcium ([Ca²(+)](i)). In quiescent non-motile sperm loaded with the Ca²(+) indicator Fluo-4, intracellular free Ca²(+) was observed around mitochondria using confocal scanning laser microscopy. A slight increase in [Ca²(+)](i) occurred simultaneously and transiently at motility initiation in sperm treated with either heated jelly extract (hJE) containing activated SMIS, or a low osmotic solution, which naturally initiates motility in externally-fertilizing amphibians and can initiate motility in urodele sperm. When the increase of [Ca²(+)](i) at motility-initiation was monitored using spectrofluorometry, large increases in [Ca²(+)](i) occurred immediately in the low osmotic solution and within 1.5 min in the hJE. In the intact jelly extract (no heating), small increases of [Ca²(+)](i) irregularly occurred from around 1 min and for about 4 min, during which motility was differentially initiated among sperm. These results indicate that the SMIS induces differential initiation of sperm motility depending on the activational states of the SMIS and its overall activity. The motility initiation in the jelly extract was delayed in sperm whose intracellular Ca²(+) had been chelated with BAPTA-AM. The relative levels of [Ca²(+)](i) were variable with a mean of 414 ± 256 nmol/L among resting sperm, suggesting that the level of [Ca²(+)](i) in the resting sperm modulates the responsiveness to the SMIS. PMID:21261606

  16. An ARID Domain-Containing Protein within Nuclear Bodies Is Required for Sperm Cell Formation in Arabidopsis thaliana

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Binglian; He, Hui; Zheng, Yanhua; Wu, Wenye; McCormick, Sheila

    2014-01-01

    In plants, each male meiotic product undergoes mitosis, and then one of the resulting cells divides again, yielding a three-celled pollen grain comprised of a vegetative cell and two sperm cells. Several genes have been found to act in this process, and DUO1 (DUO POLLEN 1), a transcription factor, plays a key role in sperm cell formation by activating expression of several germline genes. But how DUO1 itself is activated and how sperm cell formation is initiated remain unknown. To expand our understanding of sperm cell formation, we characterized an ARID (AT-Rich Interacting Domain)-containing protein, ARID1, that is specifically required for sperm cell formation in Arabidopsis. ARID1 localizes within nuclear bodies that are transiently present in the generative cell from which sperm cells arise, coincident with the timing of DUO1 activation. An arid1 mutant and antisense arid1 plants had an increased incidence of pollen with only a single sperm-like cell and exhibited reduced fertility as well as reduced expression of DUO1. In vitro and in vivo evidence showed that ARID1 binds to the DUO1 promoter. Lastly, we found that ARID1 physically associates with histone deacetylase 8 and that histone acetylation, which in wild type is evident only in sperm, expanded to the vegetative cell nucleus in the arid1 mutant. This study identifies a novel component required for sperm cell formation in plants and uncovers a direct positive regulatory role of ARID1 on DUO1 through association with histone acetylation. PMID:25057814

  17. Ocean acidification impacts on sperm mitochondrial membrane potential bring sperm swimming behaviour near its tipping point.

    PubMed

    Schlegel, Peter; Binet, Monique T; Havenhand, Jonathan N; Doyle, Christopher J; Williamson, Jane E

    2015-04-01

    Broadcast spawning marine invertebrates are susceptible to environmental stressors such as climate change, as their reproduction depends on the successful meeting and fertilization of gametes in the water column. Under near-future scenarios of ocean acidification, the swimming behaviour of marine invertebrate sperm is altered. We tested whether this was due to changes in sperm mitochondrial activity by investigating the effects of ocean acidification on sperm metabolism and swimming behaviour in the sea urchin Centrostephanus rodgersii. We used a fluorescent molecular probe (JC-1) and flow cytometry to visualize mitochondrial activity (measured as change in mitochondrial membrane potential, MMP). Sperm MMP was significantly reduced in ΔpH -0.3 (35% reduction) and ΔpH -0.5 (48% reduction) treatments, whereas sperm swimming behaviour was less sensitive with only slight changes (up to 11% decrease) observed overall. There was significant inter-individual variability in responses of sperm swimming behaviour and MMP to acidified seawater. We suggest it is likely that sperm exposed to these changes in pH are close to their tipping point in terms of physiological tolerance to acidity. Importantly, substantial inter-individual variation in responses of sperm swimming to ocean acidification may increase the scope for selection of resilient phenotypes, which, if heritable, could provide a basis for adaptation to future ocean acidification. PMID:25833135

  18. Human sperm chromosome analysis after subzonal sperm insemination of hamster oocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Cozzi, J.

    1994-09-01

    Sperm microinjection techniques, subzonal sperm insemination (SUZI) and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), have achieved a wide spread clinical application for the treatment of male infertility. To date, only one study has focused on sperm karyotypes after microinjection. Martin et al. reported a very high incidence of abnormal human sperm complements after ICSI into hamster oocytes. In the present study, are reported the first human sperm karyotypes after SUZI of hamster oocytes. Spermatozoa from two control donors were treated by calcium ionophore A23187 and injected under the zona of hamster eggs. The microinjected eggs were then cultured for cytogenetic analysis of the pronuclei. Out of 47 analyzed sperm chromosome metaphases, 5 (10.6%) were abnormal, 4 (8.5%) were hypohaploid and 1 (2.1%) had a structural abnormality. The sex ratio was not significantly different from the expected 1:1 ratio. Rates of chromosomal abnormalities in microinjected spermatozoa were similar to those observed in spermatozoa inseminated with zona free eggs, suggesting that SUZI procedure per se does not increase sperm chromosomal abnormalities.

  19. Differences in the fatty-acid composition of rodent spermatozoa are associated to levels of sperm competition

    PubMed Central

    delBarco-Trillo, Javier; Mateo, Rafael; Roldan, Eduardo R. S.

    2015-01-01

    Sperm competition is a prevalent phenomenon that drives the evolution of sperm function. High levels of sperm competition lead to increased metabolism to fuel higher sperm velocities. This enhanced metabolism can result in oxidative damage (including lipid peroxidation) and damage to the membrane. We hypothesized that in those species experiencing high levels of sperm competition there are changes in the fatty-acid composition of the sperm membrane that makes the membrane more resistant to oxidative damage. Given that polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) are the most prone to lipid peroxidation, we predicted that higher sperm competition leads to a reduction in the proportion of sperm PUFAs. In contrast, we predicted that levels of sperm competition should not affect the proportion of PUFAs in somatic cells. To test these predictions, we quantified the fatty-acid composition of sperm, testis and liver cells in four mouse species (genus Mus) that differ in their levels of sperm competition. Fatty-acid composition in testis and liver cells was not associated to sperm competition levels. However, in sperm cells, as predicted, an increase in sperm competition levels was associated with an increase in the proportion of saturated fatty-acids (the most resistant to lipid peroxidation) and by a concomitant decrease in the proportion of PUFAs. Two particular fatty acids were most responsible for this pattern (arachidonic acid and palmitic acid). Our findings thus indicate that sperm competition has a pervasive influence in the composition of sperm cells that ultimately may have important effects in sperm function. PMID:25795911

  20. Sperm Patch-Clamp

    PubMed Central

    Lishko, Polina; Clapham, David E.; Navarro, Betsy; Kirichok, Yuriy

    2014-01-01

    Sperm intracellular pH and calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) are two central factors that control sperm activity within the female reproductive tract. As such, the ion channels of the sperm plasma membrane that alter intracellular sperm [Ca2+] and pH play important roles in sperm physiology and the process of fertilization. Indeed, sperm ion channels regulate sperm motility, control sperm chemotaxis toward the egg in some species, and may trigger the acrosome reaction. Until recently, our understanding of these important molecules was rudimentary due to the inability to patch-clamp spermatozoa and directly record the activity of these ion channels under voltage clamp. Recently, we overcame this technical barrier and developed a method for reproducible application of the patch-clamp technique to mouse and human spermatozoa. This chapter covers important aspects of application of the patch-clamp technique to spermatozoa, such as selection of the electrophysiological equipment, isolation of spermatozoa for patch-clamp experiments, formation of the gigaohm seal with spermatozoa, and transition into the whole-cell mode of recording. We also discuss potential pitfalls in application of the patch-clamp technique to flagellar ion channels. PMID:23522465

  1. Microscale integrated sperm sorter.

    PubMed

    Chung, Yaokuang; Zhu, Xiaoyue; Gu, Wei; Smith, Gary D; Takayama, Shuichi

    2006-01-01

    This chapter describes the design and fabrication of a passively driven microfluidic sperm sorter using soft lithographic microfabrication techniques. This self-contained device can separate motile sperm from nonmotile sperm and other cellular debris. The sorting system is small (coin sized) and structurally simple. It comprises two inlets; two outlets; a sorting channel; and arrays of horizontally oriented reservoirs that function as passively driven, constant-flow-rate pumps. Sperm with higher motility are sorted out from the rest of the semen samples based on their ability to swim through interfaces between adjacent laminar streams into separate streamlines, whereas the nonmotile sperm and debris remain in their initial streamlines. The device, which we call a microscale integrated sperm sorter, does not rely on any external power sources or controllers and incorporates all sample loading and sorting functions necessary to prepare high-quality sperm for in vitro fertilization. This self-contained, inexpensive, and portable device may also be useful for developing convenient sperm motility assays that can be used at the point of care or at home. PMID:16508075

  2. Current status of freeze-drying technology to preserve domestic animals sperm.

    PubMed

    Gil, L; Olaciregui, M; Luño, V; Malo, C; González, N; Martínez, F

    2014-10-01

    In recent years, there has been an increased interest in new preservation techniques that facilitate sperm storage and distribution, with freeze-drying (FD) having been proposed as an alternative method for sperm preservation and maintenance of genetic resources in different animal species. FD is a method in which frozen material is dried by sublimation of ice, thereby involving a direct transition from a solid (ice) to a vapour (gas) phase. One of the main advantages of FD is that nitrogen and dry ice are no longer required for the storage and shipment of frozen sperm, which can be stored at room temperature or 4°C, thereby resulting in enormous reductions in storage and shipping costs. Unlike sperm cryopreserved after gradual freezing, the sperm membrane may be further damaged by both snap-freezing and drying stresses during the FD procedure. As mammalian spermatozoa lose their motility, viability and, at least partially, their DNA integrity when freeze-dried, they must be microinjected into an oocyte by intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Although the efficiency of ICSI is limited when freeze-dried spermatozoa are used, embryos and live offspring can be produced. DNA fragmentation in freeze-dried spermatozoa is one of the main causes of failure of embryonic development and successful pregnancy. In this regard, it has been suggested that endonucleases are among the leading causes of DNA fragmentation in spermatozoa along with oxidative stress caused by the release of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Many factors influence the FD process, and it is not clear how FD affects specific components of sperm from different animal species. As such, a sound understanding of the FD process would result in increased production of embryos and/or live offspring. The aim of this review was to study the various stages and techniques used in the FD process and to further evaluate the results obtained. PMID:25277435

  3. Mammalian Sperm Motility: Observation and Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaffney, E. A.; Gadêlha, H.; Smith, D. J.; Blake, J. R.; Kirkman-Brown, J. C.

    2011-01-01

    Mammalian spermatozoa motility is a subject of growing importance because of rising human infertility and the possibility of improving animal breeding. We highlight opportunities for fluid and continuum dynamics to provide novel insights concerning the mechanics of these specialized cells, especially during their remarkable journey to the egg. The biological structure of the motile sperm appendage, the flagellum, is described and placed in the context of the mechanics underlying the migration of mammalian sperm through the numerous environments of the female reproductive tract. This process demands certain specific changes to flagellar movement and motility for which further mechanical insight would be valuable, although this requires improved modeling capabilities, particularly to increase our understanding of sperm progression in vivo. We summarize current theoretical studies, highlighting the synergistic combination of imaging and theory in exploring sperm motility, and discuss the challenges for future observational and theoretical studies in understanding the underlying mechanics.

  4. Speract, a sea urchin egg peptide that regulates sperm motility, also stimulates sperm mitochondrial metabolism.

    PubMed

    García-Rincón, Juan; Darszon, Alberto; Beltrán, Carmen

    2016-04-01

    Sea urchin sperm have only one mitochondrion, that in addition to being the main source of energy, may modulate intracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)]i) to regulate their motility and possibly the acrosome reaction. Speract is a decapeptide from the outer jelly layer of the Strongylocentrotus purpuratus egg that upon binding to its receptor in the sperm, stimulates sperm motility, respiration and ion fluxes, among other physiological events. Altering the sea urchin sperm mitochondrial function with specific inhibitors of this organelle, increases [Ca(2+)]i in an external Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)]ext)-dependent manner (Ardón, et al., 2009. BBActa 1787: 15), suggesting that the mitochondrion is involved in sperm [Ca(2+)]i homeostasis. To further understand the interrelationship between the mitochondrion and the speract responses, we measured mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨ) and NADH levels. We found that the stimulation of sperm with speract depolarizes the mitochondrion and increases the levels of NADH. Surprisingly, these responses are independent of external Ca(2+) and are due to the increase in intracellular pH (pHi) induced by speract. Our findings indicate that speract, by regulating pHi, in addition to [Ca(2+)]i, may finely modulate mitochondrial metabolism to control motility and ensure that sperm reach the egg and fertilize it. PMID:26772728

  5. Suprazero Cooling Rate, Rather Than Freezing Rate, Determines Post Thaw Quality Of Rhesus Macaque Sperm

    PubMed Central

    Martorana, Kelly; Klooster, Katie; Meyers, Stuart

    2013-01-01

    Sperm become most sensitive to cold shock when cooled from 37C to 5C at rates that are too fast or too slow; cold shock increases the susceptibility to oxidative damage due to its influence on reactive oxygen species (ROS) production ([1]. ROS are significant stress factors that are generated during cooling and low temperature storage, and may be a main cause of decreased motility and fertility upon warming. ROS have been shown to change cellular function through the disruption of the sperm plasma membrane and through damage to proteins and DNA. The objective of this study was to determine which cryopreservation rates result in the lowest degree of oxidative damage and greatest sperm quality. In the rhesus model it has not been determined whether suprazero cooling or subzero freezing rates causes a significant amount of ROS damage to sperm. Semen samples were collected from male rhesus macaques, washed, and resuspended in TEST-yolk cryopreservation buffer to 100 x 106 sperm/mL. Sperm were frozen in 0.5mL straws at four different combinations of suprazero and subzero rates. Three different suprazero rates were used between 22C and 0C: 0.5C/min (Slow), 45C/min (Medium), and 93C/min (Fast). These suprazero rates were used in combination with two different subzero rates for temperatures 0C to ?110C: 42C/min (Medium) and 87C/min (Fast). The different freezing groups were as follows: Slow-Med (SM), Slow-Fast (SF), Med-Med (MM), and Fast-Fast (FF). Flow cytometry was used to detect lipid peroxidation (LPO), a result of ROS generation. Motility was evaluated using a computer assisted sperm motion analyzer. The MM and FF treated sperm had less viable (P < 0.0001) and motile sperm (P < 0.001) than the SM, SF, or fresh sperm. Sperm exposed to MM and FF treatments demonstrated significantly higher oxidative damage than SM, SF, or fresh sperm (P < 0.05). The SM and SF treated sperm showed decreased motility, membrane integrity, and LPO compared to fresh semen (P<0.001). Slow cooling from room temperature promotes higher membrane integrity and motility post thaw, compared to medium or fast cooling rates. Cells exposed to similar cooling rates with differing freezing rates were not different in motility and membrane integrity, whereas comparison of cells exposed to differing cooling rates with similar freezing rates indicated significant differences in motility, membrane integrity, and LPO. These data suggest that sperm quality appears to be more sensitive to the cooling, rather than freezing rate and highlight the role of the suprazero cooling rate in post thaw sperm quality. PMID:24239181

  6. Impact of increasing milk production on whole farm environmental management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increasing herd milk production can provide both economic benefit to the producer and environmental benefit to society. Simulated dairy farms with average annual herd productions from 16,000 to 30,000 lb/cow illustrate that increasing milk yield per cow improves feed efficiency, reduces feed costs a...

  7. State Policies and Planning to Increase Attainment, Quality, and Productivity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lingenfelter, Paul E.

    2007-01-01

    This article examines why state planning and policy for higher education are increasingly focused on increasing educational attainment, quality, and the productivity of the system. It presents four "stories" which illustrate initiatives to improve attainment, quality, and productivity, but fall far short of exhausting the available material.

  8. A sperm-activating peptide controls a cGMP-signaling pathway in starfish sperm.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, Midori; Solzin, Johannes; Helbig, Annika; Hagen, Volker; Ueno, Sei-ichi; Kawase, Osamu; Maruyama, Yoshinori; Ogiso, Manabu; Godde, Matthias; Minakata, Hiroyuki; Kaupp, U Benjamin; Hoshi, Motonori; Weyand, Ingo

    2003-08-15

    Peptides released from eggs of marine invertebrates play a central role in fertilization. About 80 different peptides from various phyla have been isolated, however, with one exception, their respective receptors on the sperm surface have not been unequivocally identified and the pertinent signaling pathways remain ill defined. Using rapid mixing techniques and novel membrane-permeable caged compounds of cyclic nucleotides, we show that the sperm-activating peptide asterosap evokes a fast and transient increase of the cGMP concentration in sperm of the starfish Asterias amurensis, followed by a transient cGMP-stimulated increase in the Ca(2+) concentration. In contrast, cAMP levels did not change significantly and the Ca(2+) response evoked by photolysis of caged cAMP was significantly smaller than that using caged cGMP. By cloning of cDNA and chemical crosslinking, we identified a receptor-type guanylyl cyclase in the sperm flagellum as the asterosap-binding protein. Sperm respond exquisitely sensitive to picomolar concentrations of asterosap, suggesting that the peptide serves a chemosensory function like resact, a peptide involved in chemotaxis of sperm of the sea urchin Arbacia punctulata. A unifying principle emerges that chemosensory transduction in sperm of marine invertebrates uses cGMP as the primary messenger, although there may be variations in the detail. PMID:12921734

  9. Assay of sperm motility to study the effects of metal ions

    SciTech Connect

    Timourian, H.; Watchmaker, G.

    1984-01-01

    A method for quantitating sperm motility is applied here to study the effects of metal ions on animal cells. The quantitative technique is based on orienting sperm by subjecting them to flow and then measuring their capacity for returning to randomness when the orienting force is discontinued. The optical anisotropy of sperm permits determination of orientation with a spectrophotometer equipped with a flow cell. A wide range of concentrations of zinc, copper, and nickel ions were tested to determine their effects on the motility of sea-urchin sperm. Sea urchins are a ready and convenient source of sperm. Since energy production in sperm depends on their limited supply of endogenous substrate, this test system gives us a simple screening procedure for comparing the effects of various agents on the cell's capacity for utilizing energy. Nickel at concentrations higher than 10..pi../sup 5/M had an initial depressing effect on motility; however, this effect was eventually overcome, and in some cases overcompensation resulted in an increase motility. Zinc had either an enhancing or a depressing effect, depending not only on its concentration but on the time of exposure. At 10/sup -5/M it enhanced motility if present at the time the sperm were first shed in seawater, the time of high respiration. At 10..pi../sup 4/M it depressed motility only if present during the period of decreasing respiration, 1 to 2 hr after being shed into seawater. Copper depressed activity at 10..pi../sup 4/M to 10..pi../sup 6/M at all times tested.

  10. Sperm DNA oxidative damage and DNA adducts.

    PubMed

    Jeng, Hueiwang Anna; Pan, Chih-Hong; Chao, Mu-Rong; Lin, Wen-Yi

    2015-12-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate DNA damage and adducts in sperm from coke oven workers who have been exposed to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. A longitudinal study was conducted with repeated measurements during spermatogenesis. Coke-oven workers (n=112) from a coke-oven plant served the PAH-exposed group, while administrators and security personnel (n=67) served the control. Routine semen parameters (concentration, motility, vitality, and morphology) were analyzed simultaneously; the assessment of sperm DNA integrity endpoints included DNA fragmentation, bulky DNA adducts, and 8-oxo-7,8-dihydro-2'-deoxyguanosine (8-oxo-dGuo). The degree of sperm DNA fragmentation was measured using the terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end-labeling (TUNEL) assay and sperm chromatin structure assay (SCSA). The PAH-exposed group had a significant increase in bulky DNA adducts and 8-oxo-dGuo compared to the control subjects (Ps=0.002 and 0.045, respectively). Coke oven workers' percentages of DNA fragmentation and denaturation from the PAH-exposed group were not significantly different from those of the control subjects (Ps=0.232 and 0.245, respectively). Routine semen parameters and DNA integrity endpoints were not correlated. Concentrations of 8-oxo-dGuo were positively correlated with percentages of DNA fragmentation measured by both TUNEL and SCSA (Ps=0.045 and 0.034, respectively). However, the concentrations of 8-oxo-dGuo and percentages of DNA fragmentation did not correlate with concentrations of bulky DNA adducts. In summary, coke oven workers with chronic exposure to PAHs experienced decreased sperm DNA integrity. Oxidative stress could contribute to the degree of DNA fragmentation. Bulky DNA adducts may be independent of the formation of DNA fragmentation and oxidative adducts in sperm. Monitoring sperm DNA integrity is recommended as a part of the process of assessing the impact of occupational and environmental toxins on sperm. PMID:26653986

  11. Membrane hyperpolarization during human sperm capacitation

    PubMed Central

    López-González, I.; Torres-Rodríguez, P.; Sánchez-Carranza, O.; Solís-López, A.; Santi, C.M.; Darszon, A.; Treviño, C.L.

    2014-01-01

    Sperm capacitation is a complex and indispensable physiological process that spermatozoa must undergo in order to acquire fertilization capability. Spermatozoa from several mammalian species, including mice, exhibit a capacitation-associated plasma membrane hyperpolarization, which is necessary for the acrosome reaction to occur. Despite its importance, this hyperpolarization event has not been adequately examined in human sperm. In this report we used flow cytometry to show that a subpopulation of human sperm indeed undergo a plasma membrane hyperpolarization upon in vitro capacitation. This hyperpolarization correlated with two other well-characterized capacitation parameters, namely an increase in intracellular pH and Ca2+ concentration, measured also by flow cytometry. We found that sperm membrane hyperpolarization was completely abolished in the presence of a high external K+ concentration (60 mM), indicating the participation of K+ channels. In order to identify, which of the potential K+ channels were involved in this hyperpolarization, we used different K+ channel inhibitors including charybdotoxin, slotoxin and iberiotoxin (which target Slo1) and clofilium (a more specific blocker for Slo3). All these K+ channel antagonists inhibited membrane hyperpolarization to a similar extent, suggesting that both members of the Slo family may potentially participate. Two very recent papers recorded K+ currents in human sperm electrophysiologically, with some contradictory results. In the present work, we show through immunoblotting that Slo3 channels are present in the human sperm membrane. In addition, we found that human Slo3 channels expressed in CHO cells were sensitive to clofilium (50 μM). Considered altogether, our data indicate that Slo1 and Slo3 could share the preponderant role in the capacitation-associated hyperpolarization of human sperm in contrast to what has been previously reported for mouse sperm, where Slo3 channels are the main contributors to the hyperpolarization event. PMID:24737063

  12. Factors associated with increased milk production for automatic milking systems.

    PubMed

    Tremblay, Marlène; Hess, Justin P; Christenson, Brock M; McIntyre, Kolby K; Smink, Ben; van der Kamp, Arjen J; de Jong, Lisanne G; Döpfer, Dörte

    2016-05-01

    Automatic milking systems (AMS) are increasingly popular throughout the world. Our objective was to analyze 635 North American dairy farms with AMS for (risk) factors associated with increased milk production per cow per day and milk production per robot per day. We used multivariable generalized mixed linear regressions, which identified several significant risk factors and interactions of risk factors associated with milk production. Free traffic was associated with increased production per cow and per robot per day compared with forced systems, and the presence of a single robot per pen was associated with decreased production per robot per day compared with pens using 2 robots. Retrofitted farms had significantly less production in the first 4 yr since installation compared with production after 4 yr of installation. In contrast, newly built farms did not see a significant change in production over time since installation. Overall, retrofitted farms did not produce significantly more or less milk than newly constructed farms. Detailed knowledge of factors associated with increased production of AMS will help guide future recommendations to producers looking to transition to an AMS and maximize their production. PMID:26898275

  13. Research Spotlight: Coastal cooling and marine productivity increasing off Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tretkoff, Ernie

    2011-05-01

    The upwelling system off Peru is of environmental and economic importance due to its high fish productivity. It has been suggested that global warming may be leading to increasing temperature differences between the coast and the ocean, causing increases in alongshore wind stress and coastal upwelling in this zone. Upwelling brings nutrients from deep waters toward the surface, increasing biological productivity. To confirm reported trends of increasing coastal cooling and rising biological productivity, Gutirrez et al. analyzed sediment records spanning the past 150 years as well as instrumental records from the main upwelling zone off Peru. They found that sea surface temperatures have been declining since the 1950s in the main upwelling zone. The cooling trend is likely linked to increased upwelling in spring, during which there is enhanced biological productivity. (Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1029/2010GL046324, 2011)

  14. Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI)

    MedlinePlus

    ... fertilization occurs, the fertilized egg (now called an embryo) grows in a laboratory for 1 to 5 ... damaged. • The egg might not grow into an embryo even after it is injected with sperm. • The ...

  15. STRATEGIES FOR INCREASING HERD MILK PRODUCTION THROUGH MORE FREQUENT MILKING

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    One of the most common ways for dairy producers to increase milk production is by increasing milking frequency. Frequent milking during early lactation may not only increase milk yield during the frequent milking period, but also produce carry-over effects that last well into lactation. Furthermore,...

  16. One-sided ejaculation of echidna sperm bundles.

    PubMed

    Johnston, S D; Smith, B; Pyne, M; Stenzel, D; Holt, W V

    2007-12-01

    We report for the first time an unusual ejaculatory mechanism in the short-beaked echidna in which each side of the bilaterally symmetrical, rosettelike glans penis is used alternately, with the other being shut down. This is unparalleled in mammals but is reminiscent of the use of hemipenes in squamate reptiles, providing further reproductive evidence of a sauropsidian lineage in the Monotremata. Further, we describe the occurrence of motile sperm bundles in ejaculated echidna semen and provide scanning electron micrographs of their morphology. Sperm bundling appears to confer increased sperm motility, which may provide the potential for sperm competition between males. PMID:18171162

  17. Dephosphorylation of sea urchin sperm guanylate cyclase during fertilization.

    PubMed

    Ward, G E; Moy, G W; Vacquier, V D

    1986-01-01

    Exposure of Arbacia punctulata spermatozoa to solubilized egg jelly results in the immediate dephosphorylation (within 3 sec) of an abundant 160,000 dalton (160 kDa) sperm membrane protein, and a simultaneous increase in its electrophoretic mobility to 150 kDa. The sperm phosphoprotein has been identified as guanylate cyclase. Correlated with the mobility shift of the cyclase is a decrease in its enzymatic activity. In this paper we will briefly review the work on the sperm guanylate cyclase, present new data on the role of ion fluxes in the control of its dephosphorylation, and discuss what role the dephosphorylation might play in successful sperm-egg interaction. PMID:2881431

  18. Human Sperm Tail Proteome Suggests New Endogenous Metabolic Pathways*

    PubMed Central

    Amaral, Alexandra; Castillo, Judit; Estanyol, Josep Maria; Ballescà, José Luís; Ramalho-Santos, João; Oliva, Rafael

    2013-01-01

    Proteomic studies are contributing greatly to our understanding of the sperm cell, and more detailed descriptions are expected to clarify additional cellular and molecular sperm attributes. The aim of this study was to characterize the subcellular proteome of the human sperm tail and, hopefully, identify less concentrated proteins (not found in whole cell proteome studies). Specifically, we were interested in characterizing the sperm metabolic proteome and gaining new insights into the sperm metabolism issue. Sperm were isolated from normozoospermic semen samples and depleted of any contaminating leukocytes. Tail fractions were obtained by means of sonication followed by sucrose-gradient ultracentrifugation, and their purity was confirmed via various techniques. Liquid chromatography and tandem mass spectrometry of isolated sperm tail peptides resulted in the identification of 1049 proteins, more than half of which had not been previously described in human sperm. The categorization of proteins according to their function revealed two main groups: proteins related to metabolism and energy production (26%), and proteins related to sperm tail structure and motility (11%). Interestingly, a great proportion of the metabolic proteome (24%) comprised enzymes involved in lipid metabolism, including enzymes for mitochondrial beta-oxidation. Unexpectedly, we also identified various peroxisomal proteins, some of which are known to be involved in the oxidation of very long chain fatty acids. Analysis of our data using Reactome suggests that both mitochondrial and peroxisomal pathways might indeed be active in sperm, and that the use of fatty acids as fuel might be more preponderant than previously thought. In addition, incubation of sperm with the fatty acid oxidation inhibitor etomoxir resulted in a significant decrease in sperm motility. Contradicting a common concept in the literature, we suggest that the male gamete might have the capacity to obtain energy from endogenous pools, and thus to adapt to putative exogenous fluctuations. PMID:23161514

  19. Increased polyamines may downregulate interleukin 2 production in rheumatoid arthritis.

    PubMed Central

    Flescher, E; Bowlin, T L; Ballester, A; Houk, R; Talal, N

    1989-01-01

    Polyamines downregulate immune reactivity. RA is associated with decreased IL 2 production. In this study, we present evidence to suggest that excessive polyamines can contribute to the IL 2 deficiency in RA. Blocking polyamine production with inhibitors of ornithine decarboxylase results in increased IL 2 production by RA PBMC. Moreover, polyamine oxidase (PAO) inhibitors and catalase also increase IL 2 production by RA PBMC. This effect of PAO inhibition is monocyte mediated. After 3 d in culture, RA PBMC produce three times more IL 2 than do normal PBMC. This rise is prevented by exogenous spermidine but only in the presence of monocytes. The concentration of polyamines in RA PBMC and synovial fluid MNC is 2-20-fold higher than in normal cells. Thus, polyamines and their oxidation products downregulate IL 2 production by RA PBMC and may account for the decreased T cell effector function seen in this disease. PMID:2784801

  20. Untapped opportunities for improving performance and increasing smelter production

    SciTech Connect

    Forberg, H.O.

    1996-10-01

    A review has been made of a large number of aluminum smelters concerning opportunities for improving performance and increasing production. Smelters have been grouped according to current efficiency. Opportunities for improvement of older and newer smelters are discussed. For older smelters to remain competitive and extend economic life, it is important to find new ways to increase production. These efforts have been going on for many years and the most successful producers have been able to stay viable. Opportunities are still available for many older facilities as further incremental increases of production wait to be harvested. Newer smelters are also interested in decreasing cost by increasing production. Even if the operating costs of newer plants are lower than those of older ones, it is important that newer plants make improvements that generate an acceptable rate of return on invested capital.

  1. Fenitrothion induced oxidative stress and morphological alterations of sperm and testes in male sprague-dawley rats

    PubMed Central

    Taib, Izatus Shima; Budin, Siti Balkis; Ghazali, Ahmad Rohi; Jayusman, Putri Ayu; Louis, Santhana Raj; Mohamed, Jamaludin

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Fenitrothion residue is found primarily in soil, water and food products and can lead to a variety of toxic effects on the immune, hepatobiliary and hematological systems. However, the effects of fenitrothion on the male reproductive system remain unclear. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of fenitrothion on the sperm and testes of male Sprague-Dawley rats. METHODS: A 20 mg/kg dose of fenitrothion was administered orally by gavages for 28 consecutive days. Blood sample was obtained by cardiac puncture and dissection of the testes and cauda epididymis was performed to obtain sperm. The effects of fenitrothion on the body and organ weight, biochemical and oxidative stress, sperm characteristics, histology and ultrastructural changes in the testes were evaluated. RESULTS: Fenitrothion significantly decreased the body weight gain and weight of the epididymis compared with the control group. Fenitrothion also decreased plasma cholinesterase activity compared with the control group. Fenitrothion altered the sperm characteristics, such as sperm concentration, sperm viability and normal sperm morphology, compared with the control group. Oxidative stress markers, such as malondialdehyde, protein carbonyl, total glutathione and glutathione S-transferase, were significantly increased and superoxide dismutase activity was significantly decreased in the fenitrothion-treated group compared with the control group. The histopathological and ultrastructural examination of the testes of the fenitrothion-treated group revealed alterations corresponding with the biochemical changes compared with the control group. CONCLUSION: A 20 mg/kg dose of fenitrothion caused deleterious effects on the sperm and testes of Sprague-Dawley rats. PMID:23420164

  2. Exposure to endosulfan influences sperm competition in Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Misra, Snigdha; Kumar, Ajay; Ratnasekhar, Ch.; Sharma, Vandana; Mudiam, Mohana Krishna Reddy; Ram, Kristipati Ravi

    2014-01-01

    Dwindling male fertility due to xenobiotics is of global concern. Accordingly, male reproductive toxicity assessment of xenobiotics through semen quality analysis in exposed males, and examining progeny production of their mates is critical. These assays, in part, are biased towards monogamy. Females soliciting multiple male partners (polyandry) is the norm in many species. Polyandry incites sperm competition and allows females to bias sperm use. However, consequences of xenobiotic exposure to the sperm in the light of sperm competition remain to be understood. Therefore, we exposed Drosophila melanogaster males to endosulfan, and evaluated their progeny production as well as the ability of their sperm to counter rival control sperm in the storage organs of females sequentially mated to control/exposed males. Endosulfan (2 μg/ml) had no significant effect on progeny production and on the expression of certain genes associated with reproduction. However, exposed males performed worse in sperm competition, both as 1st and 2nd male competitors. These findings indicate that simple non-competitive measures of reproductive ability may fail to demonstrate the harmful effects of low-level exposure to xenobiotics on reproduction and advocate consideration of sperm competition, as a parameter, in the reproductive toxicity assessment of xenobiotics to mimic situations prevailing in the nature. PMID:25503806

  3. Enhanced precipitation variability decreases grass- and increases shrub-productivity.

    PubMed

    Gherardi, Laureano A; Sala, Osvaldo E

    2015-10-13

    Although projections of precipitation change indicate increases in variability, most studies of impacts of climate change on ecosystems focused on effects of changes in amount of precipitation, overlooking precipitation variability effects, especially at the interannual scale. Here, we present results from a 6-y field experiment, where we applied sequences of wet and dry years, increasing interannual precipitation coefficient of variation while maintaining a precipitation amount constant. Increased precipitation variability significantly reduced ecosystem primary production. Dominant plant-functional types showed opposite responses: perennial-grass productivity decreased by 81%, whereas shrub productivity increased by 67%. This pattern was explained by different nonlinear responses to precipitation. Grass productivity presented a saturating response to precipitation where dry years had a larger negative effect than the positive effects of wet years. In contrast, shrubs showed an increasing response to precipitation that resulted in an increase in average productivity with increasing precipitation variability. In addition, the effects of precipitation variation increased through time. We argue that the differential responses of grasses and shrubs to precipitation variability and the amplification of this phenomenon through time result from contrasting root distributions of grasses and shrubs and competitive interactions among plant types, confirmed by structural equation analysis. Under drought conditions, grasses reduce their abundance and their ability to absorb water that then is transferred to deep soil layers that are exclusively explored by shrubs. Our work addresses an understudied dimension of climate change that might lead to widespread shrub encroachment reducing the provisioning of ecosystem services to society. PMID:26417095

  4. Enhanced precipitation variability decreases grass- and increases shrub-productivity

    PubMed Central

    Gherardi, Laureano A.; Sala, Osvaldo E.

    2015-01-01

    Although projections of precipitation change indicate increases in variability, most studies of impacts of climate change on ecosystems focused on effects of changes in amount of precipitation, overlooking precipitation variability effects, especially at the interannual scale. Here, we present results from a 6-y field experiment, where we applied sequences of wet and dry years, increasing interannual precipitation coefficient of variation while maintaining a precipitation amount constant. Increased precipitation variability significantly reduced ecosystem primary production. Dominant plant-functional types showed opposite responses: perennial-grass productivity decreased by 81%, whereas shrub productivity increased by 67%. This pattern was explained by different nonlinear responses to precipitation. Grass productivity presented a saturating response to precipitation where dry years had a larger negative effect than the positive effects of wet years. In contrast, shrubs showed an increasing response to precipitation that resulted in an increase in average productivity with increasing precipitation variability. In addition, the effects of precipitation variation increased through time. We argue that the differential responses of grasses and shrubs to precipitation variability and the amplification of this phenomenon through time result from contrasting root distributions of grasses and shrubs and competitive interactions among plant types, confirmed by structural equation analysis. Under drought conditions, grasses reduce their abundance and their ability to absorb water that then is transferred to deep soil layers that are exclusively explored by shrubs. Our work addresses an understudied dimension of climate change that might lead to widespread shrub encroachment reducing the provisioning of ecosystem services to society. PMID:26417095

  5. Coevolutionary Feedbacks between Female Mating Interval and Male Allocation to Competing Sperm Traits Can Drive Evolution of Costly Polyandry.

    PubMed

    Bocedi, Greta; Reid, Jane M

    2016-03-01

    Complex coevolutionary feedbacks between female mating interval and male sperm traits have been hypothesized to explain the evolution and persistence of costly polyandry. Such feedbacks could potentially arise because polyandry creates sperm competition and consequent selection on male allocation to sperm traits, while the emerging sperm traits could create female sperm limitation and, hence, impose selection for increased polyandry. However, the hypothesis that costly polyandry could coevolve with male sperm dynamics has not been tested. We built a genetically explicit individual-based model to simulate simultaneous evolution of female mating interval and male allocation to sperm number versus longevity, where these two sperm traits trade off. We show that evolution of competing sperm traits under polyandry can indeed cause female sperm limitation and, hence, promote further evolution and persistence of costly polyandry, particularly when sperm are costly relative to the degree of female sperm limitation. These feedbacks were stronger, and greater polyandry evolved, when postcopulatory competition for paternity followed a loaded rather than fair raffle and when sperm traits had realistically low heritability. We therefore demonstrate that the evolution of allocation to sperm traits driven by sperm competition can prevent males from overcoming female sperm limitation, thereby driving ongoing evolution of costly polyandry. PMID:26913946

  6. Immune Activation Reduces Sperm Quality in the Great Tit

    PubMed Central

    Losdat, Sylvain; Richner, Heinz; Blount, Jonathan D.; Helfenstein, Fabrice

    2011-01-01

    Mounting an immune response against pathogens incurs costs to organisms by its effects on important life-history traits, such as reproductive investment and survival. As shown recently, immune activation produces large amounts of reactive species and is suggested to induce oxidative stress. Sperm are highly susceptible to oxidative stress, which can negatively impact sperm function and ultimately male fertilizing efficiency. Here we address the question as to whether mounting an immune response affects sperm quality through the damaging effects of oxidative stress. It has been demonstrated recently in birds that carotenoid-based ornaments can be reliable signals of a male's ability to protect sperm from oxidative damage. In a full-factorial design, we immune-challenged great tit males while simultaneously increasing their vitamin E availability, and assessed the effect on sperm quality and oxidative damage. We conducted this experiment in a natural population and tested the males' response to the experimental treatment in relation to their carotenoid-based breast coloration, a condition-dependent trait. Immune activation induced a steeper decline in sperm swimming velocity, thus highlighting the potential costs of an induced immune response on sperm competitive ability and fertilizing efficiency. We found sperm oxidative damage to be negatively correlated with sperm swimming velocity. However, blood resistance to a free-radical attack (a measure of somatic antioxidant capacity) as well as plasma and sperm levels of oxidative damage (lipid peroxidation) remained unaffected, thus suggesting that the observed effect did not arise through oxidative stress. Towards the end of their breeding cycle, swimming velocity of sperm of more intensely colored males was higher, which has important implications for the evolution of mate choice and multiple mating in females because females may accrue both direct and indirect benefits by mating with males having better quality sperm. PMID:21765955

  7. Centrifugation on Percoll density gradient enhances motility, membrane integrity and in vitro fertilizing ability of frozen-thawed boar sperm.

    PubMed

    Noguchi, Michiko; Yoshioka, Koji; Hikono, Hirokazu; Iwagami, Gentaro; Suzuki, Chie; Kikuchi, Kazuhiro

    2015-02-01

    The effects of Percoll density gradient centrifugation on sperm quality, in vitro fertilizability and developmental capacity of frozen-thawed boar sperm were evaluated. Two-step density gradient centrifugation by Percoll enhanced significantly the motility parameters of sperm compared with a simple centrifugation procedure. Percentages of motile sperm and sperm with intact plasma and acrosome membranes after Percoll separation were significantly greater than those after simple centrifugation. The rates of penetration, cleavage and blastocyst formation after in vitro fertilization were significantly improved by Percoll separation compared with simple centrifugation and were influenced positively by the intactness of sperm head membranes, but not any sperm motility parameters. However, insemination with increased concentrations of sperm prepared by Percoll gradient centrifugation did not improve the success of fertilization and embryo development in vitro. Our results indicate that the integrity of sperm head membranes after Percoll separation is important for successful embryo development in vitro, more so than sperm motility. PMID:23659202

  8. Semiautomatic cold wire feeder systems increase GTA productivity

    SciTech Connect

    Richardson, M. )

    1995-01-01

    Often, the focus of attempts to increase GTA welding productivity is on studies to determine if justification exists for additional workstations, or for the investment in new fully automated dedicated welding fixtures. Often less costly and simpler solutions can bring about the necessary means to increase production rates and reduce operating costs. For short-run production applications, it is almost impossible to justify the substantial investment in a dedicated automatic fixture. Now, low cost GTA cold wire feeder systems are within the reach of even small shops. The paper views how cold wire equipment has been applied in several GTAW applications to improve results.

  9. Sperm cryopreservation of a live-bearing fish, Xiphophorus couchianus: Male-to-male variation in post-thaw motility and production of F1 hybrid offspring☆

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Huiping; Hazlewood, Leona; Walter, Ronald B.; Tiersch, Terrence R.

    2015-01-01

    Fishes of the genus Xiphophorus are well-studied biomedical research models, and some species, such as X. couchianus, are currently listed as endangered in the wild. Sperm cryopreservation in these live-bearing fishes has begun recently. Thus far, live young have been produced with cryopreserved sperm only in one species (Xiphophorus helleri). In this study, the goal was to develop a practical protocol for sperm cryopreservation of Xiphophorus couchianus, and to produce live young with cryopreserved sperm. Sperm were collected by crushing of testis in Hanks’ balanced salt solution at an osmolality of 500 mOsmol/kg (HBSS500), and were cryopreserved with 14% glycerol (v/v) as cryoprotectant at a cooling rate of 20 °C/min from 5 to −80 °C in 250-μL French straws. For artificial insemination, samples were thawed at 40 °C for 5 s in a water bath, washed once using fresh HBSS500 by centrifuging at 1000 g for 5 min at 4 °C, concentrated into ~5 μL, and injected into virgin females of Xiphophorus maculatus. The inseminated females were monitored for 90 days for subsequent discharge of live young. Results from 2006 and 2007 showed considerable male-to-male variation in post-thaw motility (from 1 to 70%). Offspring were produced by cryopreserved sperm in two tanks (of three) at 36 and 66 days after insemination in 2007. Paternity was confirmed via phenotypes (body color) and genotypes (microsatellite genetic marker) of the hybrid offspring. Overall, a practical protocol for sperm cryopreservation and artificial insemination is provided to preserve X. couchianus, which is an important biomedical research model, and also currently listed as an endangered species in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) red list. PMID:19027087

  10. Biodiversity increases the resistance of ecosystem productivity to climate extremes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Isbell, Forest; Craven, Dylan; Connolly, John; Loreau, Michel; Schmid, Bernhard; Beierkuhnlein, Carl; Bezemer, T. Martijn; Bonin, Catherine; Bruelheide, Helge; de Luca, Enrica; Ebeling, Anne; Griffin, John N.; Guo, Qinfeng; Hautier, Yann; Hector, Andy; Jentsch, Anke; Kreyling, Jürgen; Lanta, Vojtěch; Manning, Pete; Meyer, Sebastian T.; Mori, Akira S.; Naeem, Shahid; Niklaus, Pascal A.; Polley, H. Wayne; Reich, Peter B.; Roscher, Christiane; Seabloom, Eric W.; Smith, Melinda D.; Thakur, Madhav P.; Tilman, David; Tracy, Benjamin F.; van der Putten, Wim H.; van Ruijven, Jasper; Weigelt, Alexandra; Weisser, Wolfgang W.; Wilsey, Brian; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2015-10-01

    It remains unclear whether biodiversity buffers ecosystems against climate extremes, which are becoming increasingly frequent worldwide. Early results suggested that the ecosystem productivity of diverse grassland plant communities was more resistant, changing less during drought, and more resilient, recovering more quickly after drought, than that of depauperate communities. However, subsequent experimental tests produced mixed results. Here we use data from 46 experiments that manipulated grassland plant diversity to test whether biodiversity provides resistance during and resilience after climate events. We show that biodiversity increased ecosystem resistance for a broad range of climate events, including wet or dry, moderate or extreme, and brief or prolonged events. Across all studies and climate events, the productivity of low-diversity communities with one or two species changed by approximately 50% during climate events, whereas that of high-diversity communities with 16-32 species was more resistant, changing by only approximately 25%. By a year after each climate event, ecosystem productivity had often fully recovered, or overshot, normal levels of productivity in both high- and low-diversity communities, leading to no detectable dependence of ecosystem resilience on biodiversity. Our results suggest that biodiversity mainly stabilizes ecosystem productivity, and productivity-dependent ecosystem services, by increasing resistance to climate events. Anthropogenic environmental changes that drive biodiversity loss thus seem likely to decrease ecosystem stability, and restoration of biodiversity to increase it, mainly by changing the resistance of ecosystem productivity to climate events.

  11. Biodiversity increases the resistance of ecosystem productivity to climate extremes.

    PubMed

    Isbell, Forest; Craven, Dylan; Connolly, John; Loreau, Michel; Schmid, Bernhard; Beierkuhnlein, Carl; Bezemer, T Martijn; Bonin, Catherine; Bruelheide, Helge; de Luca, Enrica; Ebeling, Anne; Griffin, John N; Guo, Qinfeng; Hautier, Yann; Hector, Andy; Jentsch, Anke; Kreyling, Jürgen; Lanta, Vojtěch; Manning, Pete; Meyer, Sebastian T; Mori, Akira S; Naeem, Shahid; Niklaus, Pascal A; Polley, H Wayne; Reich, Peter B; Roscher, Christiane; Seabloom, Eric W; Smith, Melinda D; Thakur, Madhav P; Tilman, David; Tracy, Benjamin F; van der Putten, Wim H; van Ruijven, Jasper; Weigelt, Alexandra; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Wilsey, Brian; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2015-10-22

    It remains unclear whether biodiversity buffers ecosystems against climate extremes, which are becoming increasingly frequent worldwide. Early results suggested that the ecosystem productivity of diverse grassland plant communities was more resistant, changing less during drought, and more resilient, recovering more quickly after drought, than that of depauperate communities. However, subsequent experimental tests produced mixed results. Here we use data from 46 experiments that manipulated grassland plant diversity to test whether biodiversity provides resistance during and resilience after climate events. We show that biodiversity increased ecosystem resistance for a broad range of climate events, including wet or dry, moderate or extreme, and brief or prolonged events. Across all studies and climate events, the productivity of low-diversity communities with one or two species changed by approximately 50% during climate events, whereas that of high-diversity communities with 16-32 species was more resistant, changing by only approximately 25%. By a year after each climate event, ecosystem productivity had often fully recovered, or overshot, normal levels of productivity in both high- and low-diversity communities, leading to no detectable dependence of ecosystem resilience on biodiversity. Our results suggest that biodiversity mainly stabilizes ecosystem productivity, and productivity-dependent ecosystem services, by increasing resistance to climate events. Anthropogenic environmental changes that drive biodiversity loss thus seem likely to decrease ecosystem stability, and restoration of biodiversity to increase it, mainly by changing the resistance of ecosystem productivity to climate events. PMID:26466564

  12. Effect of sperm storage and selection techniques on sperm parameters.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Rakesh; Kattoor, Ajoe John; Ghulmiyyah, Jana; Agarwal, Ashok

    2015-01-01

    Sperm cryopreservation preserves the fertility of cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, ensures sperm are available at the time of oocyte retrieval in assisted reproductive technology (ART) procedures and avoids the need for repeated sperm extraction surgeries in azoospermic patients. Conventional methods of cryopreservation involve storage in liquid nitrogen (LN2), which causes a significant decline in sperm parameters such as motility and viability and results in DNA damage. Newer methods of sperm cryopreservation such as the LN2 vapor method, vitrification, and experimental methods such as lyophilization, have significant advantages over the conventional methods in terms of cost effectiveness and ease of use. Density gradient centrifugation (DGC), swim up, and magnetic assisted cell sorting (MACS) can be used prior to or post-cryopreservation to improve post-thaw sperm quality. Cryopreservation in special carriers such as cryoloops and empty zona prevents the loss of small numbers of sperm during cryopreservation. This article will discuss these sperm preservation and selection techniques. PMID:25354153

  13. Oxidative phosphorylation is essential for felid sperm function, but is substantially lower in cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) compared to domestic cat (Felis catus) ejaculate.

    PubMed

    Terrell, Kimberly A; Wildt, David E; Anthony, Nicola M; Bavister, Barry D; Leibo, S P; Penfold, Linda M; Marker, Laurie L; Crosier, Adrienne E

    2011-09-01

    Compared with the normospermic domestic cat, sperm metabolic function is compromised in the teratospermic cat and cheetah, but the pathway(s) involved in this deficiency are unknown. Glycolysis is essential for sperm motility, yet it appears to function normally in spermatozoa of either species regardless of structural morphology. We conducted a comparative study to further understand the mechanisms of energy production in felid spermatozoa, with the hypothesis that oxidative phosphorylation is required for normal sperm function and is impaired in teratospermic ejaculates. Electroejaculates from both species were stained with MitoTracker to quantify mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) or were incubated to assess changes in sperm function (motility, acrosomal integrity, and lactate production) after mitochondrial inhibition with myxothiazol. Sperm midpiece dimensions also were quantified. Sperm mitochondrial fluorescence (directly proportional to MMP) was ~95% lower in the cheetah compared with the normospermic and teratospermic cat, despite the cheetah having a 10% longer midpiece. In both species, MMP was increased 5-fold in spermatozoa with retained cytoplasm compared with structurally normal cells. Inhibition of oxidative phosphorylation impaired sperm function in both species, but a 100-fold higher inhibitor concentration was required in the cat compared with the cheetah. Collectively, findings revealed that oxidative phosphorylation was required for sperm function in the domestic cat and cheetah. This pathway of energy production appeared markedly less active in the cheetah, indicating a species-specific vulnerability to mitochondrial dysfunction. The unexpected, cross-species linkage between retained cytoplasmic droplets and elevated MMP may reflect increased concentrations of metabolic enzymes or substrates in these structures. PMID:21593479

  14. Reduced heterozygosity depresses sperm quality in wild rabbits, Oryctolagus cuniculus.

    PubMed

    Gage, Matthew J G; Surridge, Alison K; Tomkins, Joseph L; Green, Emma; Wiskin, Louise; Bell, Diana J; Hewitt, Godfrey M

    2006-03-21

    When close relatives are forced to reproduce, the resulting offspring inherit above average homozygosity and reduced fitness. Biologists now recognize inbreeding depression in the wild, a phenomenon that will probably increase as natural populations become depleted and fragmented. Inbreeding depression is most commonly expressed as compromised fertility and embryogenesis, but actual mechanisms remain poorly understood, especially for wild populations. Here, we examine how reduced heterozygosity influences spermatozoal and gonadal traits in wild rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) sampled across the United Kingdom. By using a suite of 29 microsatellite markers (analyzed to confirm representation of individual heterozygosity across our sample), we found a significant negative relationship between heterozygosity and the production of normal sperm; the relationship was significant both between (n = 12) and within (n = 91 [total males], 42 [island], 49 [mainland]) populations. Reduced heterozygosity was also associated with decreased testis size across males (n = 112), but no relationship was seen at the population level, suggesting environmental confounds. Our results show, for a wild mammal, that inbreeding is associated with decreased sperm quality, confirming suggestions of links between inbreeding and elevated sperm abnormalities in rare felids . These findings could explain why inbreeding depression so frequently arises via compromised fertility and embryogenesis . PMID:16546087

  15. An efficient method of guinea fowl sperm cryopreservation.

    PubMed

    Seigneurin, F; Grasseau, I; Chapuis, H; Blesbois, E

    2013-11-01

    France is the only country that practices pedigree selection of guinea fowl for meat production. The increasing risk of line extinction for sanitary or breeding failure reasons makes clear the need for an efficient method of reproductive cell cryopreservation in this species. However, an efficient method of guinea fowl sperm freezing in secured packaging is still lacking. The aim of the present study was to develop such a method. Based on results previously obtained in chickens, different cryoprotectants and freezing/thawing processes were tested and then adapted to guinea fowl. Semen quality was measured by semen viability evaluation and then by fertility measured after intravaginal artificial insemination. The best results (70% fertility with frozen-thawed sperm) were obtained by the use of the permeant cryoprotectant agents dimethyl formamide combined with a freezing rate of 30°C/min. The initial insemination frequency also affected the fertility results: 2 consecutive days of inseminations were needed in the first week to ensure enough filling of the utero-vaginal glands of the guinea fowl hen and thus to get successive fertile eggs. Thereafter, a 2-wk insemination frequency was sufficient. This new method, combining biophysical (cryoprotectant agents, freeze/thaw rate) and zootechnical (artificial insemination frequency) features, is the first cryopreservation method successfully developed in secured packaging for guinea fowl sperm. This method is now available for the practice of gene bank conservation and male reproductive management. PMID:24135603

  16. Production of fertile unreduced sperm by hybrid males of the Rutilus alburnoides complex (Teleostei, cyprinidae). An alternative route to genome tetraploidization in unisexuals.

    PubMed Central

    Alves, M J; Coelho, M M; Próspero, M I; Collares-Pereira, M J

    1999-01-01

    The hybrid minnow Rutilus alburnoides comprises diploid and polyploid females and males. Previous studies revealed that diploid and triploid females exhibit altered oogenesis that does not involve random segregation and recombination of the genomes of the two ancestors, constituting unisexual lineages. In the present study, we investigated the reproductive mode of hybrid males from the Tejo basin, using experimental crosses and flow cytometric analysis of blood and sperm. The results suggest that diploid hybrids produced fertile unreduced sperm, transmitting their hybrid genome intact to offspring. Triploid hybrids also produced unreduced sperm, but it was not possible to obtain data concerning their fertility. Finally, tetraploid hybrids produced fertile diploid sperm, which exhibited Mendelian segregation. Tetraploid R. alburnoides may reestablish biparental reproduction, as individuals of both sexes with the appropriate constitution for normal meiosis (two haploid genomes from each parental species) are likely to occur in natural populations. Tetraploids probably have arisen from syngamy of diploid eggs and diploid sperm produced by diploid hybrid males. Diploid hybrid males may therefore play a significant role in the dynamics of the complex, starting the evolutionary process that may ultimately lead to a new sexually reproducing species. PMID:9872966

  17. Increasing protein production by directed vector backbone evolution

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Recombinant protein production in prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms was a key enabling technology for the rapid development of industrial and molecular biotechnology. However, despite all progress the improvement of protein production is an ongoing challenge and of high importance for cost-effective enzyme production. With the epMEGAWHOP mutagenesis protocol for vector backbone optimization we report a novel directed evolution based approach to increase protein production levels by randomly introducing mutations in the vector backbone. In the current study we validate the epMEGAWHOP mutagenesis protocol for three different expression systems. The latter demonstrated the general applicability of the epMEGAWHOP method. Cellulase and lipase production was doubled in one round of directed evolution by random mutagenesis of pET28a(+) and pET22b(+) vector backbones. Protease production using the vector pHY300PLK was increased ~4-times with an average of ~1.25 mutations per kb vector backbone. The epMEGAWHOP does not require any rational understanding of the expression machinery and can generally be applied to enzymes, expression vectors and related hosts. epMEGAWHOP is therefore from our point of view a robust, rapid and straight forward alternative for increasing protein production in general and for biotechnological applications. PMID:23890095

  18. Intramale variation in sperm size: functional significance in a polygynous mammal

    PubMed Central

    Pintus, Eliana; Garde, José Julián

    2015-01-01

    Studies concerning the relationships between sperm size and velocity at the intraspecific level are quite limited and often yielded contradictory results across the animal kingdom. Intramale variation in sperm size may represent a meaningful factor to predict sperm velocity, due to its relationship with the level of sperm competition among related taxa. Because sperm phenotype is under post-copulatory sexual selection, we hypothesized that a reduced intramale variation in sperm size is associated with sperm competitiveness in red deer. Our results show that low variation in sperm size is strongly related to high sperm velocity and normal sperm morphology, which in turn are good predictors of male fertility in this species. Furthermore, it is well known that the red deer show high variability in testicular mass but there is limited knowledge concerning the significance of this phenomenon at intraspecific level, even though it may reveal interesting processes of sexual selection. Thereby, as a preliminary result, we found that absolute testes mass is negatively associated with intramale variation in sperm size. Our findings suggest that sperm size variation in red deer is under a strong selective force leading to increase sperm function efficiency, and reveal new insights into sexual selection mechanisms. PMID:26664807

  19. Functional evidence for differences in sperm competition in humans and chimpanzees.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Matthew J; Chapman, Shannon J; Videan, Elaine N; Evans, Erika; Fritz, Jo; Stoinski, Tara S; Dixson, Alan F; Gagneux, Pascal

    2007-10-01

    Sperm competition occurs when the gametes of or more males compete for opportunities to fertilize a given set of ova. Previous studies have demonstrated that certain morphological characteristics are affected by sperm competition intensity (e.g. relative testes size and sperm midpiece volume). This study examined whether aspects of sperm energetics may also be affected by sexual selection. We compared the membrane potential of mitochondria in live sperm between H. sapiens (single partner mating system) and P. troglodytes (multiple partner mating system). Flow cytometry of sperm stained with the carbocyanine fluorescent dye JC-1 (an assay for mitochondrial membrane potential) revealed marked differences in red fluorescence intensity. P. troglodytes sperm showed significantly higher mitochondrial membrane potential. Mitochondria provide a substantial part of the energy required for sperm motility. A higher mitochondrial loading may therefore be associated with enhanced sperm motility and/or longevity. Additionally, examination of JC-1 red fluorescence levels before and after in vitro capacitation revealed further differences. Whereas chimpanzee sperm showed maintenance of membrane potential after capacitation (in some cases even an increase), sperm from humans consistently showed reduction in membrane potential. These results indicate that the sperm of human beings and chimpanzees exhibit marked differences in mitochondrial function, which are affected by selection pressures relating to sperm competition and that these pressures differ significantly between humans and chimpanzees. PMID:17632799

  20. Quantification of mammalian sperm morphology by slit-scan flow cytometry

    SciTech Connect

    Benaron, D.A.; Gray, J.W.; Gledhill, B.L.; Lake, S.; Wyrobek, A.J.; Young, I.T.

    1982-03-01

    The head shapes of mammalian sperm have been measured by slit-scan flow cytometry (SSFCM). In this approach, the distribution of fluorescence along acriflavine stained mammalian sperm is recorded and used as a measure of head shape. Fluorescence profiles were measured for sperm from mice, rabbits, hamsters, and bulls, and for sperm from mice exposed to testicular x-irradiation from 0 to 900 rads. The profiles for sperm from nonirradiated animals were characteristic of each species and were reproducible from sperm to sperm. Some of the fluorescence profiles for sperm from the irradiated mice differed significantly from the profiles usually measured for sperm from exposed mice. An algorithm was developed to determine the frequency of these sperm. The estimated frequencies of atypical profiles correlated well (r . 0.99) with the frequencies of abnormally shaped sperm determined by microscopic scoring. The maximum SSFCM sensitivity (minimum detectable dose . 199 rad) was not as high as that for the visual assay (minimum detectable dose . 116 rad). However, only 100 profiles were measured by SSFCM at each dose while at least 500 sperm were scored visually at each dose. The sensitivity of the SSFCM assay should be increased substantially by measuring more profiles. The objective nature of SSFCM couple with the high correlation with results from the visually based assay of morphology suggests the use of SSFCM to measure frequencies of misshapen sperm when testing for mutagens or monitoring for effects of environmental contaminants.

  1. Sperm cryopreservation: effects on chromatin structure.

    PubMed

    Paoli, Donatella; Lombardo, Francesco; Lenzi, Andrea; Gandini, Loredana

    2014-01-01

    Cryopreservation is a technique that can keep sperm alive indefinitely, enabling the conservation of male fertility. It involves the cooling of semen samples and their storage at -196°C in liquid nitrogen. At this temperature all metabolic processes are arrested. Sperm cryopreservation is of fundamental importance for patients undergoing medical or surgical treatments that could induce sterility, such as cancer patients about to undergo genotoxic chemotherapy or radiotherapy, as it offers these patients not only the hope of future fertility but also psychological support in dealing with the various stages of the treatment protocols.Despite its importance for assisted reproduction technology (ART) and its success in terms of babies born, this procedure can cause cell damage and impaired sperm function. Various studies have evaluated the impact of cryopreservation on chromatin structure, albeit with contradictory results. Some, but not all, authors found significant sperm DNA damage after cryopreservation. However, studies attempting to explain the mechanisms involved in the aetiology of cryopreservation-induced DNA damage are still limited. Some reported an increase in sperm with activated caspases after cryopreservation, while others found an increase in the percentage of oxidative DNA damage. There is still little - and contradictory - information on the mechanism of the generation of DNA fragmentation after cryopreservation. More studies are needed to establish the true importance of such damage, especially to improve the results of ART. PMID:23955677

  2. Male sperm storage compromises sperm motility in guppies

    PubMed Central

    Gasparini, Clelia; Kelley, Jennifer L.; Evans, Jonathan P.

    2014-01-01

    Sperm senescence can have important evolutionary implications due to its deleterious effects on sperm quality and offspring performance. Consequently, it has been argued that polyandry (female multiple mating) may facilitate the selection of younger, and therefore competitively superior, sperm when ejaculates from multiple males compete for fertilization. Surprisingly, however, unequivocal evidence that sperm ageing influences traits that underlie sperm competitiveness is lacking. Here, we used a paired experimental design that compares sperm quality between old and young ejaculates from individual male guppies (Poecilia reticulata). We show that older sperm exhibit significant reductions in sperm velocity compared with younger sperm from the same males. We found no evidence that the brightness of the male's orange (carotenoid) spots, which are thought to signal resistance to oxidative stress (and thus age-related declines in sperm fitness), signals a male's ability to withstand the deleterious effects of sperm ageing. Instead, polyandry may be a more effective strategy for females to minimize the likelihood of being fertilized by aged sperm. PMID:25392314

  3. Sperm Motility in Flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guasto, Jeffrey; Juarez, Gabriel; Stocker, Roman

    2012-11-01

    A wide variety of plants and animals reproduce sexually by releasing motile sperm that seek out a conspecific egg, for example in the reproductive tract for mammals or in the water column for externally fertilizing organisms. Sperm are aided in their quest by chemical cues, but must also contend with hydrodynamic forces, resulting from laminar flows in reproductive tracts or turbulence in aquatic habitats. To understand how velocity gradients affect motility, we subjected swimming sperm to a range of highly-controlled straining flows using a cross-flow microfluidic device. The motion of the cell body and flagellum were captured through high-speed video microscopy. The effects of flow on swimming are twofold. For moderate velocity gradients, flow simply advects and reorients cells, quenching their ability to cross streamlines. For high velocity gradients, fluid stresses hinder the internal bending of the flagellum, directly inhibiting motility. The transition between the two regimes is governed by the Sperm number, which compares the external viscous stresses with the internal elastic stresses. Ultimately, unraveling the role of flow in sperm motility will lead to a better understanding of population dynamics among aquatic organisms and infertility problems in humans.

  4. Egg Activation at Fertilization by a Soluble Sperm Protein.

    PubMed

    Swann, Karl; Lai, F Anthony

    2016-01-01

    The most fundamental unresolved issue of fertilization is to define how the sperm activates the egg to begin embryo development. Egg activation at fertilization in all species thus far examined is caused by some form of transient increase in the cytoplasmic free Ca(2+) concentration. What has not been clear, however, is precisely how the sperm triggers the large changes in Ca(2+) observed within the egg cytoplasm. Here, we review the studies indicating that the fertilizing sperm stimulates a cytosolic Ca(2+) increase in the egg specifically by delivering a soluble factor that diffuses into the cytosolic space of the egg upon gamete membrane fusion. Evidence is primarily considered in species of eggs where the sperm has been shown to elicit a cytosolic Ca(2+) increase by initiating Ca(2+) release from intracellular Ca(2+) stores. We suggest that our best understanding of these signaling events is in mammals, where the sperm triggers a prolonged series of intracellular Ca(2+) oscillations. The strongest empirical studies to date suggest that mammalian sperm-triggered Ca(2+) oscillations are caused by the introduction of a sperm-specific protein, called phospholipase C-zeta (PLCζ) that generates inositol trisphosphate within the egg. We will discuss the role and mechanism of action of PLCζ in detail at a molecular and cellular level. We will also consider some of the evidence that a soluble sperm protein might be involved in egg activation in nonmammalian species. PMID:26631595

  5. The 5'-AMP-Activated Protein Kinase (AMPK) Is Involved in the Augmentation of Antioxidant Defenses in Cryopreserved Chicken Sperm.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Thi Mong Diep; Seigneurin, Franois; Froment, Pascal; Combarnous, Yves; Blesbois, Elisabeth

    2015-01-01

    Semen cryopreservation is a unique tool for the management of animal genetic diversity. However, the freeze-thaw process causes biochemical and physical alterations which make difficult the restoration of sperm energy-dependent functions needed for fertilization. 5'-AMP activated protein kinase (AMPK) is a key sensor and regulator of intracellular energy metabolism. Mitochondria functions are known to be severely affected during sperm cryopreservation with deleterious oxidative and peroxidative effects leading to cell integrity and functions damages. The aim of this study was thus to examine the role of AMPK on the peroxidation/antioxidant enzymes defense system in frozen-thawed sperm and its consequences on sperm functions. Chicken semen was diluted in media supplemented with or without AMPK activators (AICAR or Metformin [MET]) or inhibitor (Compound C [CC]) and then cryopreserved. AMPK? phosphorylation, antioxidant enzymes activities, mitochondrial potential, ATP, citrate, viability, acrosome reaction ability (AR) and various motility parameters were negatively affected by the freeze-thaw process while reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, lipid peroxidation (LPO) and lactate concentration were dramatically increased. AICAR partially restored superoxide dismutase (SOD), Glutathione Peroxidase (GPx) and Glutathione Reductase (GR), increased ATP, citrate, and lactate concentration and subsequently decreased the ROS and LPO (malondialdehyde) in frozen-thawed semen. Motility parameters were increased (i.e., + 23% for motility, + 34% for rapid sperm) as well as AR (+ 100%). MET had similar effects as AICAR except that catalase activity was restored and that ATP and mitochondrial potential were further decreased. CC showed effects opposite to AICAR on SOD, ROS, LPO and AR and motility parameters. Taken together, our results strongly suggest that, upon freeze-thaw process, AMPK stimulated intracellular anti-oxidative defense enzymes through ATP regulation, thus reducing ROS and lipid peroxidation, and consequently partially restoring several essential sperm functions and leading to a better quality of cryopreserved sperm. PMID:26222070

  6. Flow-cytometric analyses of viability biomarkers in pesticide-exposed sperm of three aquatic invertebrates.

    PubMed

    Favret, Karen P; Lynn, John W

    2010-05-01

    Toxicity studies on sperm often use fertilization success as the end point. This type of assay can be affected by sperm density, egg quality, and sperm-egg compatibility. Testing sperm viability biomarkers with flow cytometry is a fast, high-throughput technique for seminal analysis. In this study, we detected sperm viability biomarkers with several fluorescent reporter dyes using flow cytometry in three aquatic invertebrates (Crassostrea virginica, Dreissena polymorpha, and Lytechinus variegatus) after exposure to a pesticide and herbicide. The pesticide, Bayluscide, appeared to affect mitochondrial membrane potential in the sperm of all three species, as measured with MitoTracker Red CMXRos. A decrease in the percentage of sperm stained with SYBR-14 (indicating uncompromised plasma membrane) was observed in C. virginica and D. polymorpha sperm exposed to Bayluscide, but propidium iodide staining (indicating compromised plasma membranes) appeared to be inhibited by Bayluscide. Acrosome-reacted sperm, as measured by FITC-PNA, decreased after Bayluscide exposure in C. virginica and D. polymorpha sperm. The herbicide, Roundup Ready To-Use-Plus, did not affect the overall percentages of sperm stained with MitoTracker but did cause an increase in MitoTracker fluorescence intensity at 16 mg/L in D. polymorpha. Roundup also caused significant decreases in SYBR-14 staining, significant increases in propidium iodide staining, and significant increases in FITC-PNA staining in D. polymorpha sperm. By not having to rely on egg availability and optimal sperm density, sperm toxicity can be more accurately assessed with flow cytometry as being directly correlated to sperm viability rather than the possibility of altered toxicity results due to sperm-to-egg compatibility. PMID:19876686

  7. The healthy men study: an evaluation of exposure to disinfection by-products in tap water and sperm quality

    EPA Science Inventory

    BACKGROUND: Chlorination of drinking water generates disinfection by-products (DBPs), which have been shown to disrupt spermatogenesis in rodents at high doses, suggesting that DBPs could pose a reproductive risk to men. In this study we assessed DBP exposure and testicular toxic...

  8. Increased monocyte TNF-alpha message stability contributes to trauma patients' increased TNF production.

    PubMed

    Furse, R K; Kodys, K; Zhu, D; Miller-Graziano, C L

    1997-10-01

    Post-trauma elevation of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) appears to be critical in mediating many symptoms of systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS), resulting in late mortality. Although increased monocyte (mphi) TNF-alpha production plays a pivotal role in this TNF-alpha elevation, the molecular mechanisms leading to increased mphi TNF-alpha production have yet to be elucidated. We demonstrate that, although TNF-alpha mRNA levels are increased in all trauma patients' mphi, which produce elevated levels of TNF-alpha protein, in the majority of patients, these increased TNF-alpha mRNA levels are under normal transcriptional and posttranscriptional control. Consequently, the increased TNF-alpha production by these patients' mphi is probably due to preactivation of these mphi by trauma-released mediators. However, a small minority of patients, whose mortality rate was 57%, produce TNF-alpha of primarily the membrane-associated type. The mphi TNF-alpha mRNA accumulation of these patients in response to in vitro stimulation is significantly augmented. All of these patients experienced SIRS. In this subset of patients' mphi, TNF-alpha mRNA stability was aberrantly increased. Such an increase in TNF-alpha mRNA stability could lead to devastatingly prolonged production of TNF-alpha protein. This demonstration of increased TNF-alpha mRNA stability in post-trauma mphi represents a novel correlation of elevated membrane-associated TNF-alpha protein, increased mortality, and a mechanism for this occurrence. PMID:9335324

  9. Laboratory processing and intracytoplasmic sperm injection using epididymal and testicular spermatozoa: what can be done to improve outcomes?

    PubMed Central

    Popal, Wana; Nagy, Zsolt P

    2013-01-01

    There are two main reasons why sperm may be absent from semen. Obstructive azoospermia is the result of a blockage in the male reproductive tract; in this case, sperm are produced in the testicle but are trapped in the epididymis. Non-obstructive azoospermia is the result of severely impaired or non-existent sperm production. There are three different sperm-harvesting procedures that obstructive azoospermic males can undergo, namely MESA (microsurgical epididymal sperm aspiration), PESA (percutaneous epididymal sperm aspiration), and TESA (testicular sperm aspiration). These three procedures are performed by fine-gauge needle aspiration of epididymal fluid that is examined by an embryologist. Additionally, one technique, called TESE (testicular sperm extraction), is offered for males with non-obstructive azoospermia. In this procedure, a urologist extracts a piece of tissue from the testis. Then, an embryologist minces the tissue and uses a microscope to locate sperm. Finding sperm in the testicular tissue can be a laborious 2- to 3-hour process depending on the degree of sperm production and the etiology of testicular failure. Sperm are freed from within the seminiferous tubules and then dissected from the surrounding testicular tissue. It is specifically these situations that require advanced reproductive techniques, such as ICSI, to establish a pregnancy. This review describes eight different lab processing techniques that an embryologist can use to harvest sperm. Additionally, sperm cryopreservation, which allows patients to undergo multiple ICSI cycles without the need for additional surgeries, will also be discussed. PMID:23503962

  10. Oviducal sperm storage in poultry

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Hens are capable of fertilizing a daily succession of ovulated ova due to their ability to store sperm in the oviduct for several weeks. However, the precise biological mechanisms describing how sperm are selected and survive in the oviduct, and which sperm actually reach the site of fertilization c...

  11. Effect of relaxin on human sperm functions.

    PubMed

    Ferlin, Alberto; Menegazzo, Massimo; Gianesello, Lisa; Selice, Riccardo; Foresta, Carlo

    2012-01-01

    Relaxin is a circulating hormone with functions in pregnancy, parturition, and other aspects of female reproduction. It is also secreted from the prostate gland into the seminal fluid; however, the role of relaxin in male reproduction is debated. Studies conducted in the past have suggested possible actions on human spermatozoa, but the data were contrasting. Here, we show that the relaxin receptor RXFP1 (Relaxin Family Peptide Receptor 1) is expressed in human spermatozoa, and it mainly localizes in the astrodome. In vitro studies on human sperm demonstrated that this hormone attenuates the natural decline in sperm motility and maintains higher mitochondrial activity and lower apoptosis level. Furthermore, relaxin induced an increase in sperm hyperactivation, intracellular calcium and cAMP, and acrosome reaction. These effects were abolished by the use of the specific anti-RXFP1 antibody. Relaxin concentrations were low in the blood (x ± SD, 0.16 ± 0.03 nM) and very high in the seminal plasma (x ± SD, 10.3 ± 4.0 nM), confirming its secretion mainly by the prostate. Taken together, these data demonstrate that relaxin influences positively many sperm functions linked to fertilizing ability, and it preserves sperm functionality, with possible practical value in assisted reproduction techniques. PMID:21903973

  12. Effect of sorafenib on sperm count and sperm motility in male Swiss albino mice.

    PubMed

    Shetty, Surekha Devadasa; Bairy, Laxminarayana Kurady

    2015-01-01

    The issue of male germ line mutagenesis and the effects on developmental defects in the next generation has become increasingly high profile over recent years. Mutagenic substance affects germinal cells in the testis. Since the cells are undergoing different phases of cell division and maturation, it is an ideal system to study the effect of chemotherapeutic agents. There are lacunae in the literature on the effect of sorafenib on gonadal function. With background, a study was planned to evaluate the effects of sorafenib on sperm count and sperm motility in male Swiss albino mice. Male Swiss albino mice were used for the study. The animals were segregated into control, positive control (PC) and three treatment groups. PC received oral imatinib (100 mg/kg body weight) and treatment groups received 25, 50, and 100 mg/kg body weight of sorafenib orally for 7 consecutive days at intervals of 24 h between two administrations. The control group remained in the home cage for an equal duration of time to match their corresponding treatment groups. The animals were sacrificed at the end of 1(st), 2(nd), 4(th), 5(th), 7(th), and 10(th) weeks after the last exposure to drug, respectively. Sperm suspensions were prepared and introduced into a counting chamber. Total sperm count and motility were recorded. There was a significant decrease in sperm count and sperm motility by sorafenib which was comparable with the effect of PC imatinib. Sorafenib adversely affects sperm count and sperm motility which are reversible after discontinuation of treatment. PMID:26605157

  13. Effect of sorafenib on sperm count and sperm motility in male Swiss albino mice

    PubMed Central

    Shetty, Surekha Devadasa; Bairy, Laxminarayana Kurady

    2015-01-01

    The issue of male germ line mutagenesis and the effects on developmental defects in the next generation has become increasingly high profile over recent years. Mutagenic substance affects germinal cells in the testis. Since the cells are undergoing different phases of cell division and maturation, it is an ideal system to study the effect of chemotherapeutic agents. There are lacunae in the literature on the effect of sorafenib on gonadal function. With background, a study was planned to evaluate the effects of sorafenib on sperm count and sperm motility in male Swiss albino mice. Male Swiss albino mice were used for the study. The animals were segregated into control, positive control (PC) and three treatment groups. PC received oral imatinib (100 mg/kg body weight) and treatment groups received 25, 50, and 100 mg/kg body weight of sorafenib orally for 7 consecutive days at intervals of 24 h between two administrations. The control group remained in the home cage for an equal duration of time to match their corresponding treatment groups. The animals were sacrificed at the end of 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th, 7th, and 10th weeks after the last exposure to drug, respectively. Sperm suspensions were prepared and introduced into a counting chamber. Total sperm count and motility were recorded. There was a significant decrease in sperm count and sperm motility by sorafenib which was comparable with the effect of PC imatinib. Sorafenib adversely affects sperm count and sperm motility which are reversible after discontinuation of treatment. PMID:26605157

  14. The ecological and evolutionary consequences of sperm chemoattraction

    PubMed Central

    Riffell, Jeffrey A.; Krug, Patrick J.; Zimmer, Richard K.

    2004-01-01

    Chemical communication between sperm and egg is a critical factor mediating sexual reproduction. Sperm attractants may be significant evolutionarily for maintaining species barriers, and important ecologically for increasing gamete encounters. Still unresolved, however, are the functional consequences of these dissolved signal molecules. Here, we provide experimental evidence that sperm chemoattraction directly affects the magnitude of fertilization success. The recent discovery of l-tryptophan as a potent attractant to red abalone (Haliotis rufescens) sperm affords the opportunity to quantify how navigation affects gamete interactions. Sperm behavioral responses to manipulations of the natural tryptophan gradient around individual eggs reveals that both chemotaxis and chemokinesis significantly promote contacts. Our results show further that attractant release by means of diffusion effectively doubles the target size of red abalone eggs, which in turn significantly increases fertilization success. Although long theorized as potential barriers to hybridization, species-specific sperm attractants in red and green (Haliotis fulgens) abalone are only minor contributors to maintaining reproductive isolation. Because abalone typically live in dense, multispecies aggregations, chemically mediated navigation would prevent sperm from pointlessly tracking heterospecific eggs. Thus, even though reproductive isolation fundamentally resides at the level of membrane recognition proteins, species-specific sperm attractants may evolve to locate the right target within mixed gamete suspensions of closely related species. PMID:15070747

  15. The ecological and evolutionary consequences of sperm chemoattraction.

    PubMed

    Riffell, Jeffrey A; Krug, Patrick J; Zimmer, Richard K

    2004-03-30

    Chemical communication between sperm and egg is a critical factor mediating sexual reproduction. Sperm attractants may be significant evolutionarily for maintaining species barriers, and important ecologically for increasing gamete encounters. Still unresolved, however, are the functional consequences of these dissolved signal molecules. Here, we provide experimental evidence that sperm chemoattraction directly affects the magnitude of fertilization success. The recent discovery of L-tryptophan as a potent attractant to red abalone (Haliotis rufescens) sperm affords the opportunity to quantify how navigation affects gamete interactions. Sperm behavioral responses to manipulations of the natural tryptophan gradient around individual eggs reveals that both chemotaxis and chemokinesis significantly promote contacts. Our results show further that attractant release by means of diffusion effectively doubles the target size of red abalone eggs, which in turn significantly increases fertilization success. Although long theorized as potential barriers to hybridization, species-specific sperm attractants in red and green (Haliotis fulgens) abalone are only minor contributors to maintaining reproductive isolation. Because abalone typically live in dense, multispecies aggregations, chemically mediated navigation would prevent sperm from pointlessly tracking heterospecific eggs. Thus, even though reproductive isolation fundamentally resides at the level of membrane recognition proteins, species-specific sperm attractants may evolve to locate the right target within mixed gamete suspensions of closely related species. PMID:15070747

  16. Chemotactic behavior of the sperm of chitons (Mollusca: Polyplacophora).

    PubMed

    Miller, R L

    1977-11-01

    Observations of sperm behavior in the vicinity of gradients of egg-water or alcohol extracts of whole freshly-spawned eggs of several chitons reveal what appear to be directed movements of sperm up the gradient, resulting in the aggregation of motile sperm at the gradient source. Plots of the tracks of the sperm approaching the gradient source show that the cells increase the time during which they move toward the source and decrease the time spent moving away. Although this resembles the kinesis behavior shown by bacteria in a gradient, the path directions are markedly non-random. The reorientation behavior of thigmotactic sperm involves enlargement of the normal circular path diameter in the direction of the source and an alternation of tight loops and wide circular arcs, with the latter made in the direction of the source. The form of the path of attracted chiton sperm is like that observed during chemotaxis of the sperm of the hydroid Tubularia and the tunicate Ciona and resembles the behavior of Ciona sperm in that there is no increase in velocity as the cells move up the gradient. However, unlike the cnidarian and urochordate cases, the attracting substances extracted from chiton eggs do not act species-specifically. PMID:925668

  17. Comparison of methods for assessing integrity of equine sperm membranes.

    PubMed

    Foster, M L; Love, C C; Varner, D D; Brinsko, S P; Hinrichs, K; Teague, S; Lacaze, K; Blanchard, T L

    2011-07-15

    Sperm membrane integrity (SMI) is thought to be an important measure of stallion sperm quality. The objective was to compare three methods for evaluating SMI: flow cytometry using SYBR-14/propidium iodide (PI) stain; an automated cell counting device using PI stain; and eosin-nigrosin stain. Raw equine semen was subjected to various treatments containing 20 to 80% seminal plasma in extender, with differing sperm concentrations, to simulate spontaneous loss of SMI. The SMI was assessed immediately, and after 1 and 2 d of cooled storage. Agreement between methods was determined according to Bland-Altman methodology. Eosin-nigrosin staining yielded higher (2%) overall mean values for SMI than did flow cytometry. Flow cytometry yielded higher (6%) overall mean values for SMI than did the automated cell counter. As percentage of membrane-damaged sperm increased, agreement of SMI measurement between methods decreased. When semen contained 50-79% membrane-intact sperm, the 95% limits of agreement between SMI determined by flow cytometry and eosin-nigrosin staining were greater (range = -26.9 to 24.3%; i.e., a 51.2% span) than for SMI determined by flow cytometry and the automated cell counter (range = -3.1 to 17.0%; 20.1% span). When sperm populations contained <50% membrane-intact sperm, the 95% limits of agreement between SMI determined by flow cytometry and eosin-nigrosin staining were greater (range = -35.9 to 19.0%; 54.9% span) than for SMI determined by flow cytometry and the automated cell counter (range = -11.6 to 28.7%; 40.3% span). We concluded that eosin-nigrosin staining assessments of percent membrane-intact sperm agreed less with flow cytometry when <80% of sperm had intact membranes, whereas automated cell counter assessments of percent membrane-intact sperm agreed less with flow cytometry when <30% of sperm had intact membranes. PMID:21496902

  18. Sperm Proteasomes Degrade Sperm Receptor on the Egg Zona Pellucida during Mammalian Fertilization

    PubMed Central

    Zimmerman, Shawn W.; Manandhar, Gaurishankar; Yi, Young-Joo; Gupta, Satish K.; Sutovsky, Miriam; Odhiambo, John F.; Powell, Michael D.; Miller, David J.; Sutovsky, Peter

    2011-01-01

    Despite decades of research, the mechanism by which the fertilizing spermatozoon penetrates the mammalian vitelline membrane, the zona pellucida (ZP) remains one of the unexplained fundamental events of human/mammalian development. Evidence has been accumulating in support of the 26S proteasome as a candidate for echinoderm, ascidian and mammalian egg coat lysin. Monitoring ZP protein degradation by sperm during fertilization is nearly impossible because those few spermatozoa that penetrate the ZP leave behind a virtually untraceable residue of degraded proteins. We have overcome this hurdle by designing an experimentally consistent in vitro system in which live boar spermatozoa are co-incubated with ZP-proteins (ZPP) solubilized from porcine oocytes. Using this assay, mimicking sperm-egg interactions, we demonstrate that the sperm-borne proteasomes can degrade the sperm receptor protein ZPC. Upon coincubation with motile spermatozoa, the solubilized ZPP, which appear to be ubiquitinated, adhered to sperm acrosomal caps and induced acrosomal exocytosis/formation of the acrosomal shroud. The degradation of the sperm receptor protein ZPC was assessed by Western blotting band-densitometry and proteomics. A nearly identical pattern of sperm receptor degradation, evident already within the first 5 min of coincubation, was observed when the spermatozoa were replaced with the isolated, enzymatically active, sperm-derived proteasomes. ZPC degradation was blocked by proteasomal inhibitors and accelerated by ubiquitin-aldehyde(UBAL), a modified ubiquitin protein that stimulates proteasomal proteolysis. Such a degradation pattern of ZPC is consistent with in vitro fertilization studies, in which proteasomal inhibitors completely blocked fertilization, and UBAL increased fertilization and polyspermy rates. Preincubation of intact zona-enclosed ova with isolated active sperm proteasomes caused digestion, abrasions and loosening of the exposed zonae, and significantly reduced the fertilization/polyspermy rates after IVF, accompanied by en-mass detachment of zona bound sperm. Thus, the sperm borne 26S proteasome is a candidate zona lysin in mammals. This new paradigm has implications for contraception and assisted reproductive technologies in humans, as well as animals. PMID:21383844

  19. Do Pilea Microphylla Improve Sperm DNA Fragmentation and Sperm Parameters in Varicocelized Rats?

    PubMed

    Heidari, Reza; Alizadeh, Rafieh; Abbasi, Niloufar; Pasbakhsh, Parichehr; Hedayatpour, Azim; Farajpour, Mostafa; Khaleghi, Mohammad Reza; Abbasi, Mehdi; Dehpour, Ahmad Reza

    2015-01-01

    Varicocele is one of the most common causes of primary male infertility. Pilea microphylla (PM) is being used as folk medicine. This study was aimed to investigate the effects of PM in a rat model of varicocele. A total of 30 male Wistar rats were divided into control, sham, varicocele, accessory varicocele and PM-treated groups. After 10 weeks of varicocele induction, sperm parameters and chromatin (Aniline blue, acridine orange and toluidine blue) were evaluated, except for the treated and accessory groups that received 50 mg/kg PM orally daily for 10 weeks and then were sacrificed. Sperm parameters significantly decreased in varicocele groups (P < 0.01). Moreover, there was a negative correlation between the DNA fragmentation and sperm parameters in varicocelized rats. Administration of PM led to significantly increased sperm parameters and AO staining (P < 0.05). These findings suggest that PM improves sperm parameters and DNA fragmentation in varicocelized rats. PM can reduce the damage to sperm DNA but not chromatin condensation. PMID:26553082

  20. Chronic Ethanol Ingestion Increases Nitric Oxide Production in the Lung

    PubMed Central

    Polikandriotis, John A.; Rupnow, Heidi L.; Brown, Lou Ann; Hart, C. Michael

    2007-01-01

    Purpose: Chronic ethanol (EtOH) ingestion increases the incidence of the Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). The mechanisms underlying EtOH-induced susceptibility to lung injury continue to be defined. This study examines the hypothesis that EtOH increases endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) expression and activity in the lungs of a rat model of chronic EtOH ingestion. Methods: Male Sprague Dawley rats were fed liquid diets containing EtOH (36% of calories) or Maltose-dextrin as an isocaloric substitution for EtOH (Control) for 6 weeks. Selected animals were also treated with the angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor, lisinopril (3 mg/L in diet) for 6 weeks. At study completion, animals were sacrificed, and lung tissue was collected for assays of nitric oxide (NO) metabolism or pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells (MVEC) were isolated for analysis of NO release. Results: Compared to the Control diet, chronic EtOH ingestion increased lung H2O2 production, eNOS expression and activity, lung cGMP content and levels of protein nitration and oxidation. MVEC from animals with chronic EtOH ingestion released greater amounts of NO. EtOH-induced increases in lung H2O2 production, eNOS expression and activity, cGMP content, protein nitration and oxidation, and MVEC NO production were all attenuated by treatment with lisinopril. Conclusions: Chronic EtOH ingestion stimulates ACE-dependent increases in NO production in the lung. These novel findings indicate that chronic EtOH ingestion increases reactive species production in the lung parenchyma and provide new insights into mechanisms by which EtOH causes phenotypic alterations in the lung and its response to inflammatory stimuli. PMID:17889307

  1. Engineering the lactococcal mevalonate pathway for increased sesquiterpene production.

    PubMed

    Song, Adelene A; Abdullah, Janna Ong; Abdullah, Mohd P; Shafee, Norazizah; Othman, Roohaida; Noor, Normah Mohd; Rahim, Raha A

    2014-06-01

    Isoprenoids are a large, diverse group of secondary metabolites which has recently raised a renewed research interest due to genetic engineering advances, allowing specific isoprenoids to be produced and characterized in heterologous hosts. Many researches on metabolic engineering of heterologous hosts for increased isoprenoid production are focussed on Escherichia coli and yeasts. E. coli, as most prokaryotes, use the 2-C-methyl-d-erythritol-4-phosphate (MEP) pathway for isoprenoid production. Yeasts on the other hand, use the mevalonate pathway which is commonly found in eukaryotes. However, Lactococcus lactis is an attractive alternative host for heterologous isoprenoid production. Apart from being food-grade, this Gram-positive prokaryote uses the mevalonate pathway for isoprenoid production instead of the MEP pathway. Previous studies have shown that L. lactis is able to produce sesquiterpenes through heterologous expression of plant sesquiterpene synthases. In this work, we analysed the gene expression of the lactococcal mevalonate pathway through RT-qPCR to successfully engineer L. lactis as an efficient host for isoprenoid production. We then overexpressed the mvk gene singly or co-expressed with the mvaA gene as an attempt to increase β-sesquiphellandrene production in L. lactis. It was observed that co-expression of mvk with mvaA doubled the amount of β-sesquiphellandrene produced. PMID:24828482

  2. Could increased boreal forest ecosystem productivity offset carbon losses from increased disturbances?

    PubMed

    Kurz, Werner A; Stinson, Graham; Rampley, Greg

    2008-07-12

    To understand how boreal forest carbon (C) dynamics might respond to anticipated climatic changes, we must consider two important processes. First, projected climatic changes are expected to increase the frequency of fire and other natural disturbances that would change the forest age-class structure and reduce forest C stocks at the landscape level. Second, global change may result in increased net primary production (NPP). Could higher NPP offset anticipated C losses resulting from increased disturbances? We used the Carbon Budget Model of the Canadian Forest Sector to simulate rate changes in disturbance, growth and decomposition on a hypothetical boreal forest landscape and to explore the impacts of these changes on landscape-level forest C budgets. We found that significant increases in net ecosystem production (NEP) would be required to balance C losses from increased natural disturbance rates. Moreover, increases in NEP would have to be sustained over several decades and be widespread across the landscape. Increased NEP can only be realized when NPP is enhanced relative to heterotrophic respiration. This study indicates that boreal forest C stocks may decline as a result of climate change because it would be difficult for enhanced growth to offset C losses resulting from anticipated increases in disturbances. PMID:18029308

  3. Increasing Fiction Writers' Productivity through an Interest-Based Intervention

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Porritt, Matthew; Burt, Andrew; Poling, Alan

    2006-01-01

    Ten participants from an online community of fiction writers were exposed to a treatment package intended to increase their writing productivity. The package consisted of graphic feedback provided through a Web page, praise for goal completion delivered via e-mail, and editing of manuscripts by other members of the community dependent on the…

  4. Mobilisation of Ca2+ stores and flagellar regulation in human sperm by S-nitrosylation: a role for NO synthesised in the female tract

    PubMed Central

    Machado-Oliveira, Gisela; Lefièvre, Linda; Ford, Christopher; Herrero, M Belen; Barratt, Christopher; Connolly, Thomas J; Nash, Katherine; Morales-Garcia, Aduen; Kirkman-Brown, Jackson; Publicover, Steve

    2009-01-01

    Summary Generation of NO by nitric oxide synthase (NOS) is implicated in gamete interaction and fertilisation. Exposure of human spermatozoa to NO donors caused mobilisation of stored Ca2+ by a mechanism that did not require activation of guanylate cyclase but was mimicked by S-nitroso-glutathione (GSNO; an S-nitrosylating agent). Application of dithiothreitol, to reduce protein –SNO groups, rapidly reversed the actions of NO and GSNO on [Ca2+]i. The effects of NO, GSNO and dithiothreitol on sperm protein S-nitrosylation, assessed using the biotin switch method, closely paralleled their actions on [Ca2+]i. Immunofluorescent staining revealed constitutive and inducible NOS in human oviduct and cumulus (the cellular layer investing the oocyte). 4,5-diaminofluorescein (DAF) staining demonstrated production of NO by these tissues. Incubation of human sperm with oviduct explants induced sperm protein S-nitrosylation resembling that induced by NO donors and GSNO. Progesterone (a product of cumulus cells) also mobilises stored Ca2+ in human sperm. Pre-treatment of sperm with NO greatly enhanced the effect of progesterone on [Ca2+]i, resulting in a prolonged increase in flagellar excursion. We conclude that NO regulates mobilisation of stored Ca2+ in human sperm by protein S-nitrosylation, that this action is synergistic with progesterone and that this synergism is potentially highly significant in gamete interactions leading to fertilisation. PMID:18842814

  5. Sperm-macrophage interaction in the mouse: a quantitative assay in vitro using 111indium oxine-labeled sperm

    SciTech Connect

    Olive, D.L.; Weinberg, J.B.; Haney, A.F.

    1987-12-01

    The role of reproductive tract macrophages in contraception and reproductive failure has become widely recognized. However, in vitro analysis of sperm phagocytosis by macrophages has relied upon a semi-quantitative method of sperm counting that is of limited accuracy and reproducibility. We have developed an assay using murine sperm labeled with /sup 111/indium oxine, and results indicate the labeling to be rapid and efficient. Incorporation of /sup 111/indium into sperm increased the dose and sperm concentration and reached 90% maximal uptake after 15 min incubation, with maximal uptake occurring at 30 min. No decrease in sperm motility was noted with levels of oxine in excess of those required for significant labeling. Maximal labeling efficiency occurred in phosphate-buffered saline (PBS), with Dulbecco's modified Eagle's medium (DMEM) + 10% adult bovine serum (ABS) producing significantly less uptake. Label dissociation was detectable in PBS at room temperature, but at 37 degrees C in DMEM + 10% ABS, loss of label occurred at a rate of 23.5%/h. Addition of labeled sperm to murine macrophage monolayers under optimal conditions resulted in uptake of /sup 111/indium by macrophages, while free label was unincorporated. Results indicated assay specificity for macrophage-limited uptake, with insignificant label uptake by nonphagocytic murine fibroblasts and better sensitivity than sperm counting. Macrophages from Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG)-infected mice resulted in a decrease in sperm uptake. Female macrophages showed greater capacity for sperm uptake than those of the male mouse. These initial studies demonstrated the utility of this model system in enhancing the understanding of sperm-macrophage interaction in the female reproductive tract.

  6. Ram seminal plasma proteins contribute to sperm capacitation and modulate sperm-zona pellucida interaction.

    PubMed

    Luna, C; Colás, C; Casao, A; Serrano, E; Domingo, J; Pérez-Pé, R; Cebrián-Pérez, J A; Muiño-Blanco, T

    2015-03-01

    Incubation of ram spermatozoa in capacitating conditions with cAMP-elevating agents promotes a progressive time-dependent increase in the capacitated sperm subpopulation. In this study, the fertilizing capacity of ram spermatozoa (ability to bind to the zona pellucida, ZBA rate) capacitated in these conditions was determined. The results showed an increase (P < 0.001) in ZBA rate related to control samples in basal medium that contained BSA, calcium, and bicarbonate (1.97 ± 0.19 vs. 1.31 ± 0.09 sperm bound/oocyte, respectively). A significant correlation between protein tyrosine phosphorylation and ZBA rate (P < 0.05, r = 0.501) corroborated that incubation in a "high-cAMP" environment improves the fertilizing ability of ram spermatozoa. Likewise, the presence of two seminal plasma (SP) proteins able to protect sperm against cold shock (RSVP14 and RSVP20) was evidenced in both SP and the ram sperm surface, and their influence in the fertilizing ability of spermatozoa capacitated in basal medium or with cAMP-elevating agents was determined. The results verified that RSVP14 and RSVP20 act as decapacitating factors given that their addition to SP-free sperm samples previously to capacitation maintained high proportions of the noncapacitated sperm pattern with no increase in protein tyrosine phosphorylation. However, the obtained ZBA rate in the high-cAMP-containing samples was increased in the presence of RSVP20 (P < 0.05). These findings would indicate that the stimulating effect exerted by this protein on the sperm-oocyte binding occurs downstream from the cAMP generation and that the mechanisms by which RSVP20 promotes the zona pellucida binding might be independent of protein tyrosine phosphorylation. PMID:25515364

  7. Future seagrass beds: can increased productivity lead to increased carbon storage?

    PubMed

    Russell, Bayden D; Connell, Sean D; Uthicke, Sven; Muehllehner, Nancy; Fabricius, Katharina E; Hall-Spencer, Jason M

    2013-08-30

    While carbon capture and storage (CCS) is increasingly recognised as technologically possible, recent evidence from deep-sea CCS activities suggests that leakage from reservoirs may result in highly CO2 impacted biological communities. In contrast, shallow marine waters have higher primary productivity which may partially mitigate this leakage. We used natural CO2 seeps in shallow marine waters to assess if increased benthic primary productivity could capture and store CO2 leakage in areas targeted for CCS. We found that the productivity of seagrass communities (in situ, using natural CO2 seeps) and two individual species (ex situ, Cymodocea serrulata and Halophila ovalis) increased with CO2 concentration, but only species with dense belowground biomass increased in abundance (e.g. C. serrulata). Importantly, the ratio of below:above ground biomass of seagrass communities increased fivefold, making seagrass good candidates to partially mitigate CO2 leakage from sub-seabed reservoirs, since they form carbon sinks that can be buried for millennia. PMID:23453889

  8. Potency of blue catfish, Ictalurus furcatus (individual vs pooled) sperm to fertilize stripped channel catfish, I. punctatus eggs on the production and performance of progeny

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Channel x blue hybrid catfish is the desired genotype for US farm-raised catfish industry. Induced spawning of gravid channel catfish, followed by fertilization of stripped eggs with blue catfish sperm is the only reliable means to produce hybrid catfish embryos in hatcheries. Hybrid catfish fry p...

  9. Role of calcium on the initiation of sperm motility in the European eel.

    PubMed

    Pérez, Luz; Vílchez, M Carmen; Gallego, Víctor; Morini, Marina; Peñaranda, David S; Asturiano, Juan F

    2016-01-01

    Sperm from European eel males treated with hCGrec was washed in a calcium free extender, and sperm motility was activated both in the presence (seawater, SW) and in the absence of calcium (NaCl+EDTA), and treated with calcium inhibitors or modulators. The sperm motility parameters were evaluated by a computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA) system, and changes in the [Ca(2+)]i fluorescence (and in [Na(+)]i in some cases) were evaluated by flow cytometry. After sperm motility was activated in a medium containing Ca(2+) (seawater, SW) the intracellular fluorescence emitted by Ca(2+) increased 4-6-fold compared to the levels in quiescent sperm. However, while sperm activation in a Ca-free media (NaCl+EDTA) resulted in a percentage of motility similar to seawater, the [Ca(2+)]i levels did not increase at all. This result strongly suggests that increasing [Ca(2+)]i is not a pre-requisite for the induction of sperm motility in European eel sperm. Several sperm velocities (VCL, VSL, VAP) decreased when sperm was activated in the Ca-free activator, thus supporting the theory that Ca(2+) has a modulatory effect on sperm motility. The results indicate that a calcium/sodium exchanger (NCX) which is inhibited by bepridil and a calcium calmodulin kinase (inhibited by W-7), are involved in the sperm motility of the European eel. Our results indicate that the increase in [Ca(2+)]i concentrations during sperm activation is due to an influx from the external medium, but, unlike in most other species, it does not appear to be necessary for the activation of motility in European eel sperm. PMID:26459984

  10. Sequential male mate choice under sperm competition risk

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Male eagerness to mate is a central paradigm of sexual selection theory. However, limited sperm supplies mean that male sexual restraint might sometimes be favored under promiscuous mating. Here, we demonstrate dynamic plasticity in male mating effort when females are encountered sequentially under varying sperm competition risk. Rather than showing consistent eagerness to mate, male house mice (Mus musculus domesticus) instead tailor their mating effort according to likely reproductive payoffs. They are significantly less likely to mate when sperm competition is certain and potential reproductive payoffs low, but dramatically increase investment if they do choose to mate under such circumstances. By contrast, male mice are significantly more likely to mate in situations simulating extra-territorial copulations, where future risk of competition is high but so too are potential reproductive rewards. Differential mating propensity appears to be the primary mechanism by which male house mice allocate sperm adaptively under sperm competition risk because we find no evidence for facultative adjustment of sperm numbers per ejaculate or ejaculation frequency in response to female-related cues. We conclude that sequential male mate choice under sperm competition risk could be a widespread but often unappreciated mechanism of strategic sperm allocation. PMID:24822023

  11. Reliable single sperm cryopreservation in Cell Sleepers for azoospermia management.

    PubMed

    Coetzee, K; Ozgur, K; Berkkanoglu, M; Bulut, H; Isikli, A

    2016-03-01

    Conventional sperm freezing methods perform best when freezing sperm samples containing at least hundreds of spermatozoa. In this severe male factor infertility case series, we examined the reproductive outcomes in 12 intracytoplasmic sperm injection cases where spermatozoa used were frozen in Cell Sleepers. Cell Sleepers are novel devices in which individual spermatozoa can be frozen in microdroplets. The case series included five men with obstructive azoospermia, six with nonobstructive azoospermia and one with cryptozoospermia, in whom microscopic sperm retrievals from testicular sperm extraction (TESE), micro-TESE extracts and a centrifugation procedure resulted in less than 50 spermatozoa. A total of 304 microscopically retrieved spermatozoa were frozen in 20 Cell Sleepers using a rapid manual cryopreservation method. A total of 179 mature oocytes were injected with recovered thawed spermatozoa, resulting in a fertilisation rate of 65.9% (118 of 179), with no total fertilisation failures. In 10 cases, an embryo transfer was performed, three on day 3 and seven on day 5, resulting in a per cycle pregnancy rate of 58.3% (seven of 12). Four of the pregnancies have progressed past 20 gestation weeks. The recovery and use of spermatozoa that were frozen in Cell Sleepers was uncomplicated and effective and eliminated the need to perform any microscopic sperm retrieval procedures on the day of oocyte collection. Modification of the routine sperm cryopreservation methodology to include the use of Cell Sleepers increases the range of sperm samples that can be effectively cryopreserved, to include men with severe male factor fertility. PMID:25988980

  12. Stability, delivery and functions of human sperm RNAs at fertilization

    PubMed Central

    Sendler, Edward; Johnson, Graham D.; Mao, Shihong; Goodrich, Robert J.; Diamond, Michael P.; Hauser, Russ; Krawetz, Stephen A.

    2013-01-01

    Increasing attention has focused on the significance of RNA in sperm, in light of its contribution to the birth and long-term health of a child, role in sperm function and diagnostic potential. As the composition of sperm RNA is in flux, assigning specific roles to individual RNAs presents a significant challenge. For the first time RNA-seq was used to characterize the population of coding and non-coding transcripts in human sperm. Examining RNA representation as a function of multiple methods of library preparation revealed unique features indicative of very specific and stage-dependent maturation and regulation of sperm RNA, illuminating their various transitional roles. Correlation of sperm transcript abundance with epigenetic marks suggested roles for these elements in the pre- and post-fertilization genome. Several classes of non-coding RNAs including lncRNAs, CARs, pri-miRNAs, novel elements and mRNAs have been identified which, based on factors including relative abundance, integrity in sperm, available knockout data of embryonic effect and presence or absence in the unfertilized human oocyte, are likely to be essential male factors critical to early post-fertilization development. The diverse and unique attributes of sperm transcripts that were revealed provides the first detailed analysis of the biology and anticipated clinical significance of spermatozoal RNAs. PMID:23471003

  13. Effect of heterologous and homologous seminal plasma on stallion sperm quality.

    PubMed

    Morrell, J M; Georgakas, A; Lundeheim, N; Nash, D; Davies Morel, M C G; Johannisson, A

    2014-07-01

    Removing most of the seminal plasma (SP) from stallion semen has been shown to improve survival during cooled storage, yet adding small quantities of SP may improve pregnancy rates or cryosurvival. Furthermore, there is considerable controversy about whether the stallion's own SP or heterologous SP produces the best effect, possibly because of the variation between stallions in SP proteins or because some homologous SP remained in the sperm preparation. The SP is removed completely from stallion spermatozoa prepared by colloid centrifugation. Thus, the aim of the present study was (1) to investigate the effect of adding back SP to colloid centrifuged spermatozoa to determine its effect on spermatozoa; and (2) to investigate whether the stallion's own SP had a greater or lesser effect than heterologous SP. Conventional semen doses were sent from a stud overnight to the laboratory using standard transport conditions. Once at the laboratory, the semen samples were used for single layer centrifugation with Androcoll-E, and the resulting sperm preparations were treated with heterologous SP. Adding SP had a small but significant effect on sperm motility but no effect on the proportion of spermatozoa that had acrosome reacted. There were significant increases in hydrogen peroxide production and chromatin damage (P < 0.001). When homologous and heterologous SP were compared, considerable variation was observed between stallions, so that it was not possible to predict whether homologous or heterologous SP, or no SP, will produce the best motility for spermatozoa from any given stallion. Therefore, it is necessary to test different combinations of spermatozoa and SP to find the optimal effect on motility. The SP from most stallions increased reactive oxygen species and chromatin damage. In conclusion, the interaction between SP and spermatozoa depends on the origin of both SP and spermatozoa. If it is desirable to add SP to stallion sperm samples, it should be done directly before insemination rather than before storage, because of increased hydrogen peroxide production and sperm chromatin damage. PMID:24768057

  14. Increasing loyalty to breastfeeding: investigating a product development strategy.

    PubMed

    Parkinson, Joy; Russell-Bennett, Rebekah; Previte, Josephine

    2012-01-01

    This article demonstrates how social marketing insights were used to influence women's loyalty to breastfeeding. The article reports on a social marketing campaign undertaken by the Australian Breastfeeding Association and a government health department, which used a product development strategy in order to increase breastfeeding loyalty. Seeking new approaches to support breastfeeding behaviors is critical and timely, because while initiation rates of breastfeeding are high in developed countries such as the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and the United States, duration rates are significantly lower. Results indicate that a product- focused strategy influences pregnant women's loyalty to exclusively breastfeeding. PMID:22905944

  15. Sex preselection: high-speed flow cytometric sorting of X and Y sperm for maximum efficiency.

    PubMed

    Johnson, L A; Welch, G R

    1999-12-01

    Sex preselection that is based on flow-cytometric measurement of sperm DNA content to enable sorting of X- from Y-chromosome-bearing sperm has proven reproducible at various locations and with many species at greater than 90% purity. Offspring of the predetermined sex in both domestic animals and human beings have been born using this technology since its introduction in 1989. The method involves treating sperm with the fluorescent dye, Hoechst 33342, which binds to the DNA and then sorting them into X- and Y-bearing-sperm populations with a flow cytometer/cell sorter modified specifically for sperm. Sexed sperm are then used with differing semen delivery routes such as intra-uterine, intra-tubal, artificial insemination (deep-uterine and cervical), in vitro fertilization and embryo transfer, and intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Offspring produced at all locations using the technology have been morphologically normal and reproductively capable in succeeding generations. With the advent of high-speed cell sorting technology and improved efficiency of sorting by a new sperm orienting nozzle, the efficiency of sexed sperm production is significantly enhanced. This paper describes development of the these technological improvements in the Beltsville Sexing Technology that has brought sexed sperm to a new level of application. Under typical conditions the high-speed sperm sorter with the orienting nozzle (HiSON) results in purities of 90% of X- and Y-bearing sperm at 6 million sperm per h for each population. Taken to its highest performance level, the HiSON has produced X-bearing-sperm populations at 85 to 90% purity in the production of up to 11 million X-bearing-sperm per h of sorting. In addition if one accepts a lower purity (75 to 80%) of X, nearly 20 million sperm can be sorted per h. The latter represents a 30 to 60-fold improvement over the 1989 sorting technology using rabbit sperm. It is anticipated that with instrument refinements the production capacity can be improved even further. The application of the current technology has led to much wider potential for practical usage through conventional and deep-uterine artificial insemination of many species, especially cattle. It also opens the possibility of utilizing sexed sperm for artificial insemination in swine once low-sperm-dose methods are perfected. Sexed sperm on demand has become a reality through the development of the HiSON system. PMID:10735079

  16. Raman Spectroscopy of DNA Packaging in Individual Human Sperm Cells distinguishes Normal from Abnormal Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Huser, T; Orme, C; Hollars, C; Corzett, M; Balhorn, R

    2009-03-09

    Healthy human males produce sperm cells of which about 25-40% have abnormal head shapes. Increases in the percentage of sperm exhibiting aberrant sperm head morphologies have been correlated with male infertility, and biochemical studies of pooled sperm have suggested that sperm with abnormal shape may contain DNA that has not been properly repackaged by protamine during spermatid development. We have used micro-Raman spectroscopy to obtain Raman spectra from individual human sperm cells and examined how differences in the Raman spectra of sperm chromatin correlate with cell shape. We show that Raman spectra of individual sperm cells contain vibrational marker modes that can be used to assess the efficiency of DNA-packaging for each cell. Raman spectra obtained from sperm cells with normal shape provide evidence that DNA in these sperm is very efficiently packaged. We find, however, that the relative protein content per cell and DNA packaging efficiencies are distributed over a relatively wide range for sperm cells with both normal and abnormal shape. These findings indicate that single cell Raman spectroscopy should be a valuable tool in assessing the quality of sperm cells for in-vitro fertilization.

  17. Effects of L-Carnitine and Pentoxifylline on Carbohydrate Distribution of Mouse Testicular Sperm Membrane

    PubMed Central

    Aliabadi, Elham; Karimi, Fatemeh; Talaei-Khozani, Tahereh

    2013-01-01

    Background: The glycoconjugate content of sperms indicates their physiological and fertility properties. Lectin reactivity is indicative of intact, capacitated, and acrosome-reacted sperms. In the epididymis, sperms experience maturation, glycoconjugate modification, and simultaneously, higher L-carnitine (LC) concentrations. The aim of this project was to evaluate the effects of LC and Pentoxifylline (PF) on the integrity, capacitation, and acrosomal reaction of sperms by studying their lectin reactivity. Methods: Mouse testicular sperm samples were divided into three parts. Each sample was added Hams F10 (control) or media containing 1.76 mM LC or PF. At 30 and 90 minutes after incubation, sperm motility was assessed. Peanut agglutinin (PNA), wheat germ agglutinin (WGA), and Concanavalin A (Con A) were used to detect non-acrosome-reacted, non-capacitated, and acrosome-reacted sperms, respectively and the frequency was evaluated by flow cytometry. Statistical analysis was performed using the ANOVA. Results: Sperm motility increased after 30 and 90 minutes of incubation in the LC- and PF-treated cultures (P=0.001). LC administration created a significant increase in the percentage of the non-acrosome-reacted sperms compared to the control sperms after 30 and 90 minutes (P=0.02 and P=0.03, respectively). The frequency of the non-capacitated sperms in the LC-treated group increased compared to the control sperms after 30 minutes significantly (P=0.01). Conclusion: Although the administration of LC and PF enhanced sperm motility, LC also impacted glycoconjugates on the sperm surface. Glycoconjugates are involved in the interaction between the sperm and the zona pellucida and subsequently fertilization, thereby probably influencing the male fertility state. PMID:23825890

  18. Short-term variation in sperm competition causes sperm-mediated epigenetic effects on early offspring performance in the zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Zajitschek, Susanne; Hotzy, Cosima; Zajitschek, Felix; Immler, Simone

    2014-01-01

    The inheritance of non-genetic factors is increasingly seen to play a major role in ecology and evolution. While the causes and consequences of epigenetic effects transmitted from the mother to the offspring have received ample attention, much less is known about how variation in the condition of the father affects the offspring. Here, we manipulated the intensity of sperm competition experienced by male zebrafish Danio rerio to investigate the potential for sperm-mediated epigenetic effects over a relatively short period of time. We found that the rapid responses of males to varying intensity of sperm competition not only affected sperm traits as shown previously, but also the performance of the resulting offspring. We observed that males exposed to high intensity of sperm competition produced faster swimming and more motile sperm, and sired offspring that hatched over a narrower time frame but exhibited a lower survival rate than males exposed to low intensity of sperm competition. Our results provide striking evidence for short-term paternal effects and the possible fitness consequences of such sperm-mediated non-genetic factors not only for the resulting offspring but also for the female. PMID:24789902

  19. In silico substrate dependence increases community productivity but threatens biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daly, Aisling J.; Baetens, Jan M.; De Baets, Bernard

    2016-04-01

    The critical role that biodiversity plays in ecosystem functioning has motivated many studies of the mechanisms that sustain biodiversity, a notable example being cyclic competition. We extend existing models of communities with cyclic competition by incorporating variable community evenness and resource dependence in demographic processes, two features that have generally been neglected. In this way, we align previous approaches more closely with real-world microbial ecosystems. We demonstrate the existence of a trade-off between increasing biomass production and maintaining biodiversity. This supports experimental observations of a net negative biodiversity effect on biomass productivity, due to competition effects suffered by highly productive species in diverse communities. Our results also support the important role assigned by microbial ecologists to evenness in maintaining ecosystem stability, thus far largely overlooked in in silico approaches.

  20. Changing rooster sperm membranes to facilitate cryopreservation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cryopreservation damages rooster sperm membranes. Part of this damage is due to membrane transitioning from the fluid to the gel state as temperature is reduced. This damage may be prevented by increasing membrane fluidity at low temperatures by incorporating cholesterol or unsaturated lipids into t...

  1. A carbon sink pathway increases carbon productivity in cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Oliver, John W K; Atsumi, Shota

    2015-05-01

    The burning of fossil reserves, and subsequent release of carbon into the atmosphere is depleting the supply of carbon-based molecules used for synthetic materials including plastics, oils, medicines, and glues. To provide for future society, innovations are needed for the conversion of waste carbon (CO2) into organic carbon useful for materials. Chemical production directly from photosynthesis is a nascent technology, with great promise for capture of CO2 using sunlight. To improve low yields, it has been proposed that photosynthetic capacity can be increased by a relaxation of bottlenecks inherent to growth. The limits of carbon partitioning away from growth within the cell and the effect of partitioning on carbon fixation are not well known. Here we show that expressing genes in a pathway between carbon fixation and pyruvate increases partitioning to 2,3-butanediol (23BD) and leads to a 1.8-fold increase in total carbon yield in the cyanobacterium Synechococcus elongatus PCC 7942. Specific 2,3-butanediol production increases 2.4-fold. As partitioning increases beyond 30%, it leads to a steep decline in total carbon yield. The data suggests a local maximum for carbon partitioning from the Calvin Benson cycle that is scalable with light intensity. PMID:25777135

  2. Increased renal thromboxane production in murine lupus nephritis.

    PubMed Central

    Kelley, V E; Sneve, S; Musinski, S

    1986-01-01

    To determine whether the amount of cyclooxygenase metabolites correlates with the development of lupus nephritis, intrarenal eicosanoid production was measured in autoimmune mice. Disease progression was related to the renal biosynthesis of prostaglandin (PGE2), prostacyclin (6 keto PGF1 alpha), and thromboxane (TXB2) using the MRL-lpr and NZB X NZW F1 hybrid mouse strains with predictably progressive forms of renal disease that mimic the human illness. Mice were evaluated for renal disease by measuring urinary protein excretion and renal immunopathological conditions and these features were related to renal eicosanoid production. These studies show that: (a) intrarenal synthesis of TXB2 increased incrementally in MRL-lpr and NZB X NZW F1 hybrid mice as renal function deteriorated and renal pathologic events progressed; (b) there were no consistent increases in the levels of two other cyclooxygenase metabolites, PGE2 or 6 keto PGF1 alpha; (c) increased TXB2 production occurred in the renal medulla, cortex, and within enriched preparations of cortical glomeruli; (d) when renal disease was prevented by pharmacologic doses of PGE2, intrarenal TXB2 did not increase; (e) administration of a dose of ibuprofen (9 mg/kg), a cyclooxygenase inhibitor capable of reducing 90% of platelet TXB2 without affecting intrarenal levels, did not retard the progression of renal damage. Taken together, these data indicate that the intrarenal level of TXB2 rises in relation to the severity of murine lupus nephritis. Furthermore, because of the potential deleterious effects of TXA2, enhanced production of this eicosanoid may be an important mediator of renal injury. Images PMID:3455932

  3. A modular modulation method for achieving increases in metabolite production.

    PubMed

    Acerenza, Luis; Monzon, Pablo; Ortega, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    Increasing the production of overproducing strains represents a great challenge. Here, we develop a modular modulation method to determine the key steps for genetic manipulation to increase metabolite production. The method consists of three steps: (i) modularization of the metabolic network into two modules connected by linking metabolites, (ii) change in the activity of the modules using auxiliary rates producing or consuming the linking metabolites in appropriate proportions and (iii) determination of the key modules and steps to increase production. The mathematical formulation of the method in matrix form shows that it may be applied to metabolic networks of any structure and size, with reactions showing any kind of rate laws. The results are valid for any type of conservation relationships in the metabolite concentrations or interactions between modules. The activity of the module may, in principle, be changed by any large factor. The method may be applied recursively or combined with other methods devised to perform fine searches in smaller regions. In practice, it is implemented by integrating to the producer strain heterologous reactions or synthetic pathways producing or consuming the linking metabolites. The new procedure may contribute to develop metabolic engineering into a more systematic practice. PMID:25683235

  4. Increased productivity in the subantarctic ocean during Heinrich events.

    PubMed

    Sachs, Julian P; Anderson, Robert F

    2005-04-28

    Massive iceberg discharges from the Northern Hemisphere ice sheets, 'Heinrich events', coincided with the coldest periods of the last ice age. There is widespread evidence for Heinrich events and their profound impact on the climate and circulation of the North Atlantic Ocean, but their influence beyond that region remains uncertain. Here we use a combination of molecular fingerprints of algal productivity and radioisotope tracers of sedimentation to document eight periods of increased productivity in the subpolar Southern Ocean during the past 70,000 years that occurred within 1,000-2,000 years of a Northern Hemisphere Heinrich event. We discuss possible causes for such a link, including increased supply of iron from upwelling and increased stratification during the growing season, which imply an alteration of the global ocean circulation during Heinrich events. The mechanisms linking North Atlantic iceberg discharges with subantarctic productivity remain unclear at this point. We suggest that understanding how the Southern Ocean was altered during these extreme climate perturbations is critical to understanding the role of the ocean in climate change. PMID:15858571

  5. Summer flounder (Paralichthys dentatus) sperm cryopreservation and application in interspecific hybridization with olive flounder (P olivaceus).

    PubMed

    Liu, Q H; Ma, D Y; Xu, S H; Xiao, Z Z; Xiao, Y S; Song, Z C; Li, J

    2015-03-01

    The present study established an efficient technology for summer flounder (Paralichthys dentatus) sperm cryopreservation, and successfully applied the cryopreserved sperm into interspecific hybridization with olive flounder (P olivaceus). The best motility of postthaw sperm (78.00 ± 4.70% and 76.60 ± 7.90%), fertilization rates (95.70 ± 3.60% and 79.40 ± 5.20%), and hatching rates (93.10 ± 4.00% and 77.20 ± 2.90%) were achieved when using propylene glycol or DMSO as cryoprotectant. Furthermore, we have successfully improved the cryopreservation method from using 2-mL cryotube to 5-mL cryotube, and the dilution ratio has been increased to 4:1. By this method, the cryopreservation efficiency has been improved to 30 times of that with routine method. Computer-assisted sperm motion analysis showed the freezing-thawing process decreased the sperm speed but did not significantly change the sperm movement pattern, and the progressive linear motion still was the dominant movement pattern. The ultrastructural analysis showed 50% to 60% of the spermatozoa had normal morphology, 20% to 30% were slightly damaged, such as swelling or rupture of head, midpiece, and tail region, and 10% to 20% were severely damaged. In the artificial hybridization experiment, high fertilization rates and hatching rates were achieved when using 15% DMSO (95.7 ± 3.6% and 79.4 ± 5.2%, respectively) and 15% propylene glycol (93.1 ± 4.0% and 77.2 ± 2.9%, respectively), with no significant difference in comparison with control (94.7 ± 2.6% and 72.5 ± 6.5%, respectively). In addition, we found the embryos and larvae from postthaw sperm of P dentatus developed and grew normally. The results of the present study further validated the safety of the cryopreserved sperm in breeding production by assessing the fertilization capacity, embryo development, and larval growth. PMID:25476822

  6. Biogenesis and function of tRNA fragments during sperm maturation and fertilization in mammals.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Upasna; Conine, Colin C; Shea, Jeremy M; Boskovic, Ana; Derr, Alan G; Bing, Xin Y; Belleannee, Clemence; Kucukural, Alper; Serra, Ryan W; Sun, Fengyun; Song, Lina; Carone, Benjamin R; Ricci, Emiliano P; Li, Xin Z; Fauquier, Lucas; Moore, Melissa J; Sullivan, Robert; Mello, Craig C; Garber, Manuel; Rando, Oliver J

    2016-01-22

    Several recent studies link parental environments to phenotypes in subsequent generations. In this work, we investigate the mechanism by which paternal diet affects offspring metabolism. Protein restriction in mice affects small RNA (sRNA) levels in mature sperm, with decreased let-7 levels and increased amounts of 5' fragments of glycine transfer RNAs (tRNAs). In testicular sperm, tRNA fragments are scarce but increase in abundance as sperm mature in the epididymis. Epididymosomes (vesicles that fuse with sperm during epididymal transit) carry RNA payloads matching those of mature sperm and can deliver RNAs to immature sperm in vitro. Functionally, tRNA-glycine-GCC fragments repress genes associated with the endogenous retroelement MERVL, in both embryonic stem cells and embryos. Our results shed light on sRNA biogenesis and its dietary regulation during posttesticular sperm maturation, and they also link tRNA fragments to regulation of endogenous retroelements active in the preimplantation embryo. PMID:26721685

  7. Variation in Apical Hook Length Reflects the Intensity of Sperm Competition in Murine Rodents

    PubMed Central

    Šandera, Martin; Albrecht, Tomáš; Stopka, Pavel

    2013-01-01

    Background Post-copulatory sexual selection has been shown to shape morphology of male gametes. Both directional and stabilizing selection on sperm phenotype have been documented in vertebrates in response to sexual promiscuity. Methodology Here we investigated the degree of variance in apical hook length and tail length in six taxa of murine rodents. Conclusions Tail sperm length and apical hook length were positively associated with relative testis mass, our proxy for levels of sperm competition, thus indicating directional post-copulatory selection on sperm phenotypes. Moreover, our study shows that increased levels of sperm competition lead to the reduction of variance in the hook length, indicating stabilizing selection. Hence, the higher risk of sperm competition affects increasing hook length together with decreasing variance in the hook length. Species-specific post-copulatory sexual selection likely optimizes sperm morphology. PMID:23844198

  8. Validation of the sperm chromatin dispersion (SCD) test in the amphibian Xenopus laevis using in situ nick translation and comet assay.

    PubMed

    Pollock, K; Gosálvez, J; Arroyo, F; López-Fernández, C; Guille, M; Noble, A; Johnston, S D

    2015-11-01

    The integrity of sperm DNA is becoming increasingly recognised as an important parameter of semen quality, but there are no published reports of this procedure for any amphibian. The primary aim of this study was to apply a modified sperm chromatin dispersion (SCD) test (Halomax) to an amphibian sperm model (African clawed frog; Xenopus laevis) and to validate the assay against in situ nick translation (ISNT) and the double-comet assay procedure. Inactivated spermatozoa were collected from fresh testes (n=3). Sperm DNA fragmentation (SDF) for each sperm sample was conducted immediately following activation (T0) and again after 1h (T1) and 24h (T24) of incubation at room temperature in order to produce a range of spermatozoa with differing levels of DNA damage. The SCD procedure resulted in the production of three nuclear morphotypes; amphibian sperm morphotype 1 (ASM-1) and ASM-2 showed no evidence of DNA damage, whereas ASM-3 spermatozoa were highly fragmented with large halos of dispersed DNA fragments and a reduced nuclear core. ISNT confirmed that ASM-3 nuclei contained damaged DNA. There was a significant correlation (r=0.9613) between the levels of ASM-3 detected by the SCD test and SDF revealed by the double-comet assay. PMID:25482041

  9. Protective effect of royal jelly on the sperm parameters and testosterone level and lipid peroxidation in adult mice treated with oxymetholone

    PubMed Central

    Zahmatkesh, Ensieh; Najafi, Gholamreza; Nejati, Vahid; Heidari, Reza

    2014-01-01

    Objectives : The aim of the present study was to evaluate protective effect of royal jelly on sperm parameters, testosterone level, and malondialdehyde (MDA) production in mice. Materials and Methods: Thirty-two adult male NMRI mice weighing 302 g were used. All the animals were divided into 4 groups. Control group: received saline 0.1 ml/mouse/day orally for 30 days. Royal jelly group (RJ): received royal jelly at dose of 100 mg/kg daily for 30 days orally. Oxymetholone group: the received Oxymetholone (OX) at dose of 5 mg/kg daily for 30 days orally. Royal jelly+Oxymetholone group: received royal jelly at dose of 100 mg/kg/day orally concomitant with OX administration. Sperm count, sperm motility, viability, maturity, and DNA integrity were analyzed. Furthermore, serum testosterone and MDA concentrations were determined. Results: In Oxymetholone group, sperm count, motility as well as testosterone concentration reduced significantly (p<0.05), while significant (p<0.05) increases in immature sperm, sperm with DNA damaged, and MDA concentration were announced in Oxymetholone group in comparison with control group and Royal jelly+Oxymetholone group. RJ caused partially amelioration in all of the above- mentioned parameters in Royal Jelly+Oxymetholone group. Conclusion: In conclusion, RJ may be used in combination with OX to improve OX-induced oxidative stress and male infertility. PMID:25050300

  10. Arctic foxes as ecosystem engineers: increased soil nutrients lead to increased plant productivity on fox dens.

    PubMed

    Gharajehdaghipour, Tazarve; Roth, James D; Fafard, Paul M; Markham, John H

    2016-01-01

    Top predators can provide fundamental ecosystem services such as nutrient cycling, and their impact can be even greater in environments with low nutrients and productivity, such as Arctic tundra. We estimated the effects of Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) denning on soil nutrient dynamics and vegetation production near Churchill, Manitoba in June and August 2014. Soils from fox dens contained higher nutrient levels in June (71% more inorganic nitrogen, 1195% more extractable phosphorous) and in August (242% more inorganic nitrogen, 191% more extractable phosphorous) than adjacent control sites. Inorganic nitrogen levels decreased from June to August on both dens and controls, whereas extractable phosphorous increased. Pup production the previous year, which should enhance nutrient deposition (from urine, feces, and decomposing prey), did not affect soil nutrient concentrations, suggesting the impact of Arctic foxes persists >1 year. Dens supported 2.8 times greater vegetation biomass in August, but δ(15)N values in sea lyme grass (Leymus mollis) were unaffected by denning. By concentrating nutrients on dens Arctic foxes enhance nutrient cycling as an ecosystem service and thus engineer Arctic ecosystems on local scales. The enhanced productivity in patches on the landscape could subsequently affect plant diversity and the dispersion of herbivores on the tundra. PMID:27045973

  11. Arctic foxes as ecosystem engineers: increased soil nutrients lead to increased plant productivity on fox dens

    PubMed Central

    Gharajehdaghipour, Tazarve; Roth, James D.; Fafard, Paul M.; Markham, John H.

    2016-01-01

    Top predators can provide fundamental ecosystem services such as nutrient cycling, and their impact can be even greater in environments with low nutrients and productivity, such as Arctic tundra. We estimated the effects of Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) denning on soil nutrient dynamics and vegetation production near Churchill, Manitoba in June and August 2014. Soils from fox dens contained higher nutrient levels in June (71% more inorganic nitrogen, 1195% more extractable phosphorous) and in August (242% more inorganic nitrogen, 191% more extractable phosphorous) than adjacent control sites. Inorganic nitrogen levels decreased from June to August on both dens and controls, whereas extractable phosphorous increased. Pup production the previous year, which should enhance nutrient deposition (from urine, feces, and decomposing prey), did not affect soil nutrient concentrations, suggesting the impact of Arctic foxes persists >1 year. Dens supported 2.8 times greater vegetation biomass in August, but δ15N values in sea lyme grass (Leymus mollis) were unaffected by denning. By concentrating nutrients on dens Arctic foxes enhance nutrient cycling as an ecosystem service and thus engineer Arctic ecosystems on local scales. The enhanced productivity in patches on the landscape could subsequently affect plant diversity and the dispersion of herbivores on the tundra. PMID:27045973

  12. Evaluation of sperm nuclear integrity in patients with different percentages of decapitated sperm in ejaculates.

    PubMed

    Rondanino, Christine; Duchesne, Vronique; Escalier, Denise; Jumeau, Fanny; Verhaeghe, France; Peers, Marie-Claire; Mitchell, Valrie; Rives, Nathalie

    2015-07-01

    The decapitated sperm defect is a rare type of teratozoospermia responsible for male infertility. Spermatozoa from patients affected by this syndrome are used for intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) although little is known about their DNA integrity. This study evaluated sperm nuclear alterations in four patients and ten fertile men (control group). Sperm samples were examined by light, transmission electron and high-magnification contrast microscopy and analysed after terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase-mediated dUTP nick end labelling, aniline blue staining and fluorescence in-situ hybridization. Spermatozoa from patients presented varying degrees of decapitation, along with morphological and ultrastructural head abnormalities. Whereas the proportion of spermatozoa with fragmented DNA and numerical chromosome abnormalities was similar in patients 1-3 and controls, the percentage of spermatozoa with hypocondensed chromatin was higher in patients 1-3 than in fertile men. Patient 4 presented a distinct phenotype, with an increased proportion of flagellated spermatozoa with DNA strand breaks as well as increased aneuploidy and diploidy rates compared with controls and with patients 1-3. No successful pregnancy resulted from ICSI although embryos were obtained for three patients. The morphological defects and the nuclear alterations observed in spermatozoa of patients with the decapitated sperm syndrome may have contributed to ICSI failures. PMID:26001636

  13. Industrial Assessment Centers - Small Manufacturers Reduce Energy & Increase Productivity

    SciTech Connect

    2015-11-06

    Since 1976, the Industrial Assessment Centers (IACs), administered by the US Department of Energy, have supported small and medium-sized American manufacturers to reduce energy use and increase their productivity and competitiveness. The 24 IACs, located at premier engineering universities around the country (see below), send faculty and engineering students to local small and medium-sized manufacturers to provide no-cost assessments of energy use, process performance and waste and water flows. Under the direction of experienced professors, IAC engineering students analyze the manufacturer’s facilities, energy bills and energy, waste and water systems, including compressed air, motors/pumps, lighting, process heat and steam. The IACs then follow up with written energy-saving and productivity improvement recommendations, with estimates of related costs and payback periods.

  14. Shedding Light on the Controversy Surrounding the Temporal Decline in Human Sperm Counts: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Cocuzza, Marcello; Esteves, Sandro C.

    2014-01-01

    We systematically examined the evidence of declining sperm counts and the hypothesis that an increased exposure to environmental pollutants is responsible for such decline. Search engines, including PUBMED, MEDLINE, EMBASE, BIOSIS, and Cochrane library, were used to identify epidemiologic studies published from 1985 to 2013. We concluded that there is no enough evidence to confirm a worldwide decline in sperm counts. Also, there seems to be no scientific truth of a causative role for endocrine disruptors in the temporal decline of sperm production. Such assumptions are based on few meta-analyses and retrospective studies, while other well-conducted researches could not confirm these findings. We acknowledge that difficult-to-control confounding factors in the highly variable nature of semen, selection criteria, and comparability of populations from different time periods in secular-trend studies, the quality of laboratory methods for counting sperm, and apparently geographic variations in semen quality are the main issues that complicate the interpretation of the available evidence. Owing to the importance of this subject and the uncertainties still prevailing, there is a need not only for continuing monitoring of semen quality, reproductive hormones, and xenobiotics, but also for a better definition of fecundity. PMID:24672311

  15. Shedding light on the controversy surrounding the temporal decline in human sperm counts: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Cocuzza, Marcello; Esteves, Sandro C

    2014-01-01

    We systematically examined the evidence of declining sperm counts and the hypothesis that an increased exposure to environmental pollutants is responsible for such decline. Search engines, including PUBMED, MEDLINE, EMBASE, BIOSIS, and Cochrane library, were used to identify epidemiologic studies published from 1985 to 2013. We concluded that there is no enough evidence to confirm a worldwide decline in sperm counts. Also, there seems to be no scientific truth of a causative role for endocrine disruptors in the temporal decline of sperm production. Such assumptions are based on few meta-analyses and retrospective studies, while other well-conducted researches could not confirm these findings. We acknowledge that difficult-to-control confounding factors in the highly variable nature of semen, selection criteria, and comparability of populations from different time periods in secular-trend studies, the quality of laboratory methods for counting sperm, and apparently geographic variations in semen quality are the main issues that complicate the interpretation of the available evidence. Owing to the importance of this subject and the uncertainties still prevailing, there is a need not only for continuing monitoring of semen quality, reproductive hormones, and xenobiotics, but also for a better definition of fecundity. PMID:24672311

  16. PTX3 stimulates osteoclastogenesis by increasing osteoblast RANKL production.

    PubMed

    Lee, Eun-Jin; Song, Da-Hyun; Kim, Yeon-Ju; Choi, Bongkun; Chung, Yeon-Ho; Kim, Sang-Min; Koh, Jung-Min; Yoon, Seung-Yong; Song, Youngsup; Kang, Sang-Wook; Chang, Eun-Ju

    2014-11-01

    Pentraxin-3 (PTX3), also known as tumor necrosis factor-stimulated gene 14 (TSG-14), is produced by immune and vascular cells in response to pro-inflammatory signals and is therefore a multipotent inflammatory mediator. The present study showed that during human osteoblast (OB) differentiation, precursor OBs (pOBs), but not mature OB, highly expressed PTX3. TNF? treatment elevated the PTX3 expression of pOBs. When mice were injected with lipopolysaccharide, which induces an inflammatory osteolytic condition characterized by trabecular bone destruction and high osteoclastogenesis, their bone marrow cells expressed elevated levels of PTX3 protein. Exogenous PTX3 did not directly affect osteoclast (OC) or OB differentiation. However, when pOBs and precursor OCs were co-cultured, exogenous PTX3 significantly increased the number of tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase-positive multinucleated cells (i.e., OC cells) by increasing the pOB mRNA expression and protein secretion of RANK ligand (RANKL). This was accompanied with increased Runt-related transcription factor 2 (Runx2) expression in the pOBs. Knock-down of endogenous PTX3 with small-interfering RNA did not change the osteogenic potential of pOBs but suppressed their production of RANKL and reduced osteoclastogenesis. Finally, TNF? treatment of the co-culture elevated PTX3 expression by the pOBs and increased OC formation. This effect was suppressed by PTX3 knock-down by decreasing RANKL expression. Thus, the PTX3-driven increase in the osteoclastogenic potential of pOBs appears to be mediated by the effect of PTX3 on pOB RANKL production. These findings suggest that PTX3 is an inflammatory mediator that contributes to the deteriorating osteolytic condition of inflamed bone. J. Cell. Physiol. 229: 1744-1752, 2014. 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:24664887

  17. Turbulence of swarming sperm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Creppy, Adama; Praud, Olivier; Druart, Xavier; Kohnke, Philippa L.; Plouraboué, Franck

    2015-09-01

    Collective motion of self-sustained swarming flows has recently provided examples of small-scale turbulence arising where viscous effects are dominant. We report the first observation of universal enstrophy cascade in concentrated swarming sperm consistent with a body of evidence built from various independent measurements. We found a well-defined k-3 power-law decay of a velocity field power spectrum and relative dispersion of small beads consistent with theoretical predictions in 2D turbulence. Concentrated living sperm displays long-range, correlated whirlpool structures of a size that provides an integral scale of turbulence. We propose a consistent explanation for this quasi-2D turbulence based on self-structured laminated flow forced by steric interactions and alignment, a state of active matter that we call "swarming liquid crystal." We develop scaling arguments consistent with this interpretation.

  18. Sperm storage mediated by cryptic female choice for nuptial gifts

    PubMed Central

    Albo, Maria J.; Bilde, Trine; Uhl, Gabriele

    2013-01-01

    Polyandrous females are expected to discriminate among males through postcopulatory cryptic mate choice. Yet, there is surprisingly little unequivocal evidence for female-mediated cryptic sperm choice. In species in which nuptial gifts facilitate mating, females may gain indirect benefits through preferential storage of sperm from gift-giving males if the gift signals male quality. We tested this hypothesis in the spider Pisaura mirabilis by quantifying the number of sperm stored in response to copulation with males with or without a nuptial gift, while experimentally controlling copulation duration. We further assessed the effect of gift presence and copulation duration on egg-hatching success in matings with uninterrupted copulations with gift-giving males. We show that females mated to gift-giving males stored more sperm and experienced 17% higher egg-hatching success, compared with those mated to no-gift males, despite matched copulation durations. Uninterrupted copulations resulted in both increased sperm storage and egg-hatching success. Our study confirms the prediction that the nuptial gift as a male signal is under positive sexual selection by females through cryptic sperm storage. In addition, the gift facilitates longer copulations and increased sperm transfer providing two different types of advantage to gift-giving in males. PMID:24266042

  19. Sperm storage in male elasmobranchs: a description and survey.

    PubMed

    Pratt, H L; Tanaka, S

    1994-03-01

    Two basic types of spermatozoan aggregates, spermatophores and spermatozeugmata, found in 14 different species of sharks, one species of skate, and one species of chimaera (holocephalan), were investigated using light and scanning electron microscopy. Spermatophores, aggregates (usually 1,000-6,000 microns in diameter and larger) of randomly clumped sperm embedded in and surrounded by an eosinophilic matrix, were found in Alopias superciliosus, Odontaspis taurus, Carcharodon carcharias, Isurus oxyrinchus, and Lamna nasus. Three types of spermatozeugmata, sperm structures without a surrounding capsule or matrix, are described. The first, clumps of 60-200 sperm unbound in a supporting matrix, are found in Squalus acanthias and Hydrolagus colliei. In the second type, single-layered spheres are formed of sperm clumps with the sperm heads bound in a common supporting matrix. These are found in Carcharhinus limbatus and Carcharhinus plumbeus. The third type of spermatozeugmata are large multilayered, compound structures formed by the accretion of several single-layered aggregates. These multilayered structures characteristically are found in Carcharhinus falciformis, C. limbatus, Carcharhinus obscurus, C. plumbeus, Carcharhinus porosus, Prionace glauca, Rhizoprionodon terraenovae, and Sphyrna lewini. Sperm aggregates of all types are stored between the septa and in the lumen of the terminal ampulla of the epididymis. In their various forms they are the final product of the mature male elasmobranch reproductive tract. In a male with mature claspers, the presence of sperm aggregates is a more reliable indicator of maturity and sexual activity than is clasper condition alone. PMID:8169955

  20. Improvement of Stand Jig Sealer and Its Increased Production Capacity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soebandrija, K. E. N.; Astuti, S. W. D.

    2014-03-01

    This paper has the objective to prove that improvement of Stand Jig Sealer can lead to the cycle time target as part of Improvement efforts and its Productivity. Prior researches through prior journals both classics journal such as Quesnay (1766) and Solow (1957) and updated journal such as Reikard (2011) researches, are mentioned and elaborated. Precisely, the research is narrowed down and specified into automotive industry and eventually the software related of SPSS and Structural Equation Modeling ( SEM ). The analysis and its method are conducted through the calculation working time. The mentioned calculation are reinforced with the hypothesis test using SPSS Version 19 and involve parameters of production efficiency, productivity calculation, and the calculation of financial investments. The results obtained are augmented achievement of cycle time target ≤ 80 seconds posterior to improvement stand jig sealer. The result from calculation of SPSS-19 version comprise the following aspects: the one-sided hypothesis test is rejection of Ho:μ≥80 seconds, the correlation rs=0.84, regression y = 0.159+0.642x, validity R table = 0.4438, reliability value of Cronbach's alpha = 0.885>0.70, independence (Chi Square) Asymp. Sig=0.028<0.05, 95% efficiency, increase productivity 11%, financial analysis (NPV 2,340,596>0, PI 2.04>1, IRR 45.56%>i=12.68%, PP=1.86). The Mentioned calculation results support the hypothesis and ultimately align with the objective of this paper to prove that improvement of Stand Jig Sealer and its relation toward the cycle time target. Precisely, the improvement of production capacity of PT. Astra Daihatsu Motor.

  1. Increased production of nutriments by genetically engineered crops.

    PubMed

    Sévenier, Robert; van der Meer, Ingrid M; Bino, Raoul; Koops, Andries J

    2002-06-01

    Plants are the basis of human nutrition and have been selected and improved to assure this purpose. Nowadays, new technologies such as genetic engineering and genomics approaches allow further improvement of plants. We describe here three examples for which these techniques have been employed. We introduced the first enzyme involved in fructan synthesis, the sucrose sucrose fructosyltransferase (isolated from Jerusalem artichoke), into sugar beet. The transgenic sugar beet showed a dramatic change in the nature of the accumulated sugar, 90% of the sucrose being converted into fructan. The use of transgenic sugar beet for the production and isolation of fructans will result in a more efficient plant production system of fructans and should promote their use in human food. The second example shows how the over-expression of the key enzyme of flavonoid biosynthesis could increase anti-oxidant levels in tomato. Introduction of a highly expressed chalcone isomerase led to a seventyfold increase of the amount of quercetin glucoside, which is a strong anti-oxidant in tomato. We were also able to modify the essential amino acid content of potato in order to increase its nutritional value. The introduction of a feedback insensitive bacterial gene involved in biosynthesis of aspartate family amino acids led to a sixfold increase of the lysine content. Because the use of a bacterial gene could appear to be controversial, we also introduced a mutated form of the plant key enzyme of lysine biosynthesis (dihydrodipicolinate synthase) in potato. This modification led to a 15 times increase of the lysine content of potato. This increase of the essential amino acid lysine influences the nutritional value of potato, which normally has low levels of several essential amino acids. These three examples show how the metabolism of primary constituents of the plant cell such as sugar or amino acids, but also of secondary metabolites such as flavonoids, can be modified by genetic engineering. Producing fructan, a soluble fiber, increasing the level of flavonoids, an antioxidant, in tomato or increasing the level of essential amino acids in potato are all clear examples of plant genetic modifications with possible positive effects on human nutrition. PMID:12071305

  2. Current Status of Sperm Cryopreservation in Biomedical Research Fish Models: Zebrafish, Medaka, and Xiphophorus*

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Huiping; Tiersch, Terrence R.

    2009-01-01

    Aquarium fishes are becoming increasingly important because of their value in biomedical research and the ornamental fish trade, and because many have become threatened or endangered in the wild. This review summarizes the current status of sperm cryopreservation in three fishes widely used in biomedical research: zebrafish, medaka, and live-bearing fishes of the genus Xiphophorus, and will focus on the needs and opportunities for future research and application of cryopreservation in aquarium fish. First, we summarize the basic biological characteristics regarding natural habitat, testis structure, spermatogenesis, sperm morphology, and sperm physiology. Second, we compare protocol development of sperm cryopreservation. Third, we emphasize the importance of artificial fertilization in sperm cryopreservation to evaluate the viability of thawed sperm. We conclude with a look to future research directions for sperm cryopreservation and the application of this technique in aquarium species. PMID:18691673

  3. Methamidophos alters sperm function and DNA at different stages of spermatogenesis in mice

    SciTech Connect

    Urióstegui-Acosta, Mayrut; Hernández-Ochoa, Isabel; Sánchez-Gutiérrez, Manuel; Piña-Guzmán, Belem; Rafael-Vázquez, Leticia; Solís-Heredia, M.J.; Martínez-Aguilar, Gerardo; Quintanilla-Vega, Betzabet

    2014-09-15

    Methamidophos (MET) is a highly toxic organophosphate (OP) pesticide that is widely used in developing countries. MET has male reproductive effects, including decreased fertility. We evaluated MET effects on sperm quality, fertilization and DNA integrity, exploring the sensitivity of different stages of spermatogenesis. Adult male mice received MET (3.75 or 5 mg/kg-bw/ip/day/4 days) and were euthanized 1, 28 or 45 days post-treatment (dpt) to evaluate MET's effects on epididymal maturation, meiosis or mitosis, respectively. Spermatozoa were obtained from the cauda epididymis–vas deferens and were evaluated for sperm quality, acrosome reaction (AR; Coomassie staining), mitochondrial membrane potential (by JC-1), DNA damage (comet assay), oxidative damage (malondialdehyde (MDA) production), in vitro fertilization and protein phosphorylation (immunodetection), and erythrocyte acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity. At 1-dpt, MET inhibited AChE (43–57%) and increased abnormal cells (6%). While at 28- and 45-dpt, sperm motility and viability were significantly reduced with an increasing MET dose, and abnormal morphology increased at 5 mg/kg/day/4 days. MDA and mitochondrial activity were not affected at any dose or time. DNA damage (OTM and %DNA) was observed at 5 mg/kg/day/4 days in a time-dependent manner, whereas both parameters were altered in cells from mice exposed to 3.75 mg/kg/day/4 days only at 28-dpt. Depending on the time of collection, initial-, spontaneous- and induced-AR were altered at 5 mg/kg/day/4 days, and the fertilization capacity also decreased. Sperm phosphorylation (at serine and tyrosine residues) was observed at all time points. Data suggest that meiosis and mitosis are the more sensitive stages of spermatogenesis for MET reproductive toxicity compared to epididymal maturation. - Highlights: • Methamidophos alters sperm cell function at different stages of spermatogenesis. • Testicular stages of spermatogenesis are more sensitive to methamidophos toxicity. • Methamidophos causes sperm DNA damage at mitosis, meiosis and epididymal maturation. • Sperm cell damage by methamidophos exposure may be related to protein phosphorylation.

  4. Increasing plant productivity in closed environments with inner canopy illumination.

    PubMed

    Stasiak, M A; Cote, R; Dixon, M; Grodzinski, B

    1998-01-01

    Due to the high cost of habitable real estate associated with space travel and colonization, and the ultimate use of plants as the primary method of life support, it is necessary to develop cultivation methods whereby the highest sustainable level of productivity is achieved within the least amount of space. It is well known that in a dense plant canopy, lower leaves become shaded from above and eventually no longer contribute to carbon gain. In fact, they contribute to net respiratory carbon losses. One method of improving biomass production is to introduce light of suitable quantity and quality to the inner canopy, thereby utilizing unused photosynthetic capacity. By coupling microwave-powered lights to 100-mm-diameter glass tubes lined with 3M Optical Lighting Film, light with a spectral quality similar to that of sunlight was delivered to the inner canopy of a developing soybean crop. Results indicated that increases in productivity of 23-87%, as measured by CO2 assimilation, can be achieved in dense plant canopies (LAI approximately 6) when overhead lighting (40O-1200 micromoles m-2 s-1) is supplemented with inner canopy illumination. PMID:11541674

  5. Increased of Brazilian productivity in the slaughterhouse sector: a review.

    PubMed

    Buzanello, Márcia Rosângela; Moro, Antônio Renato Pereira

    2012-01-01

    Due to Brazil is a tropical country has activities in occupational exposure to cold restricted to few sectors especially the meatpacking industry. Taking into account that the country in 2010, was again the largest exporter of poultry meat in the world and consequently employing a large number of workers for their slaughter and processing. The search for greater productivity can result in an increase in work rate, as indicated in this sector as monotonous, repetitive and uncomfortable. According the Programa de Frigorífico it was found that within six years, about 20% of the six thousand workers in a slaughterhouse in southern Brazil, received welfare benefits due to musculoskeletal diseases. Adding to this, the lack of parameters for the Brazilian standardization concerning occupational activities carried out in cold. Although several epidemiological studies point to the cold as a risk factor for occurrence or aggravation of musculoskeletal disorders, research in this field is still limited and often contradictory conclusions. This article aims to review developments concerning the poultry industry and the fridge in Brazil, as well as raising the question about the increased productivity of the slaughterhouse, since it has already shown a high prevalence of musculoskeletal disorders related to work. PMID:22317580

  6. Factors influencing boar sperm cryosurvival.

    PubMed

    Roca, J; Hernández, M; Carvajal, G; Vázquez, J M; Martínez, E A

    2006-10-01

    Optimal sperm cryopreservation is a prerequisite for the sustainable commercial application of frozen-thawed boar semen for AI. Three experiments were performed to identify factors influencing variability of postthaw sperm survival among 464 boar ejaculates. Sperm-rich ejaculate fractions were cryopre-served using a standard freezing-thawing procedure for 0.5-mL plastic straws and computer-controlled freezing equipment. Postthaw sperm motility (assessed with a computer-assisted semen analysis system) and viability (simultaneously probed by flow cytometry analysis after triple-fluorescent stain), evaluated 30 and 150 min postthaw, were used to estimate the success of cryopreservation. In the first experiment, 168 unselected ejaculates (1 ejaculate/boar), from boars of 6 breeds with a wide age range (8 to 48 mo), were cryopreserved over a 12-mo period to evaluate the predictive value of boar (breed and age), semen collection, transport variables (season of ejaculate collection, interval between collections, and ejaculate temperature exposure), initial semen traits, and sperm quality before freezing on sperm survival after freezing-thawing. In Exp. 2, 4 ejaculates from each of 29 boars, preselected according to their initial semen traits and sperm quality before freezing, were collected and frozen over a 6-mo period to evaluate the influence of interboar and intraboar ejaculate variability in the survival of sperm after cryopreservation. In Exp. 3, 12 ejaculates preselected as for Exp. 2, from each of 15 boars with known good sperm cryosurvival, were collected and frozen over a 12-mo period to estimate the sustainability of sperm cryosurvival between ejaculates over time. Boar and semen collection and transport variables were not predictive of sperm cryosurvival among ejaculates. Initial semen traits and sperm quality variables observed before freezing explained 23.2 and 10.9%, respectively, of the variation in postthaw sperm motility and viability. However, more that 70% of total variance observed in postthaw sperm quality variables among ejaculates was explained by boar. This indicates that boar is the most important (P < 0.001) factor explaining the variability among ejaculates in sperm cryosurvival, with most (14 of the 15 boars in Exp. 3) showing consistent (P > 0.05) sperm cryosurvival over time. PMID:16971570

  7. Classification of ostrich sperm characteristics.

    PubMed

    Smith, A M J; Bonato, M; Dzama, K; Malecki, I A; Cloete, S W P

    2016-05-01

    The success of assisted reproduction techniques is dependent on a sound foundation of understanding sperm characteristics to evaluate so as to improve semen processing. This study offers a descriptive basis for ostrich semen quality in terms of sperm function characteristics (SFC) that include motility, measured by computer assisted sperm analysis CASA (SCA(®)), viability (SYBR14/PI) and membrane integrity (hypo-osmotic swelling test). Relationships among these SFC's were explored and described by correlations and regressions. Certain fixed effects including the dilution of semen, season, year and male associated with semen collection were interpreted for future applications. The seasonal effect on sperm samples collected throughout the year suggested that it is prudent to restrict collections to spring and summer when SFC's and sperm concentration are maximized, compared to winter when these aspects of sperm quality are suppressed. Dilution of ejaculates helped to maintain important SFC's associated with fertilization success. The SFC's and sperm concentration varied among males, with specific males, having greater values for the percentage of motile (MOT) and progressively motile (PMOT) sperm, as well as sperm velocity (VCL, VSL, VAP) and linearity (LIN) variables. Males may thus be screened on these variables for inclusion in an artificial insemination (AI) programme to optimize fertility success rates. PMID:27039985

  8. Cryopreservation of epididymal stallion sperm.

    PubMed

    Olaciregui, M; Gil, L; Montn, A; Luo, V; Jerez, R A; Mart, J I

    2014-02-01

    Any event that makes semen collection or mating impossible, such as death, castration, or injury, may terminate a stallion's breeding career. Fortunately, stallion sperm which are capable of fertilization can be harvested from the epididymis, and frozen for future use. However, the fertility of frozen-thawed epididymal sperm has been found to be lower than that of ejaculated sperm. Therefore, this study aimed to optimize the fertility of frozen epididymal stallion sperm by investigating the effects of different cryoprotectants and freezing protocols on sperm quality. Dimethylformamide was tested alone or combination with pasteurized egg yolk as substitute of fresh egg yolk. In addition, the effect of the pre-freeze stabilization on sperm quality was analyzed. Heterospermic samples obtained from stallion epididymis were collected and cryopreserved in lactose-egg-yolk extender or in the same extender with varying content of cryoprotectant and content of egg yolk, stabilized and no-stabilized. Sperm motility, viability, hypoosmotic swelling test (HOST) and acrosome integrity were evaluated post-thawing. No improvement was observed on the replacement of fresh yolk by pasteurized egg yolk, whereas the results suggest that dimethylformamide is a cryoprotectant suitable for cryopreservation of equine epididymal semen, even better than glycerol. In addition, we found that the stabilization before freezing on epididymal stallion sperm, can improve sperm quality parameters. PMID:24412395

  9. Effects of environment factors on initiation of sperm motility in sea cucumber Apostichopus japonicus (Selenka)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Li; Shao, Mingyu; Bao, Zhenmin; Hu, Jingjie; Zhang, Zhifeng

    2011-06-01

    Sperm of sea cucumber Apostichopus japonicus (Selenka) were quiescent in electrolyte NaCl solution and artificial seawater (ASW) and nonelectrolyte glucose and mannitol solutions when the osmolality was less than 200 mOsm kg-1. The sperm started to be motile as a result of increased osmolality, indicating an osmolality-dependent initiation of sperm motility in sea cucumber. After a brief incubation in hypotonic NaCl and glucose solutions with osmolalities of 200 and 400 mOsm kg-1, sperm lost partial motile ability. Sperm became immobilized when pH was 6.0 in NaCl, glucose and mannitol solutions, suggesting that an H+ release is involved in sperm activation. The decreased pH had no effect on the percentage of motile sperm in ASW, whereas it delayed the time period to reach the maximum motility (motilitymax). Extracellular Ca2+ in electrolyte solutions was not essential for motility stimulation but shortened the time of reaching motilitymax. When Ca2+ was mixed in nonelectrolyte solutions the sperm motility was completely suppressed. The K+ channel blocker, quinine, suppressed the sperm motility in electrolyte solution, showing a possible involvement of K+ transport in the process. High K+ concentration did not affect the sperm motility in NaCl solution, but decreased it in ASW and almost entirely suppressed it in nonelectrolyte solutions. The different effects of pH and K+ in ASW and NaCl solution indicate that external ions may also regulate sperm motility.

  10. Application of intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) for fertilization and development in birds.

    PubMed

    Shimada, Kiyoshi; Ono, Tamao; Mizushima, Shusei

    2014-01-15

    Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) technology in birds has been hampered due to opacity of oocyte. We developed ICSI-assisted fertilization and gene transfer in quail. This paper reviews recent advances of our ICSI experiments. The oocyte retrieved from the oviduct and a quail sperm was injected into the oocyte under a stereomicroscope. The oocyte was cultured for 24h at 41°C under 5% CO2 in air. The fertilization and development was assessed by microscopic observation. The fertility rate ranged 12-18% and development varied from stage II to V in trials. To improve the fertility rate, phospholipase C (PLC) zeta was injected with a sperm. It was increased to 37-50%. Furthermore, injection of inositol trisphosphate increased to over 85%. Quail oocyte can be fertilized with chicken sperm and so can testicular elongated spermatid. To extend embryonic development, chicken eggshell was used as a surrogate culture at 37°C after the 24h incubation at 41°C under 5% CO2 in air. It survived up to 2days thereafter. Finally, gene transfer was attempted in quail egg. The sperm membrane was disrupted with Triton X-100 (TX-100) and was injected with PLCzeta cRNA and enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) gene in oocyte. The GFP expression was evaluated at 24h incubation at 41°C under 5% CO2 in air in the embryos. While the expression was not detected in the control oocytes, the experimental treatment induced blastoderm development (44%) of the oocytes and 86% of blastoderm showed fluorescent emission. In addition, PCR analysis detected EGFP fragments in 50% of GFP-expressing blastoderm. Our ICSI method may be the first step toward the production of transgenic birds. PMID:24239795

  11. Effect of different monosaccharides and disaccharides on boar sperm quality after cryopreservation.

    PubMed

    Gómez-Fernández, José; Gómez-Izquierdo, Emilio; Tomás, Cristina; Mocé, Eva; de Mercado, Eduardo

    2012-07-01

    The aim of the present study was to evaluate the cryoprotectant effect of different non-permeating sugars for boar sperm. Pooled semen from three boars was used for the experiments. In the first experiment, the sperm quality of boar sperm cryopreserved with an egg-yolk based extender supplemented with different monosaccharides (glucose, galactose or fructose) was compared to a control cryopreserved in lactose-egg yolk extender. In the second experiment, the effect of five disaccharides (lactose, sucrose, lactulose, trehalose or melibiose) on boar sperm cryosurvival was studied. Several sperm quality parameters were assessed by flow cytometry in samples incubated for 30 and 150 min at 37°C after thawing: percentages of sperm with intact plasma membrane (SIPM), sperm presenting high plasma membrane fluidity (HPMF), sperm with intracellular reactive oxygen substances production (IROSP) and apoptotic sperm (AS). In addition, the percentages of total motile (TMS) and progressively motile sperm (PMS) were assessed at the same incubation times with a computer-assisted sperm analysis system. Freezing extenders supplemented with each of the monosaccharide presented smaller cryoprotective effect than the control extender supplemented with lactose (P<0.05). However, from the three monosaccharides tested, glucose provided the best sperm quality after freezing-thawing. With respect to the disaccharides studied, samples frozen with the extender supplemented with lactulose exhibited in general the lowest sperm quality, except for the percentage of capacitated sperm, which was highest (P<0.05) in the samples cryopreserved with the trehalose extender. Our results suggest that disaccharides have higher cryoprotective effect than monosaccharides, although the monosaccharide composition of the disaccharides is also important, since the best results were obtained with those disaccharides presenting glucose in their composition. PMID:22771077

  12. Autocrine regulation of human sperm motility by tachykinins

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background We examined the presence and function of tachykinins and the tachykinin-degrading enzymes neprilysin (NEP) and neprilysin-2 (NEP2) in human spermatozoa. Methods Freshly ejaculated semen was collected from forty-eight normozoospermic human donors. We analyzed the expression of substance P, neurokinin A, neurokinin B, hemokinin-1, NEP and NEP2 in sperm cells by reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), western blot and immunocytochemistry assays and evaluated the effects of the neprilysin and neprilysin-2 inhibitor phosphoramidon on sperm motility in the absence and presence of tachykinin receptor-selective antagonists. Sperm motility was measured using WHO procedures or computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA). Results The mRNAs of the genes that encode substance P/neurokinin A (TAC1), neurokinin B (TAC3), hemokinin-1 (TAC4), neprilysin (MME) and neprilysin-2 (MMEL1) were expressed in human sperm. Immunocytochemistry studies revealed that tachykinin and neprilysin proteins were present in spermatozoa and show specific and differential distributions. Phosphoramidon increased sperm progressive motility and its effects were reduced in the presence of the tachykinin receptor antagonists SR140333 (NK1 receptor-selective) and SR48968 (NK2 receptor-selective) but unmodified in the presence of SR142801 (NK3 receptor-selective). Conclusion These data show that tachykinins are present in human spermatozoa and participate in the regulation of sperm motility. Tachykinin activity is regulated, at least in part, by neprilysins. PMID:20796280

  13. Predictive factors of successful microdissection testicular sperm extraction.

    PubMed

    Bernie, Aaron M; Ramasamy, Ranjith; Schlegel, Peter N

    2013-01-01

    Azoospermia in men requires microsurgical reconstruction or a procedure for sperm retrieval with assisted reproduction to allow fertility. While the chance of successful retrieval of sperm in men with obstructive azoospermia approaches >90%, the chances of sperm retrieval in men with non-obstructive azoospermia (NOA) are not as high. Conventional procedures such as fine needle aspiration of the testis, testicular biopsy and testicular sperm extraction are successful in 20-45% of men with NOA. With microdissection testicular sperm extraction (micro-TESE), the chance of successful retrieval can be up to 60%. Despite this increased success, the ability to counsel patients preoperatively on their probability of successful sperm retrieval has remained challenging. A combination of variables such as age, serum FSH and inhibin B levels, testicular size, genetic analysis, history of Klinefelter syndrome, history of cryptorchidism or varicocele and histopathology on diagnostic biopsy have provided some insight into the chance of successful sperm retrieval in men with NOA. The goal of this review was to evaluate the preoperative factors that are currently available to predict the outcome for success with micro-TESE. PMID:25763186

  14. Impaired swimming behaviour and morphology of sperm from barn swallows Hirundo rustica in Chernobyl.

    PubMed

    Møller, A P; Mousseau, T A; Lynn, C; Lynnn, C; Ostermiller, S; Rudolfsen, G

    2008-02-29

    We investigated the motility and morphology of live sperm from barn swallows Hirundo rustica breeding in radioactively contaminated areas around Chernobyl and control areas in Ukraine in order to test the hypothesis that swimming behaviour and morphology of sperm was impaired by radioactive contamination. We obtained sperm samples from 98% of sampled birds, thus avoiding sampling bias due to the fraction of males not producing sperm samples. Analyses of within- and between-sample repeatability revealed significant and intermediate to large estimates for all sperm parameters. There were significant differences between the Chernobyl area and the control area for two of 11 sperm behaviour parameters, and significant interactions between area and year for six of these parameters. The proportion of sperm with abnormal morphology was elevated in barn swallows from Chernobyl. A principal component (PC) analysis revealed four significant axes that explained 88% of the variance in sperm behaviour parameters. One of these principal components differed between areas, and three components showed significant year by area interactions. PC2 representing the frequency of slow sperm increased with increasing radiation in one year, but not another. PC3 representing sperm with high linearity, small amplitude of lateral head displacement and low track velocity decreased with increasing background radiation level. PC4 reflecting a large proportion of static sperm with high beat cross frequency increased with increasing background radiation level. Sperm behaviour as reflected by principal components was predictable among years from information on level of radiation, and it was predictable among sites in different years. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that sperm behaviour and morphology have been affected by radiation due to the Chernobyl accident. PMID:18218334

  15. Concepts in sperm heterogeneity, sperm selection and sperm competition as biological foundations for laboratory tests of semen quality.

    PubMed

    Holt, William V; Van Look, Katrien J W

    2004-05-01

    Stringent selection mechanisms, in both internal and external fertilisation systems, reject all but a significant minority of the spermatozoa released at ejaculation. Sperm competition theory provides circumstantial evidence that the selection process involves mechanisms by which the quality of the fertilising spermatozoon is controlled, thereby ensuring that females and their offspring receive high quality genetic material. In this review we examine some of these selection processes to see whether they could be exploited for the improvement of laboratory tests of sperm quality. Such tests are not only required for clinical and agricultural purposes, but are increasingly needed in fields such as reproductive and environmental toxicology where the species requirement is much broader. Despite many years of research, sperm quality assessment methods continue to provide imprecise data about fertility; here we suggest that this may be a consequence of using tests that focus on the spermatozoa that would normally be unable to fertilise under natural conditions. To achieve fertilisation a spermatozoon must be capable of responding appropriately to external signalling stimuli; those involving protein kinase-regulated flagellar function seem especially influential in governing effects ranging from non-Mendelian inheritance in mammals to sperm chemotaxis in sea urchins. Examination of the elicited responses reveals considerable heterogeneity in all species. Here we propose that this level of heterogeneity is meaningful both in terms of understanding how spermatozoa from some individuals possess fertility advantages over spermatozoa from their rivals in sperm competition, and in that the heterogeneity should be exploitable in the development of more accurate laboratory tests. PMID:15129008

  16. Nutrient cycling by fish supports relatively more primary production as lake productivity increases.

    PubMed

    Vanni, Michael J; Bowling, Anna M; Dickman, Elizabeth M; Hale, R Scott; Higgins, Karen A; Horgan, Martin J; Knoll, Lesley B; Renwick, William H; Stein, Roy A

    2006-07-01

    Animals can be important in nutrient cycling in particular ecosystems, but few studies have examined how this importance varies along environmental gradients. In this study we quantified the nutrient cycling role of an abundant detritivorous fish species, the gizzard shad (Dorosoma cepedianum), in reservoir ecosystems along a gradient of ecosystem productivity. Gizzard shad feed mostly on sediment detritus and excrete sediment-derived nutrients into the water column, thereby mediating a cross-habitat translocation of nutrients to phytoplankton. We quantified nitrogen and phosphorus cycling (excretion) rates of gizzard shad, as well as nutrient demand by phytoplankton, in seven lakes over a four-year period (16 lake-years). The lakes span a gradient of watershed land use (the relative amounts of land used for agriculture vs. forest) and productivity. As the watersheds of these lakes became increasingly dominated by agricultural land, primary production rates, lake trophic state indicators (total phosphorus and chlorophyll concentrations), and nutrient flux through gizzard shad populations all increased. Nutrient cycling by gizzard shad supported a substantial proportion of primary production in these ecosystems, and this proportion increased as watershed agriculture (and ecosystem productivity) increased. In the four productive lakes with agricultural watersheds (>78% agricultural land), gizzard shad supported on average 51% of phytoplankton primary production (range 27-67%). In contrast, in the three relatively unproductive lakes in forested or mixed-land-use watersheds (>47% forest, <52% agricultural land), gizzard shad supported 18% of primary production (range 14-23%). Thus, along a gradient of forested to agricultural landscapes, both watershed nutrient inputs and nutrient translocation by gizzard shad increase, but our data indicate that the importance of nutrient translocation by gizzard shad increases more rapidly. Our results therefore support the hypothesis that watersheds and gizzard shad jointly regulate primary production in reservoir ecosystems. PMID:16922320

  17. Oxidative status in testis and epididymal sperm parameters after acute and chronic stress by cold-water immersion in the adult rat.

    PubMed

    García-Díaz, Erika Cecilia; Gómez-Quiroz, Luis Enrique; Arenas-Ríos, Edith; Aragón-Martínez, Andrés; Ibarra-Arias, Juan Antonio; del Socorro I Retana-Márquez, María

    2015-06-01

    Stress is associated with detrimental effects on male reproductive function. It is known that stress increases reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation in the male reproductive tract. High ROS levels may be linked to low sperm quality and male infertility. However, it is still not clear if ROS are generated by stress in the testis. The objective of this study was to characterize the role of oxidative stress induced by cold-water immersion stress in the testis of adult male rats and its relation with alterations in cauda epididymal sperm. Adult male rats were exposed to acute stress or chronic stress by cold-water immersion. Rats were sacrificed at 0, 6, 12, and 24 hours immediately following acute stress exposure, and after 20, 40, and 50 days of chronic stress. ROS production increased only at 6 hours post-stress, while the activity and expression of antioxidant enzymes, lipid peroxidation (LPO), and sperm parameters were not modified in the testis. Corticosterone increased immediately after acute stress, whereas testosterone was not modified. After chronic stress, testicular absolute weight decreased; in addition, ROS production and LPO increased at 20, 40, and 50 days. The activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD) and glutathione peroxidase (GPx) decreased throughout the duration of chronic stress and the activity of catalase (CAT) decreased at 40 and 50 days, and increased at 20 days. The expression of copper/zinc superoxide dismutase (SOD1) and CAT were not modified, but the expression of phospholipid hydroperoxide glutathione peroxidase (GPx-4) decreased at 20 days. Motility, viability, and sperm count decreased, while abnormal sperm increased with chronic stress. These results suggest that during acute stress there is a redox state regulation in the testis since no deleterious effect was observed. In contrast, equilibrium redox is lost during chronic stress, with low enzyme activity but without modifying their expression. In addition, corticosterone increased while testosterone decreased, this decrease is related to the negative effects seen in sperm. PMID:25640572

  18. Mating system does not predict permanent sperm depletion in black widow spiders.

    PubMed

    Modanu, Maria; Michalik, Peter; Andrade, Maydianne C B

    2013-05-01

    Variation in sperm production is strongly influenced by mating system across taxa. Recent work in spiders suggests that males of some species show termination of spermatogenesis before their adult molt and thus an inability to produce sperm after maturation. This permanent sperm depletion (PSD) has been hypothesized to co-occur with monogyny, genital mutilation, or sexual cannibalism because the maintenance of continual sperm supplies is not necessary for species where males can expect only one mating opportunity. Here we test this hypothesis in two congeners exhibiting genital mutilation: the sexually cannibalistic, monogynous Australian redback spider Latrodectus hasselti and the polygynous Western black widow Latrodectus hesperus. We report that PSD does not occur in adult males of either species, and show that males transfer sperm into their copulatory organs multiple times as adults. These data suggest evolutionary links between mating system and investment in sperm production may be more complex than currently appreciated. PMID:23607304

  19. Methods for increasing the production of ethanol from microbial fermentation

    DOEpatents

    Gaddy, James L.; Arora, Dinesh K.; Ko, Ching-Whan; Phillips, John Randall; Basu, Rahul; Wikstrom, Carl V.; Clausen, Edgar C.

    2007-10-23

    A stable continuous method for producing ethanol from the anaerobic bacterial fermentation of a gaseous substrate containing at least one reducing gas involves culturing a fermentation bioreactor anaerobic, acetogenic bacteria in a liquid nutrient medium; supplying the gaseous substrate to the bioreactor; and manipulating the bacteria in the bioreactor by reducing the redox potential, or increasing the NAD(P)H TO NAD(P) ratio, in the fermentation broth after the bacteria achieves a steady state and stable cell concentration in the bioreactor. The free acetic acid concentration in the bioreactor is maintained at less than 5 g/L free acid. This method allows ethanol to be produced in the fermentation broth in the bioreactor at a productivity greater than 10 g/L per day. Both ethanol and acetate are produced in a ratio of ethanol to acetate ranging from 1:1 to 20:1.

  20. Trigonellae Semen Enhances Sperm Motility and the Expression of the Cation Sperm Channel Proteins in Mouse Testes

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Do Rim; Kim, Hyu Young; Kim, Ha Young; Chang, Mun Seog; Park, Seong Kyu

    2015-01-01

    Genetic defects during spermatogenesis can lead to a reduction in sperm motility and cause male infertility. The cation channels of sperm (CatSper) play a role in the regulation of hyperactivated sperm motility in mouse testes. The effect of Trigonellae Semen (TS) on the male reproductive system and CatSper protein in mouse testes during spermatogenesis was examined. C57BL/c mice were divided into the following five groups: normal, cyclophosphamide- (CP-) only treated (control group), and three groups treated with varying concentrations of TS with CP (100, 500, and 1000?mg/kg TS and 100?mg/kg CP). Real-time PCR, western blot analysis, and a testosterone immunoassay were performed to assess CatSper protein levels in the five groups. Additionally, sperm cell counts and motility were examined. Results indicate that sperm motility and sperm counts increased in the TS treated groups in a dose-dependent manner (p < 0.01). CatSper levels were also significantly higher in the TS treated groups compared to that of the control group (p < 0.001). Therefore, TS treatment could enhance sperm function by promoting spermatogenesis and the expression of CatSper proteins in mouse testes. PMID:26539234

  1. Potentials of engineered nanoparticles as fertilizers for increasing agronomic productions.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ruiqiang; Lal, Rattan

    2015-05-01

    Development and application of new types of fertilizers using innovative nanotechnology are one of the potentially effective options of significantly enhancing the global agricultural productions needed to meet the future demands of the growing population. Indeed, the review of available literature indicates that some engineered nanomaterials can enhance plant-growth in certain concentration ranges and could be used as nanofertilizers in agriculture to increase agronomic yields of crops and/or minimize environmental pollution. This article summarizes this type of nanomaterials under four categories: macronutrient nanofertilizers, micronutrient nanofertilizers, nutrient-loaded nanofertilizers, and plant-growth-enhancing nanomaterials. Each category is discussed respectively with reference to nanomaterials' chemical composition, particle size, concentrations applied, benefited plant species, plant incubation methods, and plant-growth enhancement aspects and the rates. The importance, research directions, and research requirements of each nanofertilizer category for achieving sustainable agriculture are also specifically examined. Finally, this review suggests that development of N and P macronutrient nanofertilizers is a high research and development priority both for food production and environmental protection. PMID:25659311

  2. Relationships between human sperm protamines, DNA damage and assisted reproduction outcomes.

    PubMed

    Simon, Luke; Castillo, Judit; Oliva, Rafael; Lewis, Sheena E M

    2011-12-01

    The exchange of histones with protamines in sperm DNA results in sperm chromatin compaction and protection. Variations in sperm protamine expression are associated with male infertility. The aim of this study was to investigate relationships between DNA fragmentation, sperm protamines and assisted reproduction treatment. Semen and spermatozoa prepared by density-gradient centrifugation (DGC) from 73 men undergoing IVF and 24 men undergoing intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) were included in the study. Nuclear DNA fragmentation was assessed using the alkaline Comet assay and protamines were separated by acid-urea polyacrylamide gels. Sperm DNA fragmentation and protamine content (P1-DNA, P2-DNA, P1+P2-DNA) decreased in spermatozoa after DGC. Abnormally high and low P1/P2 ratios were associated with increased sperm DNA fragmentation. Couples with idiopathic infertility had abnormally high P1/P2 ratios. Fertilization rates and embryo quality decreased as sperm DNA fragmentation or protamines increased. Sperm DNA fragmentation was lower in couples achieving pregnancies after IVF, but not after ICSI. There was no correlation between protamine content (P1-DNA, P2-DNA, P1+P2-DNA) or P1/P2 ratios and IVF or ICSI pregnancies. Increased sperm DNA fragmentation was associated with abnormal protamination and resulted in lower fertilization rates, poorer embryo quality and reduced pregnancy rates. PMID:22036908

  3. The relative sensitivity of sperm, eggs and embryos to copper in the blue mussel (Mytilus trossulus).

    PubMed

    Fitzpatrick, J L; Nadella, S; Bucking, C; Balshine, S; Wood, C M

    2008-05-01

    Copper, an essential element, is toxic at elevated concentrations, and as a result of anthropogenic activities is becoming increasingly prevalent in marine environments. In this study, we examined the effects of copper on early life stages of the blue mussel, Mytilus trossulus. We assessed the impacts of increasing copper concentrations on embryo development, egg viability, sperm fertilization capacity and, in particular, on sperm swimming speed using computer-assisted sperm analysis. Sensitivity to copper followed the pattern: embryos > sperm > eggs. A dramatic increase in abnormal embryo development was observed following exposure to copper concentrations exceeding 10 microg/L. Sperm swimming speeds decreased significantly when exposed to 100 microg/L of copper, but lower doses did not influence sperm swimming speed. Copper exposure (at any tested concentration) did not affect sperm flagellum length, or alter egg viability. Based on our results, we suggest that exposure of sperm to copper may interfere with mitochondrial activity, which reduces sperm swimming speed during the extended duration of sperm motility in blue mussel. PMID:18308641

  4. Biochemical and topological analysis of bovine sperm cells induced by low power laser irradiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dreyer, T. R.; Siqueira, A. F. P.; Magrini, T. D.; Fiorito, P. A.; Assumpção, M. E. O. A.; Nichi, M.; Martinho, H. S.; Milazzotto, M. P.

    2011-07-01

    Low-level laser irradiation (LLLI) increases ATP production and energy supply to the cell which could increase sperm motility, acrossomal reaction and consequently the fertilizing potential. The aim of this study was to characterize the biochemical and topological changes induced by low power laser irradiation on bull sperm cells. Post-thawing sperm were irradiated with a 633nm laser with fluence rates of 30, 150 and 300mJ.cm-2 (power of 5mW for 1, 5 and 10minutes, respectively); 45, 230, and 450mJ.cm-2 (7.5mW for 1, 5 and 10 minutes); and 60, 300 and 600mJ.cm-2 (10mW for 1, 5 and 10 minutes). Biochemical and metabolical changes were analyzed by FTIR and flow cytometry; oxygen reactive species production was assessed by TBARS and the morphological changes were evaluated by AFM. Motility had no difference among times or powers of irradiation. Increasing in ROS generation was observed with power of 5mW compared to 7.5 and 10mW, and with 10min of irradiation in comparison with 5 and 1min of irradiation. This higher ROS generation was related to an increase in acrossomal and plasma membrane damage. FTIR results showed that the amount of lipids was inversely proportional to the quantity of ROS generated. AFM images showed morphological differences in plasma/acrossomal membrane, mainly on the equatorial region. We conclude that LLLI is an effective method to induce changes on sperm cell metabolism but more studies are necessary to establish an optimal dose to increase the fertility potential of these cells.

  5. Modelling a tethered mammalian sperm cell undergoing hyperactivation.

    PubMed

    Curtis, M P; Kirkman-Brown, J C; Connolly, T J; Gaffney, E A

    2012-09-21

    The beat patterns of mammalian sperm flagella can be categorised into two different types. The first involves symmetric waves propagating down the flagellum with a net linear propulsion of the sperm cell. The second, hyperactive, waveform is classified by vigorous asymmetric waves of higher amplitude, lower wavenumber and frequency propagating down the flagellum resulting in highly curved trajectories. The latter beat pattern is part of the capacitation process whereby sperm prepare for the prospective penetration of the zona pellucida and fusion with the egg. Hyperactivation is often observed to initiate as sperm escape from epithelial and ciliary bindings formed within the isthmic regions of the female oviducts, leading to a conjecture in the literature that this waveform is mechanically important for sperm escape. Hence, we explore the mechanical effects of hyperactivation on a tethered sperm, focussing on a Newtonian fluid. Using a resistive force theory model we demonstrate that hyperactivation can indeed generate forces that pull the sperm away from a tethering point and consequently a hyperactivated sperm cell bound to an epithelial surface need not always be pushed by its flagellum. More generally, directions of the forces generated by tethered flagella are insensitive to reductions in beat frequency and the detailed flagellar responses depend on the nature of the binding at the tethering point. Furthermore, waveform asymmetry and amplitude increases enhance the tendency for a tethered flagellum to start tugging on its binding. The same is generally predicted to be true for reductions in the wavenumber of the flagellum beat, but not universally so, emphasising the dynamical complexity of flagellar force generation. Finally, qualitative observations drawn from experimental data of human sperm bound to excised female reproductive tract are also presented and are found to be consistent with the theoretical predictions. PMID:22727894

  6. Sperm ultrastructure, morphometry, and abnormal morphology in American black bears (Ursus americanus).

    PubMed

    Brito, L F C; Sertich, P L; Stull, G B; Rives, W; Knobbe, M

    2010-11-01

    The objective of this study was to describe sperm ultrastructure, morphometry, and abnormal morphology in American black bears. Electroejaculation was successful in 53.8% (7/13) of the attempts, but urine contamination was common. Epididymal sperm samples were also obtained from five bears. Sperm had a paddle-like head shape and the ultrastructure was similar to that of most other mammals. The most striking particularity of black bear sperm ultrastructure was a tightening of the nucleus in the equatorial region. Although the differences were not significant in all bears, the overall decrease in sperm nucleus dimensions during transport from the caput epididymis to the cauda suggested increasing compaction of the nucleus during maturation. For ejaculated sperm, nucleus length, width, and base width were 4.9, 3.7, and 1.8 μm, respectively, whereas sperm head length, width, and base width were 6.6, 4.8, and 2.3 μm, and midpiece, tail (including midpiece), and total sperm lengths were 9.8, 68.8, and 75.3 μm. Evaluation of sperm cytoplasmic droplets in the epididymis revealed that proximal droplets start migrating toward a distal position in the caput epididymis and that the process was mostly completed by the time sperm reached the cauda epididymis. The proportion of morphologically normal sperm in the ejaculate was 35.6%; the most prevalent sperm defects were distal cytoplasmic droplets and bent/coiled tails. The morphology of abnormal sperm and the underlying ultrastructural defects were similar to that in other large domestic animals thus suggesting similar underlying pathogenesis of specific sperm defects and similar effects on fertility. PMID:20708230

  7. A simulation study of sperm motility hydrodynamics near fish eggs and spheres.

    PubMed

    Ishimoto, Kenta; Cosson, Jacky; Gaffney, Eamonn A

    2016-01-21

    For teleost fish fertilisation, sperm must proceed through a small opening on the egg surface, referred to as the micropyle. In this paper, we have used boundary element simulations to explore whether the hydrodynamic attraction between sperm and a fish egg can be a sperm guidance cue. Hydrodynamical egg-sperm interactions alone do not increase the chances of an egg encounter, nor do they induce surface swimming for virtual turbot fish sperm across smooth spheres with a diameter of 1mm, which is representative of a turbot fish egg. When a repulsive surface force between the virtual turbot sperm and the egg is introduced, as motivated by surface charge and van-der-Waals interactions for instance, we find that extended surface swimming of the virtual sperm across a model turbot egg occurs, but ultimately the sperm escapes from the egg. This is due to the small exit angle of the scattering associated with the initial sperm-egg interaction at the egg surface, leading to a weak drift away from the egg, in combination with a weak hydrodynamical attraction between both gametes, though the latter is not sufficient to prevent eventual escape. The resulting transience is not observed experimentally but is a detailed quantitative difference between theory and observation in that stable surface swimming is predicted for eggs with radii larger than about 1.8mm. Regardless, the extended sperm swimming trajectory across the egg constitutes a two-dimensional search for the micropyle and thus the egg is consistently predicted to provide a guidance cue for sperm once they are sufficiently close. In addition, the observation that the virtual turbot sperm swims stably next to a flat plane given repulsive surface interactions, but does not swim stably adjacent to a turbot-sized egg, which is extremely large by sperm-lengthscales, also highlights that the stability of sperm swimming near a boundary is very sensitive to geometry. PMID:26542943

  8. The 5’-AMP-Activated Protein Kinase (AMPK) Is Involved in the Augmentation of Antioxidant Defenses in Cryopreserved Chicken Sperm

    PubMed Central

    Nguyen, Thi Mong Diep; Seigneurin, François; Froment, Pascal; Combarnous, Yves; Blesbois, Elisabeth

    2015-01-01

    Semen cryopreservation is a unique tool for the management of animal genetic diversity. However, the freeze-thaw process causes biochemical and physical alterations which make difficult the restoration of sperm energy-dependent functions needed for fertilization. 5’-AMP activated protein kinase (AMPK) is a key sensor and regulator of intracellular energy metabolism. Mitochondria functions are known to be severely affected during sperm cryopreservation with deleterious oxidative and peroxidative effects leading to cell integrity and functions damages. The aim of this study was thus to examine the role of AMPK on the peroxidation/antioxidant enzymes defense system in frozen-thawed sperm and its consequences on sperm functions. Chicken semen was diluted in media supplemented with or without AMPK activators (AICAR or Metformin [MET]) or inhibitor (Compound C [CC]) and then cryopreserved. AMPKα phosphorylation, antioxidant enzymes activities, mitochondrial potential, ATP, citrate, viability, acrosome reaction ability (AR) and various motility parameters were negatively affected by the freeze-thaw process while reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, lipid peroxidation (LPO) and lactate concentration were dramatically increased. AICAR partially restored superoxide dismutase (SOD), Glutathione Peroxidase (GPx) and Glutathione Reductase (GR), increased ATP, citrate, and lactate concentration and subsequently decreased the ROS and LPO (malondialdehyde) in frozen-thawed semen. Motility parameters were increased (i.e., + 23% for motility, + 34% for rapid sperm) as well as AR (+ 100%). MET had similar effects as AICAR except that catalase activity was restored and that ATP and mitochondrial potential were further decreased. CC showed effects opposite to AICAR on SOD, ROS, LPO and AR and motility parameters. Taken together, our results strongly suggest that, upon freeze-thaw process, AMPK stimulated intracellular anti-oxidative defense enzymes through ATP regulation, thus reducing ROS and lipid peroxidation, and consequently partially restoring several essential sperm functions and leading to a better quality of cryopreserved sperm. PMID:26222070

  9. Earthworms increase plant production: a meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    van Groenigen, Jan Willem; Lubbers, Ingrid M; Vos, Hannah M J; Brown, George G; De Deyn, Gerlinde B; van Groenigen, Kees Jan

    2014-01-01

    To meet the challenge of feeding a growing world population with minimal environmental impact, we need comprehensive and quantitative knowledge of ecological factors affecting crop production. Earthworms are among the most important soil dwelling invertebrates. Their activity affects both biotic and abiotic soil properties, in turn affecting plant growth. Yet, studies on the effect of earthworm presence on crop yields have not been quantitatively synthesized. Here we show, using meta-analysis, that on average earthworm presence in agroecosystems leads to a 25% increase in crop yield and a 23% increase in aboveground biomass. The magnitude of these effects depends on presence of crop residue, earthworm density and type and rate of fertilization. The positive effects of earthworms become larger when more residue is returned to the soil, but disappear when soil nitrogen availability is high. This suggests that earthworms stimulate plant growth predominantly through releasing nitrogen locked away in residue and soil organic matter. Our results therefore imply that earthworms are of crucial importance to decrease the yield gap of farmers who can't -or won't- use nitrogen fertilizer. PMID:25219785

  10. Sperm donation in Israel.

    PubMed

    Mor-Yosef, S; Schenker, J G

    1995-04-01

    Science and technology in the field of human reproduction present new legal, ethical and religious questions which do not always have immediate answers. The first step in the rapidly developed field of reproductive technology was the use of sperm donation (artificial insemination by donor, AID) and the establishment of sperm banks. The state of Israel faced these problems when the regulations for sperm donation were discussed. The fact that the main holy places for the three monotheistic religions are in Israel directly influences the make-up of the population constituents. Therefore, besides a majority of secular people, a high percentage of the population of Israel is very religious: Jews, Moslems and Christians. Thus any resolution relating to AID should take this demographic combination into account. The practice of AID is opposed by the different monotheistic religions. To avoid the conflict between secular and religious people, and between the different religions' perspectives, the legal problem of AID in Israel was solved not by laws but by regulations which were published by the Ministry of Health. The main idea behind this attitude is that the state and its authorities should not and do not deal with ethical or religious questions. Thus, the decision was left to the couples and to the donors. The regulations address technical requirements, health problems and confidential issues concerning the couple, the donor and the child. In this paper we present the different views relating to these problems as perceived by the different religions, and describe the solution that was accepted by the Israeli Ministry of Health. PMID:7650152

  11. Sperm quality and cryopreservation of Brazilian freshwater fish species: a review.

    PubMed

    Viveiros, A T M; Godinho, H P

    2009-03-01

    The Brazilian freshwater fish diversity is the richest in the world. Only 0.7% of all Brazilian species have had any aspect of their sperm biology addressed up to this date. The majority of the fish species described in this review migrate during the spawning season (a phenomenon known as piracema). Urbanization, pollution, hydroelectric dams and deforestation are some of the causes of stock depletion or even local extinction of some of these species. The knowledge concerning sperm quality and minimum sperm:egg ratio is important to maximize the use of males without reducing hatching rates. Furthermore, sperm cryopreservation and gene banking can guarantee the conservation of genetic diversity and development of adequate breeding programs of native fish species. In this review, we present and evaluate the existing information on Brazilian fish species that have been subject to sperm quality and cryopreservation studies. The following parameters were evaluated: volume of extractable sperm, sperm motility, sperm concentration, freezing media, freezing methods, and post-thaw sperm quality. Although the existing protocols yield relatively high post-thaw motility and fertilization rates, the use of cryopreserved sperm in routine hatchery production is still limited in Brazil. PMID:19189240

  12. Hyperoxia increases hepatic arginase expression and ornithine production in mice

    SciTech Connect

    Malleske, Daniel T.; Rogers, Lynette K.; Velluci, Sean M.; Young, Tamara L.; Park, Min S.; Long, Donald W.; Welty, Stephen E.; Smith, Charles V.; Nelin, Leif D. . E-mail: NelinL@pediatrics.ohio-state.edu

    2006-08-15

    Hyperoxic exposure affects the levels and activities of some hepatic proteins. We tested the hypothesis that hyperoxic exposure would result in greater hepatic .NO concentrations. C3H/HeN mice were exposed to >95% O{sub 2} for 72 or 96 h and compared to room air-breathing controls. In contrast to our working hypothesis, exposure to >95% O{sub 2} for 96 h decreased hepatic nitrite/nitrate NO {sub X} concentrations (10.9 {+-} 2.2 nmol/g liver versus 19.3 {+-} 2.4 nmol/g liver in room air, P < 0.05). The hepatic levels of endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) and inducible NOS (iNOS) proteins were not different among the groups. The arginases, which convert L-arginine to urea and L-ornithine, may affect hepatic NOS activities by decreasing L-arginine bioavailability. Hepatic ornithine concentrations were greater in hyperoxic animals than in controls (318 {+-} 18 nmol/g liver in room air, and 539 {+-} 64, and 475 {+-} 40 at 72 and 96 h of hyperoxia, respectively, P < 0.01). Hepatic arginase I protein levels were greater in hyperoxic animals than in controls. Hepatic carbamoyl phosphate synthetase (CPS) protein levels and activities were not different among groups. These results indicate that increases in hepatic levels of arginase I in mice exposed to hyperoxia may diminish .NO production, as reflected by lower liver levels of NO {sub X}. The resultant greater hepatic ornithine concentrations may represent a mechanism to facilitate tissue repair, by favoring the production of polyamines and/or proline.

  13. Sperm transport through the rete testis in anesthetized rats: role of the testicular capsule and effect of gonadotropins and prostaglandins

    SciTech Connect

    Free, M.J.; Jaffe, R.A.; Morford, D.E.

    1980-01-01

    An intact testicular capsule was not necessary for flow of rete testis fluid in anesthetized rats fitted with efferent duct cannulae. Flow was unaffected by i.v. injections of FSH, LH or prolactin, or by intratesticular injections of prostaglandin E/sub 1/, E/sub 2/ or A/sub 1/. However, small increases in intratesticular pressure resulting from injection of 2 to 20 ..mu..l saline resulted in transient (3 to 7 min) increases in flow rate, while PGF/sub 2..cap alpha../ increased rete testis fluid flow 2 to 3-fold over a 20 to 40 min period. PGF/sub 2..cap alpha../ effect was reduced or eliminated when the testicular capsule was cut open. Sperm concentration in the rete fluid was unaffected by any of the treatments mentioned above, suggesting that spermiation was unaffected. In hypophysectomized rats given replacement androgens for 8 weeks (2.5 to 25 mg testosterone propionate/day), sperm concentration in rete fluid was similar to normal, although rate of fluid flow, and therefore sperm output rates, were significantly reduced. These data suggest a link between testicular fluid production and sperm release in the rat.

  14. A Mutant Gene That Increases Gibberellin Production in Brassica1

    PubMed Central

    Rood, Stewart B.; Williams, Paul H.; Pearce, David; Murofushi, Noboru; Mander, Lewis N.; Pharis, Richard P.

    1990-01-01

    A single gene mutant (elongated internode [ein/ein]) with accelerated shoot elongation was identified from a rapid cycling line of Brassica rapa. Relative to normal plants, mutant plants had slightly accelerated floral development, greater stem dry weights, and particularly, increased internode and inflorescence elongation. The application of the triazole plant growth retardant, paclobutrazol, inhibited shoot elongation, returning ein to a more normal phenotype. Conversely, exogenous gibberellin A3 (GA3) can convert normal genotypes to a phenotype resembling ein. The content of endogenous GA1 and GA3 were estimated by gas chromatography-selected ion monitoring using [2H]GA1, as a quantitative internal standard and at day 14 were 1.5- and 12.1-fold higher per stem, respectively, in ein than in normal plants, although GA concentrations were more similar. The endogenous levels of GA20 and GA1, and the rate of GA19 metabolism were simultaneously analyzed at day 7 by feeding [2H2]GA19 and measuring metabolites [2H2]GA20 and [2H2]GA1 and endogenous GA20 and GA1, with [2H5]GA20 and [2H5]GA1 as quantitative internal standards. Levels of GA1 and GA20 were 4.6- and 12.9-fold higher, respectively, and conversions to GA20 and GA1 were 8.3 and 1.3 times faster in ein than normal plants. Confirming the enhanced rate of GA1 biosynthesis in ein, the conversion of [3H]GA20 to [3H]GA1 was also faster in ein than in the normal genotype. Thus, the ein allele results in accelerated GA1 biosynthesis and an elevated content of endogenous GAs, including the dihydroxylated GAs A1 and A3. The enhanced GA production probably underlies the accelerated shoot growth and development, and particularly, the increased shoot elongation. Images Figure 1 PMID:16667574

  15. Effect of Palm Pollen on Sperm Parameters of Infertile Man.

    PubMed

    Rasekh, Athar; Jashni, Hojjatollah Karimi; Rahmanian, Karamatollah; Jahromi, Abdolreza Sotoodeh

    2015-04-01

    There is a rapidly growing trend in the consumption of herbal remedies in the developing countries. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of orally administered Date Palm Pollen (DPP) on the results of semen analysis in adult infertile men. Forty infertile men participated in our study. They were treated by Pollen powder 120 mg kg(-1) in gelatinous capsules every other day, for two months. Before and at the end of therapy, the semen was collected after masturbation and sperm numbers, motility and morphology were determined. Our findings revealed that consumption of DPP improved the sperm count. The treatment was significantly increased sperm motility, morphology and forward progressive motility. Date palm pollen seems to cure male infertility by improving the quality of sperm parameters. PMID:26506651

  16. New stimulation technique improves frac recovery and increases production

    SciTech Connect

    Phillips, A.M.; Wilson, W.J.

    1984-09-01

    A technique for improving stimulation fluid recovery has been developed in the laboratory and has proven effective in field applications. The method involves improving proppant pack drainage and minimizing capillary pressure in the formation through the judicious application of surface active agents. The technique is particularly applicable in low pressure oil wells and tight gas reservoirs, and may be used in all aqueous fracturing treatments. These include slick and gelled water, as well as foamed and crosslinked systems. The technique involves the use of a solvent in the pad fluids and a surfactant system throughout the entire fracturing treatment. This combination improves sand pack drainage and minimizes capillary water blocks in the invaded formation, while maintaining the water-wet condition of both the proppant pack and formation. The results of field applications using this technique have shown great improvement in the recovery of aqueous stimulation fluids in both sand and limestone formations. Increases in initial hydrocarbon production have also resulted. Case histories are presented from both oil and gas wells in a variety of formations.

  17. Sperm mitochondria in reproduction: good or bad and where do they go?

    PubMed

    Luo, Shi-Ming; Schatten, Heide; Sun, Qing-Yuan

    2013-11-20

    The mitochondrion is the major energy provider to power sperm motility. In mammals, aside from the nuclear genome, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) also contributes to oxidative phosphorylation to impact production of ATP by coding 13 polypeptides. However, the role of sperm mitochondria in fertilization and its final fate after fertilization are still controversial. The viewpoints that sperm bearing more mtDNA will have a better fertilizing capability and that sperm mtDNA is actively eliminated during early embryogenesis are widely accepted. However, this may be not true for several mammalian species, including mice and humans. Here, we review the sperm mitochondria and their mtDNA in sperm functions, and the mechanisms of maternal mitochondrial inheritance in mammals. PMID:24238608

  18. Behavioral mechanisms of mammalian sperm guidance

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Cerezales, Serafín; Boryshpolets, Sergii; Eisenbach, Michael

    2015-01-01

    In mammals, sperm guidance in the oviduct appears essential for successful sperm arrival at the oocyte. Hitherto, three different potential sperm guidance mechanisms have been recognized: thermotaxis, rheotaxis, and chemotaxis, each of them using specific stimuli – a temperature gradient, fluid flow, and a chemoattractant gradient, respectively. Here, we review sperm behavioral in these mechanisms and indicate commonalities and differences between them. PMID:25999361

  19. Quantification of mammalian sperm morphology by slit-scan flow cytometry

    SciTech Connect

    Benaron, D.A.; Gray, J.W.; Gledhill, B.L.; Lake, S.; Wyrobek, A.J.; Young, I.T.

    1982-01-01

    The head shapes of mammalian sperm were measured by slit-scan flow cytometry (SSFCM). Fluorescence profiles were measured for sperm from mice, rabbits, hamsters, and bulls, and for sperm from mice, rabbits, hamsters, and bulls, and for sperm from mice exposed to testicular x-irradiation from 0 to 900 rads. Some of the fluorescence profiles for sperm from the irradiated mice differed significantly from the profiles usually measured for sperm from unexposed mice. An algorithm was developed to determine the frequency of these sperm. The estimated frequencies of atypical profiles correlated well with the frequencies of abnormally shaped sperm determined by microscopic scoring. The maximum SSFCM sensitivity was not as high as that for the visual assay. However, only 100 profiles were measured by SSFCM at each dose while at least 500 sperm were scored visually at each dose. The sensitivity of the SSFCM assay should be increased substantially by measuring more profiles. The objective nature of SSFCM coupled with the high correlation with results from the visually based assay of morphology suggests the use of SSFCM to measure frequencies of misshapen sperm when testing for mutagens or monitoring for effects of environmental contaminants.

  20. Fertilization Is Not a New Beginning: The Relationship between Sperm Longevity and Offspring Performance

    PubMed Central

    Crean, Angela J.; Dwyer, John M.; Marshall, Dustin J.

    2012-01-01

    Sperm are the most diverse cell type known: varying not only among- and within- species, but also among- and within-ejaculates of a single male. Recently, the causes and consequences of variability in sperm phenotypes have received much attention, but the importance of within-ejaculate variability remains largely unknown. Correlative evidence suggests that reduced within-ejaculate variation in sperm phenotype increases a males fertilization success in competitive conditions; but the transgenerational consequences of within-ejaculate variation in sperm phenotype remain relatively unexplored. Here we examine the relationship between sperm longevity and offspring performance in a marine invertebrate with external fertilization, Styela plicata. Offspring sired by longer-lived sperm had higher performance compared to offspring sired by freshly-extracted sperm of the same ejaculate, both in the laboratory and the field. This indicates that within-ejaculate differences in sperm longevity can influence offspring fitness a source of variability in offspring phenotypes that has not previously been considered. Links between sperm phenotype and offspring performance may constrain responses to selection on either sperm or offspring traits, with broad ecological and evolutionary implications. PMID:23155458

  1. Quantitative evaluation of radiation-induced changes in sperm morphology and chromatin distribution

    SciTech Connect

    Aubele, M.; Juetting, U.R.; Rodenacker, K.; Gais, P.; Burger, G.; Hacker-Klom, U. )

    1990-01-01

    Sperm head cytometry provides a useful assay for the detection of radiation-induced damage in mouse germ cells. Exposure of the gonads to radiation is known to lead to an increase of diploid and higher polyploid sperm and of sperm with head shape abnormalities. In the pilot studies reported here quantitative analysis of the total DNA content, the morphology, and the chromatin distribution of mouse sperm was performed. The goal was to evaluate the discriminative power of features derived by high resolution image cytometry in distinguishing sperm of control and irradiated mice. Our results suggest that besides the induction of the above mentioned variations in DNA content and shape of sperm head, changes of the nonhomogeneous chromatin distribution within the sperm may also be used to quantify the radiation effect on sperm cells. Whereas the chromatin distribution features show larger variations for sperm 21 days after exposure (dpr), the shape parameters seem to be more important to discriminate sperm 35 dpr. This may be explained by differentiation processes, which take place in different stages during mouse spermatogenesis.

  2. A nonsemen copulatory fluid influences the outcome of sperm competition in Japanese quail.

    PubMed

    Finseth, F R; Iacovelli, S R; Harrison, R G; Adkins-Regan, E K

    2013-09-01

    Sperm competition is a powerful and widespread evolutionary force that drives the divergence of behavioural, physiological and morphological traits. Elucidating the mechanisms governing differential fertilization success is a fundamental question of sperm competition. Both sperm and nonsperm ejaculate components can influence sperm competition outcomes. Here, we investigate the role of a nonsemen copulatory fluid in sperm competition. Male Japanese quail possess a gland that makes meringue-like foam. Males produce and store foam independent of sperm and seminal fluid, yet transfer foam to females during copulation. We tested whether foam influenced the outcome of sperm competition by varying foam state and mating order in competitive matings. We found that the presence of foam from one male decreased the relative fertilization success of a rival, and that foam from a given male increased the probability he obtained any fertilizations. Mating order also affected competitive success. Males mated first fertilized proportionally more eggs in a clutch and had more matings with any fertilizations than subsequent males. We conclude that the function of foam in sperm competition is mediated through the positive interaction of foam with a male's sperm, and we speculate whether the benefit is achieved through improving sperm storage, fertilizing efficiency or retention. Our results suggest males can evolve complex strategies to gain fertilizations at the expense of rivals as foam, a copulatory fluid not required for fertilization, nevertheless, has important effects on reproductive performance under competition. PMID:23890178

  3. Complementary role of CNNM2 in sperm motility and Ca(2+) influx during capacitation.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, Daisuke; Funato, Yosuke; Miyata, Haruhiko; Ikawa, Masahito; Miki, Hiroaki

    2016-06-01

    Ca(2+) plays a central role in the regulation of sperm motility. We recently reported an unexpected role of CNNM4, a Mg(2+) transporter, in this process by demonstrating perturbed Ca(2+) influx and gradual loss of motility of Cnnm4-deficient sperm. However, Cnnm4-deficient male mice were not entirely infertile, and a significant Ca(2+) response was still observed in their sperm. In the present study, we generated Cnnm4-deficient mice harboring a non-functional Cnnm2 allele (Cnnm2(Δ)), to examine whether CNNM2 compensates for the lost function of CNNM4 in sperm. Cnnm2(+/Δ); Cnnm4(Δ/Δ) mice were infertile, and no obvious histological abnormalities were noted in their testis and epididymis. Their sperm showed normal morphology, but became immotile much more rapidly than those from Cnnm4(Δ/Δ) mice. When capacitation was initiated using serum albumin application, a rapid increase of intracellular Ca(2+) levels was observed in most wild-type sperm, but only about half of sperm from Cnnm4(Δ/Δ) mice exhibited a Ca(2+) response, and the response rate was further reduced in sperm from Cnnm2(+/Δ); Cnnm4(Δ/Δ) mice. Thus, sperm motility and Ca(2+) response were more severely affected in sperm from Cnnm2(+/Δ); Cnnm4(Δ/Δ) mice than in those from Cnnm4(Δ/Δ) mice, implicating CNNM2 in regulating these processes. PMID:27150626

  4. Oral antioxidant treatment partly improves integrity of human sperm DNA in infertile grade I varicocele patients.

    PubMed

    Gual-Frau, Josep; Abad, Carlos; Amengual, María J; Hannaoui, Naim; Checa, Miguel A; Ribas-Maynou, Jordi; Lozano, Iris; Nikolaou, Alexandros; Benet, Jordi; García-Peiró, Agustín; Prats, Juan

    2015-09-01

    Infertile males with varicocele have the highest percentage of sperm cells with damaged DNA, compared to other infertile groups. Antioxidant treatment is known to enhance the integrity of sperm DNA; however, there are no data on the effects in varicocele patients. We thus investigated the potential benefits of antioxidant treatment specifically in grade I varicocele males. Twenty infertile patients with grade I varicocele were given multivitamins (1500 mg L-Carnitine, 60 mg vitamin C, 20 mg coenzyme Q10, 10 mg vitamin E, 200 μg vitamin B9, 1 μg vitamin B12, 10 mg zinc, 50 μg selenium) daily for three months. Semen parameters including total sperm count, concentration, progressive motility, vitality, and morphology were determined before and after treatment. In addition, sperm DNA fragmentation and the amount of highly degraded sperm cells were analyzed by Sperm Chromatin Dispersion. After treatment, patients showed an average relative reduction of 22.1% in sperm DNA fragmentation (p = 0.02) and had 31.3% fewer highly degraded sperm cells (p = 0.07). Total numbers of sperm cells were increased (p = 0.04), but other semen parameters were unaffected. These data suggest that sperm DNA integrity in grade I varicocele patients may be improved by oral antioxidant treatment. PMID:26090928

  5. Addition of cholesterol-loaded cyclodextrins to the thawing extender: effects on boar sperm quality.

    PubMed

    Tomás, C; Gómez-Fernández, J; Gómez-Izquierdo, E; Mocé, E; de Mercado, E

    2014-06-01

    The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effect that the addition of cholesterol-loaded cyclodextrins (CLC) to the thawing extender has on the quality of frozen-thawed boar sperm. Pooled semen (n = 5) from three boars was used for the experiments. The semen was cryopreserved with an egg-yolk-based extender, it was diluted after thawing in Beltsville thawing solution (BTS) supplemented with different concentrations of CLC (0, 12.5, 25, 50 or 100 mg/500 × 10(6) sperm), and these samples were incubated at 37°C for 150 min. The following parameters of sperm quality were evaluated 30 and 150 min after incubation: sperm with intact plasma membrane (SIPM; %), sperm with normal acrosomal ridge (NAR; %), total motile sperm (TMS; %), progressively motile sperm (PMS; %) and kinetic parameters. Both SIPM and NAR increased (p < 0.05) when the thawing extender was supplemented with 12.5, 25 and 50 mg CLC/500 × 10(6) sperm. Nevertheless, motility decreased (p < 0.05) when the concentration of CLC exceeded 12.5 mg CLC/500 × 10(6) sperm. In conclusion, our results suggest that the supplementation of thawing extenders with CLC improves sperm viability and reduces acrosome damage after freezing/thawing. PMID:24593058

  6. Ejaculate Oxidative Stress Is Related with Sperm DNA Fragmentation and Round Cells

    PubMed Central

    Iommiello, Valeria Maria; Albani, Elena; Di Rosa, Alessandra; Marras, Alessandra; Menduni, Francesca; Morreale, Giovanna; Levi, Shanti Lia; Pisano, Benedetta; Levi-Setti, Paolo Emanuele

    2015-01-01

    Oxidative stress (OS) plays an essential role in male infertility aetiology by affecting sperm quality, function, and also the integrity of sperm DNA. The assessment of oxidative stress in semen may be an important tool to improve the evaluation of sperm reproductive capacity. The purpose of this study was the evaluation of any possible relation between the unbalance of oxidative stress caused by superoxide anion in the ejaculate with the presence of sperm DNA fragmentation and high concentration of round cells. 56 semen samples from males from couples suffering from infertility were evaluated according to World Health Organisation (WHO) 2010 guidelines. Oxidative stress levels from N1 (low) to N4 (high) were assessed in ejaculates using oxiSperm; DFI (sperm DNA fragmentation index) as assessed by the SCSA (Sperm Chromatin Structure Assay) was used for evaluation of sperm chromatin integrity. Our data show that high oxidative stress (N3-N4 levels) correlated positively with a DFI ≥ 30% (P = 0.0379) and round cells ≥1.500.000/mL (P = 0.0084). In conclusion, OS increases sperm DNA damage. Thus evaluation of semen OS extent of sperm DNA damage in infertile man could be useful to develop new therapeutic strategies and improve success of assisted reproduction techniques (ART). PMID:25802519

  7. Carbonic anhydrases and their functional differences in human and mouse sperm physiology.

    PubMed

    José, O; Torres-Rodríguez, P; Forero-Quintero, L S; Chávez, J C; De la Vega-Beltrán, J L; Carta, F; Supuran, C T; Deitmer, J W; Treviño, C L

    2015-12-25

    Fertilization is a key reproductive event in which sperm and egg fuse to generate a new individual. Proper regulation of certain parameters (such as intracellular pH) is crucial for this process. Carbonic anhydrases (CAs) are among the molecular entities that control intracellular pH dynamics in most cells. Unfortunately, little is known about the function of CAs in mammalian sperm physiology. For this reason, we re-explored the expression of CAI, II, IV and XIII in human and mouse sperm. We also measured the level of CA activity, determined by mass spectrometry, and found that it is similar in non-capacitated and capacitated mouse sperm. Importantly, we found that CAII activity accounts for half of the total CA activity in capacitated mouse sperm. Using the general CA inhibitor ethoxyzolamide, we studied how CAs participate in fundamental sperm physiological processes such as motility and acrosome reaction in both species. We found that capacitated human sperm depend strongly on CA activity to support normal motility, while capacitated mouse sperm do not. Finally, we found that CA inhibition increases the acrosome reaction in capacitated human sperm, but not in capacitated mouse sperm. PMID:26551457

  8. Sperm performance in conspecific and heterospecific female fluid.

    PubMed

    Cramer, Emily R A; Stensrud, Even; Marthinsen, Gunnhild; Hogner, Silje; Johannessen, Lars Erik; Laskemoen, Terje; Eybert, Marie-Christine; Slagsvold, Tore; Lifjeld, Jan T; Johnsen, Arild

    2016-03-01

    Divergent sexual selection within allopatric populations may result in divergent sexual phenotypes, which can act as reproductive barriers between populations upon secondary contact. This hypothesis has been most tested on traits involved in precopulatory sexual selection, with less work focusing on traits that act after copulation and before fertilization (i.e., postcopulatory prezygotic traits), particularly in internally fertilizing vertebrates. However, postcopulatory sexual selection within species can also drive trait divergence, resulting in reduced performance of heterospecific sperm within the female reproductive tract. Such incompatibilities, arising as a by-product of divergent postcopulatory sexual selection in allopatry, can represent reproductive barriers, analogous to species-assortative mating preferences. Here, we tested for postcopulatory prezygotic reproductive barriers between three pairs of taxa with diverged sperm phenotypes and moderate-to-high opportunity for postcopulatory sexual selection (barn swallows Hirundo rustica versus sand martins Riparia riparia, two subspecies of bluethroats, Luscinia svecica svecica versus L. s. namnetum, and great tits Parus major versus blue tits Cyanistes caeruleus). We tested sperm swimming performance in fluid from the outer reproductive tract of females, because the greatest reduction in sperm number in birds occurs as sperm swim across the vagina. Contrary to our expectations, sperm swam equally well in fluid from conspecific and heterospecific females, suggesting that postcopulatory prezygotic barriers do not act between these taxon pairs, at this stage between copulation and fertilization. We therefore suggest that divergence in sperm phenotypes in allopatry is insufficient to cause widespread postcopulatory prezygotic barriers in the form of impaired sperm swimming performance in passerine birds. PMID:26855769

  9. A Systematic Analysis of a Deep Mouse Epididymal Sperm Proteome

    SciTech Connect

    Chauvin, Theodore; Xie, Fang; Liu, Tao; Nicora, Carrie D.; Yang, Feng; Camp, David G.; Smith, Richard D.; Roberts, Kenneth P.

    2012-12-21

    Spermatozoa are highly specialized cells that, when mature, are capable of navigating the female reproductive tract and fertilizing an oocyte. The sperm cell is thought to be largely quiescent in terms of transcriptional and translational activity. As a result, once it has left the male reproductive tract, the sperm cell is essentially operating with a static population of proteins. It is therefore theoretically possible to understand the protein networks contained in a sperm cell and to deduce its cellular function capabilities. To this end we have performed a proteomic analysis of mouse sperm isolated from the cauda epididymis and have confidently identified 2,850 proteins, which is the most comprehensive sperm proteome for any species reported to date. These proteins comprise many complete cellular pathways, including those for energy production via glycolysis, β-oxidation and oxidative phosphorylation, protein folding and transport, and cell signaling systems. This proteome should prove a useful tool for assembly and testing of protein networks important for sperm function.

  10. The relationship between sperm quality in cool-shipped semen and embryo recovery rate in horses.

    PubMed

    Love, C C; Noble, J K; Standridge, S A; Bearden, C T; Blanchard, T L; Varner, D D; Cavinder, C A

    2015-12-01

    The relationship between the quality of cool-shipped stallion semen and fertility has not been adequately described. This study evaluated sperm quality of cool-shipped semen from 459 ejaculates (N = 130 stallions) that were used for insemination of 196 embryo donor mares (n = 496 estrous cycles). Embryo recovery rate (ERR; %) increased, as all sperm measures (e.g., motility, viability, DNA quality, morphology, concentration, and total number) increased. Threshold values are reported for each sperm quality measure (e.g., total sperm motility ≥ 65%) that separate two ERR groups (e.g., average: ∼50% ERR; high: ∼65% ERR). PMID:26363735

  11. Enforced ATP futile cycling increases specific productivity and yield of anaerobic lactate production in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Hädicke, Oliver; Bettenbrock, Katja; Klamt, Steffen

    2015-10-01

    The manipulation of cofactor pools such as ATP or NAD(P)H has for long been recognized as key targets for metabolic engineering of microorganisms to improve yields and productivities of biotechnological processes. Several works in the past have shown that enforcing ATP futile cycling may enhance the synthesis of certain products under aerobic conditions. However, case studies demonstrating that ATP wasting may also have beneficial effects for anaerobic production processes are scarce. Taking lactic acid as an economically relevant product, we demonstrate that induction of ATP futile cycling in Escherichia coli leads to increased yields and specific production rates under anaerobic conditions, even in the case where lactate is already produced with high yields. Specifically, we constructed a high lactate producer strain KBM10111 (= MG1655 ΔadhE::Cam ΔackA-pta) and implemented an IPTG-inducible overexpression of ppsA encoding for PEP synthase which, together with pyruvate kinase, gives rise to an ATP consuming cycle. Under induction of ppsA, KBM10111 exhibits a 25% higher specific lactate productivity as well as an 8% higher lactate yield. Furthermore, the specific substrate uptake rate was increased by 14%. However, trade-offs between specific and volumetric productivities must be considered when ATP wasting strategies are used to shift substrate conversion from biomass to product synthesis and we discuss potential solutions to design optimal processes. In summary, enforced ATP futile cycling has great potential to optimize a variety of production processes and our study demonstrates that this holds true also for anaerobic processes. PMID:25899755

  12. Quality Control of Boar Sperm Processing: Implications from European AI Centres and Two Spermatology Reference Laboratories.

    PubMed

    Riesenbeck, A; Schulze, M; Rüdiger, K; Henning, H; Waberski, D

    2015-07-01

    In recent years, increased automatization has resulted in a higher efficiency of boar semen processing in AI laboratories. Sophisticated laboratory management and efficient quality control programmes are needed for current tendencies in major pork-producing countries to reduce the sperm number per AI dose, to lengthen semen storage times and to adopt responsible methods for bacterial control and prevention of the development of multiresistant bacteria. The objective of the present review was to outline current trends in boar semen production and the critical steps in semen processing which affect sperm quality. In addition, integrated elements of a quality assurance programme in use by thirty European AI centres in association with the two German spermatology reference laboratories are described. PMID:26174912

  13. Proteins Involved in Motility and Sperm-Egg Interaction Evolve More Rapidly in Mouse Spermatozoa

    PubMed Central

    Vicens, Alberto; Lüke, Lena; Roldan, Eduardo R. S.

    2014-01-01

    Proteomic studies of spermatozoa have identified a large catalog of integral sperm proteins. Rapid evolution of these proteins may underlie adaptive changes of sperm traits involved in different events leading to fertilization, although the selective forces underlying such rapid evolution are not well understood. A variety of selective forces may differentially affect several steps ending in fertilization, thus resulting in a compartmentalized adaptation of sperm proteins. Here we analyzed the evolution of genes associated to various events in the sperm’s life, from sperm formation to sperm-egg interaction. Evolutionary analyses were performed on gene sequences from 17 mouse strains whose genomes have been sequenced. Four of these are derived from wild Mus musculus, M. domesticus, M. castaneus and M. spretus. We found a higher proportion of genes exhibiting a signature of positive selection among those related to sperm motility and sperm-egg interaction. Furthermore, sperm proteins involved in sperm-egg interaction exhibited accelerated evolution in comparison to those involved in other events. Thus, we identified a large set of candidate proteins for future comparative analyses of genotype-phenotype associations in spermatozoa of species subjected to different sexual selection pressures. Adaptive evolution of proteins involved in motility could be driven by sperm competition, since this selective force is known to increase the proportion of motile sperm and their swimming velocity. On the other hand, sperm proteins involved in gamete interaction could be coevolving with their egg partners through episodes of sexual selection or sexual conflict resulting in species-specific sperm-egg interactions and barriers preventing interspecies fertilization. PMID:24608277

  14. Combined Effect of Trolox and EDTA on Frozen-Thawed Sperm Quality

    PubMed Central

    Keshtgar, Sara; Iravanpour, Farideh; Gharesi-Fard, Behrooz; Kazerooni, Marjaneh

    2016-01-01

    The freezing and thawing process not only is associated with serious damage to sperm such as damage to the plasma membrane and the acrosomal membrane but also changes the membrane permeability to some ions including calcium. Also, the generation of oxygen free radicals is increased during the freezing-thawing process. The purpose of this study was to evaluate of the effects of Trolox as an antioxidant and edetic acid (EDTA) as a calcium chelator on frozen-thawed (FT) sperm and compare these effects with those on fresh sperm. This study was done on these men of 25 healthy men, who referred to Shiraz Infertility Centerbetween2012 and2013. Normal samples were transferred to the ReproductivePhysiology Laboratory, Department of Physiology, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz. The samples were divided into two groups randomly: fresh and FT sperm groups. Each group was divided into five subgroups: control group, the solvent group (0.1%dimethyl sulfoxide [DMSO]), Trolox group (200μM), EDTA group (1.1mM), and Trolox+EDTA group. The percentages of motility, viability, and acrosome-reacted sperm were tested. The percentages of motility and viability in the FT sperm were lower than those in the fresh sperm. The progressive motility of the FT sperm was improved nonsignificantly with Trolox+EDTA. However, the effect of Trolox+EDTA on the progressive motility of the FT sperm was much more than that on the fresh sperm. The fewest acrosome-reacted sperm were observed in the EDTA-containingFT sperm. Antioxidant supplementation or omission of extracellular calcium may partly improve motility and also reduce acrosomal damage in FT sperm. PMID:27217608

  15. Sperm bundle and reproductive organs of carabid beetles tribe Pterostichini (Coleoptera: Carabidae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sasakawa, Kôji

    2007-05-01

    The morphological characteristics of sperm and reproductive organs may offer clues as to how reproductive systems have evolved. In this paper, the morphologies of the sperm and male reproductive organs of carabid beetles in the tribe Pterostichini (Coleoptera: Carabidae) are described, and the morphological associations among characters are examined. All species form sperm bundles in which the head of the sperm was embedded in a rod-shaped structure, i.e., spermatodesm. The spermatodesm shape (left-handed spiral, right-handed spiral, or without conspicuous spiral structure) and the condition of the sperm on the spermatodesm surface (with the tail free-moving or forming a thin, sheetlike structure) vary among species. In all species, the spiral directions of the convoluted seminal vesicles and vasa deferentia are the same on both sides of the body; that is, they show an asymmetric structure. The species in which the sperm bundle and the seminal vesicles both have a spiral structure could be classified into two types, with significant differences in sperm-bundle length between the two types. The species with a sperm-bundle spiral and seminal-vesicle spiral of almost the same diameter have longer sperm bundles than the species with a sperm-bundle spiral and seminal-vesicle tube of almost the same diameter. In the former type, the spiral directions of the sperm bundles and seminal vesicles are inevitably the same, whereas they differ in some species with the later type. Therefore, increased sperm bundle length appears to have been facilitated by the concordance of the sperm bundle’s coiling direction with the coiling direction of the seminal vesicle.

  16. Use of Androcoll-S after thawing improves the quality of electroejaculated and epididymal sperm samples from red deer.

    PubMed

    Anel-Lpez, L; Martnez-Rodrguez, C; Soler, A J; Fernndez-Santos, M R; Garde, J J; Morrell, J M

    2015-07-01

    Single Layer Centrifugation is a useful technique to select sperm with good quality. The use of selection methods such as Androcoll could become an important tool to improve the quality of sperm samples and therefore to improve other artificial reproductive techniques such as sperm sex sorting, in vitro fertilization or AI. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of a Single Layer Centrifugation with Androcoll-S on the sperm quality of red deer sperm samples of two different origins, electroejaculated samples and epididymal samples obtained post-mortem, after thawing and after an incubation for 2h at 37C. Sperm motility, viability, membrane permeability, mitochondrial activity, acrosomal status and DNA fragmentation were determined for all samples. The samples selected by Androcoll-S showed an improvement in sperm kinematics compared to unselected samples after thawing and after incubation. The same effect was observed in parameters such as viability, mitochondrial activity or acrosomal status which were improved after the selection. In contrast, no difference was found in DNA fragmentation between selected and unselected samples within the same sperm type. We conclude that sperm selection by SLC with Androcoll-S after thawing for red deer sperm of both types is a suitable technique that allows sperm quality in both types of sperm samples to be improved, thereby improving other assisted reproductive techniques. Further studies (IVF and in vivo fertilization) are required to determine whether this improvement can increase fertility, as has been shown for other species. PMID:26002696

  17. Increasing cropping system diversity balances productivity, profitability and environmental health

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Balancing productivity, profitability, and environmental health is a key challenge for agricultural sustainability. Most crop production systems in the United States are characterized by low species and management diversity, high use of fossil energy and agrichemicals, and can have large negative im...

  18. Productivity Increased in 1981 in Most Industries Measured.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Herman, Arthur S.

    1982-01-01

    Although productivity growth slowed during 1976-81 for most of the industries surveyed, a majority of significant industries showed advances in output per employee hour in 1981. The growth in industry productivity was consistent with the gain in the nonfarm business sector of the economy, which grew 1.4 percent. (SSH)

  19. Chemotactic Motility of Sperm in Shear

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guasto, Jeffrey S.; Riffell, Jeffrey A.; Zimmer, Richard K.; Stocker, Roman

    2011-11-01

    Chemical gradients are utilized by plants and animals in sexual reproduction to guide swimming sperm cells toward the egg. This process (``chemotaxis''), which can greatly increase the success of fertilization, is subject to interference by fluid flow, both in the bodily conduits of internal fertilizers (e.g. mammals) and in the aquatic environment of external fertilizers (e.g. benthic invertebrates). We studied the biomechanics of chemotaxing sea urchin spermatozoa using microfluidic devices, which allow for the precise and independent control of attractant gradients and fluid shear. We captured swimming trajectories and flagellar beat patterns using high-speed video-microscopy, to detect chemotactic responses and measure the effect of fluid forces on swimming. This work will ultimately help us to understand how swimming sperm cells actively navigate natural chemoattractant gradients for successful fertilization.

  20. Biodiversity Increases the Productivity and Stability of Phytoplankton Communities

    PubMed Central

    Corcoran, Alina A.; Boeing, Wiebke J.

    2012-01-01

    Global biodiversity losses provide an immediate impetus to elucidate the relationships between biodiversity, productivity and stability. In this study, we quantified the effects of species richness and species combination on the productivity and stability of phytoplankton communities subject to predation by a single rotifer species. We also tested one mechanism of the insurance hypothesis: whether large, slow-growing, potentially-defended cells would compensate for the loss of small, fast-growing, poorly-defended cells after predation. There were significant effects of species richness and species combination on the productivity, relative yield, and stability of phytoplankton cultures, but the relative importance of species richness and combination varied with the response variables. Species combination drove patterns of productivity, whereas species richness was more important for stability. Polycultures containing the most productive single species, Dunaliella, were consistently the most productive. Yet, the most species rich cultures were the most stable, having low temporal variability in measures of biomass. Polycultures recovered from short-term negative grazing effects, but this recovery was not due to the compensation of large, slow-growing cells for the loss of small, fast-growing cells. Instead, polyculture recovery was the result of reduced rotifer grazing rates and persisting small species within the polycultures. Therefore, although an insurance effect in polycultures was found, this effect was indirect and unrelated to grazing tolerance. We hypothesize that diverse phytoplankton assemblages interfered with efficient rotifer grazing and that this “interference effect” facilitated the recovery of the most productive species, Dunaliella. In summary, we demonstrate that both species composition and species richness are important in driving patterns of productivity and stability, respectively, and that stability in biodiverse communities can result from an alteration in consumer functioning. Our findings underscore the importance of predator-prey dynamics in determining the relationships between biodiversity, productivity and stability in producer communities. PMID:23173059

  1. Biodiversity increases the productivity and stability of phytoplankton communities.

    PubMed

    Corcoran, Alina A; Boeing, Wiebke J

    2012-01-01

    Global biodiversity losses provide an immediate impetus to elucidate the relationships between biodiversity, productivity and stability. In this study, we quantified the effects of species richness and species combination on the productivity and stability of phytoplankton communities subject to predation by a single rotifer species. We also tested one mechanism of the insurance hypothesis: whether large, slow-growing, potentially-defended cells would compensate for the loss of small, fast-growing, poorly-defended cells after predation. There were significant effects of species richness and species combination on the productivity, relative yield, and stability of phytoplankton cultures, but the relative importance of species richness and combination varied with the response variables. Species combination drove patterns of productivity, whereas species richness was more important for stability. Polycultures containing the most productive single species, Dunaliella, were consistently the most productive. Yet, the most species rich cultures were the most stable, having low temporal variability in measures of biomass. Polycultures recovered from short-term negative grazing effects, but this recovery was not due to the compensation of large, slow-growing cells for the loss of small, fast-growing cells. Instead, polyculture recovery was the result of reduced rotifer grazing rates and persisting small species within the polycultures. Therefore, although an insurance effect in polycultures was found, this effect was indirect and unrelated to grazing tolerance. We hypothesize that diverse phytoplankton assemblages interfered with efficient rotifer grazing and that this "interference effect" facilitated the recovery of the most productive species, Dunaliella. In summary, we demonstrate that both species composition and species richness are important in driving patterns of productivity and stability, respectively, and that stability in biodiverse communities can result from an alteration in consumer functioning. Our findings underscore the importance of predator-prey dynamics in determining the relationships between biodiversity, productivity and stability in producer communities. PMID:23173059

  2. Sperm Proteome Maturation in the Mouse Epididymis

    PubMed Central

    Skerget, Sheri; Rosenow, Matthew A.; Petritis, Konstantinos; Karr, Timothy L.

    2015-01-01

    In mammals, transit through the epididymis, which involves the acquisition, loss and modification of proteins, is required to confer motility and fertilization competency to sperm. The overall dynamics of maturation is poorly understood, and a systems level understanding of the complex maturation process will provide valuable new information about changes occurring during epididymal transport. We report the proteomes of sperm collected from the caput, corpus and cauda segments of the mouse epididymis, identifying 1536, 1720 and 1234 proteins respectively. This study identified 765 proteins that are present in sperm obtained from all three segments. We identified 1766 proteins that are potentially added (732) or removed (1034) from sperm during epididymal transit. Phenotypic analyses of the caput, corpus and cauda sperm proteomes identified 60 proteins that have known sperm phenotypes when mutated, or absent from sperm. Our analysis indicates that as much as one-third of proteins with known sperm phenotypes are added to sperm during epididymal transit. GO analyses revealed that cauda sperm are enriched for specific functions including sperm-egg recognition and motility, consistent with the observation that sperm acquire motility and fertilization competency during transit through the epididymis. In addition, GO analyses revealed that the immunity protein profile of sperm changes during sperm maturation. Finally, we identified components of the 26S proteasome, the immunoproteasome, and a proteasome activator in mature sperm. PMID:26556802

  3. Deletion of murine choline dehydrogenase results in diminished sperm motility

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Amy R.; Craciunescu, Corneliu N.; Guo, Zhong; Teng, Ya-Wen; Thresher, Randy J.; Blusztajn, Jan K.; Zeisel, Steven H.

    2010-01-01

    Choline dehydrogenase (CHDH) catalyzes the conversion of choline to betaine, an important methyl donor and organic osmolyte. We have previously identified single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the human CHDH gene that, when present, seem to alter the activity of the CHDH enzyme. These SNPs occur frequently in humans. We created a Chdh−/− mouse to determine the functional effects of mutations that result in decreased CHDH activity. Chdh deletion did not affect fetal viability or alter growth or survival of these mice. Only one of eleven Chdh−/− males was able to reproduce. Loss of CHDH activity resulted in decreased testicular betaine and increased choline and PCho concentrations. Chdh+/+ and Chdh−/− mice produced comparable amounts of sperm; the impaired fertility was due to diminished sperm motility in the Chdh−/− males. Transmission electron microscopy revealed abnormal mitochondrial morphology in Chdh−/− sperm. ATP content, total mitochondrial dehydrogenase activity and inner mitochondrial membrane polarization were all significantly reduced in sperm from Chdh−/− animals. Mitochondrial changes were also detected in liver, kidney, heart, and testis tissues. We suggest that men who have SNPs in CHDH that decrease the activity of the CHDH enzyme could have decreased sperm motility and fertility.—Johnson, A. R., Craciunescu, C. N., Guo, Z., Teng, Y.-W., Thresher, R. J., Blusztajn, J. K., Zeisel, S. H. Deletion of murine choline dehydrogenase results in diminished sperm motility. PMID:20371614

  4. Mass sperm motility is associated with fertility in sheep.

    PubMed

    David, Ingrid; Kohnke, Philippa; Lagriffoul, Gilles; Praud, Olivier; Plouarboué, Franck; Degond, Pierre; Druart, Xavier

    2015-10-01

    The study was to focus on the relationship between wave motion (mass sperm motility, measured by a mass sperm motility score, manually assessed by artificial insemination (AI) center operators) and fertility in male sheep. A dataset of 711,562 artificial inseminations performed in seven breeds by five French AI centers during the 2001-2005 time period was used for the analysis. Factors influencing the outcome of the insemination, which is a binary response observed at lambing of either success (1) or failure (0), were studied using a joint model within each breed and AI center (eight separate analyses). The joint model is a multivariate model where all information related to the female, the male and the insemination process were included to improve the estimation of the factor effects. Results were consistent for all analyses. The male factors affecting AI results were the age of the ram and the mass motility. After correction for the other factors of variation, the lambing rate increased quasi linearly from three to more than ten points with the mass sperm motility score depending on the breed and the AI center. The consistency of the relationship for all breeds indicated that mass sperm motility is predictive of the fertility resulting when sperm are used from a specific ejaculate. Nonetheless, predictability could be improved if an objective measurement of mass sperm motility were available as a substitute for the subjective scoring currently in use in AI centers. PMID:26364125

  5. Embryo formation from low sperm concentration by using dielectrophoretic force

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Hong-Yuan; Huang, Yu-Hsuan; Kao, Wei-Lun

    2015-01-01

    A biochip system imitates the oviduct of mammals with a microfluidic channel to achieve fertilization in vitro of imprinting-control-region (ICR) mice. We apply a method to manipulate and to position the oocyte and the sperm of ICR mice at the same time in our microfluidic channel with a positive dielectrophoretic (DEP) force. The positive dielectrophoretic response of the oocyte and sperm was exhibited under applied bias conditions AC 10 Vpp waveform, 1 MHz, 10 min. With this method, the concentration of sperm in the vicinity of the oocyte was increased and enhanced the probability of natural fertilization. We used commercial numerical software (CFDRC-ACE+) to simulate the square of the electric field and analyzed the location at which the oocyte and sperm are trapped. The microfluidic devices were designed and fabricated with poly(dimethylsiloxane). The results of our experiments indicate that a positive DEP served to drive the position of the oocyte and the sperm to natural fertilization (average rate of fertilization 51.58%) in our microchannel structures at insemination concentration 1.5 × 106 sperm ml−1. Embryos were cultured to two cells after 24 h and four cells after 48 h. PMID:25825615

  6. Bicarbonate is required for migration of sperm epididymal protein DE (CRISP-1) to the equatorial segment and expression of rat sperm fusion ability.

    PubMed

    Da Ros, Vanina G; Munuce, María J; Cohen, Débora J; Marín-Briggiler, Clara I; Busso, Dolores; Visconti, Pablo E; Cuasnicú, Patricia S

    2004-05-01

    Numerous studies have demonstrated that sperm capacitation is a bicarbonate-dependent process. In the rat, capacitation has not been studied as much as in other species, mainly because of the difficulties in carrying out functional assays with this animal model. In the present study, we have examined the influence of bicarbonate in the overall rat sperm capacitation process by analyzing involvement of the anion in 1) protein tyrosine phosphorylation, 2) migration of epididymal protein DE (also known as CRISP-1) from the dorsal region to the equatorial segment of the sperm head that occurs during capacitation, and 3) ability of sperm to fuse with the egg. Incubation of sperm under capacitating conditions produced a time-dependent increase in protein tyrosine phosphorylation. This phosphorylation did not occur in the absence of HCO3- and rapidly increased by either exposure of sperm to HCO3- or replacement of the anion by a cAMP analog (dibutyryl-cAMP) and a phosphodiesterase inhibitor (pentoxifylline). The absence of HCO3- also produced a significant decrease in the percentage of cells showing migration of DE to the equatorial segment. This parameter was completely restored by addition of the anion, but dibutyryl-cAMP and pentoxifylline were not sufficient to overcome the decrease in DE migration. Sperm capacitated in the absence of HCO3- were unable to penetrate zona-free eggs independent of the presence of the anion during gamete coincubation. Exposure of these sperm to bicarbonate, or replacement of the anion by dibutyryl-cAMP and pentoxifylline, only partially restored the sperm fusion ability. Altogether, these results indicate that, in addition to its influence on protein tyrosine phosphorylation, bicarbonate is required to support other rat sperm capacitation- associated events, such as migration of DE to the equatorial segment, and expression of the ability of sperm to fuse with the egg. PMID:14711787

  7. Methods for Cryopreservation of Guinea Fowl Sperm

    PubMed Central

    Vradi, va; Vgi, Barbara; Lipti, Krisztina; Barna, Judit

    2013-01-01

    Conservation of indigenous poultry species is an important part of the new Hungarian agricultural strategy. Semen cryopreservation is the most practical method for the long term storage of poultry genetic material. The objective was to compare four protocols for cryopreservation of guinea fowl sperm (slow and fast programmable, freezing in nitrogen vapor, and pellet) and three cryoprotectants (10% ethylene glycol, 6% dimethyl-formamide and 6% dimethyl-acetamide). The efficiency of the methods was examined by in vitro tests (subjective motility scoring, sperm concentration, morphological and live/dead sperm analysis with eosin-aniline staining). Thereafter, the two most promising methods were tested by artificial insemination of frozen-thawed semen (3 times a week for 3 weeks using 300 million spermatozoa/hen), followed by candling of incubated eggs, assessment of fertilization, embryonic death, and hatching rate. The survival rate of live, intact spermatozoa was greatest (p?0.05) in pellet method and the slow programmable protocol (with 10% ethylene glycol) (28.6 and 23.5%). The two best protocols (based on in vitro assessment of post-thaw semen quality) were subsequently tested in vivo with artificial insemination. The pellet method yielded a 64% fertility rate compared to slow protocol with only 30% fertility. Regardless, both freezing protocols significantly increased embryonic deaths compared to the control group (16,7; 9,1 and 8,3%, respectively). During the 3-week in vivo trial, fertility increased and early embryonic death decreased over time. According to the results the guinea fowl sperm could tolerate the fast freezing in pellet better than the slower freezing rates and resulted acceptable fertility rate. PMID:23658648

  8. DECREASING EPIDIDYMAL SPERM RESERVES ENHANCES THE DETECTION OF ETHOXYETHANOL-INDUCED SPERMATOTOXICITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Current test strategies for assessing male reproductive toxicity may be inadequate for estimating risk in humans. High levels of sperm production and existence of large epididymal sperm reserves in most test species may impede the detection of spermatoxicity at low doses. The cur...

  9. Cryopreservation and sperm DNA integrity.

    PubMed

    Gandini, L; Lombardo, F; Lenzi, A; Span, M; Dondero, F

    2006-01-01

    Cryopreservation of sperm is an extremely important issue in the field of male infertility as freezing can have detrimental effects on a variety of sperm functions, some of them not accessible to the traditional semen quality analysis. In this study, chromatin structure variations in human spermatozoa in semen were studied with the sperm chromatin structure assay (SCSA), both before and after cryopreservation. Samples were divided into two aliquots: the first was analysed without further treatment, while the second was stored in liquid nitrogen at -196 degrees C using standard cryopreservation techniques. The fresh and thawed aliquots were also assessed by light and fluorescence microscopy (after Acridine Orange staining, AO), and computer-assisted semen analysis (CASA) of motility. Overall sperm quality was found to deteriorate after cryopreservation. When thawed spermatozoa were subjected to an extra swim-up round, a general improvement in nuclear maturity was seen in post-rise spermatozoa. PMID:16732411

  10. Sperm DNA quality evaluated by comet assay and sperm chromatin structure assay in stallions after unilateral orchiectomy.

    PubMed

    Serafini, R; Varner, D D; Bissett, W; Blanchard, T L; Teague, S R; Love, C C

    2015-09-15

    Unilateral orchiectomy (UO) may interfere with thermoregulation of the remaining testis caused by inflammation surrounding the incision site, thus altering normal spermatogenesis and consequently sperm quality. Two measures of sperm DNA quality (neutral comet assay and the sperm chromatin structure assay [SCSA]) were compared before UO (0 days) and at 14, 30, and 60 days after UO to determine whether sperm DNA changed after a mild testis stress (i.e., UO). The percent DNA in the comet tail was higher at 14 and 60 days compared to 0 days (P < 0.05) after UO. All other comet tail measures (i.e., length, moment, migration) were higher at all time periods after UO compared to 0 days (P < 0.05). Two SCSA measures (mean-αt, mode-αt) increased at 14 days after UO (P < 0.05), whereas two measures (SD-αt and COMP-αt) did not change. This study identified a decrease in sperm DNA quality using both the neutral comet assay and the SCSA, which was not identified using traditional measures of sperm quality. PMID:26104544

  11. Comprehensive meiotic segregation analysis of a 4-breakpoint t(1;3;6) complex chromosome rearrangement using single sperm array comparative genomic hybridization and FISH.

    PubMed

    Hornak, Miroslav; Vozdova, Miluse; Musilova, Petra; Prinosilova, Petra; Oracova, Eva; Linkova, Vlasta; Vesela, Katerina; Rubes, Jiri

    2014-10-01

    Complex chromosomal rearrangements (CCR) represent rare structural chromosome abnormalities frequently associated with infertility. In this study, meiotic segregation in spermatozoa of an infertile normospermic carrier of a 4-breakpoint t(1;3;6) CCR was analysed. A newly developed array comparative genomic hybridization protocol was used, and all chromosomes in 50 single sperm cells were simultaneously examined. Three-colour FISH was used to analyse chromosome segregation in 1557 other single sperm cells. It was also used to measure an interchromosomal effect; sperm chromatin structure assay was used to measure chromatin integrity. A high-frequency of unbalanced spermatozoa (84%) was observed, mostly arising from the 3:3 symmetrical segregation mode. Array comparative genomic hybridization was used to detect additional aneuploidies in two out of 50 spermatozoa (4%) in chromosomes not involved in the complex chromosome rearrangement. Significantly increased rates of diploidy and XY disomy were found in the CCR carrier compared with the control group (P < 0.001). Defective condensation of sperm chromatin was also found in 22.7% of spermatozoa by sperm chromatin structure assay. The results indicate that the infertility in the man with CCR and normal spermatozoa was caused by a production of chromosomally unbalanced, XY disomic and diploid spermatozoa and spermatozoa with defective chromatin condensation. PMID:25154015

  12. Sea urchin sperm antigens mediating the acrosome reaction

    SciTech Connect

    Trimmer, J.S.

    1987-01-01

    The study of sea urchin sperm antigens mediating the acrosome reactions (AR) has been undertaken. Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) have been isolated reacting with a number of sperm surface antigens. These mAbs have been used in functional assays to attempt to infer the roles of these proteins in the induction of the AR. These mAbs have also been used to isolate protein for biochemical characterization and reconstitution studies. mAbs reacting with a 210 kD protein of the sea urchin sperm plasma membrane have been used to identify this protein as playing a role in the regulation of ion fluxes during the induction of the AR. mAbs reacting with certain extracellular regions inhibit the induction of: the AR, the long duration {sup 45}Ca{sup 2+} uptake into the mitochondrion, and H{sup +} efflux. Addition of these same mAbs, however, induces an increase in sperm (Ca{sup 2+}){sub i} to levels much higher than those induced by FSG, as monitored by the fluorescent Ca{sup 2+} indicators fura 2 and indo 1. This (Ca{sup 2+}){sub i} increase occurs without an increase in pH{sub i}, and thus allows for the first time the analysis of the effects of increasing sperm (Ca{sup 2+}){sub i} ion the absence of increased pH{sub i}.

  13. Acrosome markers of human sperm.

    PubMed

    Ito, Chizuru; Toshimori, Kiyotaka

    2016-03-01

    Molecular biomarkers that can assess sperm acrosome status are very useful for evaluating sperm quality in the field of assisted reproductive technology. In this review, we introduce and discuss the localization and function of acrosomal proteins that have been well studied. Journal databases were searched using keywords, including "human acrosome", "localization", "fertilization-related protein", "acrosomal membrane", "acrosomal matrix", "acrosome reaction", "knockout mouse", and "acrosome marker". PMID:26748928

  14. Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptors (FGFRs) in Human Sperm: Expression, Functionality and Involvement in Motility Regulation.

    PubMed

    Saucedo, Lucía; Buffa, Gabriela N; Rosso, Marina; Guillardoy, Tomás; Góngora, Adrian; Munuce, María J; Vazquez-Levin, Mónica H; Marín-Briggiler, Clara

    2015-01-01

    Fibroblast growth factors receptors (FGFRs) have been widely characterized in somatic cells, but there is scarce evidence of their expression and function in mammalian gametes. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the expression of FGFRs in human male germ cells, to determine sperm FGFR activation by the FGF2 ligand and their participation in the regulation of sperm motility. The expression of FGFR1, 2, 3 and 4 mRNAs and proteins in human testis and localization of these receptors in germ cells of the seminiferous epithelium was demonstrated. In ejaculated sperm, FGFRs were localized to the acrosomal region and flagellum. Sperm exposure to FGF2 caused an increase in flagellar FGFR phosphorylation and activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and protein kinase B (PKB or Akt) signaling pathways. Incubation with FGF2 led to a significant increase in the percentage of total and progressive sperm motility, as well as in sperm kinematics. All responses were prevented by sperm preincubation with BGJ398, a specific inhibitor of FGFR tyrosine kinase activity. In addition to confirming the expression of FGFRs in germ cells of the human testis, our study describes for the first time the presence, localization and functionality of human sperm FGFRs, and provides evidence of the beneficial effect of FGF2 upon sperm motility. PMID:25970615

  15. Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptors (FGFRs) in Human Sperm: Expression, Functionality and Involvement in Motility Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Saucedo, Lucía; Buffa, Gabriela N.; Rosso, Marina; Guillardoy, Tomás; Góngora, Adrian; Munuce, María J.

    2015-01-01

    Fibroblast growth factors receptors (FGFRs) have been widely characterized in somatic cells, but there is scarce evidence of their expression and function in mammalian gametes. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the expression of FGFRs in human male germ cells, to determine sperm FGFR activation by the FGF2 ligand and their participation in the regulation of sperm motility. The expression of FGFR1, 2, 3 and 4 mRNAs and proteins in human testis and localization of these receptors in germ cells of the seminiferous epithelium was demonstrated. In ejaculated sperm, FGFRs were localized to the acrosomal region and flagellum. Sperm exposure to FGF2 caused an increase in flagellar FGFR phosphorylation and activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and protein kinase B (PKB or Akt) signaling pathways. Incubation with FGF2 led to a significant increase in the percentage of total and progressive sperm motility, as well as in sperm kinematics. All responses were prevented by sperm preincubation with BGJ398, a specific inhibitor of FGFR tyrosine kinase activity. In addition to confirming the expression of FGFRs in germ cells of the human testis, our study describes for the first time the presence, localization and functionality of human sperm FGFRs, and provides evidence of the beneficial effect of FGF2 upon sperm motility. PMID:25970615

  16. Sperm aggregations in female Agkistrodon piscivorus (Reptilia:Squamata): a histological and ultrastructural investigation.

    PubMed

    Siegel, Dustin S; Sever, David M

    2008-02-01

    Upon copulation in female Agkistrodon piscivorus, sperm migrate up the oviduct to sperm storage tubules (SSTs) in the posterior infundibulum. The epithelium of the SSTs is composed of ciliated and secretory cells and differs ultrastructurally from that of the epithelium lining the lumen of the posterior infundibulum. Sperm pass through an area composed primarily of ciliated cells at the opening of each gland before aligning themselves in parallel arrays with their nuclei facing an area composed primarily of secretory cells at the base of the tubules. Sperm are also found embedded inter- and intracellularly in the SSTs. The secretory vacuoles in the SSTs become highly electron dense after the start of the fall mating season along with the synthesis of lipid droplets. Histochemical analysis reveals that the alteration in secretory material density is caused by the production of neutral carbohydrates. Some sperm remain in aggregates in the nonglandular section of the posterior uterus until the time of ovulation. However, ultrastructural evidence indicates these sperm degrade before ovulation. Therefore, sperm in posterior aggregates have no role in fertilization of ovulated ova. The data presented here support the hypothesis that infundibular sperm storage is the mode that snakes utilize to sequester viable sperm until ovulation. PMID:17935196

  17. Turkey sperm reside in the tubular glands in the urodeum following artificial insemination.

    PubMed

    Bakst, M R; Akuffo, V

    2008-04-01

    A turkey hen in egg production requires 48 h after the last insemination to maximize the number of sperm in the uterovaginal junction sperm-storage tubules. Where the sperm that continue to fill the oviductal sperm-storage sites during this 48-h period reside remains unknown. Histological sections of the juncture of the vagina with the urodeum, the central compartment of the cloaca, revealed deep tubular glands containing periodic acid-Schiff-positive secretory material. When examined 36 h after the last artificial insemination, sperm were observed in the lumen of the tubular glands associated with the urodeum. We suggest that sperm reside in the tubular glands within the urodeum and are released in association with the secretory activity of the tubular glands. These sperm then may ascend the vagina to continue to populate the sperm-storage tubules. Alternatively, the sperm in the tubular glands of the urodeum may be evidence of spermatorrhea and have no functional role in the fertilization process. PMID:18340002

  18. Dimethyl formamide improves the postthaw characteristics of sex-sorted and nonsorted stallion sperm.

    PubMed

    Gibb, Z; Morris, L H A; Maxwell, W M C; Grupen, C G

    2013-04-15

    Cryopreserved, sex-sorted stallion sperm has been shown to have poor fertility. During this study, the effects of cryoprotectant (glycerol [GLY] and dimethyl formamide [DMF]), cryoprotectant equilibration time (0, 30, 60, 90, or 120 minutes), and cryoprotectant concentration (2%, 3%, or 4% vol/vol) on stored sex-sorted and stored nonsorted stallion sperm were evaluated. Total motility, viability, and DNA integrity (determined using sperm chromatin structure assay) of sperm were assessed after thawing. Equilibration for 90 minutes improved total motility (33.8%) compared with 0 (28.5%) or 120 minutes (29.8%; P < 0.05), though viability was higher after 120 minutes (33.1%) compared with 0 (30.5%) or 30 minutes (31.0%; P < 0.01). The viability of nonsorted sperm decreased as cryoprotectant concentration increased (P < 0.001), and total motility of nonsorted sperm was higher when DMF alone was used (15.8%, 16.6%, and 24.0% for GLY, GLY and DMF, and DMF respectively; P < 0.001). Sex sorting was detrimental to the postthaw quality of sperm; at 45 minutes after thawing, total motility of nonsorted sperm was higher than that of sex-sorted sperm (37.4% vs. 5.6%; P < 0.001), the viability of sex-sorted sperm was lower than that of nonsorted sperm (12.4% vs. 30.0%; P < 0.001, averaged over postthaw time), and sex-sorted sperm had higher detectable DNA fragmentation index (DFI) (63.6% vs. 11.3%, P < 0.001) and mean DFI (285.1 vs. 211.3, P < 0.001) than nonsorted sperm. The viability of sex-sorted sperm was improved by GLY and DMF or DMF compared with GLY (22.6%, 25.3%, and 19.3%, respectively; P < 0.05), and the DNA integrity of sex-sorted sperm was improved by the use of DMF compared with GLY (detectable DFI, 60.2 vs. 66.8, P < 0.05; and mean DFI, 280.9 vs. 289.2, P < 0.05, respectively). In conclusion, postthaw characteristics of stored sex-sorted and stored nonsorted stallion sperm were improved by the use of DMF as a cryoprotectant, though the parameters to benefit differed between sorted and nonsorted sperm. PMID:23453787

  19. Nutritional limitations to increased production on pasture-based systems.

    PubMed

    Kolver, Eric S

    2003-05-01

    The constraints to high levels of milk production imposed by a high-quality-pasture diet, and development of feeding strategies to overcome these limitations, were examined by modelling the nutritional status of New Zealand Friesian and North American Holstein-Friesian dairy cows grazing high-quality pasture. The Cornell Net Carbohydrate and Protein System (CNCPS) was used to predict sensitivity of milk production to a 10% change in the composition of pasture nutrients. The rate at which fibre and protein were degraded in the rumen and the value given to effective fibre and lignin content significantly affected the supply of metabolisable energy and protein, and the profile of amino acid supply. The first limiting factor in milk production when only high-quality pasture was fed was metabolisable energy supply, while specific amino acids, particularly methionine and lysine, limited milk production when > 20 g/kg diet consisted of a grain supplement. Compared with cows fed a total mixed ration in confinement, North American Holstein-Friesians grazing all pasture produced less milk (29.6 v. 44.1 kg/d). Of the difference in milk production 61% could be attributed to a lower DM intake (19 kg/d v. 23.4 kg/d). Predictions using the CNCPS indicated that supply of metabolisable energy was the first-limiting factor for milk production from high-quality pasture (251 g crude protein (N x 6.25)/kg, 432 g neutral-detergent fibre/kg, 77% in vitro DM digestibility), rather than metabolisable protein or amino acids. In addition, these nutritional limitations imposed by pasture diets will be greater for dairy cow genotypes that have not been selected for high performance within a pasture system. PMID:14506876

  20. Effects of Adding Sodium Nitroprusside to Semen Diluents on Motility, Viability and Lipid Peroxidation of Sperm in Holstein Bulls

    PubMed Central

    Khodaei, Hamidreza; Chamani, Mohammad; Mahdavi, Behnaz; Akhondi, Ali Asghar

    2016-01-01

    Background Nitric oxide (NO) that plays important role in all sexual activities of animals is made from the amino acid L-arginine by the enzymatic action of NO synthase (NOS). NO makes a band with sulfur-iron complexes, but due to production of steroid sexual hormones related to the enzymes involved in this complex, NO can change the activity of these enzymes. NO affects many cells including vein endothelial cells, macrophages and mast cells. These cells are also found in Leydig cells; therefore, they are important source of NO in testis tissue. Therefore, minimizing damages to sperm at the time of freezing thawing process are really important. The aim of this study was to determine the appropriate NO concentration to be added to the freezing extender to improve the quality of thawed sperm. Materials and Methods In this experimental randomized study, sperms of four Holstein bulls with an average age of 4 were collected twice a week for 3 weeks. They received sodium nitroprusside (SNP) in concentrations of 0, 10, 50 and 100 nmol/ml. Data analysis was performed using the special issue and static (SAS) 98 software. Also, mean comparison was done using Duncan’s multiple ranges test (P<0.05).This research was conducted at the laboratory of Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran at spring and summer of 2013. Results All concentrations of SNP used was found to increase motility and viability of spermatozoa at 1, 2 and 3 hours after thawing, significantly (P<0.05), but there was no significant difference at zero time. Different concentrations of SNP reduced the membrane lipid peroxidation level of sperm and increased acrosome membranes integrity, implying that SNP generally improved samples membranes, especially in 50 and 100 nmol/ml concentrations. Conclusion According to the obtained results, addition of SNP to semen diluents increases motility and viability of spermatozoa. Also, it reduces membrane lipid peroxidation level that leads to improved sperm function. PMID:26985340

  1. The relationship between paternal age, sex ratios, and aneuploidy frequencies in human sperm, as assessed by multicolor FISH

    SciTech Connect

    Martin, R.H.; Spriggs, E. |; Ko, E.

    1995-12-01

    We studied the frequencies of X- and Y-chromosome bearing sperm, diploidy and disomy for chromosomes 1, 12, X, and Y in sperm from 10 normal men aged 21 - 52 years, to determine whether there was any relationship between donor age and any of these variables. Multicolor FISH was used to control for lack of probe hybridization and to distinguish diploid sperm from disomic sperm. A minimum of 10,000 sperm per donor was evaluated for each chromosome, for a total of 225,846 sperm studied. Sperm were considered disomic if two fluorescent signals were separated by a minimal distance of one signal domain. The mean frequencies of X- and Y-bearing sperm were 50.1% and 49.0%, respectively; not significantly different from 50%. There was no correlation between paternal age and {open_quotes}sex ratio {close_quotes} in sperm. Similarly, there was no association between the frequency of diploid sperm (mean, .16%; range, .06%-.42%) and donor age. For disomy frequencies, there was no relationship between donor age and disomy 12 (mean, .16%; range, .10%-.25%), XX (mean, .07%; range, .03%-.17%), and XY sperm (mean, .16%; range, .08%-.24%). There was a significant increase in the frequency of YY sperm (P = .04; mean, .18%; range, .10%-.43%) and disomy 1 sperm (P = .01; mean, .11%; range, .05%-.18%) with donor age. In summary, our results do not support a correlation between paternal age and sex ratio or diploidy. A relationship between paternal age and disomy was observed for disomy 1 and YY sperm but not for disomy 12, XX or XY sperm. 37 refs., 3 tabs.

  2. Disrupting Faculty Service: Using Technology to Increase Academic Service Productivity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burnett, Perry; Shemroske, Kenneth; Khayum, Mohammed

    2014-01-01

    Scholarly attention regarding faculty involvement has primarily focused on faculty opinions of shared governance and faculty influence on institutional decision-making. There has been limited attention given to academic service productivity and the effectiveness of traditional approaches toward the accomplishment of faculty service requirements.…

  3. An effective increase in milk production through triticale feeding.

    PubMed

    Derbal, Nora; Benbelkacem, A; Dib, Y

    2014-01-01

    Since the first studies in Algeria in 1999, 2002 and 2005, triticale has been used in arid and semi-arid areas mainly for livestock production. Efforts have been done for the utilization of triticale as hay, silage and hole grain to feed dairy cattle and small ruminants (sheep). Studies have shown that triticale could be easily integrated in the existing crop-livestock system of northern Algeria. In spite of the good results in the yield performance and adaptation to diverse environments, decision makers are not giving the necessary attention to triticale. Dairy cattle holders that tested the crop have adopted it quickly and developed it in an informal way. Now, more than 90% of the triticale seed business is in the hands of private farmers without any help or subsidies nor a good price policy to develop strongly this crop. The utilization of triticale in Algeria is roughly as follow: human consumption 5%, forage crop (hay or silage) 60% and 30% as feed grain, the remaining 5% are kept for sowing seed. In our studies we have compared different feed sources (barley, triticale, concentrate diet and mixtures) to dairy cattle and sheep. Triticale showed highly significantly better results for meat production and gave also an amazing response for dairy and sheep milk production in Algeria. Milk production of animals fed with triticale over exceeded the other feed sources by 26% to 53%; mean weight gain exhibited the same rates. PMID:26072583

  4. Environmental Implications of Increased Bioenergy Production on Midwest Soil Landscapes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Prairie soil landscapes encompass over 16 million acres in Missouri and surrounding states. Much of this area has been degraded by erosion but is still used for grain production. Erosion has caused variable topsoil depth within fields which in turn has resulted in greater within-field variability of...

  5. Perennial Forage Kochia for Increased Production of Winter Grazed Pastures

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Grazing forage kochia (Kochia prostrata) during fall/winter has improved livestock health and reduced winter feeding costs. The objectives of this study were to compare forage production/quality and livestock performance of traditional winter pastures versus pastures with forage kochia. Two kochia...

  6. Effect of aracnotoxin from Latrodectus mactans on bovine sperm function: modulatory action of bovine oviduct cells and their secretions.

    PubMed

    Gómez, P N; Alvarez, J G; Parodi, J; Romero, F; Sánchez, R

    2012-05-01

    Latrodectus mactans' aracnotoxin (Atx) induces changes in sperm function that could be used as a co-adjuvant in male contraceptive barrier methods. This effect includes the suppression of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS), an event necessary for capacitation, chemotaxis and acrosome reaction (AR). The sperm that are not trapped by the barrier method can reach the oviduct before fertilisation and be exposed to the secretions of the oviducts. This study evaluated the effect of bovine tubal explants (TU) and conditioned media (CM) from the ampullar and isthmal regions on spermatozoa exposed to Atx. Thawed bovine sperm were incubated with Atx, TU and CM from the ampullar and isthmal regions for 4 h and then DNA integrity, intracellular ROS and lysophosphatidylcholine-induced AR were determined. Spermatozoa exposed to Atx and co-incubated with TU and CM for 4 h produced an increase in sperm DNA damage, a decrease in ROS production and a decrease in %AR, compared with the control. A similar result was obtained from the co-incubation of spermatozoa with Atx. In conclusion, the effect of Atx is not modified by tubal cells or their secretions and this opens the door to future studies to evaluate the application of synthetic peptides obtained from Atx as a co-adjuvant of contraceptive barrier methods. PMID:22211875

  7. Heat Shock Protein 90 Has Roles in Intracellular Calcium Homeostasis, Protein Tyrosine Phosphorylation Regulation, and Progesterone-Responsive Sperm Function in Human Sperm

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Aijun; Jiang, Youfang; Xie, Haifeng; Shi, Qixian; Zhang, Songying; Ni, Ya

    2014-01-01

    Heat shock protein 90 plays critical roles in client protein maturation, signal transduction, protein folding and degradation, and morphological evolution; however, its function in human sperm is not fully understood. Therefore, our objective in this study was to elucidate the mechanism by which heat shock protein 90 exerts its effects on human sperm function. By performing indirect immunofluorescence staining, we found that heat shock protein 90 was localized primarily in the neck, midpiece, and tail regions of human sperm, and that its expression increased with increasing incubation time under capacitation conditions. Geldanamycin, a specific inhibitor of heat shock protein 90, was shown to inhibit this increase in heat shock protein 90 expression in western blotting analyses. Using a multifunctional microplate reader to examine Fluo-3 AM-loaded sperm, we observed for the first time that inhibition of heat shock protein 90 by using geldanamycin significantly decreased intracellular calcium concentrations during capacitation. Moreover, western blot analysis showed that geldanamycin enhanced tyrosine phosphorylation of several proteins, including heat shock protein 90, in a dose-dependent manner. The effects of geldanamycin on human sperm function in the absence or presence of progesterone was evaluated by performing chlortetracycline staining and by using a computer-assisted sperm analyzer. We found that geldanamycin alone did not affect sperm capacitation, hyperactivation, and motility, but did so in the presence of progesterone. Taken together, these data suggest that heat shock protein 90, which increases in expression in human sperm during capacitation, has roles in intracellular calcium homeostasis, protein tyrosine phosphorylation regulation, and progesterone-stimulated sperm function. In this study, we provide new insights into the roles of heat shock protein 90 in sperm function. PMID:25541943

  8. Physiological hypercortisolemia increases proteolysis, glutamine, and alanine production

    SciTech Connect

    Darmaun, D.; Matthews, D.E.; Bier, D.M. Cornell Univ. Medical College, New York, NY )

    1988-09-01

    Physiological elevations of plasma cortisol levels, as are encountered in stress and severe trauma, were produced in six normal subjects by infusing them with hydrocortisone for 64 h. Amino acid kinetics were measured in the postabsorptive state using three 4-h infusions of L-(1-{sup 13}C)leucine, L-phenyl({sup 2}H{sub 5})phenylalanine, L-(2-{sup 15}N)glutamine, and L-(1-{sup 13}C)alanine tracers (1) before, (2) at 12 h, and (3) at 60 h of cortisol infusion. Before and throughout the study, the subjects ate a normal diet of adequate protein and energy intake. The cortisol infusion raised plasma cortisol levels significantly from 10 {plus minus} 1 to 32 {plus minus} 4 {mu}g/dl, leucine flux from 83 {plus minus} 3 to 97 {plus minus} 3 {mu}mol{center dot}kg{sup {minus}1}{center dot}h{sup {minus}1}, and phenylalanine flux from 34 {plus minus} 1 to 39 {plus minus} 1 (SE) {mu}mol{center dot}kg{sup {minus}1}{center dot}h{sup {minus}1} after 12 h of cortisol infusion. These increases were maintained until the cortisol infusion was terminated. These nearly identical 15% increases in two different essential amino acid appearance rates are reflective of increased whole body protein breakdown. Glutamine flux rose by 12 h of cortisol infusion and remained elevated at the same level at 64 h. The increase in flux was primarily due to a 55% increase in glutamine de novo synthesis. Alanine flux increased with acute hypercortisolemia and increased further at 60 h of cortisol infusion, a result primarily of increased alanine de novo synthesis. Insulin, alanine, and lactate plasma levels responded similarly with significant rises between the acute and chronic periods of cortisol infusion. Thus hypercortisolemia increases both protein breakdown and the turnover of important nonessential amino acids for periods of up to 64 h.

  9. Semen characterization, seasonality of production, and in vitro sperm quality after chilled storage and cryopreservation in the king penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus).

    PubMed

    O'Brien, Justine K; Robeck, Todd R

    2014-01-01

    Research was conducted to examine seasonal seminal traits and to establish short-term and long-term sperm preservation methods in the king penguin (Aptenodytes patagonicus) for use in genome banking and artificial insemination (AI). Spermic ejaculates (n = 87) obtained using a cooperative method were collected across multiple (n = 6, Male 1) and a single (Male 2) breeding season(s). Non-contaminated ejaculates (n = 69) were 0.36 ± 0.32 ml at 56.3 ± 62.7 × 10(7)  sperm/ml with 85.3 ± 10.6% total motility (TMot), 52.5 ± 12.9% progressive motility (PMot), 86.6 ± 24.3 µm/sec average path velocity (VAP) and 92.3 ± 3.7% plasma membrane intact. In vitro quality of chilled semen was best maintained over 48 hr at 5°C than 21°C, with decreased (P < 0.05) motility and morphology parameters observed by 24 and 6 hr, respectively. A comparison of two freezing methods (straw [STR] vs. directional [DF]) demonstrated similar effects on post-thaw quality at 0 and 3 hr, with the exception of plasma membrane integrity which was higher (P < 0.05) at 0 hr for DF (48.7 ± 6.5%) than STR (41.2 ± 7.0%). At 0 hr post-thaw, DF samples retained 46%, 69%, and 52% of their initial PMot, VAP, and plasma membrane integrity, respectively. Normal morphology of motile cells was reduced (P < 0.05) during freeze-thawing from 84% post-collection to 37% and 34% at 0 and 3 hr post-thaw, respectively. Results indicate that chilled and cryopreserved semen from the king penguin has potential for use in AI. PMID:24395205

  10. Viewing Death on Television Increases the Appeal of Advertised Products

    PubMed Central

    DAR-NIMROD, ILAN

    2012-01-01

    References to death abound in many television programs accessible to most people. Terror Management Theory (TMT) postulates that existential anxiety, which death reminders activate, may reinforce materialistic tendencies. The current paper explores the effect of a death reminder in television shows on the desirability of advertised products. Consistent with TMT's predictions, in two studies participants show greater desire for products, which were advertised immediately following clips from programs that featured a death scene, compared with programs that did not. Cognitive accessibility of death predicted the appeal difference while changes in affect or interest in the show did not. The findings are discussed in light on affective and existential theories which make opposite predictions. Implications and future directions are considered. PMID:22468421

  11. Viewing death on television increases the appeal of advertised products.

    PubMed

    Dar-Nimrod, Ilan

    2012-01-01

    References to death abound in many television programs accessible to most people. Terror Management Theory postulates that existential anxiety, which death reminders activate, may reinforce materialistic tendencies. The current article explores the effect of a death reminder in television shows on the desirability of advertised products. Consistent with Terror Management Theory's predictions, in two studies participants show greater desire for products, which were advertised immediately following clips from programs that featured a death scene, compared with programs that did not. Cognitive accessibility of death predicted the appeal difference while changes in affect or interest in the show did not. The findings are discussed in light on affective and existential theories which make opposite predictions. Implications and future directions are considered. PMID:22468421

  12. Increase in hospital purchase of hand hygiene products: The importance of focusing on the right product.

    PubMed

    Biswal, Manisha; Prasad, Amber; Dhaliwal, Navneet; Gupta, A K; Taneja, Neelam

    2015-07-01

    Alcohol-based handrub (AHR) consumption is positively correlated with increases in hand hygiene (HH) compliance. In our 2,000-bed hospital in India, multiple awareness drives have been conducted to promote HH. This study aimed to determine the quantitative effect of these campaigns on use of HH products (soap and AHR) in the hospital. Over the last 6 years, bar soap consumption has increased by 389.15%, whereas that of AHR increased by 146.7%. We also evaluated microbial contamination of 99 bar soap and 60 liquid soap samples in our hospital for a year. Of the samples, 61 (61.6%) of the bar soaps and 2 (3.3%) of the liquid soaps were found to be contaminated with various organisms (P < .0002). To conclude, the focus should be to increase the right kind of HH product so that hospitals in developing countries procure liquid soaps instead of bar soaps for handwashing purposes. PMID:25920704

  13. Increasing Cropping System Diversity Balances Productivity, Profitability and Environmental Health

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Adam S.; Hill, Jason D.; Chase, Craig A.; Johanns, Ann M.; Liebman, Matt

    2012-01-01

    Balancing productivity, profitability, and environmental health is a key challenge for agricultural sustainability. Most crop production systems in the United States are characterized by low species and management diversity, high use of fossil energy and agrichemicals, and large negative impacts on the environment. We hypothesized that cropping system diversification would promote ecosystem services that would supplement, and eventually displace, synthetic external inputs used to maintain crop productivity. To test this, we conducted a field study from 2003–2011 in Iowa that included three contrasting systems varying in length of crop sequence and inputs. We compared a conventionally managed 2-yr rotation (maize-soybean) that received fertilizers and herbicides at rates comparable to those used on nearby farms with two more diverse cropping systems: a 3-yr rotation (maize-soybean-small grain + red clover) and a 4-yr rotation (maize-soybean-small grain + alfalfa-alfalfa) managed with lower synthetic N fertilizer and herbicide inputs and periodic applications of cattle manure. Grain yields, mass of harvested products, and profit in the more diverse systems were similar to, or greater than, those in the conventional system, despite reductions of agrichemical inputs. Weeds were suppressed effectively in all systems, but freshwater toxicity of the more diverse systems was two orders of magnitude lower than in the conventional system. Results of our study indicate that more diverse cropping systems can use small amounts of synthetic agrichemical inputs as powerful tools with which to tune, rather than drive, agroecosystem performance, while meeting or exceeding the performance of less diverse systems. PMID:23071739

  14. Increasing cropping system diversity balances productivity, profitability and environmental health.

    PubMed

    Davis, Adam S; Hill, Jason D; Chase, Craig A; Johanns, Ann M; Liebman, Matt

    2012-01-01

    Balancing productivity, profitability, and environmental health is a key challenge for agricultural sustainability. Most crop production systems in the United States are characterized by low species and management diversity, high use of fossil energy and agrichemicals, and large negative impacts on the environment. We hypothesized that cropping system diversification would promote ecosystem services that would supplement, and eventually displace, synthetic external inputs used to maintain crop productivity. To test this, we conducted a field study from 2003-2011 in Iowa that included three contrasting systems varying in length of crop sequence and inputs. We compared a conventionally managed 2-yr rotation (maize-soybean) that received fertilizers and herbicides at rates comparable to those used on nearby farms with two more diverse cropping systems: a 3-yr rotation (maize-soybean-small grain + red clover) and a 4-yr rotation (maize-soybean-small grain + alfalfa-alfalfa) managed with lower synthetic N fertilizer and herbicide inputs and periodic applications of cattle manure. Grain yields, mass of harvested products, and profit in the more diverse systems were similar to, or greater than, those in the conventional system, despite reductions of agrichemical inputs. Weeds were suppressed effectively in all systems, but freshwater toxicity of the more diverse systems was two orders of magnitude lower than in the conventional system. Results of our study indicate that more diverse cropping systems can use small amounts of synthetic agrichemical inputs as powerful tools with which to tune, rather than drive, agroecosystem performance, while meeting or exceeding the performance of less diverse systems. PMID:23071739

  15. Increasing cropping system diversity balances productivity, profitability and environmental health.

    TOXLINE Toxicology Bibliographic Information

    Davis AS; Hill JD; Chase CA; Johanns AM; Liebman M

    2012-01-01

    Balancing productivity, profitability, and environmental health is a key challenge for agricultural sustainability. Most crop production systems in the United States are characterized by low species and management diversity, high use of fossil energy and agrichemicals, and large negative impacts on the environment. We hypothesized that cropping system diversification would promote ecosystem services that would supplement, and eventually displace, synthetic external inputs used to maintain crop productivity. To test this, we conducted a field study from 2003-2011 in Iowa that included three contrasting systems varying in length of crop sequence and inputs. We compared a conventionally managed 2-yr rotation (maize-soybean) that received fertilizers and herbicides at rates comparable to those used on nearby farms with two more diverse cropping systems: a 3-yr rotation (maize-soybean-small grain + red clover) and a 4-yr rotation (maize-soybean-small grain + alfalfa-alfalfa) managed with lower synthetic N fertilizer and herbicide inputs and periodic applications of cattle manure. Grain yields, mass of harvested products, and profit in the more diverse systems were similar to, or greater than, those in the conventional system, despite reductions of agrichemical inputs. Weeds were suppressed effectively in all systems, but freshwater toxicity of the more diverse systems was two orders of magnitude lower than in the conventional system. Results of our study indicate that more diverse cropping systems can use small amounts of synthetic agrichemical inputs as powerful tools with which to tune, rather than drive, agroecosystem performance, while meeting or exceeding the performance of less diverse systems.

  16. Assessment of chromosomal abnormalities in sperm of infertile men using sperm karyotyping and multicolour fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH)

    SciTech Connect

    Moosani, N.; Martin, R.H.

    1994-09-01

    Individuals with male factor infertility resulting from idiopathic oligo-, astheno- or teratozoospermia are frequently offered IVF in an attempt to increase their chances of having a child. A concern remains whether these infertile males have an elevated risk of transmitting chromosomal abnormalities to their offspring. Sperm chromosomal complements from these men were assayed using the human sperm/hamster oocyte fusion system and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) on sperm nuclei. For each of 5 infertile patients, 100 sperm karyotypes were analyzed and multicolour FISH analysis was performed on a minimum of 10,000 sperm nuclei for each chromosome-specific DNA probe for chromosomes 1 (pUC1.77), 12 (D12Z3), X (XC) and Y (DYZ3). As a group, the infertile patients showed increased frequencies of both numerical ({chi}{sup 2}=17.26, {proportional_to} <0.001) and total abnormalities ({chi}{sup 2}=7.78, {proportional_to} <0.01) relative to control donors when assessed by sperm karyotypes. Analysis of sperm nuclei by FISH indicated a significant increase in the frequency of disomy for chromosome 1 in three of the five patients as compared to control donors ({chi}{sup 2}>8.35, {proportional_to} <0.005). In addition, the frequency of XY disomy was significantly higher in four of the five patients studied by FISH ({chi}{sup 2}>10.58, {proportional_to}<0.005), suggesting that mis-segregation caused by the failure of the XY bivalent to pair may play a role in idiopathic male infertility.

  17. Beyond Testis Size: Links between Spermatogenesis and Sperm Traits in a Seasonal Breeding Mammal

    PubMed Central

    Pintus, Eliana; Ros-Santaella, José Luis; Garde, José Julián

    2015-01-01

    Spermatogenesis is a costly process that is expected to be under selection to maximise sperm quantity and quality. Testis size is often regarded as a proxy measure of sperm investment, implicitly overlooking the quantitative assessment of spermatogenesis. An enhanced understanding of testicular function, beyond testis size, may reveal further sexual traits involved in sperm quantity and quality. Here, we first estimated the inter-male variation in testicular function and sperm traits in red deer across the breeding and non-breeding seasons. Then, we analysed the relationships between the testis mass, eight parameters of spermatogenic function, and seven parameters of sperm quality. Our findings revealed that the Sertoli cell number and function parameters vary greatly between red deer males, and that spermatogenic activity co-varies with testis mass and sperm quality across the breeding and non-breeding seasons. For the first time in a seasonal breeder, we found that not only is the Sertoli cell number important in determining testis mass (r = 0.619, p = 0.007 and r = 0.248, p = 0.047 for the Sertoli cell number assessed by histology and cytology, respectively), but also sperm function (r = 0.703, p = 0.002 and r = 0.328, p = 0.012 for the Sertoli cell number assessed by histology and cytology, respectively). Testicular histology also revealed that a high Sertoli cell number per tubular cross-section is associated with high sperm production (r = 0.600, p = 0.009). Sperm production and function were also positively correlated (r = 0.384, p = 0.004), suggesting that these traits co-vary to maximise sperm fertilisation ability in red deer. In conclusion, our findings contribute to the understanding of the dynamics of spermatogenesis, and reveal new insights into the role of testicular function and the Sertoli cell number on testis size and sperm quality in red deer. PMID:26430740

  18. Correlation between sperm ultrastructure in infertile patients with abnormal sperm morphology and DNA damage.

    PubMed

    He, M; Tan, L

    2015-01-01

    This study explored the correlation between sperm ultrastructure in infertile patients with abnormal sperm morphology and DNA damage. Three unusual sperm morphologies were selected for the experimental group namely case 1 (95% headless sperm), case 2 (98% headless sperm), and case 3 (100% headless sperm), and the control group consisted of 2 subjects (20 and 15% headless sperm). For case 1, the patient was negative for sexually transmitted diseases and had normal semen plasma biochemistry, reproductive hormones, peripheral blood chromosomes, and azoospermia factor (AZF). The aneuploid rate of sperm chromosomes was 0.6%, and DNA damage index of sperm nuclei was 84.4%. The partner of this patient did not get pregnant after artificial reproductive technology assistance. For case 2, the aneuploid rate of sperm chromosomes was 0.8% and DNA damage index of sperm nuclei was 95%. This patient and his spouse did not choose assisted reproduction. For case 3, reproductive hormones, peripheral blood chromosomes and AZF were normal and the aneuploid rate of sperm chromosomes was 0.2%. The wife of this patient gave birth to a healthy baby after ova removal, fertilization and transplantation. For the control group, the aneuploid rate of sperm chromosomes and DNA damage index of sperm nuclei were approximately 0.3 and 30%, respectively. To sum up, sperm ultrastructure of infertile patients suffering from unusual sperm morphology is associated with DNA damage to some extent and can cause infertility. However, pregnancy is still possible through intracytoplasmic sperm injection. PMID:26681047

  19. Sperm-Specific Glyceraldehyde-3-Phosphate Dehydrogenase - An Evolutionary Acquisition of Mammals.

    PubMed

    Muronetz, V I; Kuravsky, M L; Barinova, K V; Schmalhausen, E V

    2015-12-01

    This review is focused on the mammalian sperm-specific glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDS). GAPDS plays the major role in the production of energy required for sperm cell movement and does not perform non-glycolytic functions that are characteristic of the somatic isoenzyme of glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase. The GAPDS sequence is composed of 408 amino acid residues and includes an additional N-terminal region of 72 a.a. that binds the protein to the sperm tail cytoskeleton. GAPDS is present only in the sperm cells of mammals and lizards, possibly providing them with certain evolutionary advantages in reproduction. In this review, studies concerning the problems of GAPDS isolation, its catalytic properties, and its structural features are described in detail. GAPDS is much more stable compared to the somatic isoenzyme, perhaps due to the necessity of maintaining the enzyme function in the absence of protein expression. The site-directed mutagenesis approach revealed the two GAPDS-specific proline residues, as well as three salt bridges, which seem to be the basis of the increased stability of this protein. As distinct from the somatic isoenzyme, GAPDS exhibits positive cooperativity in binding of the coenzyme NAD+. The key role in transduction of structural changes induced by NAD+ is played by the salt bridge D311-H124. Disruption of this salt bridge cancels GAPDS cooperativity and twofold increases its enzymatic activity instead. The expression of GAPDS was detected in some melanoma cells as well. Its role in the development of certain pathologies, such as cancer and neurodegenerative diseases, is discussed. PMID:26878573

  20. Rapid increases in tropospheric ozone production and export from China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verstraeten, Willem W.; Neu, Jessica L.; Williams, Jason E.; Bowman, Kevin W.; Worden, John R.; Boersma, K. Folkert

    2015-09-01

    Rapid population growth and industrialization have driven substantial increases in Asian ozone precursor emissions over the past decade, with highly uncertain impacts on regional and global tropospheric ozone levels. According to ozonesonde measurements, tropospheric ozone concentrations at two Asian sites have increased by 1 to 3% per year since 2000, an increase thought to contribute to positive trends in the ozone levels observed at North America’s West Coast. However, model estimates of the Asian contribution to North American ozone levels are not well-constrained by observations. Here we interpret Aura satellite measurements of tropospheric concentrations of ozone and its precursor NO2, along with its largest natural source, stratospheric ozone, using the TM5 global chemistry-transport model. We show that tropospheric ozone concentrations over China have increased by about 7% between 2005 and 2010 in response to two factors: a rise in Chinese emissions by about 21% and increased downward transport of stratospheric ozone. Furthermore, we find that transport from China of ozone and its precursors has offset about 43% of the 0.42 DU reduction in free-tropospheric ozone over the western United States that was expected between 2005 and 2010 as a result of emissions reductions associated with federal, state and local air quality policies. We conclude that global efforts may be required to address regional air quality and climate change.

  1. Sperm Competition in Humans: Mate Guarding Behavior Negatively Correlates with Ejaculate Quality

    PubMed Central

    Leivers, Samantha; Rhodes, Gillian; Simmons, Leigh W.

    2014-01-01

    In species where females mate with multiple males, the sperm from these males must compete to fertilise available ova. Sexual selection from sperm competition is expected to favor opposing adaptations in males that function either in the avoidance of sperm competition (by guarding females from rival males) or in the engagement in sperm competition (by increased expenditure on the ejaculate). The extent to which males may adjust the relative use of these opposing tactics has been relatively neglected. Where males can successfully avoid sperm competition from rivals, one might expect a decrease in their expenditure on tactics for the engagement in sperm competition and vice versa. In this study, we examine the relationship between mate guarding and ejaculate quality using humans as an empirical model. We found that men who performed fewer mate guarding behaviors produced higher quality ejaculates, having a greater concentration of sperm, a higher percentage of motile sperm and sperm that swam faster and less erratically. These effects were found independent of lifestyle factors or factors related to male quality. Our findings suggest that male expenditure on mate guarding and on the ejaculate may represent alternative routes to paternity assurance in humans. PMID:25250582

  2. Optical tweezers and non-ratiometric fluorescent-dye-based studies of respiration in sperm mitochondria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Timothy; Shi, Linda Z.; Zhu, Qingyuan; Chandsawangbhuwana, Charlie; Berns, Michael W.

    2011-04-01

    The purpose of this study is to investigate how the mitochondrial membrane potential affects sperm motility using laser tweezers and a non-ratiometric fluorescent probe, DiOC6(3). A 1064 nm Nd:YVO4 continuous wave laser was used to trap motile sperm at a power of 450 mW in the trap spot. Using customized tracking software, the curvilinear velocity (VCL) and the escape force from the laser tweezers were measured. Human (Homo sapiens), dog (Canis lupis familiaris) and drill (Mandrillus leucophaeus) sperm were treated with DiOC6(3) to measure the membrane potential in the mitochondria-rich sperm midpieces. Sperm from all three species exhibited an increase in fluorescence when treated with the DiOC6(3). When a cyanide inhibitor (CCCP) of aerobic respiration was applied, sperm of all three species exhibited a reduction in fluorescence to pre-dye levels. With respect to VCL and escape force, the CCCP had no effect on dog or human sperm, suggesting a major reliance upon anaerobic respiration (glycolysis) for ATP in these two species. Based on the preliminary study on drill sperm, CCCP caused a drop in the VCL, suggesting potential reliance on both glycolysis and aerobic respiration for motility. The results demonstrate that optical trapping in combination with DiOC6(3) is an effective way to study sperm motility and energetics.

  3. How sexual selection can drive the evolution of costly sperm ornamentation.

    PubMed

    Lüpold, Stefan; Manier, Mollie K; Puniamoorthy, Nalini; Schoff, Christopher; Starmer, William T; Luepold, Shannon H Buckley; Belote, John M; Pitnick, Scott

    2016-05-26

    Post-copulatory sexual selection (PSS), fuelled by female promiscuity, is credited with the rapid evolution of sperm quality traits across diverse taxa. Yet, our understanding of the adaptive significance of sperm ornaments and the cryptic female preferences driving their evolution is extremely limited. Here we review the evolutionary allometry of exaggerated sexual traits (for example, antlers, horns, tail feathers, mandibles and dewlaps), show that the giant sperm of some Drosophila species are possibly the most extreme ornaments in all of nature and demonstrate how their existence challenges theories explaining the intensity of sexual selection, mating-system evolution and the fundamental nature of sex differences. We also combine quantitative genetic analyses of interacting sex-specific traits in D. melanogaster with comparative analyses of the condition dependence of male and female reproductive potential across species with varying ornament size to reveal complex dynamics that may underlie sperm-length evolution. Our results suggest that producing few gigantic sperm evolved by (1) Fisherian runaway selection mediated by genetic correlations between sperm length, the female preference for long sperm and female mating frequency, and (2) longer sperm increasing the indirect benefits to females. Our results also suggest that the developmental integration of sperm quality and quantity renders post-copulatory sexual selection on ejaculates unlikely to treat male-male competition and female choice as discrete processes. PMID:27225128

  4. Mating systems and protein–protein interactions determine evolutionary rates of primate sperm proteins

    PubMed Central

    Schumacher, Julia; Rosenkranz, David; Herlyn, Holger

    2014-01-01

    To assess the relative impact of functional constraint and post-mating sexual selection on sequence evolution of reproductive proteins, we examined 169 primate sperm proteins. In order to recognize potential genome-wide trends, we additionally analysed a sample of altogether 318 non-reproductive (brain and postsynaptic) proteins. Based on cDNAs of eight primate species (Anthropoidea), we observed that pre-mating sperm proteins engaged in sperm composition and assembly show significantly lower incidence of site-specific positive selection and overall lower non-synonymous to synonymous substitution rates (dN/dS) across sites as compared with post-mating sperm proteins involved in capacitation, hyperactivation, acrosome reaction and fertilization. Moreover, database screening revealed overall more intracellular protein interaction partners in pre-mating than in post-mating sperm proteins. Finally, post-mating sperm proteins evolved at significantly higher evolutionary rates than pre-mating sperm and non-reproductive proteins on the branches to multi-male breeding species, while no such increase was observed on the branches to unimale and monogamous species. We conclude that less protein–protein interactions of post-mating sperm proteins account for lowered functional constraint, allowing for stronger impact of post-mating sexual selection, while the opposite holds true for pre-mating sperm proteins. This pattern is particularly strong in multi-male breeding species showing high female promiscuity. PMID:24307672

  5. Sperm Swimming Velocity Predicts Competitive Fertilization Success in the Green Swordtail Xiphophorus helleri

    PubMed Central

    Gasparini, Clelia; Simmons, Leigh W.; Beveridge, Maxine; Evans, Jonathan P.

    2010-01-01

    Sperm competition is expected to favour the evolution of traits that influence the performance of sperm when they compete to fertilize a female's eggs. While there is considerable evidence that selection favours increases in sperm numbers, much less is known about how sperm quality contributes towards competitive fertilization success. Here, we determine whether variation in sperm quality influences competitive fertilization success in the green swordtail Xiphophorus helleri, a highly promiscuous livebearing fish. We use artificial insemination as a method of controlled sperm delivery and show that sperm swimming velocity is the primary determinant of fertilization success when ejaculates from two males compete to fertilize a female's eggs. By contrast, we found no evidence that sperm length had any effect on siring success. We also found no evidence that pre- and postcopulatory sexual traits were phenotypically integrated in this species, suggesting that the previous observation that reproductive skew favours males with high mating rates is unlikely to be due to any direct association between sperm quality and male sexual ornamentation. PMID:20730092

  6. Competition among Eggs Shifts to Cooperation along a Sperm Supply Gradient in an External Fertilizer.

    PubMed

    Okamoto, Daniel K

    2016-05-01

    Competition among gametes for fertilization imposes strong selection. For external fertilizers, this selective pressure extends to eggs for which spawning conditions can range from sperm limitation (competition among eggs) to sexual conflict (overabundance of competing sperm toxic to eggs). Yet existing fertilization models ignore dynamics that can alter the functional nature of gamete interactions. These factors include attraction of sperm to eggs, egg crowding effects, or other nonlinearities in per capita rates of sperm-egg interaction. Such processes potentially allow egg concentrations to drastically affect viable fertilization probabilities. I experimentally tested whether such egg effects occur, using the urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus, and parameterized a newly derived model of fertilization dynamics and existing models modified to include such interactions. The experiments revealed that at low sperm concentrations, eggs compete for sperm, while at high sperm concentrations, eggs cooperatively reduce abnormal fertilization (a proxy for polyspermy). I show that these observations are consistent with declines in the per capita rate at which sperm and eggs interact as eggs increase in density. The results suggest a fitness trade-off of egg release during spawning: as sperm range from scarce to superabundant, interactions among eggs transition from highly competitive to cooperative in terms of viable fertilization probabilities. PMID:27105001

  7. Pronuclear epigenetic modification of protamine deficient human sperm following injection into mouse oocytes.

    PubMed

    Rajabi, Hoda; Mohseni-Kouchesfehani, Homa; Mohammadi-Sangcheshmeh, Abdollah; Farifteh-Nobijari, Fattaneh; Salehi, Mohammad

    2016-04-01

    Epigenetic abnormalities and abnormal chromatin structure in sperm may lead to male infertility. Protamine deficiency is among the disorders of chromatin structure in sperm. The study of epigenetic changes in male pronuclei is necessary since abnormal sperm is sometimes used to create embryos using assisted reproductive techniques. The present study was carried out to compare epigenetic global marks in male pronuclei derived from normal and protamine deficient sperm cells. To do so, interspecies fertilization was used to obtain the male pronucleus. Normal and protamine deficient sperm cells, which were identified by chromomycin A3 staining, were injected into mouse oocytes. Oocytes were cultured until pronuclear formation and were then labeled with different antibodies (anti 5-methylcytosine, anti 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, and anti acetyl H4K12). Based on the fluorescence intensity, the level of each of these epigenetic factors was determined and they revealed a significant relationship between the level of sperm protamine deficiency and sperm epigenetic factors. Protamine deficiency was found to be associated with an increased methylation (p=0) and decreased hydroxymethylation rate (p=0.015) of the male pronucleus chromatin. However, no association was found between protamine deficiency and the level of H4K12 acetylation (p=0.548). Also, the efficiency of fertilization in protamine deficient sperm cells was less than normal. These results suggest that protamine deficient sperm cells lead to the formation of epigenetically altered pronuclei. PMID:26901234

  8. Golbal Economic and Environmental Impacts of Increased Bioenergy Production

    SciTech Connect

    Wallace Tyner

    2012-05-30

    The project had three main objectives: to build and incorporate an explicit biomass energy sector within the GTAP analytical framework and data base; to provide an analysis of the impact of renewable fuel standards and other policies in the U.S. and E.U, as well as alternative biofuel policies in other parts of the world, on changes in production, prices, consumption, trade and poverty; and to evaluate environmental impacts of alternative policies for bioenergy development. Progress and outputs related to each objective are reported.

  9. Fluid loss control materials increase production at Alba

    SciTech Connect

    Ali, S.; McGinn, P.; Fitzpatrick, H.

    1996-05-01

    High-permeability formations are susceptible to formation damage. Drilling or completion fluids can cause permanent damage to the formation and may never be recovered once they leak into formation sand. Downhole processes, such as running in screens and pulling out guns, can also easily lead to damage in an unconsolidated formation. As describes here, Chevron recently used a crosslinkable HEC polymer gel pill and a viscous linear biopolymer prepack fluid to improve drilling and production performance at Alba field in the North Sea.

  10. Increasing Your Productivity with Web-Based Surveys

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wissmann, Mary; Stone, Brittney; Schuster, Ellen

    2012-01-01

    Web-based survey tools such as Survey Monkey can be used in many ways to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of Extension professionals. This article describes how Survey Monkey has been used at the state and county levels to collect community and internal staff information for the purposes of program planning, administration, evaluation and

  11. Increasing Your Productivity with Web-Based Surveys

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wissmann, Mary; Stone, Brittney; Schuster, Ellen

    2012-01-01

    Web-based survey tools such as Survey Monkey can be used in many ways to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of Extension professionals. This article describes how Survey Monkey has been used at the state and county levels to collect community and internal staff information for the purposes of program planning, administration, evaluation and…

  12. Increased calf production in cattle selected for twin ovulations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of increasing fetal numbers and their distribution between the left and right uterine horns on calf survival, calf BW at birth and weaning, gestation length, dystocia, and calf sex ratio were evaluated for single (n = 1,587), twin (n = 2,440), and triplet calves (n = 147) born to primipa...

  13. Increased Alberta bitumen production results in prorationing of light oil production

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1986-09-01

    During January to May 1986, shut-in production of light oil in Alberta averaged 109,000 barrels per day. The peak month was April with a shut-in of 164,000 barrels per day. The cause of the shut-in is insufficient pipeline delivery capacity. Both the Interprovincial and TransMountain systems have been operating at full capacity since November 1985. The Rangeland system has also been utilized to its capacity in late spring. This paper discusses the history of the Alberta Proration Plan dating from 1950, the operation of the plan during the recent past years, and the resulting effects of an increase in bitumen production on the transport capacity for light oil.

  14. Writing Retreat Increases Productivity And Community For Women Geoscientists

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Connell, S.; Holmes, M.

    2011-12-01

    Five, weeklong geoscientist writing retreats have been completed with an NSF ADANCE PAID grant. During the five nights and four and a half days, eight to twenty-four academics have gathered in a rural setting outside of Boston to get to focus on writing papers and proposals while getting to know each other. Participants range in age and experience from graduate students to emeritus professors. Over twenty papers and proposals acknowledge their production, in part to this writing retreat. Impact extends beyond papers as informal mentoring and discussions at meals and in the evenings centers on succeeding in academia. Research and teaching are foremost in the conversation. Post-docs learn strategies for applying for jobs and grants, and senior professors discuss strategies for working with academic administrations, running departments and mentoring students. They also learn new technologies and perspectives from younger participants. Particularly helpful are discussions on work-life balance. Networking opportunities extend beyond the retreat as participants join each other at their home institutions to give seminars, develop research projects and mentor each other's students. All weeks follow the same format. Participants arrive Sunday and meet during an evening welcome reception. Monday is devoted to writing. Tuesday a writing coach is available. In the morning, using examples from the scientific literature, she discusses strategies and techniques for writing clearly at a group session. During the afternoon, participants work with the coach individually or in small groups to improve their own writing projects. Wednesday evening a skill session is offered on a topic of interest. These have included undergraduate research, NSF funding, productive techniques for dealing with conflict, and generational characteristics and attitudes, which can hamper communication. A Thursday evening wrap-up session prepares participants for Friday's departure. We believe that this model is replicable to other regions or to single institutions. All that is really required is space, meals, and a writing coach or a journal editor. Costs are very reasonable, considering the positive lifelong impact on this most necessary skill for the productive scientist.

  15. Generation of Live Piglets for the First Time Using Sperm Retrieved from Immature Testicular Tissue Cryopreserved and Grafted into Nude Mice

    PubMed Central

    Nakai, Michiko; Somfai, Tamas; Noguchi, Junko; Tanihara, Fuminori; Ito, Junya; Kashiwazaki, Naomi

    2013-01-01

    Cryopreservation of immature testicular tissues is essential for increasing the possibilities of offspring generation by testicular xenografting for agricultural or medical purposes. However, successful production of offspring from the sperm involved has never been reported previously. In the present study, therefore, using intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), we examined whether xenogeneic sperm obtained from immature pig testicular tissue after cryopreservation would have the capacity to produce live piglets. Testicular fragments from 9- to 11-day-old piglets were vitrified after 10- or 20-min immersion in vitrification solution containing ethylene glycol (EG), polyvinyl pyrrolidone (PVP) and trehalose as cryoprotectants, and then stored in liquid nitrogen for more than 140 days. Thirty nude mice were assigned to each immersion-time group. Testicular fragments were transplanted under the back skin of castrated mice immediately after warming and removal of the cryoprotectants. Blood and testicular grafts were then recovered from the recipient mice on days 60, 120, 180 and 230−350 (day 0 =  grafting). Histological assessment of the testicular grafts and analyses of inhibin and testosterone production revealed no significant differences between the two immersion-time groups, indicating equal growth activity of the cryopreserved tissues. A single sperm obtained from a mouse in each group on day 230−350 was injected into an in vitro-matured porcine oocyte, and then the ICSI oocytes were transferred to the oviducts of estrus-synchronized recipient gilts. One out of 4 gilts that had received oocytes fertilized using sperm from the 10-min immersion group delivered 2 live piglets, and one of another 4 gilts from the 20-min group delivered 4 live piglets. Thus, we have successfully generated porcine offspring utilizing sperm from immature testicular tissues after cryopreservation and transplantation into nude mice. The present model using pigs will be applicable to many large animals, since pigs are phylogenetically distant from the murine recipients. PMID:23923039

  16. Science Video Journals to Increase Productivity in Research and Education

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henderson, K. M.

    2013-12-01

    Research in both the physical and biological sciences chronically suffers from the low productivity and reproducibility of experimental studies. This is due in part because the traditional text-based format of science journals cannot provide an adequate description of complex research procedures. This creates a critical 'bottleneck' problem of knowledge transfer for research and education. Addressing this challenge, a new generation of science journals employs online video to provide a systematic visualized publication of experimental studies. This presentation will provide an overview of the growing field of video publication and discuss its technical challenges, implications for scholarly communication and acceptance in the academic and library community. Results and recently conducted case studies will be shown in support of video publications as a valid communication venue in scientific publishing.

  17. Butyrate increases IL-23 production by stimulated dendritic cells

    PubMed Central

    Berndt, Bradford E.; Zhang, Min; Owyang, Stephanie Y.; Cole, Tyler S.; Wang, Teresa W.; Luther, Jay; Veniaminova, Natalia A.; Merchant, Juanita L.; Chen, Chun-Chia; Huffnagle, Gary B.

    2012-01-01

    The gut microbiota is essential for the maintenance of intestinal immune homeostasis and is responsible for breaking down dietary fiber into short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs). Butyrate, the most abundant bioactive SCFA in the gut, is a histone deacetylase inhibitor (HDACi), a class of drug that has potent immunomodulatory properties. This characteristic of butyrate, along with our previous discovery that conventional dendritic cells (DCs) are required for the development of experimental colitis, led us to speculate that butyrate may modulate DC function to regulate gut mucosal homeostasis. We found that butyrate, in addition to suppressing LPS-induced bone marrow-derived DC maturation and inhibiting DC IL-12 production, significantly induced IL-23 expression. The upregulation of mRNA subunit IL-23p19 at the pretranslational level was consistent with the role of HDACi on the epigenetic modification of gene expression. Furthermore, the mechanism of IL-23p19 upregulation was independent of Stat3 and ZBP89. Coculture of splenocytes with LPS-stimulated DCs pretreated with or without butyrate was performed and showed a significant induction of IL-17 and IL-10. We demonstrated further the effect of butyrate in vivo using dextran sulfate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis and found that the addition of butyrate in the drinking water of mice worsened DSS-colitis. This is in contrast to the daily intraperitoneal butyrate injection of DSS-treated mice, which mildly improved disease severity. Our study highlights a novel effect of butyrate in upregulating IL-23 production of activated DCs and demonstrates a difference in the host response to the oral vs. systemic route of butyrate administration. PMID:23086919

  18. Effect of sex-sorted sperm dosage on conception rates in Holstein heifers and lactating cows.

    PubMed

    DeJarnette, J M; Nebel, R L; Marshall, C E; Moreno, J F; McCleary, C R; Lenz, R W

    2008-05-01

    Ejaculates were collected by artificial vagina from 3 Holstein sires and sorted to 90% purity for X-chromosome-bearing spermatozoa (range 88 to 93%) using flow cytometry. Sorted sperm were diluted to 2.1, 3.5, or 5.0 x 10(6) sperm per dose in an egg yolk (20%), Tris, glycerol (7%) extender. Collections were repeated until >600 straws per sperm dose per sire were obtained. Each sperm dose was loaded into color-coded 0.25-mL French straws, with alternate colors used to define treatments across sires. Within sires, straws were packaged at 9 per cane (3 of each color) and strategically allocated to 75 Holstein herds with targets for 50% use in heifers and 50% in lactating cows. Straw color was recorded in the on-farm record-keeping system at the time of insemination. Data were analyzed separately for cows and heifers. Among heifers, a total of 2,125 usable records were retrieved from 51 herds (238 +/- 5.5 services/ sperm dose per sire, range: 218 to 263). Conception rates in heifers were influenced by the sire x sperm dosage interaction. Within sire A, conception rates of heifers were greater for the 5 x 10(6) (59.5%) than for the 2.1 x 10(6) (46.4%) sperm dose and intermediate for the 3.5 x 10(6) sperm dose (52.2%). However, across sires, sperm dosage had no effect on heifer conception rates (46.7, 51.2, and 52.5% for the 2.1, 3.5, and 5.0 x 10(6) sperm dosages, respectively). Among cows, a total of 2,369 services were retrieved from 56 herds (263 +/- 8.8 services/sperm dose per sire, range: 233 to 303). Conception rates of cows (29.4%) were not affected by sire or sperm dosage (27.0, 29.1, and 30.3% for the 2.1, 3.5, and 5.0 x 10(6) sperm dosages, respectively). In conclusion, these data indicate that an increased sperm dosage may enhance virgin heifer conception rates for some (but not all) sires, whereas neither sire nor sexed-sperm dosage affected conception rates of lactating cows. Additional studies of sexed-sperm dosage across a larger sampling of bulls are warranted to determine whether and how such a practice can be implemented cost effectively for the benefit of the dairy industry. PMID:18420608

  19. Environmental toxicants cause sperm DNA fragmentation as detected by the Sperm Chromatin Structure Assay (SCSA[reg])

    SciTech Connect

    Evenson, Donald P. . E-mail: scsa@brookings.net; Wixon, Regina

    2005-09-01

    Studies over the past two decades have clearly shown that reproductive toxicants cause sperm DNA fragmentation. This DNA fragmentation can usually be detected prior to observing alterations of metaphase chromosomes in embryos. Thus, Sperm Chromatin Structure Assay (SCSA)-detected DNA damage is viewed as the molecular precursor to later gross chromosome damage observed under the light microscope. SCSA measurements of animal or human sperm consist of first obtaining a fresh or flash frozen neat semen sample in LN2 or dry ice. Samples are then sent to a SCSA diagnostic laboratory where the samples are thawed, diluted to {approx}1-2 x 106 sperm/ml, treated for 30 s with a pH 1.2 detergent buffer and then stained with acridine orange (AO). The low pH partially denatures DNA at the sites of DNA strand breaks and the AO-ssDNA fluoresces red while the AO-dsDNA fluoresces green. Flow cytometry measurements of 5000 sperm/sample provide statistically robust data on the ratio of red to green sperm, the extent of the DNA fragmentation and the standard deviations of measures. Numerous experiments on rodents treated with reproductive toxicants clearly showed that SCSA measures are highly dose responsive and have a very low CV. Different agents that act on germ cells at various stages of development usually showed sperm DNA fragmentation when that germ cell fraction arrived in the epididymis or ejaculate. Some of these treated samples were capable of successful in vitro fertilization but with frequent embryo failure. A 2-year longitudinal study of men living a valley town with a reported abnormal level of infertility and spontaneous miscarriages and also a seasonal atmospheric smog pollution, showed, for the first time, that SCSA measurements of human sperm DNA fragmentation were detectable and correlated with dosage of air pollution while the classical semen measures were not correlated. Also, young men spraying pesticides without protective gear are at an increased risk for elevated sperm DNA fragmentation. Extensive DNA fragmentation probably cannot be repaired by the egg and the spontaneous abortion rate is {approx}2x higher if a man has more than 30% of sperm showing DNA fragmentation. DNA fragmentation is an excellent marker for exposure to potential reproductive toxicants and a diagnostic/prognostic tool for potential male infertility.

  20. New insights into transduction pathways that regulate boar sperm function.

    PubMed

    Hurtado de Llera, A; Martin-Hidalgo, D; Gil, M C; Garcia-Marin, L J; Bragado, M J

    2016-01-01

    Detailed molecular mechanisms mediating signal transduction cascades that regulate boar sperm function involving Ser/Thr and tyrosine phosphorylation of proteins have been reviewed previously. Therefore, this review will focus in those kinase pathways identified recently (<10 years) in boar spermatozoa that regulate different functional spermatozoa processes. AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is a cell energy sensor kinase that was first identified in mammalian spermatozoa in 2012, and since then it has emerged as an essential regulator of boar sperm function. Signaling pathways leading to AMPK activation in boar sperm are highlighted in this review (PKA, CaMKK?/?, and PKC as well as Ca(2+) and cAMP messengers as upstream regulators). Interestingly, stimuli considered as cell stress (hyperosmotic stress, inhibition of mitochondrial activity, absence of intracellular Ca(2+)) markedly activate AMPK in boar spermatozoa. Moreover, AMPK plays a remarkable and necessary regulatory role in mammalian sperm function, controlling essential boar sperm functional processes such as motility, viability, mitochondrial membrane potential, organization and fluidity of plasma membrane, and outer acrosome membrane integrity. These mentioned processes are all required under fluctuating environment of spermatozoa when transiting through the female reproductive tract to achieve fertilization. An applied role of AMPK in artificial insemination techniques is also suggested as during boar seminal doses preservation at 17 C, physiological levels of AMPK activity markedly increase (maximum on Day 7) and result essential to maintain the aforementioned fundamental sperm processes. Moreover, regulation of sperm function exerted by the glycogen synthase kinase 3 and Src family kinase pathways is summarized. PMID:26074068

  1. DNA integrity of canine spermatozoa during chill storage assessed by the sperm chromatin dispersion test using bright-field or fluorescence microscopy.

    PubMed

    Hidalgo, M; Urbano, M; Ortiz, I; Demyda-Peyras, S; Murabito, M R; Gálvez, M J; Dorado, J

    2015-08-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of chill storage on canine sperm DNA fragmentation assessed by the sperm chromatin dispersion test using bright-field microscopy with Wright solution (sDF-B) or fluorescence microscopy with propidium iodide (sDF-F). The relationship and agreement between the results obtained with both staining methods were analyzed. The values of DNA fragmentation indexes (sDF-F and sDF-B) were compared at each time of chill storage (0, 24, 48, 72, and 96 hours). Additionally, the sperm DNA fragmentation rate (slope) was compared between the methods during chill storage. Good agreement and no significant differences between values obtained with both staining procedures were observed. Finally, the effect of chill storage for up to 96 hours was assessed on sperm motility parameters and DNA fragmentation indexes. Significant differences were found after 48 hours of chill storage, obtaining greater values of fragmented DNA. Progressive sperm motility was lower just after 96 hours of chill storage, and no effect was found in total sperm motility. In conclusion, the Sperm-Halomax kit, developed for canine semen and based on the sperm chromatin dispersion test, can be used accurately under bright-field or fluorescence microscopy to assess the sperm DNA integrity of canine semen during chill storage. The sperm DNA fragmentation index increased after 48 hours of chill storage, thereby detecting sperm damage earlier than other routine sperm parameters, such as sperm motility. PMID:25963130

  2. Mutant E. coli strain with increased succinic acid production

    DOEpatents

    Donnelly, Mark; Millard, Cynthia S.; Stols, Lucy

    2001-09-25

    A method for isolating succinic acid producing bacteria is pr