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Sample records for posttesticular sperm maturation

  1. Posttesticular sperm maturation, infertility, and hypercholesterolemia

    PubMed Central

    Whitfield, Marjorie; Pollet-Villard, Xavier; Levy, Rachel; Drevet, Joël R; Saez, Fabrice

    2015-01-01

    Cholesterol is a key molecule in the mammalian physiology of especial particular importance for the reproductive system as it is the common precursor for steroid hormone synthesis. Cholesterol is also a recognized modulator of sperm functions, not only at the level of gametogenesis. Cholesterol homeostasis regulation is crucial for posttesticular sperm maturation, and imbalanced cholesterol levels may particularly affect these posttesticular events. Metabolic lipid disorders (dyslipidemia) affect male fertility but are most of the time studied from the angle of endocrine/testicular consequences. This review will focus on the deleterious effects of a particular dyslipidemia, i.e., hypercholesterolemia, on posttesticular maturation of mammalian spermatozoa. PMID:26067871

  2. Epididymal protein Rnase10 is required for post-testicular sperm maturation and male fertility.

    PubMed

    Krutskikh, Anton; Poliandri, Ariel; Cabrera-Sharp, Victoria; Dacheux, Jean Louis; Poutanen, Matti; Huhtaniemi, Ilpo

    2012-10-01

    Eutherian spermatozoa are dependent on the environment of the proximal epididymis to complete their maturation; however, no specific epididymal factors that mediate this process have so far been identified. Here, we show that targeted disruption of the novel gene Rnase10 encoding a secreted proximal epididymal protein in the mouse results in a binding defect in spermatozoa and their inability to pass through the uterotubal junction in the female. The failure to gain the site of fertilization in the knockout spermatozoa is associated with a gradual loss of ADAM3 and ADAM6 proteins during epididymal transit. In the distal epididymis, these spermatozoa appear to lack calcium-dependent associations with the immobilizing glutinous extracellular material and are released as single, vigorously motile cells that display no tendency for head-to-head agglutination and lack affinity to the oviductal epithelium. In sperm-egg binding assay, they are unable to establish a tenacious association with the zona pellucida, yet they are capable of fertilization. Furthermore, these sperm show accelerated capacitation resulting in an overall in vitro fertilizing ability superior to that of wild-type sperm. We conclude that the physiological role of sperm adhesiveness is in the mechanism of restricted sperm entry into the oviduct rather than in sperm-egg interaction. PMID:22750516

  3. Post-Testicular Sperm Maturation: Centriole Pairs, Found in Upper Epididymis, are Destroyed Prior to Sperm’s Release at Ejaculation

    PubMed Central

    Simerly, C.; Castro, C.; Hartnett, C.; Lin, C. C.; Sukhwani, M.; Orwig, K.; Schatten, G.

    2016-01-01

    The fertilizing sperm’s lengthiest unchartered voyage is through the longest, least-investigated organ in a man’s body – the Epididymis. Over six meters long in men, ~80 meters in stallions and over one-hundred times a mouse’s body length, there are few functions known aside from sperm storage and nutrition. While spermatogenesis is completed in the testes, here we demonstrate sperm centriole reduction occurs within the epididymis. Investigations of GFP-CENTR mice and controls demonstrate both the presence of centriole pairs in the upper caput region of the epididymis and, the destruction, first, of the distal and, then, of the proximal centriole as the sperm transits to the cauda and vas deferens in preparation for its climactic release. These centrioles can neither recruit γ-tubulin nor nucleate microtubules when eggs are inseminated or microinjected, yet numerous maternally-nucleated cytasters are found. These sperm centrioles appear as vestigial basal bodies, destroyed in the mid-to-lower corpus. Post-testicular sperm maturation, in which sperm centrioles found in the caput are destroyed prior to ejaculation, is a newly discovered function for the epididymis. PMID:27534805

  4. Implication of the estrogen receptors GPER, ESR1, ESR2 in post-testicular maturations of equine spermatozoa.

    PubMed

    Gautier, Camille; Barrier-Battut, Isabelle; Guénon, Isabelle; Goux, Didier; Delalande, Christelle; Bouraïma-Lelong, Hélène

    2016-07-01

    Estrogen receptors ESR1, ESR2 and GPER are present on mature ejaculated horse spermatozoa, suggesting these cells as putative targets for estrogens. Indeed, spermatozoa are exposed to high level of estrogens during the transit in the male and female genital tracts but their roles are not investigated. So, we evaluated in vitro the role of 17β-estradiol during post-testicular maturations: regulation of motility, capacitation and acrosome reaction. Moreover according to the pseudo-seasonal breeder status of the stallion, we analyzed the putative seasonal variations in the presence of ESRs in spermatozoa. We showed that ESRs are more present on stallion sperm during the breeding season. We showed that capacitation and acrosome reaction are independent of estradiol action in horse. Estradiol can weakly modulate the motility and this effect is strictly associated with GPER and not with ESR1 and ESR2. The subcellular localization of GPER in the neck on stallion sperm is coherent with this effect. It seems that estrogens are not major regulators of sperm maturations associated to mare genital tract, so they could act during the epididymal maturations. PMID:27222348

  5. 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

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

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2016-01-01

    Several recent studies link parental environments to phenotypes in subsequent generations. Here, we investigate the mechanism by which paternal diet affects offspring metabolism. Protein restriction in mice affects small RNA levels in mature sperm, with decreased let-7 levels and increased levels of 5’ fragments of glycine tRNAs. tRNA fragments are scarce in testicular sperm, but are gained as sperm mature in the epididymis. Epididymosomes – vesicles that fuse with sperm during epididymal transit – carry RNA payloads matching those of mature sperm, and deliver RNAs to immature sperm in vitro. Functionally, tRNA-Gly-GCC fragments repress genes associated with the endogenous retroelement MERVL, both in ES cells and embryos. Our results shed light on small RNA biogenesis, and its dietary regulation, during post-testicular sperm maturation, and link tRNA fragments to regulation of endogenous retroelements active in the preimplantation embryo. PMID:26721685

  7. 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

  8. Monotremes provide a key to understanding the evolutionary significance of epididymal sperm maturation.

    PubMed

    Nixon, Brett; Ecroyd, Heath W; Dacheux, Jean-Louis; Jones, Russell C

    2011-01-01

    It has been widely accepted that mammalian spermatozoa are infertile when they leave the testes and require a period of maturation in both the epididymis and the female reproductive tract before acquiring the ability to fertilize an oocyte. However, the necessity for such a complex process of posttesticular sperm maturation appears to be unique to mammals because it is well established that these processes do not directly influence the fertilizing ability of the spermatozoa of birds, reptiles, and other lower vertebrates. Because of their key evolutionary position and form of reproduction, we contend that monotremes (platypus and echidna) provide a unique model for resolving why these processes are necessary. In the present review, we examine evidence that the epididymal maturation of monotreme spermatozoa is far less complex than in other mammals. However, a unique feature of the monotreme epididymis lies in its ability to promote the formation of elaborate sperm bundles that serve to greatly enhance the cells' motility. It is suggested that this intriguing cooperative strategy used by monotreme sperm represents an early form of epididymal maturation that appears to have been elaborated upon during the evolution of higher mammals, possibly as an adaptation for sperm competition. PMID:21441429

  9. Macrophages and dendritic cells in the post-testicular environment.

    PubMed

    Da Silva, Nicolas; Barton, Claire R

    2016-01-01

    Macrophages (MΦ) and dendritic cells (DCs) are heterogeneous families of functionally and developmentally related immune cells that play crucial roles in tissue homeostasis and the regulation of immune responses. During the past 5 years, immunologists have generated a considerable amount of data that challenge dogmas about the ontogeny and functions of these highly versatile cells. The male excurrent duct system plays a critical role in the establishment of fertility by allowing sperm maturation, transport and storage. In addition, it is challenged by pathogens and must establish a protective and tolerogenic environment for a continuous flow of autoantigenic spermatozoa. The post-testicular environment and, in particular, the epididymis contain an intricate network of DCs and MΦ; however, the immunophysiology of this intriguing and highly specialized mucosal system is poorly understood. This review summarizes the current trends in mouse MΦ and DC biology and speculates about their roles in the steady-state epididymis. Unraveling immune cell functions in the male reproductive tract is an essential prerequisite for the design of innovative strategies aimed at controlling male fertility and treating infertility. PMID:26337514

  10. Study of Sperm Reproductive Parameters in Mature Zanjani Viper

    PubMed Central

    Moshiri, Malihe; Todehdehghan, Fatemeh; Shiravi, Abdolhossein

    2014-01-01

    Objective Zanjani viper (Vipera albicornuta) is an endemic venomous snake in East Azerbai- jan Province, Iran which is medically important due to its application for antivenin production in the laboratory. We need to produce this snake in captivity. This study was conducted to charac- terize mature male Zanjani viper and to evaluate its sperm reproductive parameters. Materials and Methods This applied- descriptive study was conducted on twenty Zan- jani viper samples collected from Ag Dag Mountain in East Azarbaijan Province, Iran, between September and October 2010. After the snakes were anesthetized and sacrificed humanly, their morphometric specifications and sperm reproductive parameters, including concentration, motility, vitality, morphology, and survival time, were measured. Results Morphometric specifications and evaluation of sperms of the snake showed the following information: Zanjani male viper, body length of 73.65 ± 4.35 cm, tail length of 5.465 ± 0.48 cm, and mature snakes with testicular volumes of 0.61 ± 0.81 ml (right) and of 0.46 ± 0.17 ml (left). Our findings revealed average sperm concen- tration of 0.47 ± 0.1 ×106ml-1, motility of 49 -55 %, vitality of 46.11 ± 9.63 %, normal morphology of 61.71 ± 5.3%, and survival time of 6 ± 2 hours at the laboratory tem- perature. Statistical analyses were performed using Student’s t test for comparison of two values, and one-way ANOVA was applied where three values were compared. Conclusion Results suggest that mature Zanjani male viper with mature sperms in its vas deferens is present in late summer and early autumn seasons in Bostanabad County, Iran. PMID:24567940

  11. Experimental evidence that sperm maturation drives protandry in an ectotherm.

    PubMed

    Breedveld, Merel C; Fitze, Patrick S

    2016-09-01

    Protandry, i.e., the earlier arrival to breeding areas of males than females, has attracted a lot of scientific attention. However, evidence for the evolutionary hypotheses of protandry is surprisingly scarce. Here, we experimentally manipulate the time of emergence from hibernation of males, relative to females, in the common lizard, Zootoca vivipara. We test whether the timing of emergence affects sperm maturation and mating success, to disentangle among proposed selective advantages of protandry. Our results experimentally demonstrate that the timing of emergence affects the date of sperm presence. Moreover, the degree of protandry affected whether males had sperm upon their first encounter with females, but it did not affect the probability of copulating. Mating occurred independent of male fertility and mating during infertility was least common in early emerging males. Early emergence from hibernation by males, relative to females, thus increases the male's chance of fertilising eggs and later emergence from hibernation by females reduces the female's probability of mating with infertile males. These results point to direct reproductive benefits of protandry in males and females, where earlier emergence is predicted to increase the male's opportunities to inseminate mates, and later emergence reduces the female's probability of copulating with infertile males. This suggests that protandry evolved due to the time required for sperm maturation after emergence from hibernation. PMID:27259749

  12. Electron microscopic observation of the sagittal structure of Drosophila mature sperm.

    PubMed

    Yasuno, Yusaku; Yamamoto, Masa-Toshi

    2014-09-01

    Observation of sperm development and determination of their morphological characteristics are very important to the understanding of phylogenetic relationships and the study of sperm function during fertilization. Although ultrastructural studies of sperm development in the testes of the fruit fly Drosophila have been performed, there are few reports describing electron microscopic morphology of mature sperm, that is, those released from the testes to the seminal vesicles. Here, we present the first report of the sagittal organization of Drosophila sperm head and neck regions by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The head and tail structures of a mature sperm, for example, the acrosome, nucleus, and flagellum, were easy to distinguish by the morphological characteristics of the sperm surface by SEM. The morphological relationships between the surface and internal structures of mature sperm were confirmed by observing longitudinal sections with TEM. Our approach overcame the technical difficulties involved in sample preparation for electron microscopic observation of the Drosophila mature sperm head, and therefore, this study serves as an important foundation for future genetic dissection of sperm ultrastructure and function in male sterile mutants. PMID:24911661

  13. 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

  14. Characterization of maturation-dependent extrinsic proteins of the rat sperm surface

    SciTech Connect

    Rifkin, J.M.; Olson, G.E.

    1985-05-01

    Mammalian spermatozoa must mature in the epididymis before they can fertilize an egg. It is known that modification of the protein composition of the sperm surface is an important part of the maturation process. In this paper, the authors present data on two related glycoproteins that can be extracted from mature but not immature spermatozoa. Cell surface radioiodination has shown that these proteins are on the sperm surface, and immunofluorescence microscopy, by use of monospecific antibodies to the proteins, has indicated that their localization is restricted to the periacrosomal region of the sperm head. The authors have also shown that in vitro, these proteins will bind to the identical region of immature sperm. Immunohistochemical localization of the proteins in the epididymis shows that they are produced and secreted by the cauda region. The significance of the addition of these proteins to the sperm surface in both maturation and fertilization is discussed.

  15. Sialylation Facilitates the Maturation of Mammalian Sperm and Affects Its Survival in Female Uterus.

    PubMed

    Ma, Xue; Pan, Qian; Feng, Ying; Choudhury, Biswa P; Ma, Qianhong; Gagneux, Pascal; Ma, Fang

    2016-06-01

    Establishment of adequate levels of sialylation is crucial for sperm survival and function after insemination; however, the mechanism for the addition of the sperm sialome has not been identified. Here, we report evidence for several different mechanisms that contribute to the establishment of the mature sperm sialome. Directly quantifying the source of the nucleotide sugar CMP-beta-N-acetylneuraminic acid in epididymal fluid indicates that transsialylation occurs in the upper epididymis. Western blots for the low-molecular-mass sialoglycoprotein (around 20-50 kDa) in C57BL/6 mice epididymal fluid reflect that additional sialome could be obtained by glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored sialoglycopeptide incorporation during epididymal transit in the caput of the epididymis. Additionally, we found that in Cmah (CMP-N-acetylneuraminic acid hydroxylase)-/- transgenic mice, epididymal sperm obtained sialylated-CD52 from seminal vesicle fluid (SVF). Finally, we used Gfp (green fluorescent protein)+/+ mouse sperm to test the role of sialylation on sperm for protection from female leukocyte attack. There is very low phagocytosis of the epididymal sperm when compared to that of sperm coincubated with SVF. Treating sperm with Arthrobacter ureafaciens sialidase (AUS) increased phagocytosis even further. Our results highlight the different mechanisms of increasing sialylation, which lead to the formation of the mature sperm sialome, as well as reveal the sialome's function in sperm survival within the female genital tract. PMID:27075617

  16. Sperm Bundles in the Seminal Vesicles of Sexually Mature Lasius Ant Males

    PubMed Central

    Burnett, William E.; Heinze, Jürgen

    2014-01-01

    In many insects, sperm cells are produced in bundles with their heads being held together by a glycoprotein matrix secreted by a cyst cell. Mature sperm cells in the seminal vesicles are usually free, but in sawflies and several other insects, such structures (spermatodesmata) remain intact and sperm cells may be ejaculated as bundles. Here we report the occurrence of spermatodesmata in mature males of the ant Lasius pallitarsis. Microscopic investigations of the abdominal contents of males immediately prior to their nuptial flights showed that the anterior ends of numerous sperm cells were embedded in an oval-shaped 20 by 30 micrometer extracellular fibrous cap. Individual sperm ranged in length from 55 to 75 micrometers with an average overall length of 65 micrometers. The bulb-shaped heads of the sperm were relatively small, only about 1.5 micrometers in length and about 1.1 micrometers in diameter. The diameter of the sperm tails was approximately 1 micrometer. Observations of live preparations of the spermatodesmata showed increasingly active undulating wave-like movement of the sperm tails as the slide preparations aged. This appears to be the first case of sperm bundles being present in the seminal vesicles of mature ant males – males that are immediately poised to complete their nuptial mating flight. PMID:24671307

  17. Bisphenol A Impairs Mature Sperm Functions by a CatSper-Relevant Mechanism.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hua-Feng; Liu, Min; Li, Na; Luo, Tao; Zheng, Li-Ping; Zeng, Xu-Hui

    2016-07-01

    Bisphenol A (BPA), an endocrine-disrupting chemical, is widely used in the manufacture of daily necessities. Previous studies showed that BPA could impair spermatogenesis. However, its effects on mature spermatozoa are not well known. We aimed to investigate the in vivo and in vitro toxicity of BPA on mature mouse spermatozoa. Different doses of BPA (0, 10, 50, and 250 μg·kg(-1)·d(-1)) were administrated orally to C57BL/6 mice for 8 weeks. Subsequently, the sperm viability, motility, acrosome reaction (AR) ratio together with the expression/current levels of the sperm-specific Ca(2+ )channel (CatSper) and K(+ )channel (KSper) were examined. These parameters were also evaluated after applying BPA directly to normal mouse sperm to appraise the toxicity of BPA to mature sperm in vitro Significant decreases in sperm motility and AR were found in BPA administrated mice, possibly resulting from a BPA caused CatSper down-regulation which was supported by both western blot and patch clamping results. Moreover, direct application of BPA to spermatozoa inhibited CatSper transiently and also caused significant reductions in sperm total motility and AR ratio. In conclusion, both in vivo administration and in vitro application of BPA impair mature sperm functions by a CatSper-relevant mechanism. PMID:27125968

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

    PubMed

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

    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

  19. Spermatogenesis, the mature sperm, and sperm egg association in Nematospiroides dubius

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clark, W. H., Jr.

    1974-01-01

    Nematode spermatogenesis was investigated using the strongyloid Nematospiroides dubius. The primary spermatocytes, development of spermatids, and changes in the sperm in the female tract are described.

  20. Identification of Peroxiredoxin-5 in Bovine Cauda Epididymal Sperm

    PubMed Central

    Nagdas, Subir K; Buchanan, Teresa; Raychoudhury, Samir

    2013-01-01

    Developing spermatozoa require a series of post-testicular modifications within the luminal environment of the epididymis to achieve maturation; this involves several surface modifications including changes in plasma membrane lipids, proteins, carbohydrates, and alterations in the outer acrosomal membrane. Epididymal maturation can therefore allow sperm to gain forward motility and fertilization capabilities. The objective of this study was to identify maturation dependent protein(s) and to investigate their role with the production of functionally competent spermatozoa. Lectin blot analyses of caput and cauda sperm plasma membrane fractions identified a 17.5kDa Wheat Germ Agglutinin (WGA) binding polypeptide present in the cauda sperm plasma membrane not in the caput sperm plasma membrane. Among the several WGA stained bands, the presence of a 17.5kDa WGA binding polypeptide band was detected only in cauda epididymal fluid not in caput epididymal fluid suggesting that the 17.5kDa WGA-binding polypeptide is secreted from the cauda epididymis and binds to the cauda sperm plasma membrane during epididymal transit. Proteomic identification of the 17.5kDa polypeptide yielded 13 peptides that matched the sequence of peroxiredoxin-5 (PRDX5) protein (Bos Taurus). We propose that bovine cauda sperm PRDX5 acts as an antioxidant enzyme in the epididymal environment, which is crucial in protecting the viable sperm population against the damage caused by endogeneous or exogeneous peroxide. PMID:24186847

  1. Glucose Regulated Protein 78 Phosphorylation in Sperm Undergoes Dynamic Changes during Maturation

    PubMed Central

    Lobo, Vivian; Rao, Parimala; Gajbhiye, Rahul; Kulkarni, Vijay; Parte, Priyanka

    2015-01-01

    GRP78, a resident endoplasmic reticulum (ER) chaperone involved in protein transport, folding and assembly, has been reported in sperm. It is shown to be localized in the neck region of human sperm. We have previously reported GRP78 to be less phosphorylated in asthenozoosperm.The present study aimed to determine whether sperm GRP78 undergoes phosphorylation changes during epididymal maturation and whether there are any differences in GRP78 phosphoforms in asthenozoosperm vis-à-vis normozoosperm. Testicular- and cauda epididymal- sperm from adult male Holtzman rats, and semen ejaculates collected from normal and asthenozoospermic individuals were investigated. DIGE carried out to determine phosphorylation of GRP78 in asthenozoosperm and normal sperm reveals a shift in the location of GRP78 of asthenozoosperm towards the alkaline pH, indicative of reduced GRP78 phosphorylation. Immunoprecipitation studies using antibodies specific to GRP78, serine-, threonine-, and tyrosine phosphorylation and Pan phospho antibody demonstrates GRP78 to be phosphorylated at all three residues in rat spermatozoa. Phosphatase assays using Calf intestinal alkaline phosphatase and Lambda protein phosphatase followed by nanofluidic proteomic immunoassay (NIA) show that in rat, GP4.96, GP4.94 and GP4.85 are the three phosphoforms in mature (caudal) sperm as against two phosphoforms GP4.96and GP4.94in immature (testicular) sperm. In mature human sperm GP5.04, GP4.96, and GP4.94were the 3 phosphoforms observed. GP4.94[P = 0.014]andGP5.04 [P = 0.02] are significantly reduced in asthenozoosperm. Ours is the first report indicating GRP78 in sperm to be phosphorylated at serine, threonine and tyrosine residues contrary to published literature reporting GRP78 not to be tyrosine phosphorylated. We report the presence of GRP78 phosphoforms in rat- and human- sperm and our data suggest that GRP78 phosphorylation in sperm undergoes spatial reorganization during epididymal maturation. Significant

  2. Contribution of the secretory material of caecilian (amphibia: Gymnophiona) male Mullerian gland to motility of sperm: a study in Uraeotyphlus narayani.

    PubMed

    George, Jancy M; Smita, Mathew; Kadalmani, Balamuthu; Girija, Ramankutty; Oommen, Oommen V; Akbarsha, Mohammad A

    2005-02-01

    Caecilians are a unique group of limbless burrowing amphibians with discontinuous distribution. Several caecilian species are viviparous, and all practice internal fertilization. In amniotic vertebrates the sperm undergo post-testicular physiological maturation when they are initiated into motility under the influence of an epididymal secretion. Further, during ejaculation mammalian sperm are suspended in a fluid secreted by the male accessory sex glands, viz., prostate gland and seminal vesicles. Caecilians lack comparable glands, but still practice internal fertilization. Uniquely, male caecilians retain the Mullerian ducts in the adults as a pair of functional glands. It has long been hypothesized, based on indirect evidence, that the Mullerian gland would be a male accessory sex gland, secreting a fluid in which sperm are suspended during ejaculation and which would also provide nutritional support to the ejaculated sperm. In the present study, the secretory material of the Mullerian gland of Uraeotyphlus narayani was mixed with sperm obtained from the testis, and the changes in motility were recorded. Uraeotyphlus narayani sperm possess a perforatorium of the acrosome proceeding deep into the endonuclear canal of the nucleus. The midpiece is characterized by closely applied centrioles, the anterior ends of the axoneme and axial fiber, and a mitochondrial sheath. The long tail has an undulating membrane on one side, supported by the axoneme and an axial fiber. The live sperm possess a mitochondrial vesicle, also known as the cytoplasmic droplet, anywhere along the head and the midpiece, as in anuran sperm, which is shed from sperm that have ceased motility. Uraeotyphlus narayani sperm are motile the moment they are released directly from the testis, indicating that the sperm do not require post-testicular physiological maturation. On being mixed with the secretory material of the Mullerian gland, the spermatozoa are enhanced in speed as well as duration of

  3. Sperm nuclear expansion and meiotic maturation in normal and gynogenetic eggs of the scallop, Chlamys farreri

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Ying; Li, Qi; Yu, Ruihai; Wang, Rucai

    2008-02-01

    Sperm nuclear expansion, meiosis and the association of the male and female pronuclei leading to the four-cell stage in normal Chlamys farreri eggs were observed under a fluorescence microscope. The effects of ultraviolet (UV) irradiation on the fertilizing sperm were also examined. Both normal and UV-irradiated sperm nuclei enlarged at three distinct phases (phase A, metaphase I; phase B, polar body formation; and phase C, female pronuclear development and expansion) that were temporally correlated with meiotic process of the maternal chromosomes. Sperm nuclei underwent a rapid, initial enlargement during phase A, but condensed slightly during phase B, then re-enlarged during phase C. The effects of UV irradiation were not apparent during transformation of the sperm nucleus into a male pronucleus, and there was not any apparent effect on meiotic maturation and development of the female pronucleus. However, the rate of expansion of the UV-irradiated sperm nuclei and the size of male pronuclei were reduced apparently. Unlike the female pronucleus, the male pronucleus derived from sperm genome inactivated by UV irradiation did not form chromosomes, but became a dense chromatin body (DCB). At mitotic anaphase, DCB did not participate in the karyokinesis of the first cleavage as evidenced by chromosomal nondisjunction, demonstrating the effectiveness of using UV irradiation to induce gynogenetic scallop embryos.

  4. Comparative Proteomic Identification of Mature and Immature Sperm in the Catfish Cranoglanis bouderius

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Shaolin; Wang, Chao; Lv, Zijun; Zou, Jixing

    2016-01-01

    To understand the molecular responses of mature and immature sperm in the catfish Cranoglanis bouderius, we used the iTRAQ proteomics approach to perform proteomic profiling of spermatogenesis in C. bouderius. As a result, 1,941 proteins were identified, including 361 differentially expressed proteins, 157 upregulated proteins and 204 downregulated proteins in mature sperm relative to immature sperm. All of the identified proteins were categorized into seven types of subcellular localizations and three molecular functions and were found to be involved in nine biological processes. All of the differential proteins were involved in 235 different pathways. Moreover, we found that the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) pathway played an important role in the energy metabolism of sperm and that the EABB pathway was involved in the mechanism of spermatogenesis. Our study is the first to use the iTRAQ-based proteomic approach to analyze the catfish sperm proteome, and the results we obtained using this approach are valuable for understanding the molecular mechanisms of fish spermatogenesis. PMID:26964044

  5. Intraflagellar transport is essential for mammalian spermiogenesis but is absent in mature sperm

    PubMed Central

    San Agustin, Jovenal T.; Pazour, Gregory J.; Witman, George B.

    2015-01-01

    Drosophila sperm are unusual in that they do not require the intraflagellar transport (IFT) system for assembly of their flagella. In the mouse, the IFT proteins are very abundant in testis, but we here show that mature sperm are completely devoid of them, making the importance of IFT to mammalian sperm development unclear. To address this question, we characterized spermiogenesis and fertility in the Ift88Tg737Rpw mouse. This mouse has a hypomorphic mutation in the gene encoding the IFT88 subunit of the IFT particle. This mutation is highly disruptive to ciliary assembly in other organs. Ift88−/− mice are completely sterile. They produce ∼350-fold fewer sperm than wild-type mice, and the remaining sperm completely lack or have very short flagella. The short flagella rarely have axonemes but assemble ectopic microtubules and outer dense fibers and accumulate improperly assembled fibrous sheath proteins. Thus IFT is essential for the formation but not the maintenance of mammalian sperm flagella. PMID:26424803

  6. Protein deubiquitination during oocyte maturation influences sperm function during fertilisation, antipolyspermy defense and embryo development.

    PubMed

    Yi, Young-Joo; Sutovsky, Miriam; Song, Won-Hee; Sutovsky, Peter

    2015-11-01

    Ubiquitination is a covalent post-translational modification of proteins by the chaperone protein ubiquitin. Upon docking to the 26S proteasome, ubiquitin is released from the substrate protein by deubiquitinating enzymes (DUBs). We hypothesised that specific inhibitors of two closely related oocyte DUBs, namely inhibitors of the ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolases (UCH) UCHL1 (L1 inhibitor) and UCHL3 (L3 inhibitor), would alter porcine oocyte maturation and influence sperm function and embryo development. Aberrant cortical granule (CG) migration and meiotic spindle defects were observed in oocytes matured with the L1 or L3 inhibitor. Embryo development was delayed or blocked in oocytes matured with the general DUB inhibitor PR-619. Aggresomes, the cellular stress-inducible aggregates of ubiquitinated proteins, formed in oocytes matured with L1 inhibitor or PR-619, a likely consequence of impaired protein turnover. Proteomic analysis identified the major vault protein (MVP) as the most prominent protein accumulated in oocytes matured with PR-619, suggesting that the inhibition of deubiquitination altered the turnover of MVP. The mitophagy/autophagy of sperm-contributed mitochondria inside the fertilised oocytes was hindered by DUB inhibitors. It is concluded that DUB inhibitors alter porcine oocyte maturation, fertilisation and preimplantation embryo development. By regulating the turnover of oocyte proteins and mono-ubiquitin regeneration, the DUBs may promote the acquisition of developmental competence during oocyte maturation. PMID:24848520

  7. Effect of abamectin exposure on semen parameters indicative of reduced sperm maturity: a study on farmworkers in Antalya (Turkey).

    PubMed

    Celik-Ozenci, C; Tasatargil, A; Tekcan, M; Sati, L; Gungor, E; Isbir, M; Usta, M F; Akar, M E; Erler, F

    2012-12-01

    Environmental exposure to pesticides may cause serious health risks including fertility and reproductive function. The aim of this study was to highlight whether there is a relationship between exposure to abamectin and male fertility parameters of farmworkers. Twenty male farmworkers who were using abamectin and 20 men not exposed to pesticides were recruited as experimental and control groups, respectively. Semen analysis, molecular markers of sperm maturity and serum reproductive hormone levels were evaluated. In experimental group, high plasma abamectin levels were detected. These men have decreased sperm motility. Moreover, diminished molecular markers of sperm maturity, such as decreased hyaluronic acid (HA) binding of sperm, increased numbers of aniline blue positive sperm and increased percentage of creatine kinase (CK) positive sperm, were observed in abamectin-exposed men. Their serum testosterone, LH and FSH levels did not change significantly. We conclude that exposure to abamectin may impair male fertility by effecting semen quality. PMID:22530723

  8. Methyl-parathion decreases sperm function and fertilization capacity after targeting spermatocytes and maturing spermatozoa

    SciTech Connect

    Pina-Guzman, Belem; Sanchez-Gutierrez, M.; Marchetti, Francesco; Hernandez-Ochoa, I.; Solis-Heredia, M.J .; Quintanilla-Vega, B.

    2009-05-03

    Paternal germline exposure to organophosphorous pesticides (OP) has been associated with reproductive failures and adverse effects in the offspring. Methyl parathion (Me-Pa), a worldwide-used OP, has reproductive adverse effects and is genotoxic to sperm. Oxidative damage has been involved in the genotoxic and reproductive effects of OP. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of Me-Pa on spermatozoa function and ability to fertilize. Male mice were exposed to Me-Pa (20 mg/kg bw, i.p.) and spermatozoa from epididymis-vas deferens were collected at 7 or 28 days post-treatment (dpt) to assess the effects on maturing spermatozoa and spermatocytes, respectively. DNA damage was evaluated by nick translation (NT-positive cells) and SCSA (percentDFI); lipoperoxidation (LPO) by malondialdehyde production; sperm function by spontaneous- and induced-acrosome reactions (AR); mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) by using the JC-1 flurochrome; and, fertilization ability by an in vitro assay and in vivo mating. Results showed alterations in DNA integrity (percentDFI and NT-positive cells) at 7 and 28 dpt, in addition to decreased sperm quality and a decrease in induced-AR; reduced MMP and LPO was observed only at 7 dpt. We found negative correlations between LPO and all sperm alterations. Altered sperm functional parameters were associated with reduced fertilization rates at both times, evaluated either in vitro or in vivo. These results show that Me-Pa exposure of maturing spermatozoa and spermatocytes affects many sperm functional parameters that result in a decreased fertilizing capacity. Oxidative stress seems to be a likely mechanism ofthe detrimental effects of Me-Pa in male germ cells.

  9. IMPORTANCE OF GLUTATHIONE IN THE ACQUISITION AND MAINTENANCE OF SPERM NUCLEAR DECONDENSING ACTIVITY IN MATURING HAMSTER OOCYTES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Sperm nuclear decondensing activity in mammalian oocytes is dependent upon the maturational state of the oocyte. It is maximal in mature, metaphase II oocytes and minimal or absent in immature germinal vesicle (GV) and fertilized pronuclear oocytes. Previous studies suggested tha...

  10. Cyclic AMP induces maturation of trout sperm axoneme to initiate motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morisawa, Masaaki

    1982-02-01

    Cyclic AMP has long been implicated as an activator of sperm motility1-5. From more recent experiments using demembranated mammalian and sea urchin spermatozoa6,7, it was concluded that cyclic AMP only increases the motility of the axoneme after it has been initiated by MgATP2-. We have now carried out similar experiments using spermatozoa collected from the rainbow trout and demembranated by treatment with the detergent Triton X-100. Our results suggest that in this species, cyclic AMP is required before MgATP2- to trigger maturation of the nonmotile axoneme. Subsequent addition of an energy source then induces motility.

  11. Ability of in vitro maturing bovine oocytes to transform sperm nuclei to metaphase chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Abeydeera, L R; Niwa, K

    1992-11-01

    Bovine oocytes at the germinal vesicle stage were inseminated in Brackett & Oliphant's medium with bovine serum albumin, caffeine and heparin. Eight hours after insemination, oocytes were transferred into tissue culture medium-199 containing 10% fetal calf serum and cultured for 5-40 h at 39 degrees C in 5% CO2 in air. The proportions of unpenetrated and penetrated oocytes reaching metaphase II increased as the time of examination increased, reaching 70 and 65% 40 h after transfer, respectively. When oocytes were penetrated by more than four spermatozoa, meiotic maturation was greatly retarded. Sperm nuclei were decondensed in most (81%) penetrated oocytes 5 h after transfer. The decondensed sperm nuclei were recondensed and then transformed to metaphase chromosomes which were morphologically compacted at first but became slightly dispersed later. The formation of the metaphase chromosomes was observed in 86% of penetrated oocytes examined 40 h after transfer, and occurred in all metaphase II oocytes at that time. In oocytes penetrated by more than nine spermatozoa, no such transformation of sperm nuclei was observed. Well-developed male and female pro-nuclei were observed in only three (6%) of 51 oocytes penetrated 40 h after transfer. PMID:1339837

  12. Effects of dietary energy on sexual maturation and sperm production in Holstein bulls.

    PubMed

    Harstine, B R; Maquivar, M; Helser, L A; Utt, M D; Premanandan, C; DeJarnette, J M; Day, M L

    2015-06-01

    In prepubertal bulls and heifers of dairy and beef breeds, puberty can be induced to occur earlier than typical with targeted high-energy diets due to precocious activation of the endocrine mechanisms that regulate puberty. Precocious activation of puberty in bulls intended for use in the AI industry has the potential to hasten and perhaps increase sperm production. It was hypothesized that feeding bulls a high-energy diet beginning at 8 wk of age would advance the prepubertal rise in LH and lead to advanced testicular maturation and age at puberty. From 58 to 230 ± 0.3 d of age, Holstein bulls received either a high-energy diet (HE;n = 9; targeted ADG 1.5 kg/d) or a control diet (CONT;n = 10; targeted ADG 0.75 kg/d). Thereafter, all bulls were fed a similar diet. The HE treatment increased LH secretion at 125 d of age, testosterone concentrations from 181 to 210 d, and scrotal circumference (SC) from 146 to 360 d of age relative to the CONT treatment. Beginning at 241 ± 5 d of age, semen collection (artificial vagina) was attempted every 14 d in bulls from the HE (n = 8) and CONT (n = 7) treatment until each bull attained puberty (ejaculate containing 50 × 10 spermatozoa with 10% motility). To assess semen production as mature bulls, semen was collected thrice weekly beginning at 541 ± 5 d of age until slaughter at 569 ± 5 d of age. After slaughter, epididymal and testicular measurements were collected and testicular tissue was fixed to determine seminiferous tubule diameter. Age at puberty did not differ between treatments (310 ± 35 d). Although testis and epididymal weight and testis volume were greater (P < 0.05) in the HE than the CONT treatment, sperm production of mature bulls did not differ between treatments. Diameter of seminiferous tubules also did not differ between treatments. We conclude that the HE advanced aspects of sexual maturation and increased testes size, but this was not reflected in hastened puberty or sperm production in the present

  13. Can bovine in vitro-matured oocytes selectively process X- or Y-sorted sperm differentially?

    PubMed

    Bermejo-Alvarez, P; Rizos, D; Rath, D; Lonergan, P; Gutiérrez-Adán, A

    2008-10-01

    It has been reported that the mammalian female could have a preconceptual influence on the sex of her offspring, and it has been hypothesized that this influence could go some way toward accounting for the reported lower fertility following insemination with sex-sorted sperm. To test whether in vitro matured oocytes are able to select X- or Y-bearing spermatozoa following in vitro fertilization (IVF), we fertilized in vitro 1788 oocytes with X-sorted semen, Y-sorted semen, a mix of X- and Y-sorted semen, and unsorted semen from the same bull, and cultured until Day 9. Fertility was assessed by recording cleavage rate at 48 h postinsemination (hpi) and blastocyst development until Day 9. Embryos were sexed at the two- to four-cell stage and the blastocyst stage. The proportion of zygotes cleaving at 48 hpi was not different between X- and Y-sorted groups and the mix of X- and Y-sorted semen group; however, all were significantly lower than the unsorted group (P < 0.001). Blastocyst yield on Day 6 was significantly higher (P < or = 0.01) in the control group compared with the rest of the groups. Cumulative blastocyst yields on Days 7, 8, and 9 were also significantly higher (P < or = 0.01) in the unsorted group compared with the sorted groups. The proportion of female and male two- to four-cell embryos obtained following IVF with X- and Y-sorted sperm was 88% and 89%, respectively and the sex ratio at the two- to four-cell stage was not different following IVF with unsorted or sorted/recombined sperm (56.9% males vs. 57% males, respectively). At the blastocyst stage, similar percentages were obtained. In conclusion, the differences in cleavage and blastocyst development using sorted versus unsorted sperm are not due to the oocyte preferentially selecting sperm of one sex over another, but are more likely due to spermatic damage caused by the sorting procedure. PMID:18579751

  14. Morphometric study of the testis and reproductive tract (including sperm granuloma) after vasectomy in mature rats.

    PubMed

    Ma, Li; Guo, Yang; Yuan, Yong; Li, Yu-Gen; Deng, Xian-Zhong; Yang, Zheng-Wei

    2016-01-01

    By utilizing the rabbit model, previous studies have found good evidence indicating that vasectomy-induced spermatogenic damage is pressure-mediated: the damage occurs when the occluded reproductive tract is unable to accommodate additional spermatozoa produced by the testis. More studies with the more commonly used rat model have shown, however, controversial results on whether and why the damage occurs. In this study, 12 mature male Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to unilateral vasectomy: double ligation (without severing) of the vas deferens exposed via a small inguinal incision; 37 days after the operation, the testes, epididymides, vasa deferentia (juxta-epididymal segments), and sperm granulomas (at the vasectomy site) were removed to obtain methacrylate resin-embedded sections and morphometric studies carried out with light microscopy. Marked spermatogenic damage with spermatids and spermatocytes depleted in the seminiferous epithelium in 43% of the seminiferous tubule profiles was demonstrated in 5 of the 12 testes on the vasectomized side, and the damage was associated with smaller or absent sperm granulomas; in the other 7 testes with essentially normal spermatogenesis, there was an increase (by 111% on average) in the volume of the tubule lumen, associated with larger granulomas or granulomas containing more spermatozoa. There was an overall increase (by 66%) in the thickness of the rete testis in the 12 testes; the epididymis or vas deferens showed no distension. It seems therefore that the spermatogenic damage induced by vasectomy in rats is pressure-mediated as well, and that variation in the damage depends mainly on the postoperative development of the sperm granuloma. PMID:25791731

  15. Bovine in vitro fertilization: in vitro oocyte maturation and sperm capacitation with heparin.

    PubMed

    Parrish, John J

    2014-01-01

    As a result of research in the 1980s on in vitro maturation, sperm capacitation, and in vitro fertilization, the bovine is now one of the important models for development. Further, the current production of bovine embryos in vitro rivals that of in vivo embryo production for commercial applications. Researchers of today may be unaware of why decisions were made in the procedures. This review addresses the state of the art at the time of the work by Parrish et al. (Bovine in vitro fertilization with frozen thawed semen. Theriogenology 1986;25:591-600), and how later work would explain success or failure of competing procedures. Important was the use of frozen semen and heparin capacitation, because this allowed future researchers/practitioners to change sperm numbers and capacitation conditions to adjust for variations among bulls. The large numbers of citation of the original work stand the testament of time in the repeatability and success of the procedures. The work was done within the environment of the N.L. First laboratory and the unique interactions with a large number of talented graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and technicians. PMID:24274411

  16. Sperm Proteome: What Is on the Horizon?

    PubMed

    Mohanty, Gayatri; Swain, Nirlipta; Samanta, Luna

    2015-06-01

    As the mammalian spermatozoa transcends from the testis to the end of the epididymal tubule, the functionally incompetent spermatozoa acquires its fertilizing capability. Molecular changes in the spermatozoa at the posttesticular level concern qualitative and quantitative modifications of proteins along with their sugar moieties and membranous lipids mostly associated with motility, egg binding, and penetration processes. Proteomic studies have identified numerous sperm-specific proteins, and recent reports have provided a further understanding of their function with respect to male fertility. High-throughput techniques such as mass spectrometry have shown drastic potential for the identification and study of sperm proteins. In fact, compelling evidence has provided that proteins are critically important in cellular remodeling event and that aberrant expression is associated with pronounced defects in sperm function. This review highlights the posttesticular functional transformation in the epididymis and female reproductive tract with due emphasis on proteomics. PMID:25376881

  17. The presence of centrioles and centrosomes in ovarian mature cystic teratoma cells suggests human parthenotes developed in vitro can differentiate into mature cells without a sperm centriole

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Bo Yon; Shim, Sang Woo; Kim, Young Sun; Kim, Seung Bo

    2011-11-18

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The sperm centriole is the progenitor of centrosomes in all somatic cells. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Centrioles and centrosomes exist in parthenogenetic ovarian teratoma cells. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Without a sperm centriole, parthenogenetic oocytes produce centrioles and centrosomes. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Parthenogenetic human oocytes can develop and differentiate into mature cells. -- Abstract: In most animals, somatic cell centrosomes are inherited from the centriole of the fertilizing spermatozoa. The oocyte centriole degenerates during oogenesis, and completely disappears in metaphase II. Therefore, the embryos generated by in vitro parthenogenesis are supposed to develop without any centrioles. Exceptional acentriolar and/or acentrosomal developments are possible in mice and in some experimental cells; however, in most animals, the full developmental potential of parthenogenetic cells in vitro and the fate of their centrioles/centrosomes are not clearly understood. To predict the future of in vitro human parthenogenesis, we explored the centrioles/centrosomes in ovarian mature cystic teratoma cells by immunofluorescent staining and transmission electron microscopy. We confirmed the presence of centrioles and centrosomes in these well-known parthenogenetic ovarian tumor cells. Our findings clearly demonstrate that, even without a sperm centriole, parthenotes that develop from activated oocytes can produce their own centrioles/centrosomes, and can even develop into the well-differentiated mature tissue.

  18. Hypotonic resistance of boar spermatozoa: sperm subpopulations and relationship with epididymal maturation and fertility.

    PubMed

    Druart, Xavier; Gatti, Jean-Luc; Huet, Sylvie; Dacheux, Jean-Louis; Humblot, Patrice

    2009-02-01

    Hypotonic resistance of boar spermatozoa was investigated by measuring the ratio of live/dead spermatozoa (SYBR-14/propidium iodide) by flow cytometry after hypotonic stress. The survival rate of ejaculated spermatozoa incubated in hypotonic solutions ranging from 3 to 330 mmol/kg followed a sigmoid curve that fitted a simple logistic model. The critical osmolality value (Osm(crit)) at which 50% of spermatozoa died was determined with this model. Hypotonic resistance of spermatozoa increased with temperature between 15 and 39 degrees C and decreased after hydrogen superoxide treatment, but was not modified during 8 days of preservation in Beltsville thawing solution. Hypotonic resistance markedly decreased during epididymal maturation and after ejaculation as Osm(crit) at 15 degrees C was 54.7+/-3.2, 68.5+/-10.6, 116.7+/-2.1 and 194.3+/-3.7 mmol/kg for the caput, corpus, cauda and ejaculated spermatozoa respectively. Hypo-osmotic stress of 100 mmol/kg revealed a sperm subpopulation exhibiting increased hypotonic resistance compared with the whole ejaculate (Osm(crit)=67.8+/-2.1 mmol/kg). Consistent differences were observed between lean and standard breeds (Pietrain versus Large White) and between boars within the same breed. According to data collected by artificial insemination centers during a large-scale field trial, hypotonic resistance of ejaculates was found to be positively correlated with in vivo fertility. PMID:18996973

  19. Maturation-promoting factor (MPF) is responsible for the transformation of sperm nuclei to metaphase chromosomes in maturing bovine oocytes in vitro.

    PubMed

    Abeydeera, L R; Niwa, K; Okuda, K

    1993-07-01

    Bovine oocytes at the germinal vesicle stage were inseminated in Brackett and Oliphant's medium in the presence of BSA (10 mg ml-1), caffeine (5 mmol l-1) and heparin (10 micrograms ml-1). When oocytes were transferred into tissue culture medium (TCM)-199 containing 10% fetal calf serum (FCS) with or without 6-dimethylaminopurine (6-DMAP; 2 mmol l-1) 8 h after insemination and cultured for 15-40 h at 39 degrees C in 5% CO2 in air, 74-83% of oocytes were penetrated and polyspermy (67-80%) was common. At 40 h after culture in 6-DMAP-free medium, 65% and 63% of unpenetrated and penetrated oocytes, respectively, reached metaphase II or beyond. A few (6%) oocytes were activated and contained both male and female pronuclei. Sperm metaphase chromosomes were observed in 90% of the penetrated oocytes. Penetration by more than four spermatozoa greatly retarded the meiotic maturation of the oocyte. However, sperm chromosomes were never observed in oocytes cultured in 6-DMAP supplemented medium and oocyte maturation did not proceed beyond the stage of prometaphase I. These results demonstrate the possible participation of maturation-promoting factor in metaphase chromosome formation in spermatozoa. PMID:8410805

  20. Changes in Carboxy Methylation and Tyrosine Phosphorylation of Protein Phosphatase PP2A Are Associated with Epididymal Sperm Maturation and Motility.

    PubMed

    Dudiki, Tejasvi; Kadunganattil, Suraj; Ferrara, John K; Kline, Douglas W; Vijayaraghavan, Srinivasan

    2015-01-01

    Mammalian sperm contain the serine/threonine phosphatases PP1γ2 and PP2A. The role of sperm PP1γ2 is relatively well studied. Here we confirm the presence of PP2A in sperm and show that it undergoes marked changes in methylation (leucine 309), tyrosine phosphorylation (tyrosine 307) and catalytic activity during epididymal sperm maturation. Spermatozoa isolated from proximal caput, distal caput and caudal regions of the epididymis contain equal immuno-reactive amounts of PP2A. Using demethyl sensitive antibodies we show that PP2A is methylated at its carboxy terminus in sperm from the distal caput and caudal regions but not in sperm from the proximal caput region of the epididymis. The methylation status of PP2A was confirmed by isolation of PP2A with microcystin agarose followed by alkali treatment, which causes hydrolysis of protein carboxy methyl esters. Tyrosine phosphorylation of sperm PP2A varied inversely with methylation. That is, PP2A was tyrosine phosphorylated when it was demethylated but not when methylated. PP2A demethylation and its reciprocal tyrosine phosphorylation were also affected by treatment of sperm with L-homocysteine and adenosine, which are known to elevate intracellular S-adenosylhomocysteine, a feedback inhibitor of methyltransferases. Catalytic activity of PP2A declined during epididymal sperm maturation. Inhibition of PP2A by okadaic acid or by incubation of caudal epididymal spermatozoa with L-homocysteine and adenosine resulted in increase of sperm motility parameters including percent motility, velocity, and lateral head amplitude. Demethylation or pharmacological inhibition of PP2A also leads to an increase in phosphorylation of glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK3). Our results show for the first time that changes in PP2A activity due to methylation and tyrosine phosphorylation occur in sperm and that these changes may play an important role in the regulation of sperm function. PMID:26569399

  1. Changes in Carboxy Methylation and Tyrosine Phosphorylation of Protein Phosphatase PP2A Are Associated with Epididymal Sperm Maturation and Motility

    PubMed Central

    Dudiki, Tejasvi; Kadunganattil, Suraj; Ferrara, John K.; Kline, Douglas W.; Vijayaraghavan, Srinivasan

    2015-01-01

    Mammalian sperm contain the serine/threonine phosphatases PP1γ2 and PP2A. The role of sperm PP1γ2 is relatively well studied. Here we confirm the presence of PP2A in sperm and show that it undergoes marked changes in methylation (leucine 309), tyrosine phosphorylation (tyrosine 307) and catalytic activity during epididymal sperm maturation. Spermatozoa isolated from proximal caput, distal caput and caudal regions of the epididymis contain equal immuno-reactive amounts of PP2A. Using demethyl sensitive antibodies we show that PP2A is methylated at its carboxy terminus in sperm from the distal caput and caudal regions but not in sperm from the proximal caput region of the epididymis. The methylation status of PP2A was confirmed by isolation of PP2A with microcystin agarose followed by alkali treatment, which causes hydrolysis of protein carboxy methyl esters. Tyrosine phosphorylation of sperm PP2A varied inversely with methylation. That is, PP2A was tyrosine phosphorylated when it was demethylated but not when methylated. PP2A demethylation and its reciprocal tyrosine phosphorylation were also affected by treatment of sperm with L-homocysteine and adenosine, which are known to elevate intracellular S-adenosylhomocysteine, a feedback inhibitor of methyltransferases. Catalytic activity of PP2A declined during epididymal sperm maturation. Inhibition of PP2A by okadaic acid or by incubation of caudal epididymal spermatozoa with L-homocysteine and adenosine resulted in increase of sperm motility parameters including percent motility, velocity, and lateral head amplitude. Demethylation or pharmacological inhibition of PP2A also leads to an increase in phosphorylation of glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK3). Our results show for the first time that changes in PP2A activity due to methylation and tyrosine phosphorylation occur in sperm and that these changes may play an important role in the regulation of sperm function. PMID:26569399

  2. Azoospermia and maturation arrest: malfunction of valves in erect poster of humans leads to hypoxia in sperm production site.

    PubMed

    Gat, Y; Gornish, M; Chakraborty, J; Perlow, A; Levinger, U; Pasqualotto, F

    2010-12-01

    Maturation arrest (MA) of spermatogenesis is diagnosed on histology as interruption of spermatogenesis before the final stage without impairment of Sertoli or Leydig cells. It is considered a condition of irreversible or absolute infertility. Varicocele, which represents impairment in the testicular venous drainage system, has been shown to be a bilateral disease. Malfunction of the valves increase the hydrostatic pressure in the testicular venous system that exceeds the pressure in the arterial system leading to hypoxia in the testicular microcirculation and in the seminiferous tubules, the sperm production site. Sperm production deteriorates, and ultimately progresses to azoospermia. Our prediction was that MA, if genetic factors are excluded, is the final stage of long standing hypoxia. This would indicate that MA is not always an independent disease entity, but may represent progressive process of deterioration of the testicular parenchyma beyond azoospermia. By histology and electron microscopy, our prediction confirmed, at least partially, that MA is associated with degenerative ischaemic changes in the seminiferous tubules. Adequate treatment of bilateral varicocele by microsurgery or super-selective sclerotherapy of the internal spermatic veins including associated network of venous bypasses, vertically oriented, may resume the flow of oxygenated blood. If irreversible damages did not occur and ischaemia is not too long standing, limited sperm production may be restored, at least partially. PMID:21105890

  3. Merlin Isoforms 1 and 2 Both Act as Tumour Suppressors and Are Required for Optimal Sperm Maturation

    PubMed Central

    Zoch, Ansgar; Mayerl, Steffen; Schulz, Alexander; Greither, Thomas; Frappart, Lucien; Rübsam, Juliane; Heuer, Heike; Giovannini, Marco; Morrison, Helen

    2015-01-01

    The tumour suppressor Merlin, encoded by the gene NF2, is frequently mutated in the autosomal dominant disorder neurofibromatosis type II, characterised primarily by the development of schwannoma and other glial cell tumours. However, NF2 is expressed in virtually all analysed human and rodent organs, and its deletion in mice causes early embryonic lethality. Additionally, NF2 encodes for two major isoforms of Merlin of unknown functionality. Specifically, the tumour suppressor potential of isoform 2 remains controversial. In this study, we used Nf2 isoform-specific knockout mouse models to analyse the function of each isoform during development and organ homeostasis. We found that both isoforms carry full tumour suppressor functionality and can completely compensate the loss of the other isoform during development and in most adult organs. Surprisingly, we discovered that spermatogenesis is strictly dependent on the presence of both isoforms. While the testis primarily expresses isoform 1, we noticed an enrichment of isoform 2 in spermatogonial stem cells. Deletion of either isoform was found to cause decreased sperm quality as observed by maturation defects and head/midpiece abnormalities. These defects led to impaired sperm functionality as assessed by decreased sperm capacitation. Thus, we describe spermatogenesis as a new Nf2-dependent process. Additionally, we provide for the first time in vivo evidence for equal tumour suppressor potentials of Merlin isoform 1 and isoform 2. PMID:26258444

  4. Di-(2-ethylhexyl)-phthalate disrupts pituitary and testicular hormonal functions to reduce sperm quality in mature goldfish.

    PubMed

    Golshan, Mahdi; Hatef, Azadeh; Socha, Magdalena; Milla, Sylvain; Butts, Ian A E; Carnevali, Oliana; Rodina, Marek; Sokołowska-Mikołajczyk, Mirosława; Fontaine, Pascal; Linhart, Otomar; Alavi, Sayyed Mohammad Hadi

    2015-06-01

    Di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) interferes with male reproductive endocrine system in mammals, however its effects on fish reproduction are largely unknown. We evaluated sperm quality and investigated reproductive endocrine system in mature goldfish (Carassius auratus) exposed to nominal 1, 10, and 100μg/L DEHP. To examine DEHP estrogenic activity, one group of goldfish was exposed to 17β-estradiol (5μg/L E2) for comparison. Following 30d of exposure, sperm production was decreased and suppressed in DEHP and E2 treated goldfish, respectively. Sperm motility and velocity were decreased in goldfish exposed to 100 and 10μg/L DEHP at 15s post-sperm activation, respectively. Compared to control, 11-ketotestosterone (11-KT) levels were decreased at 10 and 1μg/L DEHP at day 15 and 30, respectively. In E2 treated goldfish, 11-KT levels were decreased compared to control during the period of exposure. E2 levels were increased in goldfish exposed to E2, but remained unchanged in DEHP treated goldfish during the period of exposure. StAR mRNA levels encoding regulator of cholesterol transfer to steroidogenesis were decreased in DEHP and E2 treated goldfish following 15 and 30d of exposure, respectively. Luteinizing hormone (LH) levels were decreased in DEHP and E2 treated goldfish following 15 and 30d of exposure, respectively. In DEHP treated goldfish, gnrh3, kiss1 and its receptor (gpr54) mRNA levels did not change during the experimental period. In E2 treated goldfish, gnrh3 mRNA levels were decreased at day 7, but kiss1 and gpr54 mRNA levels were increased at day 30 of exposure. The mRNA levels of genes encoding testicular LH and androgen receptors remained unchanged in DEHP and E2 treated goldfish. In contrast to E2 treated goldfish, vitellogenin production was not induced in DEHP treated goldfish and mRNA levels of genes with products mediating estrogenic effects remained unchanged or decreased. In conclusion, DEHP interferes with testis and pituitary hormonal

  5. Characterisation of mouse epididymosomes reveals a complex profile of microRNAs and a potential mechanism for modification of the sperm epigenome.

    PubMed

    Reilly, Jackson N; McLaughlin, Eileen A; Stanger, Simone J; Anderson, Amanda L; Hutcheon, Kate; Church, Kiralee; Mihalas, Bettina P; Tyagi, Sonika; Holt, Janet E; Eamens, Andrew L; Nixon, Brett

    2016-01-01

    Recent evidence has shown that the sperm epigenome is vulnerable to dynamic modifications arising from a variety of paternal environment exposures and that this legacy can serve as an important determinant of intergenerational inheritance. It has been postulated that such exchange is communicated to maturing spermatozoa via the transfer of small non-protein-coding RNAs (sRNAs) in a mechanism mediated by epididymosomes; small membrane bound vesicles released by the soma of the male reproductive tract (epididymis). Here we confirm that mouse epididymosomes encapsulate an impressive cargo of >350 microRNAs (miRNAs), a developmentally important sRNA class, the majority (~60%) of which are also represented by the miRNA signature of spermatozoa. This includes >50 miRNAs that were found exclusively in epididymal sperm and epididymosomes, but not in the surrounding soma. We also documented substantial changes in the epididymosome miRNA cargo, including significant fold changes in almost half of the miRNAs along the length of the epididymis. Finally, we provide the first direct evidence for the transfer of several prominent miRNA species between mouse epididymosomes and spermatozoa to afford novel insight into a mechanism of intercellular communication by which the sRNA payload of sperm can be selectively modified during their post-testicular maturation. PMID:27549865

  6. Characterisation of mouse epididymosomes reveals a complex profile of microRNAs and a potential mechanism for modification of the sperm epigenome

    PubMed Central

    Reilly, Jackson N.; McLaughlin, Eileen A.; Stanger, Simone J.; Anderson, Amanda L.; Hutcheon, Kate; Church, Kiralee; Mihalas, Bettina P.; Tyagi, Sonika; Holt, Janet E.; Eamens, Andrew L.; Nixon, Brett

    2016-01-01

    Recent evidence has shown that the sperm epigenome is vulnerable to dynamic modifications arising from a variety of paternal environment exposures and that this legacy can serve as an important determinant of intergenerational inheritance. It has been postulated that such exchange is communicated to maturing spermatozoa via the transfer of small non-protein-coding RNAs (sRNAs) in a mechanism mediated by epididymosomes; small membrane bound vesicles released by the soma of the male reproductive tract (epididymis). Here we confirm that mouse epididymosomes encapsulate an impressive cargo of >350 microRNAs (miRNAs), a developmentally important sRNA class, the majority (~60%) of which are also represented by the miRNA signature of spermatozoa. This includes >50 miRNAs that were found exclusively in epididymal sperm and epididymosomes, but not in the surrounding soma. We also documented substantial changes in the epididymosome miRNA cargo, including significant fold changes in almost half of the miRNAs along the length of the epididymis. Finally, we provide the first direct evidence for the transfer of several prominent miRNA species between mouse epididymosomes and spermatozoa to afford novel insight into a mechanism of intercellular communication by which the sRNA payload of sperm can be selectively modified during their post-testicular maturation. PMID:27549865

  7. Plasma Membrane Ca2+-ATPase 4 in Murine Epididymis: Secretion of Splice Variants in the Luminal Fluid and a Role in Sperm Maturation1

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Ramkrishna; Al-Dossary, Amal A.; Stabley, Deborah L.; Barone, Carol; Galileo, Deni S.; Strehler, Emanuel E.; Martin-DeLeon, Patricia A.

    2013-01-01

    ABSTRACT Plasma membrane Ca2+-ATPase isoform 4 (PMCA4) is the primary Ca2+ efflux pump in murine sperm, where it regulates motility. In Pmca4 null sperm, motility loss results in infertility. We have shown that murine sperm PMCA4b interacts with Ca2+/CaM-dependent serine kinase (CASK) in regulating Ca2+ homeostasis and motility. However, recent work indicated that the bovine PMCA4a splice variant (missing in testis) is epididymally expressed, along with 4b, and may be transferred to sperm. Here we show, via conventional and in situ RT-PCR, that both the splice variants of Pmca4 mRNA are expressed in murine testis and throughout the epididymis. Immunofluorescence localized PMCA4a to the apical membrane of the epididymal epithelium, and Western analysis not only confirmed its presence but showed for the first time that PMCA4a and PMCA4b are secreted in the epididymal luminal fluid (ELF), from which epididymosomes containing PMCA4a were isolated. Flow cytometry indicated the presence of PMCA4a on mature caudal sperm where it was increased ∼5-fold compared to caput sperm (detected by Western blotting) and ∼2-fold after incubation in ELF, revealing in vitro uptake and implicating PMCA4a in epididymal sperm maturation. Coimmunoprecipitation using pan-PMCA4 antibodies, revealed that both variants associate with CASK, suggesting their presence in a complex. Because they have different kinetic properties for Ca2+ transport and different abilities to bind to CASK, our study suggests a mechanism for combining the functional attributes of both PMCA4 variants, leading to heightened efficiency of the pump in the maintenance of Ca2+ homeostasis, which is crucial for normal motility and male fertility. PMID:23699388

  8. Manipulation and In Vitro Maturation of Xenopus laevis Oocytes, Followed by Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection, to Study Embryonic Development

    PubMed Central

    Miyamoto, Kei; Simpson, David; Gurdon, John B.

    2015-01-01

    Amphibian eggs have been widely used to study embryonic development. Early embryonic development is driven by maternally stored factors accumulated during oogenesis. In order to study roles of such maternal factors in early embryonic development, it is desirable to manipulate their functions from the very beginning of embryonic development. Conventional ways of gene interference are achieved by injection of antisense oligonucleotides (oligos) or mRNA into fertilized eggs, enabling under- or over-expression of specific proteins, respectively. However, these methods normally require more than several hours until protein expression is affected, and, hence, the interference of gene functions is not effective during early embryonic stages. Here, we introduce an experimental system in which expression levels of maternal proteins can be altered before fertilization. Xenopus laevis oocytes obtained from ovaries are defolliculated by incubating with enzymes. Antisense oligos or mRNAs are injected into defolliculated oocytes at the germinal vesicle (GV) stage. These oocytes are in vitro matured to eggs at the metaphase II (MII) stage, followed by intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). By this way, up to 10% of ICSI embryos can reach the swimming tadpole stage, thus allowing functional tests of specific gene knockdown or overexpression. This approach can be a useful way to study roles of maternally stored factors in early embryonic development. PMID:25742326

  9. Rheotaxis guides mammalian sperm

    PubMed Central

    Miki, Kiyoshi; Clapham, David E

    2013-01-01

    Background In sea urchins, spermatozoan motility is altered by chemotactic peptides, giving rise to the assumption that mammalian eggs also emit chemotactic agents that guide spermatozoa through the female reproductive tract to the mature oocyte. Mammalian spermatozoa indeed undergo complex adaptations within the female (the process of capacitation) that are initiated by agents ranging from pH to progesterone, but these factors are not necessarily taxic. Currently, chemotaxis, thermotaxis, and rheotaxis have not been definitively established in mammals. Results Here, we show that positive rheotaxis, the ability of organisms to orient and swim against the flow of surrounding fluid, is a major taxic factor for mouse and human sperm. This flow is generated within 4 hours of sexual stimulation and coitus in female mice; prolactin-triggered oviductal fluid secretion clears the oviduct of debris, lowers viscosity, and generates the stream that guides sperm migration in the oviduct. Rheotaxic movement is demonstrated in capacitated and uncapacitated spermatozoa in low and high viscosity medium. Finally, we show that a unique sperm motion we quantify using the sperm head's rolling rate reflects sperm rotation that generates essential force for positioning the sperm in the stream. Rotation requires CatSper channels, presumably by enabling Ca2+ influx. Conclusions We propose that rheotaxis is a major determinant of sperm guidance over long distances in the mammalian female reproductive tract. Coitus induces fluid flow to guide sperm in the oviduct. Sperm rheotaxis requires rotational motion during CatSper channel-dependent hyperactivated motility. PMID:23453951

  10. Comparisons of Sperm Storage Tubule Distribution and Number in Four Strains of Mature Broiler Breeders and in Turkey Hens Before and After the Onset of Photostimulation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The biological basis of sustained fertility in broiler and turkey hens is their capacity to store sperm in the oviductal sperm storage tubules (SSTs) located in the uterovaginal junction. The objectives of this study were to determine if the numbers of SST varied between four strains of broiler bre...

  11. Types, Causes, Detection and Repair of DNA Fragmentation in Animal and Human Sperm Cells

    PubMed Central

    González-Marín, Clara; Gosálvez, Jaime; Roy, Rosa

    2012-01-01

    Concentration, motility and morphology are parameters commonly used to determine the fertilization potential of an ejaculate. These parameters give a general view on the quality of sperm but do not provide information about one of the most important components of the reproductive outcome: DNA. Either single or double DNA strand breaks can set the difference between fertile and infertile males. Sperm DNA fragmentation can be caused by intrinsic factors like abortive apoptosis, deficiencies in recombination, protamine imbalances or oxidative stress. Damage can also occur due to extrinsic factors such as storage temperatures, extenders, handling conditions, time after ejaculation, infections and reaction to medicines or post-testicular oxidative stress, among others. Two singular characteristics differentiate sperm from somatic cells: Protamination and absence of DNA repair. DNA repair in sperm is terminated as transcription and translation stops post-spermiogenesis, so these cells have no mechanism to repair the damage occurred during their transit through the epididymis and post-ejaculation. Oocytes and early embryos have been shown to repair sperm DNA damage, so the effect of sperm DNA fragmentation depends on the combined effects of sperm chromatin damage and the capacity of the oocyte to repair it. In this contribution we review some of these issues. PMID:23203048

  12. Feline spermatozoa from fresh and cryopreserved testicular tissues have comparable ability to fertilize matured oocytes and sustain the embryo development after intracytoplasmic sperm injection.

    PubMed

    Buarpung, S; Tharasanit, T; Comizzoli, P; Techakumphu, M

    2013-01-01

    Cryopreservation of testicular tissue associated with intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is a critical tool that still needs to be explored for preserving the fertility of endangered species. Using the domestic cat as a model for wild felids, the study aimed at determining the effect of different cryoprotectants and freezing techniques (two-step freezing vs. controlled slow freezing) on the sperm quality (membrane and DNA integrity). Then, spermatozoa were extracted from frozen-thawed testicular tissues and used for ICSI to assess early gamete activation or developmental competence in vitro. The percentage of spermatozoa with intact plasma membrane was not different (P > 0.05) among nonfrozen control, glycerol-, and ethylene glycol-frozen tissues (63.2 ± 2%, 58.2 ± 2.6%, 53.3 ± 2.3%, respectively). However, these percentages were significantly lower (P < 0.05) in groups of dimethyl sulfoxide (46.3 ± 3.3%) and 1,2 propanediol (44.3 ± 2.9%) when compared with control. Conventional freezing combined with 5% (vol/vol) glycerol best preserved sperm membrane integrity (55.0 ± 2.7%) when compared with other freezing techniques. The incidence of DNA fragmentation was found to be low (0.2%-1.1%) in all freezing protocols. After ICSI with frozen testicular spermatozoa, male and female gametes were asynchronously activated and the percentages of normal fertilization at 6, 12, and 18 hours were 11.2%, 20.6%, and 22.1%, respectively. Metaphase II-arrested oocytes containing or not a decondensed sperm head were predominantly found after ICSI with frozen testicular spermatozoa. Although two-pronucleus formation could be observed as soon as 6 hours post ICSI (10%), the rate increased dramatically after 12 and 18 hours post ICSI (17.2% and 19.5%, respectively). ICSI using frozen-thawed testicular spermatozoa yielded cleavage (32.7%), morula (6.5%), and blastocyst (4.4%) percentages similar to nonfrozen control (P > 0.05). It is concluded that conventional freezing

  13. Sperm and Oocyte Communication Mechanisms Controlling C. elegans Fertility

    PubMed Central

    Han, Sung Min; Cottee, Pauline A.; Miller, Michael A.

    2010-01-01

    During sexual reproduction in many species, sperm and oocyte secrete diffusible signaling molecules to help orchestrate the biological symphony of fertilization. In the Caenorhabditis elegans gonad, bidirectional signaling between sperm and oocyte is important for guiding sperm to the fertilization site and inducing oocyte maturation. The molecular mechanisms that regulate sperm guidance and oocyte maturation are being delineated. Unexpectedly, these mechanisms are providing insight into human diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, spinal muscular atrophy, and cancer. Here we review sperm and oocyte communication in C. elegans and discuss relationships to human disorders. PMID:20034089

  14. Sugar-coated sperm: Unraveling the functions of the mammalian sperm glycocalyx.

    PubMed

    Tecle, Eillen; Gagneux, Pascal

    2015-09-01

    Mammalian spermatozoa are coated with a thick glycocalyx that is assembled during sperm development, maturation, and upon contact with seminal fluid. The sperm glycocalyx is critical for sperm survival in the female reproductive tract and is modified during capacitation. The complex interplay among the various glycoconjugates generates numerous signaling motifs that may regulate sperm function and, as a result, fertility. Nascent spermatozoa assemble their own glycans while the cells still possess a functional endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi in the seminiferous tubule, but once spermatogenesis is complete, they lose the capacity to produce glycoconjugates de novo. Sperm glycans continue to be modified, during epididymal transit by extracellular glycosidases and glycosyltransferases. Furthermore, epididymal cells secrete glycoconjugates (glycophosphatidylinositol-anchored glycoproteins and glycolipids) and glycan-rich microvesicles that can fuse with the maturing sperm membrane. The sperm glycocalyx mediates numerous functions in the female reproductive tract, including the following: inhibition of premature capacitation; passage through the cervical mucus; protection from innate and adaptive female immunity; formation of the sperm reservoir; and masking sperm proteins involved in fertilization. The immense diversity in sperm-associated glycans within and between species forms a remarkable challenge to our understanding of essential sperm glycan functions. PMID:26061344

  15. The sperm and its formation in the scorpion Centruroides vittatus.

    PubMed

    Riess, R W; Barker, K R; Biesele, J J

    1978-01-01

    The development of sperm from a spermatid in the scorpion, Centruroides vittatus (Say), is described. The mature sperm is short with helical nucleus and a peculiar structure of the sperm tail. This peculiarity consists of alternating mitochondrial derivatives and membranous or network elements wrapped about the flagellum. We note the absence both of microtubules in the sperm of Centruroides and also of the centriole adjunct, which is present in other scorpion spermatids. PMID:743731

  16. Sugar‐coated sperm: Unraveling the functions of the mammalian sperm glycocalyx

    PubMed Central

    Tecle, Eillen

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Mammalian spermatozoa are coated with a thick glycocalyx that is assembled during sperm development, maturation, and upon contact with seminal fluid. The sperm glycocalyx is critical for sperm survival in the female reproductive tract and is modified during capacitation. The complex interplay among the various glycoconjugates generates numerous signaling motifs that may regulate sperm function and, as a result, fertility. Nascent spermatozoa assemble their own glycans while the cells still possess a functional endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi in the seminiferous tubule, but once spermatogenesis is complete, they lose the capacity to produce glycoconjugates de novo. Sperm glycans continue to be modified, during epididymal transit by extracellular glycosidases and glycosyltransferases. Furthermore, epididymal cells secrete glycoconjugates (glycophosphatidylinositol‐anchored glycoproteins and glycolipids) and glycan‐rich microvesicles that can fuse with the maturing sperm membrane. The sperm glycocalyx mediates numerous functions in the female reproductive tract, including the following: inhibition of premature capacitation; passage through the cervical mucus; protection from innate and adaptive female immunity; formation of the sperm reservoir; and masking sperm proteins involved in fertilization. The immense diversity in sperm‐associated glycans within and between species forms a remarkable challenge to our understanding of essential sperm glycan functions. Mol. Reprod. Dev. 82: 635–650, 2015. © 2015 The Authors. Molecular Reproduction and Development published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26061344

  17. Korean red ginseng extract rejuvenates testicular ineffectiveness and sperm maturation process in aged rats by regulating redox proteins and oxidative defense mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Kopalli, Spandana Rajendra; Hwang, Seock-Yeon; Won, Yu-Jin; Kim, Sung-Won; Cha, Kyu-Min; Han, Chang-Kyun; Hong, Jae-Yup; Kim, Si-Kwan

    2015-09-01

    Distortion of intracellular oxidant and antioxidant balances appears to be a common feature that underlies in age-related male sexual impairment. Therefore regulating oxidative defense mechanisms might be an ideal approach in improving male sexual dysfunctions. In the present study, the effect of Korean red ginseng aqueous extract (KRG) on age-induced testicular dysfunction in rats was investigated. KRG (200mg/kg) mixed with regular pellet diet was administered orally for six months and the morphological, spermatogenic and antioxidant enzyme status in testis of aged rats (18months) were evaluated. Data indicated a significant change in morphology and decrease in spermatogenesis-related parameters in aged rats (AC) compared with young rats (YC). Sperm number, germ cell count, Sertoli cell count and Sertoli cell index were significantly (p<0.05) restored in KRG-treated aged rat groups (G-AC). Further the increased lipid peroxidation as measured by malondialdehyde (p<0.05), and altered enzymatic (superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, glutathione S-transferase, glutathione reductase and catalase) and non-enzymatic (reduced glutathione, ascorbic acid and α-tocopherol) antioxidants (p<0.05) were attenuated by KRG treatment in aged rats to near normal levels as in YC groups. Furthermore, proteomic analysis demonstrated differential expression of selected proteins such as phosphatidylinositol transfer protein, fatty acid binding protein-9, triosephosphate isomerase-1 and aldehyde (aldose) reductase-1in aged rats was significantly (p<0.05) protected by KRG treatment. In conclusion, long-term administration of KRG restored aging-induced testicular ineffectiveness in rats by modulating redox proteins and oxidative defense mechanisms. PMID:25980653

  18. 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

  19. Virtual azoospermia and cryptozoospermia--fresh/frozen testicular or ejaculate sperm for better IVF outcome?

    PubMed

    Hauser, Ron; Bibi, Guy; Yogev, Leah; Carmon, Ariella; Azem, Foad; Botchan, Amnon; Yavetz, Haim; Klieman, Sandra E; Lehavi, Ofer; Amit, Ami; Ben-Yosef, Dalit

    2011-01-01

    Men diagnosed as having azoospermia occasionally have a few mature sperm cells in other ejaculates. Other men may have constant, yet very low quality and quantity of sperm cells in their ejaculates, resulting in poor intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) outcome. It has not been conclusively established which source of sperm cells is preferable for ICSI when both ejaculate and testicular (fresh or frozen) sperm cells are available. It is also unclear whether there is any advantage of fresh over frozen sperm if testicular sperm is to be used. We used ejaculate, testicular (fresh or frozen) sperm cells, or both for ICSI in 13 couples. Five of these couples initially underwent ICSI by testicular sperm extraction, because the males had total azoospermia, and in later cycles with ejaculate sperm cells. Ejaculate sperm cells were initially used for ICSI in the other 8 patients, and later with testicular sperm cells. The fertilization rate was significantly higher when fresh or frozen-thawed testicular sperm cells were used than when ejaculated sperm cells were used. Likewise, the quality of the embryos from testicular (fresh and frozen) sperm was higher than from ejaculated sperm (65.3% vs 53.2%, respectively, P < .05). The use of fresh testicular sperm yielded better implantation rates than both frozen testicular sperm and ejaculate. Therefore, fresh testicular sperm should be considered first for ICSI in patients with virtual azoospermia or cryptozoospermia because of their superior fertility. PMID:21164144

  20. A novel SoxB2 gene is required for maturation of sperm nucleus during spermiogenesis in the Chinese mitten crab, Eriocheir sinensis

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhi-Qiang; Jiang, Xue-Hui; Qi, Hai-Yan; Xiong, Liang-Wei; Qiu, Gao-Feng

    2016-01-01

    SRY-related HMG box (Sox) genes are characterized by the presence of a DNA-binding HMG domain and involved in a diverse range of developmental processes. In this study, we identified a novel Sox gene, designated as EsSoxB2-1, from the Chinese mitten crab Eriocheir sinensis. The EsSoxB2-1 encodes a protein of 259 amino acids, sharing the highest identity with the beetle Tribolium castaneum SOX21b. Unlike insect Sox21b, however, EsSoxB2-1 is intronless and exhibits a gonad-specific expression pattern at both mRNA and protein level. Two core promoters in 5′ flanking region were demonstrated to be essential for inducing transcriptional regulatory activity. The transcription of EsSoxB2-1 mRNA begins in spermatogonia stage, while the translation of EsSOXB2-1 protein initiates at spermiogenesis stage. Interestingly, EsSOXB2-1 protein was exclusively localized in the nucleus of spermatid and spermatozoa even at the end of acrosome reaction, and was bound to the uncondensed chromatin in nucleoplasm of mature spermatozoa. Knockdown of EsSoxB2-1 by RNAi leads to abnormal transformation of the nucleus during spermiogenesis. Together, these findings demonstrated the requirement of EsSoxB2-1 for the spermatozoa nucleus maturation and also suggested that EsSoxB2-1 would be delivered into fertilized eggs along with chromatins as a paternal transcription factor for regulating early embryonic development. PMID:27561408

  1. A novel SoxB2 gene is required for maturation of sperm nucleus during spermiogenesis in the Chinese mitten crab, Eriocheir sinensis.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhi-Qiang; Jiang, Xue-Hui; Qi, Hai-Yan; Xiong, Liang-Wei; Qiu, Gao-Feng

    2016-01-01

    SRY-related HMG box (Sox) genes are characterized by the presence of a DNA-binding HMG domain and involved in a diverse range of developmental processes. In this study, we identified a novel Sox gene, designated as EsSoxB2-1, from the Chinese mitten crab Eriocheir sinensis. The EsSoxB2-1 encodes a protein of 259 amino acids, sharing the highest identity with the beetle Tribolium castaneum SOX21b. Unlike insect Sox21b, however, EsSoxB2-1 is intronless and exhibits a gonad-specific expression pattern at both mRNA and protein level. Two core promoters in 5' flanking region were demonstrated to be essential for inducing transcriptional regulatory activity. The transcription of EsSoxB2-1 mRNA begins in spermatogonia stage, while the translation of EsSOXB2-1 protein initiates at spermiogenesis stage. Interestingly, EsSOXB2-1 protein was exclusively localized in the nucleus of spermatid and spermatozoa even at the end of acrosome reaction, and was bound to the uncondensed chromatin in nucleoplasm of mature spermatozoa. Knockdown of EsSoxB2-1 by RNAi leads to abnormal transformation of the nucleus during spermiogenesis. Together, these findings demonstrated the requirement of EsSoxB2-1 for the spermatozoa nucleus maturation and also suggested that EsSoxB2-1 would be delivered into fertilized eggs along with chromatins as a paternal transcription factor for regulating early embryonic development. PMID:27561408

  2. Comparison of efficacy of two techniques for testicular sperm retrieval in nonobstructive azoospermia: multifocal testicular sperm extraction versus multifocal testicular sperm aspiration.

    PubMed

    Hauser, Ron; Yogev, Leah; Paz, Gedalia; Yavetz, Haim; Azem, Fuad; Lessing, Joseph B; Botchan, Amnon

    2006-01-01

    To compare the efficacy of 2 sperm-retrieval procedures, testicular sperm extraction (TESE) and testicular sperm aspiration (TESA), during the same procedure using the same subjects as their own controls. The presence of mature testicular sperm cells and motility were evaluated in 87 men with nonobstructive azoospermia (NOA) by means of multifocal TESE and multifocal TESA, which were performed during the same procedure using the same subjects as their own controls. Sperm cells were recovered by TESE in 54 cases, but by TESA in only 36 cases. There were significantly more cases (n = 20) in which sperm cells were recovered by TESE only, compared with 2 cases in whom cells were recovered by TESA only (McNemar's test, P < .001). The mean number of locations in each testis in which sperm cells were detected was significantly higher in the TESE group. In significantly more cases (n = 27), motility was observed in TESE material only, compared with 3 cases in which motility was present in material extracted by TESA only (McNemar's test, P < .001). Mean number of locations in each testis with motile sperm cells was significantly higher in the TESE group. The TESE procedure yielded significantly more sperm cells, as was also reflected by the difference in number of straws with cryopreserved sperm. This comparative prospective clinical study revealed that multifocal TESE is more efficient than multifocal TESA for sperm detection and recovery in men with NOA and should be the procedure of choice for sperm retrieval for them. PMID:16400074

  3. Use of Fluorescent Dyes for Readily Recognizing Sperm Damage

    PubMed Central

    Farah, Omar Ibrahim; Cuiling, Li; Jiaojiao, Wang; Huiping, Zhang

    2013-01-01

    Sperm is produced by the testis and mature in the epididymis. For having a successful conception, the fertilizing sperm should have functional competent membranes, intact acrosome, functional mitochondria and an intact haploid genome. The effects of genetic and environmental factors result in sperm vulnerability to damage in the process of spermatogenesis and maturation. In recent years, the feasibility of detecting sperm damage is enhanced through the advances in technologies like fluoscerent staining techniques assisted with fluorescence microscope, flow cytometry and computer analysis systems. Fluoscerent staining techniques involve the use of fluorescent dyes, either directly or indirectly for binding them with some ingredients of sperm and evaluating the damage of the structure or function of the sperm, i.e. membrane, acrosome, mitochondria, chromosome or DNA. PMID:24163795

  4. 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...

  5. Computer assisted sperm morphometry in mammals: a review.

    PubMed

    Yániz, J L; Soler, C; Santolaria, P

    2015-05-01

    Computer-assisted sperm morphometry analysis (CASMA or ASMA) systems were developed to reduce the subjectivity of sperm morphology assessement. This review focuses on a complete description of the CASMA technique, including recent developments, factors of variation, results in the different species and possible applications. Techniques to study sperm morphometry include light microscopy, phase-contrast microscopy and, more recently, fluorescence microscopy. Most published studies on sperm morphometry have been centered on the whole sperm heads, although some of them also measured other parts of the sperm structure, such as the nucleus, acrosome, midpiece or flagellum. The independent study of sperm components may be more informative than the traditional assessment of the whole sperm head. Morphometric data provided by the CASMA system may be analyzed using classical statistics although, given the heterogeneity of spermatozoa in the ejaculates, the study of sperm subpopulations using clustering procedures may be more informative. Morphometric results may vary depending on factors intrinsic and extrinsic to the semen donor. Intrinsic factors may include, among others, genetic factors, age and sexual maturity. Extrinsic factors may include those related to the influence of environment on the donor, as well as those related with sample processing and the morphometric analysis itself. Once standardized, this technique may provide relevant information in studies focused on evolutionary biology, sperm formation, sperm quality assessment, including prediction of the potential fertility, semen cryopreservation, or the effect of reprotoxicants. PMID:25802026

  6. Etiologies of sperm oxidative stress

    PubMed Central

    Sabeti, Parvin; Pourmasumi, Soheila; Rahiminia, Tahereh; Akyash, Fatemeh; Talebi, Ali Reza

    2016-01-01

    Sperm is particularly susceptible to reactive oxygen species (ROS) during critical phases of spermiogenesis. However, the level of seminal ROS is restricted by seminal antioxidants which have beneficial effects on sperm parameters and developmental potentials. Mitochondria and sperm plasma membrane are two major sites of ROS generation in sperm cells. Besides, leukocytes including polymer phonuclear (PMN) leukocytes and macrophages produce broad category of molecules including oxygen free radicals, non-radical species and reactive nitrogen species. Physiological role of ROS increase the intracellular cAMP which then activate protein kinase in male reproductive system. This indicates that spermatozoa need small amounts of ROS to acquire the ability of nuclear maturation regulation and condensation to fertilize the oocyte. There is a long list of intrinsic and extrinsic factors which can induce oxidative stress to interact with lipids, proteins and DNA molecules. As a result, we have lipid peroxidation, DNA fragmentation, axonemal damage, denaturation of the enzymes, over generation of superoxide in the mitochondria, lower antioxidant activity and finally abnormal spermatogenesis. If oxidative stress is considered as one of the main cause of DNA damage in the germ cells, then there should be good reason for antioxidant therapy in these conditions. PMID:27351024

  7. Etiologies of sperm oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Sabeti, Parvin; Pourmasumi, Soheila; Rahiminia, Tahereh; Akyash, Fatemeh; Talebi, Ali Reza

    2016-04-01

    Sperm is particularly susceptible to reactive oxygen species (ROS) during critical phases of spermiogenesis. However, the level of seminal ROS is restricted by seminal antioxidants which have beneficial effects on sperm parameters and developmental potentials. Mitochondria and sperm plasma membrane are two major sites of ROS generation in sperm cells. Besides, leukocytes including polymer phonuclear (PMN) leukocytes and macrophages produce broad category of molecules including oxygen free radicals, non-radical species and reactive nitrogen species. Physiological role of ROS increase the intracellular cAMP which then activate protein kinase in male reproductive system. This indicates that spermatozoa need small amounts of ROS to acquire the ability of nuclear maturation regulation and condensation to fertilize the oocyte. There is a long list of intrinsic and extrinsic factors which can induce oxidative stress to interact with lipids, proteins and DNA molecules. As a result, we have lipid peroxidation, DNA fragmentation, axonemal damage, denaturation of the enzymes, over generation of superoxide in the mitochondria, lower antioxidant activity and finally abnormal spermatogenesis. If oxidative stress is considered as one of the main cause of DNA damage in the germ cells, then there should be good reason for antioxidant therapy in these conditions. PMID:27351024

  8. Sperm nuclear proteome and its epigenetic potential.

    PubMed

    Castillo, J; Amaral, A; Oliva, R

    2014-05-01

    The main function of the sperm cell is to transmit the paternal genetic message and epigenetic information to the embryo. Importantly, the majority of the genes in the sperm chromatin are highly condensed by protamines, whereas genes potentially needed in the initial stages of development are associated with histones, representing a form of epigenetic marking. However, so far little attention has been devoted to other sperm chromatin-associated proteins that, in addition to histones and protamines, may also have an epigenetic role. Therefore, with the goal of contributing to cover this subject we have compiled, reviewed and report a list of 581 chromatin or nuclear proteins described in the human sperm cell. Furthermore, we have analysed their Gene Ontology Biological Process enriched terms and have grouped them into different functional categories. Remarkably, we show that 56% of the sperm nuclear proteins have a potential epigenetic activity, being involved in at least one of the following functions: chromosome organization, chromatin organization, protein-DNA complex assembly, DNA packaging, gene expression, transcription, chromatin modification and histone modification. In addition, we have also included and compared the sperm cell proteomes of different model species, demonstrating the existence of common trends in the chromatin composition in the mammalian mature male gamete. Taken together, our analyses suggest that the mammalian sperm cell delivers to the offspring a rich combination of histone variants, transcription factors, chromatin-associated and chromatin-modifying proteins which have the potential to encode and transmit an extremely complex epigenetic information. PMID:24327354

  9. Sperm phosphoproteomics: historical perspectives and current methodologies

    PubMed Central

    Porambo, James R; Salicioni, Ana M; Visconti, Pablo E; Platt, Mark D

    2013-01-01

    Mammalian sperm are differentiated germ cells that transfer genetic material from the male to the female. Owing to this essential role in the reproductive process, an understanding of the complex mechanisms that underlie sperm function has implications ranging from the development of novel contraceptives to the treatment of male infertility. While the importance of phosphorylation in sperm differentiation, maturation and fertilization has been well established, the ability to directly determine the sites of phosphorylation within sperm proteins and to quantitate the extent of phosphorylation at these sites is a recent development that has relied almost exclusively on advances in the field of proteomics. This review will summarize the work that has been carried out to date on sperm phosphoproteomics and discuss how the resulting qualitative and quantitative information has been used to provide insight into the manner in which protein phosphorylation events modulate sperm function. The authors also present the proteomics process as it is most often utilized for the elucidation of protein expression, with a particular emphasis on the way in which the process has been modified for the analysis of protein phosphorylation in sperm. PMID:23194270

  10. Intracellular pH in Sperm Physiology

    PubMed Central

    Nishigaki, Takuya; José, Omar; González-Cota, Ana Laura; Romero, Francisco; Treviño, Claudia L.; Darszon, Alberto

    2014-01-01

    Intracellular pH (pHi) regulation is essential for cell function. Notably, several unique sperm ion transporters and enzymes whose elimination causes infertility are either pHi dependent or somehow related to pHi regulation. Amongst them are: CatSper, a Ca2+ channel; Slo3, a K+ channel; the sperm-specific Na+/H+ exchanger and the soluble adenylyl cyclase. It is thus clear that pHi regulation is of the utmost importance for sperm physiology. This review briefly summarizes the key components involved in pHi regulation, their characteristics and participation in fundamental sperm functions such as motility, maturation and the acrosome reaction. PMID:24887564

  11. Comparative Transcriptomics of Arabidopsis thaliana Sperm Cells

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In flowering plants the two sperm cells are embedded within the cytoplasm of the growing pollen tube and as such are passively transported to the embryo sac, wherein double fertilization occurs upon their release. Understanding the mechanisms and conditions by which male gametes mature and take part...

  12. Protective effect of hyaluronic acid on cryopreserved boar sperm.

    PubMed

    Qian, Li; Yu, Sijiu; Zhou, Yan

    2016-06-01

    This study aimed to evaluate the effects of supplementing freezing and thawing media with hyaluronic acid (HA) on the quality parameters of frozen-thawed boar spermatozoa. Boar semen samples were collected from seven mature Yorkshire boars once a week using the gloved hand technique; these samples were frozen-thawed in the extender with added HA. Boar sperm was cryopreserved in the extender with HA added at concentrations of 0 (used as control), 4, 6, 8, 8 and 12mg/L, and their effects on the quality of frozen-thawed boar sperm were evaluated. HA addition to the extender significantly improved sperm motility, sperm membrane integrity, mitochondrial activity, acrosomal integrity, superoxide dismutase and catalase activity, but decreased sperm malondialdehyde level (p<0.05). Therefore, HA could be a promising cryoprotectant for boar sperm. PMID:26944660

  13. Wolbachia infection lowers fertile sperm transfer in a moth

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Z.; Champion de Crespigny, F. E.; Sait, S. M.; Tregenza, T.; Wedell, N.

    2011-01-01

    The endosymbiotic bacterium Wolbachia pipientis manipulates host reproduction by rendering infected males reproductively incompatible with uninfected females (cytoplasmic incompatibility; CI). CI is believed to occur as a result of Wolbachia-induced modifications to sperm during maturation, which prevent infected sperm from initiating successful zygote development when fertilizing uninfected females' eggs. However, the mechanism by which CI occurs has been little studied outside the genus Drosophila. Here, we show that in the sperm heteromorphic Mediterranean flour moth, Ephestia kuehniella, infected males transfer fewer fertile sperm at mating than uninfected males. In contrast, non-fertile apyrene sperm are not affected. This indicates that Wolbachia may only affect fertile sperm production and highlights the potential of the Lepidoptera as a model for examining the mechanism by which Wolbachia induces CI in insects. PMID:20880864

  14. Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI)

    MedlinePlus

    ... male partner produces too few sperm to do artificial insemination (intrauterine insemination [IUI]) or IVF. • The sperm may ... birth defects may actually be due to the infertility and not the treatments used to overcome the ...

  15. 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.

  16. Kinesin-1 Prevents Capture of the Oocyte Meiotic Spindle by the Sperm Aster

    PubMed Central

    McNally, Karen L.P.; Fabritius, Amy S.; Ellefson, Marina L.; Flynn, Jonathan R.; Milan, Jennifer A.; McNally, Francis J.

    2012-01-01

    Centrioles are lost during oogenesis and inherited from the sperm at fertilization. In the zygote, the centrioles recruit pericentriolar proteins from the egg to form a mature centrosome that nucleates a sperm aster. The sperm aster then captures the female pronucleus to join the maternal and paternal genomes. Because fertilization occurs before completion of female meiosis, some mechanism must prevent capture of the meiotic spindle by the sperm aster. Here we show that in wild-type Caenorhabditis elegans zygotes, maternal pericentriolar proteins are not recruited to the sperm centrioles until after completion of meiosis. Depletion of kinesin-1 heavy chain or its binding partner resulted in premature centrosome maturation during meiosis and growth of a sperm aster that could capture the oocyte meiotic spindle. Kinesin prevents recruitment of pericentriolar proteins by coating the sperm DNA and centrioles and thus prevents triploidy by a non-motor mechanism. PMID:22465668

  17. 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

  18. Sperm Pretreatment with Dithiothreitol Increases Male Pronucleus Formation Rates After Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) in Swamp Buffalo Oocytes

    PubMed Central

    CHANKITISAKUL, Vibuntita; AM-IN, Nutthee; THARASANIT, Theerawat; SOMFAI, Tamas; NAGAI, Takashi; TECHAKUMPHU, Mongkol

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Failure of male pronucleus formation has hampered the success of intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) in swamp buffalo. The aim of the present study was to improve male pronucleus formation by pretreating sperm with various chemicals before ICSI. In Experiments1 and 2, sperm were treated according to one of the following protocols: (1) 0.1% Triton-X 100 (TX) for 1 min, (2) 10 µM calcium ionophore (CaI) for 20 min, (3) freezing and thawing (FT) without any cryoprotectant, or (4) no treatment (control). These sperm treatment groups then either did or did not receive additional sperm treatment with 5 mM dithiothreitol (DTT) for 20 min. Acrosomal integrity (Experiment 1) and DNA fragmentation (Experiment 2) were evaluated in the sperm before ICSI. In Experiment 3, oocytes matured in vitro were subjected to ICSI using pretreated sperm as described above and then were cultured either with or without activation. The TX- and CaI-treated sperm caused an increase in the number of acrosome-loss sperm, whereas the FT treatment and control increased the proportion of acrosome-reacted sperm (P<0.05). The DNA fragmentation did not differ among treatments (P>0.05). At 18 h post-ICSI, pronucleus (PN) formation was found only in activated oocytes. The majority of the activated ICSI oocytes contained intact sperm heads. Normal fertilization was observed in the CaI and FT treatment groups and control group when sperm were treated with DTT before ICSI. In conclusion, DTT treatment of sperm with reacted acrosomes before ICSI together with activation of the ICSI oocytes is important for successful male pronucleus formation. PMID:23132520

  19. Gamete evolution and sperm numbers: sperm competition versus sperm limitation.

    PubMed

    Parker, Geoff A; Lehtonen, Jussi

    2014-09-22

    Both gamete competition and gamete limitation can generate anisogamy from ancestral isogamy, and both sperm competition (SC) and sperm limitation (SL) can increase sperm numbers. Here, we compare the marginal benefits due to these two components at any given population level of sperm production using the risk and intensity models in sperm economics. We show quite generally for the intensity model (where N males compete for each set of eggs) that however severe the degree of SL, if there is at least one competitor for fertilization (N - 1 ≥ 1), the marginal gains through SC exceed those for SL, provided that the relationship between the probability of fertilization (F) and increasing sperm numbers (x) is a concave function. In the risk model, as fertility F increases from 0 to 1.0, the threshold SC risk (the probability q that two males compete for fertilization) for SC to be the dominant force drops from 1.0 to 0. The gamete competition and gamete limitation theories for the evolution of anisogamy rely on very similar considerations: our results imply that gamete limitation could dominate only if ancestral reproduction took place in highly isolated, small spawning groups. PMID:25100694

  20. Sperm is epigenetically programmed to regulate gene transcription in embryos.

    PubMed

    Teperek, Marta; Simeone, Angela; Gaggioli, Vincent; Miyamoto, Kei; Allen, George E; Erkek, Serap; Kwon, Taejoon; Marcotte, Edward M; Zegerman, Philip; Bradshaw, Charles R; Peters, Antoine H F M; Gurdon, John B; Jullien, Jerome

    2016-08-01

    For a long time, it has been assumed that the only role of sperm at fertilization is to introduce the male genome into the egg. Recently, ideas have emerged that the epigenetic state of the sperm nucleus could influence transcription in the embryo. However, conflicting reports have challenged the existence of epigenetic marks on sperm genes, and there are no functional tests supporting the role of sperm epigenetic marking on embryonic gene expression. Here, we show that sperm is epigenetically programmed to regulate embryonic gene expression. By comparing the development of sperm- and spermatid-derived frog embryos, we show that the programming of sperm for successful development relates to its ability to regulate transcription of a set of developmentally important genes. During spermatid maturation into sperm, these genes lose H3K4me2/3 and retain H3K27me3 marks. Experimental removal of these epigenetic marks at fertilization de-regulates gene expression in the resulting embryos in a paternal chromatin-dependent manner. This demonstrates that epigenetic instructions delivered by the sperm at fertilization are required for correct regulation of gene expression in the future embryos. The epigenetic mechanisms of developmental programming revealed here are likely to relate to the mechanisms involved in transgenerational transmission of acquired traits. Understanding how parental experience can influence development of the progeny has broad potential for improving human health. PMID:27034506

  1. Sperm is epigenetically programmed to regulate gene transcription in embryos

    PubMed Central

    Teperek, Marta; Simeone, Angela; Gaggioli, Vincent; Miyamoto, Kei; Allen, George E.; Erkek, Serap; Kwon, Taejoon; Marcotte, Edward M.; Zegerman, Philip; Bradshaw, Charles R.; Peters, Antoine H.F.M.; Gurdon, John B.; Jullien, Jerome

    2016-01-01

    For a long time, it has been assumed that the only role of sperm at fertilization is to introduce the male genome into the egg. Recently, ideas have emerged that the epigenetic state of the sperm nucleus could influence transcription in the embryo. However, conflicting reports have challenged the existence of epigenetic marks on sperm genes, and there are no functional tests supporting the role of sperm epigenetic marking on embryonic gene expression. Here, we show that sperm is epigenetically programmed to regulate embryonic gene expression. By comparing the development of sperm- and spermatid-derived frog embryos, we show that the programming of sperm for successful development relates to its ability to regulate transcription of a set of developmentally important genes. During spermatid maturation into sperm, these genes lose H3K4me2/3 and retain H3K27me3 marks. Experimental removal of these epigenetic marks at fertilization de-regulates gene expression in the resulting embryos in a paternal chromatin-dependent manner. This demonstrates that epigenetic instructions delivered by the sperm at fertilization are required for correct regulation of gene expression in the future embryos. The epigenetic mechanisms of developmental programming revealed here are likely to relate to the mechanisms involved in transgenerational transmission of acquired traits. Understanding how parental experience can influence development of the progeny has broad potential for improving human health. PMID:27034506

  2. Functional Amyloids in the Mouse Sperm Acrosome

    PubMed Central

    Guyonnet, Benoit; Egge, Nathan

    2014-01-01

    The acrosomal matrix (AM) is an insoluble structure within the sperm acrosome that serves as a scaffold controlling the release of AM-associated proteins during the sperm acrosome reaction. The AM also interacts with the zona pellucida (ZP) that surrounds the oocyte, suggesting a remarkable stability that allows its survival despite being surrounded by proteolytic and hydrolytic enzymes released during the acrosome reaction. To date, the mechanism responsible for the stability of the AM is not known. Our studies demonstrate that amyloids are present within the sperm AM and contribute to the formation of an SDS- and formic-acid-resistant core. The AM core contained several known amyloidogenic proteins, as well as many proteins predicted to form amyloid, including several ZP binding proteins, suggesting a functional role for the amyloid core in sperm-ZP interactions. While stable at pH 3, at pH 7, the sperm AM rapidly destabilized. The pH-dependent dispersion of the AM correlated with a change in amyloid structure leading to a loss of mature forms and a gain of immature forms, suggesting that the reversal of amyloid is integral to AM dispersion. PMID:24797071

  3. Negative biomarker-based male fertility evaluation: sperm phenotypes associated with molecular-level anomalies

    PubMed Central

    Sutovsky, Peter; Aarabi, Mahmoud; Miranda-Vizuete, Antonio; Oko, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Biomarker-based sperm analysis elevates the treatment of human infertility and ameliorates reproductive performance in livestock. The negative biomarker-based approach focuses on proteins and ligands unique to defective spermatozoa, regardless of their morphological phenotype, lending itself to analysis by flow cytometry (FC). A prime example is the spermatid specific thioredoxin SPTRX3/TXNDC8, retained in the nuclear vacuoles and superfluous cytoplasm of defective human spermatozoa. Infertile couples with high semen SPTRX3 are less likely to conceive by assisted reproductive therapies (ART) and more prone to recurrent miscarriage while low SPTRX3 has been associated with multiple ART births. Ubiquitin, a small, proteolysis-promoting covalent posttranslational protein modifier is found on the surface of defective posttesticular spermatozoa and in the damaged protein aggregates, the aggresomes of spermiogenic origin. Semen ubiquitin content correlates negatively with fertility and conventional semen parameters, and with sperm binding of lectins LCA (Lens culinaris agglutinin; reveals altered sperm surface) and PNA (Arachis hypogaea/peanut agglutinin; reveals acrosomal malformation or damage). The Postacrosomal Sheath WWI Domain Binding Protein (PAWP), implicated in oocyte activation during fertilization, is ectopic or absent from defective human and animal spermatozoa. Consequently, FC-parameters of PAWP correlate with ART outcomes in infertile couples and with fertility in bulls. Assays based on the above biomarkers have been combined into multiplex FC semen screening protocols, and the surface expression of lectins and ubiquitin has been utilized to develop nanoparticle-based bull semen purification method validated by field artificial insemination trials. These advances go hand-in-hand with the innovation of FC-technology and genomics/proteomics-based biomarker discovery. PMID:25999356

  4. 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

  5. Mouse Sperm Membrane Potential Hyperpolarization Is Necessary and Sufficient to Prepare Sperm for the Acrosome Reaction*

    PubMed Central

    De La Vega-Beltran, Jose Luis; Sánchez-Cárdenas, Claudia; Krapf, Darío; Hernandez-González, Enrique O.; Wertheimer, Eva; Treviño, Claudia L.; Visconti, Pablo E.; Darszon, Alberto

    2012-01-01

    Mammalian sperm are unable to fertilize the egg immediately after ejaculation; they acquire this capacity during migration in the female reproductive tract. This maturational process is called capacitation and in mouse sperm it involves a plasma membrane reorganization, extensive changes in the state of protein phosphorylation, increases in intracellular pH (pHi) and Ca2+ ([Ca2+]i), and the appearance of hyperactivated motility. In addition, mouse sperm capacitation is associated with the hyperpolarization of the cell membrane potential. However, the functional role of this process is not known. In this work, to dissect the role of this membrane potential change, hyperpolarization was induced in noncapacitated sperm using either the ENaC inhibitor amiloride, the CFTR agonist genistein or the K+ ionophore valinomycin. In this experimental setting, other capacitation-associated processes such as activation of a cAMP-dependent pathway and the consequent increase in protein tyrosine phosphorylation were not observed. However, hyperpolarization was sufficient to prepare sperm for the acrosome reaction induced either by depolarization with high K+ or by addition of solubilized zona pellucida (sZP). Moreover, K+ and sZP were also able to increase [Ca2+]i in non-capacitated sperm treated with these hyperpolarizing agents but not in untreated cells. On the other hand, in conditions that support capacitation-associated processes blocking hyperpolarization by adding valinomycin and increasing K+ concentrations inhibited the agonist-induced acrosome reaction as well as the increase in [Ca2+]i. Altogether, these results suggest that sperm hyperpolarization by itself is key to enabling mice sperm to undergo the acrosome reaction. PMID:23095755

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. A role for the WH-30 protein in sperm-sperm adhesion during rouleaux formation in the guinea pig.

    PubMed

    Flaherty, S P; Swann, N J; Primakoff, P; Myles, D G

    1993-03-01

    Mammalian spermatozoa participate in specific cell adhesion phenomena during their development and functional lifespan; this includes interaction with Sertoli cells, the zona pellucida, and the oolemma. In some species such as the guinea pig, an additional sperm-sperm adhesion occurs during epididymal maturation which results in the formation of rouleaux in which the sperm heads are stacked one upon the other and the periacrosomal plasma membranes of adjacent sperm are linked by periodic cross-bridges. In this study, we have used a monoclonal antibody to investigate the role of the WH-30 protein on the sperm surface in the formation of the junctional zones between adjacent guinea pig sperm in rouleaux. WH-30 monoclonal antibodies caused a dose- and time-dependent dissociation of rouleaux and an increase in the percentage of single, acrosome-intact sperm; there were no effects on sperm motility (maintained at 80-90%) or ultrastructure during the 120-min incubations. The maximal effect of about 80% single sperm was obtained with a 1:4 dilution of the WH-30 hybridoma supernatant or 5-50 micrograms/ml of purified WH-30 IgG. In contrast, incubation of sperm in AH-20 IgG, myeloma cell supernatants, or purified, nonspecific mouse IgG1 had no effect on rouleaux. Treatment of sperm with a WH-30 Fab fragment resulted in almost complete dissociation of rouleaux without any observed effect on sperm motility or acrosomal status. Surface labeling of sperm followed by immunoprecipitation and SDS-PAGE revealed that the WH-30 antibody recognizes a single polypeptide of 43-45 kDa. Using immunofluorescence, the WH-30 protein was localized over the entire surface of the sperm head (whole-head pattern), and immunogold labeling showed that WH-30 is localized in the glycocalyx on both the dorsal and ventral surfaces of the periacrosomal and postacrosomal plasma membranes. These results indicate that the WH-30 protein on the sperm surface is a cell adhesion protein which is involved in

  9. Male Pronuclear Formation using Dog Sperm Derived from Ectopic Testicular Xenografts, Testis, and Epididymis

    PubMed Central

    Shirazi, Abolfazl; Khadivi, Asma; Shams-Esfandabadi, Naser

    2014-01-01

    Background Testis tissue xenografting and the resultant sperm in a xenograft may provide a unique approach to rescue the genetic material of males that die prematurely and is a model for the study of human spermatogenesis and can represent an alternative approach for fertility preservation in cancer patients. This study was aimed to evaluate the xenogenic dog sperm in formation of male pronucleus following injection into the sheep oocytes. Methods The in vitro matured slaughterhouse derived sheep oocytes were subjected to Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) with epididymal, testicular, and xenogenic dog sperm. The ICSI was performed after scoring of the sperm midpiece using an IX71-Olympus inverted microscope with Nomarsky optics. Within 1 hr after injection, the injected oocytes in activated group were exposed to 5 µM ionomycin for 5 min. The data were analyzed by Chi-square and ANOVA using SigmaStat, version 3.5, and p<0.05 was considered significant. Results The formation of female pronucleus after ICSI of xenogenic sperm was higher than epididymal and testicular sperm in non-activated oocytes. The corresponding rate in activated oocytes was higher or comparable with testicular and epididymal sperm. The rate of male pronucleus formation after ICSI of xenogenic sperm was comparable with injection of two other sperm sources. Oocyte activation had an inductive role in female and male pronuclear formation. Conclusion Dog xenogenic sperm was capable to induce oocyte activation and proportion of male pronucleous formation was comparable to the testicular and epididymal sperm. PMID:25215177

  10. 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

  11. Supporters of sperm

    PubMed Central

    Løvlie, Hanne

    2014-01-01

    The Biology of Spermatozoa (BoS) meetings have run on a biannual basis since the early 1990s. They are dedicated to the fascinating research topic of sperm and their complicated route to fertilization. The BoS meetings focus on sperm, but they also explore additional supporting factors important in fertilization, such as those present in seminal and ovarian fluid, as well as the genomic bases of sperm biology. Here, I present a report of the recent BoS meeting, and showcase some of the highlights of this year’s meeting. PMID:25225623

  12. Comprehensive profiling of accessible surface glycans of mammalian sperm using a lectin microarray

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    It is well known that cell surface glycans or glycocalyx play important roles in sperm motility, maturation and fertilization. A comprehensive profile of the sperm surface glycans will greatly facilitate both basic research (sperm glycobiology) and clinical studies, such as diagnostics of infertility. As a group of natural glycan binders, lectin is an ideal tool for cell surface glycan profiling. However, because of the lack of effective technology, only a few lectins have been tested for lectin-sperm binding profiles. To address this challenge, we have developed a procedure for high-throughput probing of mammalian sperm with 91 lectins on lectin microarrays. Normal sperm from human, boar, bull, goat and rabbit were collected and analyzed on the lectin microarrays. Positive bindings of a set of ~50 lectins were observed for all the sperm of 5 species, which indicated a wide range of glycans are on the surface of mammalian sperm. Species specific lectin bindings were also observed. Clustering analysis revealed that the distances of the five species according to the lectin binding profiles are consistent with that of the genome sequence based phylogenetic tree except for rabbit. The procedure that we established in this study could be generally applicable for sperm from other species or defect sperm from the same species. We believe the lectin binding profiles of the mammalian sperm that we established in this study are valuable for both basic research and clinical studies. PMID:24629138

  13. Sperm and Spermatids Contain Different Proteins and Bind Distinct Egg Factors

    PubMed Central

    Teperek, Marta; Miyamoto, Kei; Simeone, Angela; Feret, Renata; Deery, Michael J.; Gurdon, John B.; Jullien, Jerome

    2014-01-01

    Spermatozoa are more efficient at supporting normal embryonic development than spermatids, their immature, immediate precursors. This suggests that the sperm acquires the ability to support embryonic development during spermiogenesis (spermatid to sperm maturation). Here, using Xenopus laevis as a model organism, we performed 2-D Fluorescence Difference Gel Electrophoresis (2D-DIGE) and mass spectrometry analysis of differentially expressed proteins between sperm and spermatids in order to identify factors that could be responsible for the efficiency of the sperm to support embryonic development. Furthermore, benefiting from the availability of egg extracts in Xenopus, we also tested whether the chromatin of sperm could attract different egg factors compared to the chromatin of spermatids. Our analysis identified: (1) several proteins which were present exclusively in sperm; but not in spermatid nuclei and (2) numerous egg proteins binding to the sperm (but not to the spermatid chromatin) after incubation in egg extracts. Amongst these factors we identified many chromatin-associated proteins and transcriptional repressors. Presence of transcriptional repressors binding specifically to sperm chromatin could suggest its preparation for the early embryonic cell cycles, during which no transcription is observed and suggests that sperm chromatin has a unique protein composition, which facilitates the recruitment of egg chromatin remodelling factors. It is therefore likely that the acquisition of these sperm-specific factors during spermiogenesis makes the sperm chromatin suitable to interact with the maternal factors and, as a consequence, to support efficient embryonic development. PMID:25244019

  14. Objective evaluation of the morphology of human epididymal sperm heads.

    PubMed

    Soler, C; Pérez-Sánchez, F; Schulze, H; Bergmann, M; Oberpenning, F; Yeung, C; Cooper, T G

    2000-04-01

    Spermatozoa were obtained from nine epididymal regions of six epididymides taken from five men undergoing castration for prostatic carcinoma (53-76 years) and from one man with testicular cancer (38 years). Spermatozoa were obtained by mincing tissue in phosphate-buffered saline, making air dried smears and staining with Hemacolor. The percentage of sperm heads categorised subjectively as normal (of uniform shape) or otherwise was calculated for each region. This confirmed that grossly swollen sperm heads (previously shown to be artefacts) were only present in proximal regions of the duct. A computer-aided sperm morphology analyser (Sperm Class Analyzer(R)) was used to provide objective measurements of sperm head area, perimeter, length and width of the uniform sperm heads and revealed that there was a gradual and statistically significant decline in sperm head size upon maturation, as occurs in other species. There was no significant difference between the morphometric parameters of spermatozoa obtained from the distal cauda epididymis and those obtained from the ejaculates of young normozoospermic patients. PMID:10762433

  15. Sperm release pathway

    MedlinePlus Videos and Cool Tools

    ... top of the seminiferous tubules in the testes is the epididymis. The sperm migrate from of the ... vesicle are added. From the ampulla, seminal fluid is propelled forward through the ejaculatory ducts toward the ...

  16. Sperm release pathway

    MedlinePlus Videos and Cool Tools

    ... stored in this structure. The ejaculation process begins as the penis fills with blood and becomes erect. ... travel from the epididymis through the vas deferens, a muscular tube, which propels sperm forward through smooth ...

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. Male sperm storage compromises sperm motility in guppies.

    PubMed

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

    2014-11-01

    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

  1. 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.

  2. Quantitative analysis of radiation-induced changes in sperm morphology.

    PubMed

    Young, I T; Gledhill, B L; Lake, S; Wyrobek, A J

    1982-09-01

    When developing spermatogenic cells are exposed to radiation, chemical carcinogens or mutagens, the transformation in the morphology of the mature sperm can be used to determine the severity of the exposure. In this study five groups of mice with three mice per group received testicular doses of X irradiation at dosage levels ranging from 0 rad to 120 rad. A random sample of 100 mature sperm per mouse was analyzed five weeks later for the quantitative morphologic transformation as a function of dosage level. The cells were stained with gallocyanin chrome alum (GCA) so that only the DNA in the sperm head was visible. The ACUity quantitative microscopy system at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory was used to scan the sperm at a sampling density of 16 points per linear micrometer and with 256 brightness levels per point. The contour of each cell was extracted using conventional thresholding techniques on the high-contrast images. For each contour a variety of shape features was then computed to characterize the morphology of that cell. Using the control group and the distribution of their shape features to establish the variability of a normal sperm population, the 95% limits on normal morphology were established. Using only four shape features, a doubling dose of approximately 39 rad was determined. That is, at 39 rad exposure the percentage of abnormal cells was twice that occurring in the control population. This compared to a doubling dose of approximately 70 rad obtained from a concurrent visual procedure. PMID:6184000

  3. 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...

  4. Fusion of Boar Sperm with Nanoliposomes Prepared from Synthetic Phospholipids.

    PubMed

    Kasimanickam, V R; Buhr, M M

    2016-08-01

    Liposomes are artificial membrane vesicles that can be used to test and model the functions and interactions of various biological membranes, or as a carrier system to deliver biologically active substances into the cells, or to incorporate lipids into the plasma membrane of target cells to modify membrane structure-function relationships. Sperm plasma membrane undergoes lipid modification during maturation in epididymis and during capacitation in the female reproductive tract to facilitate fertilization. Natural variation in the amounts and composition of lipids in the sperm plasma membrane may also contribute to the species-specific sperm sensitivities to handling and storage conditions. Boar sperm are notoriously susceptible to membrane damage and are resistant to compositional alteration by artificial liposomes. This study used flow cytometry to demonstrate stable incorporation of nanoliposomes prepared from a complex mixture of various phospholipids (phosphatidylcholine : phosphatidylethanolamine : sphingomyelin : phosphatidylserine : phosphatidylinositol) with high fusion efficiency. Over 90% of sperm rapidly took up fluorescently labelled liposomes and retained the lipids for at least 60 min, in a significant time- and concentration-dependent manner. This unique fusion efficacy could be used to alter sperm plasma membrane composition and hence membrane-based functional responses. PMID:27217373

  5. 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.

  6. Sperm Proteomics: Road to Male Fertility and Contraception

    PubMed Central

    Rahman, Md Saidur; Lee, June-Sub

    2013-01-01

    Spermatozoa are highly specialized cells that can be easily obtained and purified. Mature spermatozoa are transcriptionally and translationally inactive and incapable of protein synthesis. In addition, spermatozoa contain relatively higher amounts of membrane proteins compared to other cells; therefore, they are very suitable for proteomic studies. Recently, the application of proteomic approaches such as the two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, mass spectrometry, and differential in-gel electrophoresis has identified several sperm-specific proteins. These findings have provided a further understanding of protein functions involved in different sperm processes as well as of the differentiation of normal state from an abnormal one. In addition, studies on the sperm proteome have demonstrated the importance of spermatozoal posttranslational modifications and their ability to induce physiological changes responsible for fertilization. Large-scale proteomic studies to identify hundreds to thousands of sperm proteins will ultimately result in the development of novel biomarkers that may help to detect fertility, the state of complete contraception, and beyond. Eventually, these protein biomarkers will allow for a better diagnosis of sperm dysfunctions and aid in drug development. This paper reviews the recent scientific publications available from the PubMed database to address sperm proteomics and its potential application to characterize male fertility and contraception. PMID:24363670

  7. A NOVEL SYSTEM FOR THE CO-CULTURE OF EPIDIDYMAL EPITHELIAL CELLS AND SPERM FROM ADULT RATS

    EPA Science Inventory

    To study interactions which occur between the epididymal epithelial cells and sperm within the epididymis during sperm maturation, a specialized co-culture system capable of supporting the differentiated function of these cell types must be utilized. A multifaceted approach has b...

  8. Coupling sperm mediated gene transfer and sperm sorting techniques: a new perspective for swine transgenesis.

    PubMed

    De Cecco, Marco; Spinaci, Marcella; Zannoni, Augusta; Bernardini, Chiara; Seren, Eraldo; Forni, Monica; Bacci, Maria Laura

    2010-09-15

    Flow cytometric separation of X and Y chromosome-bearing spermatozoa has been demonstrated to be effective in pigs, allowing the use of boar sexed semen in in vitro trials. Sperm Mediated Gene Transfer (SMGT) is a widely used and efficient technique for the creation of transgenic animals. The present research intended to prove that it is possible to associate sperm sexing with the SMGT technique in order to speed up the assessment of homozygous lines of transgenic pigs. In the first experiment, the sorting protocol was modified in order to obtain the highest DNA uptake by sorted spermatozoa. In the second experiment, spermatozoa that had undergone only sperm sorting, only SMGT, or both procedures (Sorted-SMGT) were used for in in vitro fertilization of in vitro matured oocytes. In the third experiment, transformed blastocysts of the desired gender (male) were obtained with Sorted-SMGT in an in vitro fertilization trial. The method we developed here allowed us to produce transgenic swine blastocysts of pre-determined gender, giving a positive answer at the aim to couple SMGT and sperm sorting in swine, obtaining fertile spermatozoa able to produce transgenic embryos of pre-determined gender. PMID:20537690

  9. Glycocalyx characterisation and glycoprotein expression of Sus domesticus epididymal sperm surface samples.

    PubMed

    Fàbrega, Anna; Puigmulé, Marta; Dacheux, Jean-Louis; Bonet, Sergi; Pinart, Elisabeth

    2012-01-01

    The sperm surface is covered with a dense coating of carbohydrate-rich molecules. Many of these molecules are involved in the acquisition of fertilising ability. In the present study, eight lectins (i.e. Arachis hypogae (peanut) agglutinin (PNA), Lens culimaris (lentil) agglutinin-A (LCA), Pisum sativum (pea) agglutin (PSA), Triticum vulgari (wheat) germ agglutinin (WGA), Helix pomatia agglutinin (HPA), Phaseolus vulgaris (red kidney bean) leucoagglutinin (PHA-L), Glycine max (soybean) agglutinin (SBA) and Ulex europaeus agglutinin I (UEA-I)) were investigated to identify changes in the nature and localisation of glycoproteins in boar spermatozoa migrating along the epididymal duct. Complementary procedures included measurement of global lectin binding over the surface of the viable sperm population by flow cytometry, analysis of lectin localisation on the membrane of individual spermatozoa using fluorescence microscopy and the electrophoretic characterisation of the major sperm surface glycoprotein receptors involved in lectin binding. A significant increase was found in sperm galactose, glucose/mannose and N-acetyl-d-glucosamine residues distally in the epididymis. Moreover, the sperm head, cytoplasmic droplet and midpiece were recognised by most of the lectins tested, whereas only HPA and WGA bound to the principal piece and end piece of the sperm tail. Fourteen sperm surface proteins were observed with different patterns of lectin expression between epididymal regions. The sperm glycocalyx modifications observed in the present study provide an insight into the molecular modifications associated with epididymal maturation, which may be correlated with the degree of maturation of ejaculated spermatozoa. PMID:22541550

  10. Aneuploidy detection in human sperm nuclei using PRINS technique

    SciTech Connect

    Girardet, A.; Coignet, L.; Andreo, B.

    1996-08-23

    Rapid and specific identification of chromosomes can be attained in situ using the PRimed IN Situ (PRINS) labelling technique. We have adapted this technique to mature human sperm in combination with a protocol for simultaneous decondensation and denaturation of sperm nuclei. This strategy allowed us to obtain double labelling of human spermatozoa in a <2-hr reaction. In the present study, we report the estimates of disomy for chromosomes 3, 7, 10, 11, and 17 on 64,642 spermatozoa from 2 normal males. The incidences of disomy ranged from 0.28-0.34%. There were no significant interindividual or interchromosomal differences in disomy rates. 27 refs., 1 fig., 3 tabs.

  11. Provisional bilateral symmetry in Xenopus eggs is established during maturation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, E. E.; Margelot, K. M.; Danilchik, M. V.

    1994-01-01

    Dorsal-ventral patterning in the Xenopus egg becomes established midway through the first cell cycle during a 30 degree rotation of the subcortical yolk mass relative to the egg cortex. This 'rotation of symmetrisation' is microtubule dependent, and its direction is thought to be cued by the usually eccentric sperm centrosome. The fact that parthenogenetically activated eggs also undergo a directed rotation, despite the absence of a sperm centrosome, suggests that an endogenous asymmetry in the unfertilised egg supports the directed polymerisation of microtubules in the vegetal cortex, in the way that an eccentric sperm centrosome would in fertilised eggs. Consistent with this idea, we noticed that the maturation spot is usually located an average of more than 15 degrees from the geometric centre of the pigmented animal hemisphere. In parthenogenetically activated eggs, this eccentric maturation spot can be used to predict the direction of rotation. Although in most fertilised eggs the yolk mass rotates toward the sperm entry point (SEP) meridian, occasionally this relationship is perturbed significantly; in such eggs, the maturation spot is never on the same side of the egg as the SEP. In oocytes tilted 90 degrees from upright during maturation in vitro, the maturation spot developed 15 degrees or more from the centre of the pigmented hemisphere, always displaced towards the point on the equator that was up during maturation. This experimentally demonstrated lability is consistent with an off-axis oocyte orientation during oogenesis determining its eccentric maturation spot position, and, in turn, its endogenous rotational bias.

  12. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection

    MedlinePlus Videos and Cool Tools

    ... in which fertilization occurs outside of the body. First, egg cells are harvested and transferred to a special media in a laboratory dish. Within a few hours, a single sperm is injected through a fine needle into the center of an egg cell to aid in the process of fertilization. If successful, the ...

  13. Proteomics and the genetics of sperm chromatin condensation

    PubMed Central

    Oliva, Rafael; Castillo, Judit

    2011-01-01

    Spermatogenesis involves extremely marked cellular, genetic and chromatin changes resulting in the generation of the highly specialized sperm cell. Proteomics allows the identification of the proteins that compose the spermatogenic cells and the study of their function. The recent developments in mass spectrometry (MS) have markedly increased the throughput to identify and to study the sperm proteins. Catalogs of thousands of testis and spermatozoan proteins in human and different model species are becoming available, setting up the basis for subsequent research, diagnostic applications and possibly the future development of specific treatments. The present review intends to summarize the key genetic and chromatin changes at the different stages of spermatogenesis and in the mature sperm cell and to comment on the presently available proteomic studies. PMID:21042303

  14. Modification of sperm quality after sexual abstinence in Seba's short-tailed bat, Carollia perspicillata.

    PubMed

    Wesseling, Charlotte; Fasel, Nicolas; Richner, Heinz; Helfenstein, Fabrice

    2016-05-01

    In polygynous mating systems, few males have stable access to sexual mates. With an expected higher copulation rate, harem males may deplete seminal fluids or increase epididymal sperm maturation, generating poor sperm quality. In a first study, we reported a higher sperm quality in sneaker males of Carollia perspicillata To test whether the lower sperm quality observed in harem males was generated by an elevated copulation rate, we temporarily removed males of both social statuses from the colony. We thus assessed status-related changes of sperm quality resulting from sexual abstinence. Moreover, released from territory and female guarding, harem males were expected to show a reduction in somatic costs. On the basis of sperm competition models, we predicted a higher resource investment in the ejaculate with the reduction of pre-copulatory efforts. In line with our predictions, sperm quality of harem males improved significantly in contrast to sneaker males, whose sperm quality did not change. Without an increase in ejaculate lipid peroxidation, our results also provide evidence that the duration of sexual abstinence was not sufficient to generate sperm oxidative damage through senescence. Harem males did not show a reduction in blood lipid peroxidation or in the ratio of oxidized to reduced glutathione. In line with the maintenance of these somatic costs, harem males did not invest more superoxide dismutase to the ejaculate to maintain sperm quality. Our results suggest that a difference in copulation rate rather than an adaptation to sperm competition provides sneaker males with higher sperm quality in C. perspicillata. PMID:27208034

  15. TRY-5 Is a Sperm-Activating Protease in Caenorhabditis elegans Seminal Fluid

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Joseph R.; Stanfield, Gillian M.

    2011-01-01

    Seminal fluid proteins have been shown to play important roles in male reproductive success, but the mechanisms for this regulation remain largely unknown. In Caenorhabditis elegans, sperm differentiate from immature spermatids into mature, motile spermatozoa during a process termed sperm activation. For C. elegans males, sperm activation occurs during insemination of the hermaphrodite and is thought to be mediated by seminal fluid, but the molecular nature of this activity has not been previously identified. Here we show that TRY-5 is a seminal fluid protease that is required in C. elegans for male-mediated sperm activation. We observed that TRY-5::GFP is expressed in the male somatic gonad and is transferred along with sperm to hermaphrodites during mating. In the absence of TRY-5, male seminal fluid loses its potency to transactivate hermaphrodite sperm. However, TRY-5 is not required for either hermaphrodite or male fertility, suggesting that hermaphrodite sperm are normally activated by a distinct hermaphrodite-specific activator to which male sperm are also competent to respond. Within males, TRY-5::GFP localization within the seminal vesicle is antagonized by the protease inhibitor SWM-1. Together, these data suggest that TRY-5 functions as an extracellular activator of C. elegans sperm. The presence of TRY-5 within the seminal fluid couples the timing of sperm activation to that of transfer of sperm into the hermaphrodite uterus, where motility must be rapidly acquired. Our results provide insight into how C. elegans has adopted sex-specific regulation of sperm motility to accommodate its male-hermaphrodite mode of reproduction. PMID:22125495

  16. Unconventional endocannabinoid signaling governs sperm activation via the sex hormone progesterone.

    PubMed

    Miller, Melissa R; Mannowetz, Nadja; Iavarone, Anthony T; Safavi, Rojin; Gracheva, Elena O; Smith, James F; Hill, Rose Z; Bautista, Diana M; Kirichok, Yuriy; Lishko, Polina V

    2016-04-29

    Steroids regulate cell proliferation, tissue development, and cell signaling via two pathways: a nuclear receptor mechanism and genome-independent signaling. Sperm activation, egg maturation, and steroid-induced anesthesia are executed via the latter pathway, the key components of which remain unknown. Here, we present characterization of the human sperm progesterone receptor that is conveyed by the orphan enzyme α/β hydrolase domain-containing protein 2 (ABHD2). We show that ABHD2 is highly expressed in spermatozoa, binds progesterone, and acts as a progesterone-dependent lipid hydrolase by depleting the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2AG) from plasma membrane. The 2AG inhibits the sperm calcium channel (CatSper), and its removal leads to calcium influx via CatSper and ensures sperm activation. This study reveals that progesterone-activated endocannabinoid depletion by ABHD2 is a general mechanism by which progesterone exerts its genome-independent action and primes sperm for fertilization. PMID:26989199

  17. Imbalanced lipid homeostasis in the conditional Dicer1 knockout mouse epididymis causes instability of the sperm membrane.

    PubMed

    Björkgren, Ida; Gylling, Helena; Turunen, Heikki; Huhtaniemi, Ilpo; Strauss, Leena; Poutanen, Matti; Sipilä, Petra

    2015-02-01

    During epididymal sperm maturation, the lipid content of the sperm membrane is modified, which facilitates sperm motility and fertility. However, little is known about the mechanisms regulating the maturation process. By generating a conditional knockout (cKO) of Dicer1 in the proximal part of the mouse epididymis, we studied the role of RNA interference in epididymal functions. The Dicer1 cKO epididymis displayed an altered lipid homeostasis associated with a 0.6-fold reduction in the expression of the gene elongation of very long chain fatty acids-like 2, an enzyme needed for production of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). Furthermore, the expression of several factors involved in cholesterol synthesis was up-regulated. Accordingly, the Dicer1 cKO sperm membrane showed a 0.7-fold decrease in long-chain PUFAs, whereas the amount of cholesterol in acrosome-reacted sperm displayed a 1.7-fold increase. The increased cholesterol:PUFA ratio of the sperm membrane caused breakage of the neck and acrosome region and immotility of sperm. Dicer1 cKO mice sperm also displayed reduced ability to bind to and fertilize the oocyte in vitro. This study thus shows that Dicer1 is critical for lipid synthesis in the epididymis, which directly affects sperm membrane integrity and male fertility. PMID:25366345

  18. 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.

  19. Turbulence of swarming sperm.

    PubMed

    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. PMID:26465513

  20. 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.

  1. Mammalian Sperm Fertility Related Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Ashrafzadeh, Ali; Karsani, Saiful Anuar; Nathan, Sheila

    2013-01-01

    Infertility is an important aspect of human and animal reproduction and still presents with much etiological ambiguity. As fifty percent of infertility is related to the male partner, molecular investigations on sperm and seminal plasma can lead to new knowledge on male infertility. Several comparisons between fertile and infertile human and other species sperm proteome have shown the existence of potential fertility markers. These proteins have been categorized into energy related, structural and other functional proteins which play a major role in sperm motility, capacitation and sperm-oocyte binding. The data from these studies show the impact of sperm proteome studies on identifying different valuable markers for fertility screening. In this article, we review recent development in unraveling sperm fertility related proteins. PMID:24151436

  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. Sperm function test

    PubMed Central

    Talwar, Pankaj; Hayatnagarkar, Suryakant

    2015-01-01

    With absolute normal semen analysis parameters it may not be necessary to shift to specialized tests early but in cases with borderline parameters or with history of fertilization failure in past it becomes necessary to do a battery of tests to evaluate different parameters of spermatozoa. Various sperm function tests are proposed and endorsed by different researchers in addition to the routine evaluation of fertility. These tests detect function of a certain part of spermatozoon and give insight on the events in fertilization of the oocyte. The sperms need to get nutrition from the seminal plasma in the form of fructose and citrate (this can be assessed by fructose qualitative and quantitative estimation, citrate estimation). They should be protected from the bad effects of pus cells and reactive oxygen species (ROS) (leukocyte detection test, ROS estimation). Their number should be in sufficient in terms of (count), structure normal to be able to fertilize eggs (semen morphology). Sperms should have intact and functioning membrane to survive harsh environment of vagina and uterine fluids (vitality and hypo-osmotic swelling test), should have good mitochondrial function to be able to provide energy (mitochondrial activity index test). They should also have satisfactory acrosome function to be able to burrow a hole in zona pellucida (acrosome intactness test, zona penetration test). Finally, they should have properly packed DNA in the nucleus to be able to transfer the male genes (nuclear chromatic decondensation test) to the oocyte during fertilization. PMID:26157295

  4. Sperm function test.

    PubMed

    Talwar, Pankaj; Hayatnagarkar, Suryakant

    2015-01-01

    With absolute normal semen analysis parameters it may not be necessary to shift to specialized tests early but in cases with borderline parameters or with history of fertilization failure in past it becomes necessary to do a battery of tests to evaluate different parameters of spermatozoa. Various sperm function tests are proposed and endorsed by different researchers in addition to the routine evaluation of fertility. These tests detect function of a certain part of spermatozoon and give insight on the events in fertilization of the oocyte. The sperms need to get nutrition from the seminal plasma in the form of fructose and citrate (this can be assessed by fructose qualitative and quantitative estimation, citrate estimation). They should be protected from the bad effects of pus cells and reactive oxygen species (ROS) (leukocyte detection test, ROS estimation). Their number should be in sufficient in terms of (count), structure normal to be able to fertilize eggs (semen morphology). Sperms should have intact and functioning membrane to survive harsh environment of vagina and uterine fluids (vitality and hypo-osmotic swelling test), should have good mitochondrial function to be able to provide energy (mitochondrial activity index test). They should also have satisfactory acrosome function to be able to burrow a hole in zona pellucida (acrosome intactness test, zona penetration test). Finally, they should have properly packed DNA in the nucleus to be able to transfer the male genes (nuclear chromatic decondensation test) to the oocyte during fertilization. PMID:26157295

  5. Quantitative analysis of flagellar proteins in Drosophila sperm tails.

    PubMed

    Mendes Maia, Teresa; Paul-Gilloteaux, Perrine; Basto, Renata

    2015-01-01

    The cilium has a well-defined structure, which can still accommodate some morphological and molecular composition diversity to suit the functional requirements of different cell types. The sperm flagellum of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster appears as a good model to study the genetic regulation of axoneme assembly and motility, due to the wealth of genetic tools publically available for this organism. In addition, the fruit fly's sperm flagellum displays quite a long axoneme (∼1.8mm), which may facilitate both histological and biochemical analyses. Here, we present a protocol for imaging and quantitatively analyze proteins, which associate with the fly differentiating, and mature sperm flagella. We will use as an example the quantification of tubulin polyglycylation in wild-type testes and in Bug22 mutant testes, which present defects in the deposition of this posttranslational modification. During sperm biogenesis, flagella appear tightly bundled, which makes it more challenging to get accurate measurements of protein levels from immunostained specimens. The method we present is based on the use of a novel semiautomated, macro installed in the image processing software ImageJ. It allows to measure fluorescence levels in closely associated sperm tails, through an exact distinction between positive and background signals, and provides background-corrected pixel intensity values that can directly be used for data analysis. PMID:25837396

  6. Lithium carbonate inducing disorders in three parameters of rat sperm

    PubMed Central

    Toghyani, Shima; Dashti, Gholam R.; Roudbari, Nasim Hayati; Rouzbehani, Shaila; Monajemi, Ramesh

    2013-01-01

    Background: Lithium has a significant impact in reducing the symptoms of bipolar mania but in long periods of use with therapeutic doses can cause several disorders in various organs including the reproductive system. In this study, the effect of lithium on the sperm concentration and motility and forms of abnormal cells has been examined. Materials and Methods: Male Wistar rats under the 48-day treatment with lithium carbonate at doses of 10, 20, and 30 mg/kg bw/day were kept in standard conditions. At the end of this period, sperm cells isolated from the cauda epididymis were counted, motility was estimated, and stained with smear papanicolaou stain. Results: In lithium-treated groups, the rate of spermatogenesis and sperm quality were reduced and was seen in a dose-dependent manner. Discussion: Lithium alters intracellular signaling pathways such as inositol phosphate metabolic cycle and cyclic adenosine mono phosphate (cAMP) system and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) synthesis. It also interferes in the division of sex cells to produce mature sperm and showed changes in the sperm cell membrane, function, and structure. PMID:24223370

  7. [Do phospholipases, key enzymes in sperm physiology, represent therapeutic challenges?].

    PubMed

    Arnoult, Christophe; Escoffier, Jessica; Munch, Léa; Pierre, Virginie; Hennebicq, Sylviane; Lambeau, Gérard; Ray, Pierre

    2012-05-01

    The spermatozoon is one of the most differentiated cells in mammals and its production requires an extremely complex machinery. Subtle but critical molecular changes take place during capacitation, which comprises the last series of maturation steps that naturally occur between the cauda epididymidis where spermatozoa are stored and their ultimate destination inside the oocyte. Phospholipases, by hydrolyzing various phospholipids, have been found to be critical in sperm processes such as 1) the control of flagellum beats, 2) capacitation - the molecular transformations preparing the sperm for fertilization, 3) acrosome reaction and 4) oocyte activation by eliciting calcium oscillations. The emerging important role of phospholipases is also emphasized by the fact that alterations of sperm lipids can lead to infertility. Phospholipases may represent valuable targets to develop anti- and pro-fertility drugs. Results obtained in mice are encouraging, since treatment of sperm with recombinant sPLA(2) of group X, known to be involved in capacitation, improves fertilization in vitro, while co-injection of PLCζ RNA with infertile sperm restores oocyte activation. PMID:22643005

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. Sperm storage in caecilian amphibians

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Female sperm storage has evolved independently multiple times among vertebrates to control reproduction in response to the environment. In internally fertilising amphibians, female salamanders store sperm in cloacal spermathecae, whereas among anurans sperm storage in oviducts is known only in tailed frogs. Facilitated through extensive field sampling following historical observations we tested for sperm storing structures in the female urogenital tract of fossorial, tropical caecilian amphibians. Findings In the oviparous Ichthyophis cf. kohtaoensis, aggregated sperm were present in a distinct region of the posterior oviduct but not in the cloaca in six out of seven vitellogenic females prior to oviposition. Spermatozoa were found most abundantly between the mucosal folds. In relation to the reproductive status decreased amounts of sperm were present in gravid females compared to pre-ovulatory females. Sperm were absent in females past oviposition. Conclusions Our findings indicate short-term oviductal sperm storage in the oviparous Ichthyophis cf. kohtaoensis. We assume that in female caecilians exhibiting high levels of parental investment sperm storage has evolved in order to optimally coordinate reproductive events and to increase fitness. PMID:22672478

  11. Paternal DNA damage resulting from various sperm treatments persists after fertilization and is similar before and after DNA replication.

    PubMed

    Yamauchi, Yasuhiro; Riel, Jonathan M; Ward, Monika A

    2012-01-01

    In spite of its highly condensed state, sperm DNA is vulnerable to damage that can originate from oxidative stress, the activity of sperm-specific nucleases, or both. After fertilization, in the oocyte, paternal chromatin undergoes dramatic changes, and during this extensive remodeling, it can be both repaired and degraded, and these processes can be linked to DNA synthesis. Here, we analyzed sperm response to damage-inducing treatments both before and after fertilization and before or after zygotic DNA replication. Epididymal mouse spermatozoa were either frozen without cryoprotection (FT) or treated with detergent Triton X-100 coupled with dithiothreitol (TX+DTT) to induce DNA damage. Fresh, untreated sperm served as control. Immediately after preparation, spermatozoa from 3 groups were taken for comet assay, or for intracytoplasmic sperm injection into prometaphase I oocytes to visualize prematurely condensed single-chromatid chromosomes, or into mature metaphase II oocytes to visualize chromosomes after DNA replication. Comet assay revealed increased DNA fragmentation in treated sperm when compared with control, with FT sperm more severely affected. Chromosome analysis demonstrated paternal DNA damage in oocytes injected with treated, but not with fresh, sperm, with FT and TX+DTT groups now yielding similar damage. There were no differences in the incidence of abnormal paternal karyoplates before and after DNA synthesis in all examined groups. This study provides evidence that subjecting sperm to DNA damage-inducing treatments results in degradation of highly condensed sperm chromatin when it is still packed within the sperm head, and that this DNA damage persists after fertilization. The difference in DNA damage in sperm subjected to 2 treatments was ameliorated in the fertilized oocytes, suggesting that some chromatin repair might have occurred. This process, however, was independent of DNA synthesis and took place during oocyte maturation. PMID:21546611

  12. Sperm Capacitation and Acrosome Reaction in Mammalian Sperm.

    PubMed

    Stival, Cintia; Puga Molina, Lis Del C; Paudel, Bidur; Buffone, Mariano G; Visconti, Pablo E; Krapf, Dario

    2016-01-01

    Physiological changes that endow mammalian sperm with fertilizing capacity are known as sperm capacitation. As part of capacitation, sperm develop an asymmetrical flagellar beating known as hyperactivation and acquire the ability to undergo the acrosome reaction. Together, these processes promote fertilizing competence in sperm. At the molecular level, capacitation involves a series of signal transduction events which include activation of cAMP-dependent phosphorylation pathways, removal of cholesterol, hyperpolarization of the sperm plasma membrane, and changes in ion permeability. In recent years, new technologies have aided in the study of sperm signaling molecules with better resolution, at both spatial and temporal levels, unraveling how different cascades integrate and cooperate to render a fertilizing sperm. Despite this new information, the molecular mechanisms connecting capacitation with acrosomal exocytosis and hyperactivation are not well understood. This review brings together results obtained in mammalian species in the field of sperm capacitation with special focus on those pathways involved in the preparation to undergo the acrosomal reaction. PMID:27194351

  13. Giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) sperm morphometry and function after repeated freezing and thawing.

    PubMed

    Santiago-Moreno, J; Esteso, M C; Pradiee, J; Castaño, C; Toledano-Díaz, A; O'Brien, E; Lopez-Sebastián, A; Martínez-Nevado, E; Delclaux, M; Fernández-Morán, J; Zhihe, Z

    2016-05-01

    This work examines the effects of subsequent cycles of freezing-thawing on giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) sperm morphometry and function, and assesses whether density-gradient centrifugation (DGC) can increase the number of freezing-thawing cycles this sperm can withstand. A sperm sample was collected by electroejaculation from a mature giant panda and subjected to five freezing-thawing cycles. Although repeated freezing-thawing negatively affected (P < 0.05) sperm motility and membrane integrity, in both nonselected and DCG-selected sperm samples, >60% of the sperm cells in both treatments showed acrosome integrity even after the fifth freezing cycle. In fresh semen, the sperm head length was 4.7 μm, the head width 3.6 μm, area 14.3 μm(2) and perimeter length 14.1 μm. The present results suggest that giant panda sperm trends to be resistant to repeated freezing-thawing, even without DGC selection. PMID:26268795

  14. Molecular and functional characterization of voltage-gated sodium channels in human sperm

    PubMed Central

    Pinto, Francisco M; Ravina, Cristina G; Fernández-Sánchez, Manuel; Gallardo-Castro, Manuel; Cejudo-Román, Antonio; Candenas, Luz

    2009-01-01

    Background We have investigated the expression of voltage-gated sodium channels in human spermatozoa and characterized their role in sperm motility. Methods Freshly ejaculated semen was collected from thirty normozoospermic human donors, with each donor supplying 2 different samples. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunofluorescence techniques were used to detect the mRNAs and proteins of interest. Sperm motility was measured by a computer-assisted sperm analysis system (CASA). Cytosolic free calcium was determined by fluorimetry in cells loaded with the fluorescent calcium indicator Fura-2. Results The mRNAs that encode the different Nav alpha subunits (Nav1.1-1.9) were all expressed in capacitated human spermatozoa. The mRNAs of the auxiliary subunits beta1, beta3 and beta4 were also present. Immunofluorescence studies showed that, with the exception of Nav1.1 and Nav1.3, the Nav channel proteins were present in sperm cells and show specific and different sites of localization. Veratridine, a voltage-gated sodium channel activator, caused time- and concentration-dependent increases in progressive sperm motility. In sperm suspensions loaded with Fura-2, veratridine did not modify intracellular free calcium levels. Conclusion This research shows the presence of voltage-gated sodium channels in human sperm and supports a role for these channels in the regulation of mature sperm function. PMID:19607678

  15. Effect of Akti-2 on sperm motility, capacitation and acrosome reaction in a mouse model

    PubMed Central

    QUAN, YANMEI; LIU, QIANG

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of the Akt inhibitor, Akti-2, on the sperm motility and acrosome reaction in mice. Mature sperms from the adult mice, aged 8 weeks, were co-incubated with Akti-2 for ~30 min at 37°C in 5% CO2, and the sperm viability was assessed by eosin-nigrosin staining. The sperm total and progressive motility were analyzed by computer-aided sperm analysis. In addition, the acrosome reaction of sperms was detected by the acid phosphatase assay, Coomassie Brilliant Blue staining and fluorescein-isothiocyanate conjugated pisum sativum lectin staining, respectively. Compared with the control (dimethyl sulfoxide), Akti-2 had no effect on sperm viability, but it suppressed the total and progressive motility significantly. Furthermore, the capacitation-associated protein tyrosine phosphorylation and the acrosome reaction induced by calcium ionophore A23187 could be suppressed by Akti-2. These experiments confirmed that Akti-2 significantly impaired the sperm functions, including motility, capacitation and acrosome reaction, and provide the proof for its potential in male reproductive toxicity. PMID:27123250

  16. Current knowledge on boar sperm metabolism: Comparison with other mammalian species.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Gil, Joan E; Bonet, Sergi

    2016-01-01

    A practical consequence of the specific pig reproductive cycle is that the main functional features that distinguish boar spermatozoa cannot be extrapolated to other species. This prevents an overall picture that explains mammalian sperm function from being assumed. Furthermore, the extraordinary complexity of the molecular mechanisms implied in the control and modulation of mature boar sperm functions makes it impossible to provide a complete description of these mechanisms in the limited space of this chapter. Taking this into account, this chapter centers on the description of three highly important specific aspects of boar sperm function. The first aspect is the mechanisms by which boar sperm cells uptake extracellular energy sources. The second aspect is the necessity of mammalian sperm to use other hexoses than glucose as feasible energy sources. The third aspect would be an analysis of the roles that mitochondria could play in the regulation of the overall boar sperm function. As a whole, this revision intends to be an overall picture of regulatory mechanisms involved in the maintenance of proper energy levels of boar sperm and their relationship with the control of the overall boar sperm function. PMID:26094247

  17. Unraveling the Sperm Bauplan: Relationships Between Sperm Head Morphology and Sperm Function in Rodents.

    PubMed

    Varea-Sánchez, María; Tourmente, Maximiliano; Bastir, Markus; Roldan, Eduardo R S

    2016-07-01

    Rodents have spermatozoa with features not seen in other species. Sperm heads in many rodent species bear one or more apical extensions known as "hooks." The process by which hooks have evolved, together with their adaptive significance, are still controversial issues. In order to improve our understanding of the biological meaning of these sperm head adaptations, we analyzed hook curvature angles, hook length, and overall hook shape in muroid rodents by using geometric morphometrics. We also searched for relationships between hook design and measurements of intermale competition to assess whether postcopulatory sexual selection was an important selective force driving changes in this sperm structure. Finally, we sought possible links between aspects of sperm hook design and sperm velocity as a measure of sperm performance. Results showed that one hook curvature angle is under strong selective pressure. Similarly, hook length appears to be strongly selected by sexual selection, with this selective force also exhibiting a stabilizing role reducing intermale variation in this trait. The adaptive significance of changes in hook structure was supported by the finding that there are strong and significant covariations between hook dimensions and shape and between hook design and sperm swimming velocity. Overall, this study strongly suggests that postcopulatory sexual selection has an important effect on the design of the sperm head that, in turn, is important for enhancing sperm velocity, a function crucial to reaching the vicinity of the female gamete and winning fertilizations under competitive situations. PMID:27281707

  18. Sperm Morphology Assessment in Captive Neotropical Primates.

    PubMed

    Swanson, W F; Valle, R R; Carvalho, F M; Arakaki, P R; Rodas-Martínez, A Z; Muniz, Japc; García-Herreros, M

    2016-08-01

    The main objective of this study was to evaluate sperm morphology in four neotropical primate species to compare the sperm morphological traits and the sperm morphometric parameters as a basis for establishing normative sperm standards for each species. Data from 80 ejaculates collected from four primate species, Callithrix jacchus, Callimico goeldii, Alouatta caraya and Ateles geoffroyi, were analysed for detection of sperm morphological alterations using subjective World Health Organization (WHO-2010) standards and Sperm Deformity Index (SDI) criteria, objective computer-assisted sperm morphometry analysis (CASMA) and subpopulation sperm determination (SSD) methods. There were multiple differences (p < 0.01) observed among primate species in values obtained from WHO-2010, SDI, CASMA and SSD sperm analysis methods. In addition, multiple significant positive and negative correlations were observed between the sperm morphological traits (SDI, Sperm Deformity Index Head Defects, Sperm Deformity Index Midpiece Defects, Sperm Deformity Index Tail Defects, Normal Sperm, Head Defects, Midpiece Defects and Tail Defects) and the sperm morphometric parameters (SSD, Area (A), Perimeter (P), Length (L), Width (W), Ellipticity, Elongation and Rugosity) (p ≤ 0.046). In conclusion, our findings using different evaluation methods indicate that pronounced sperm morphological variation exists among these four neotropical primate species. Because of the strong relationship observed among morphological and morphometric parameters, these results suggest that application of objective analysis methods could substantially improve the reliability of comparative studies and help to establish valid normative sperm values for neotropical primates. PMID:27260333

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Nuclear activity of sperm cells during Hyacinthus orientalis L. in vitro pollen tube growth

    PubMed Central

    Zienkiewicz, Krzysztof; Suwińska, Anna; Niedojadło, Katarzyna; Zienkiewicz, Agnieszka; Bednarska, Elżbieta

    2011-01-01

    In this study, the transcriptional state and distribution of RNA polymerase II, pre-mRNA splicing machinery elements, and rRNA transcripts were investigated in the sperm cells of Hyacinthus orientalis L. during in vitro pollen tube growth. During the second pollen mitosis, no nascent transcripts were observed in the area of the dividing generative cell, whereas the splicing factors were present and their pools were divided between newly formed sperm cells. Just after their origin, the sperm cells were shown to synthesize new RNA, although at a markedly lower level than the vegetative nucleus. The occurrence of RNA synthesis was accompanied by the presence of RNA polymerase II and a rich pool of splicing machinery elements. Differences in the spatial pattern of pre-mRNA splicing factors localization reflect different levels of RNA synthesis in the vegetative nucleus and sperm nuclei. In the vegetative nucleus, they were localized homogenously, whereas in the sperm nuclei a mainly speckled pattern of small nuclear RNA with a trimethylguanosine cap (TMG snRNA) and SC35 protein distribution was observed. As pollen tube growth proceeded, inhibition of RNA synthesis in the sperm nuclei was observed, which was accompanied by a gradual elimination of the splicing factors. In addition, analysis of rRNA localization indicated that the sperm nuclei are likely to synthesize some pool of rRNA at the later steps of pollen tube. It is proposed that the described changes in the nuclear activity of H. orientalis sperm cells reflect their maturation process during pollen tube growth, and that mature sperm cells do not carry into the zygote the nascent transcripts or the splicing machinery elements. PMID:21081664

  2. 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

  3. Ion channels, phosphorylation and mammalian sperm capacitation

    PubMed Central

    Visconti, Pablo E; Krapf, Dario; de la Vega-Beltrán, José Luis; Acevedo, Juan José; Darszon, Alberto

    2011-01-01

    Sexually reproducing animals require an orchestrated communication between spermatozoa and the egg to generate a new individual. Capacitation, a maturational complex phenomenon that occurs in the female reproductive tract, renders spermatozoa capable of binding and fusing with the oocyte, and it is a requirement for mammalian fertilization. Capacitation encompasses plasma membrane reorganization, ion permeability regulation, cholesterol loss and changes in the phosphorylation state of many proteins. Novel tools to study sperm ion channels, image intracellular ionic changes and proteins with better spatial and temporal resolution, are unraveling how modifications in sperm ion transport and phosphorylation states lead to capacitation. Recent evidence indicates that two parallel pathways regulate phosphorylation events leading to capacitation, one of them requiring activation of protein kinase A and the second one involving inactivation of ser/thr phosphatases. This review examines the involvement of ion transporters and phosphorylation signaling processes needed for spermatozoa to achieve capacitation. Understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to fertilization is central for societies to deal with rising male infertility rates, to develop safe male gamete-based contraceptives and to preserve biodiversity through better assisted fertilization strategies. PMID:21540868

  4. Comparative sperm ultrastructure in Nemertea.

    PubMed

    von Döhren, J; Beckers, P; Vogeler, R; Bartolomaeus, T

    2010-07-01

    Although the monophyly of Nemertea is strongly supported by unique morphological characters and results of molecular phylogenetic studies, their ingroup relationships are largely unresolved. To contribute solving this problem we studied sperm ultrastructure of 12 nemertean species that belong to different subtaxa representing the commonly recognized major monophyletic groups. The study yielded a set of 26 characters with an unexpected variation among species of the same genus (Tubulanus and Procephalothrix species), whereas other species varied in metric values or only one character state (Ramphogordius). In some species, the sperm nucleus has grooves (Zygonemertes virescens, Amphiporus imparispinosus) that may be twisted and give a spiral shape to the sperm head (Paranemertes peregrina, Emplectonema gracile). To make the characters from sperm ultrastructure accessible for further phylogenetic analyses, they were coded in a character matrix. Published data for eight species turned out to be sufficiently detailed to be included. Comparative evaluation of available information on the sperm ultrastructure suggests that subtaxa of Heteronemertea and Hoplonemertea are supported as monophyletic by sperm morphology. However, the data do not provide information on the existing contradictions regarding the internal relationships of "Palaeonemertea." Nevertheless, our study provides evidence that sperm ultrastructure yields numerous potentially informative characters that will be included in upcoming phylogenetic analyses. PMID:20544873

  5. 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.

  6. Understanding fertilization through intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)

    PubMed Central

    Neri, Queenie V.; Lee, Bora; Rosenwaks, Zev; Machaca, Khaled; Palermo, Gianpiero D.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Since the establishment of in vitro fertilization, it became evident that almost half of the couples failed to achieve fertilization and this phenomenon was attributed to a male gamete dysfunction. The adoption of assisted fertilization techniques particularly ICSI has been able to alleviate male factor infertility by granting the consistent ability of a viable spermatozoon to activate an oocyte. Single sperm injection, by pinpointing the beginning of fertilization, has been an invaluable tool in clarifying the different aspects of early fertilization and syngamy. However, even with ICSI some couples fail to fertilize due to ooplasmic dysmaturity in relation to the achieved nuclear maturation marked by the extrusion of the first polar body. More uncommon are cases where the spermatozoa partially or completely lack the specific oocyte activating factor. In this work, we review the most relevant aspects of fertilization and its failure through assisted reproductive technologies. Attempts at diagnosing and treating clinical fertilization failure are described. PMID:24290744

  7. Sperm ultrastructure in Chironomoidea (Insecta, Diptera).

    PubMed

    Dallai, Romano; Lombardo, Bianca Maria; Lupetti, Pietro

    2007-06-01

    The fine structure of spermatozoa from several species of chironomids, of Culicoides sp. (Ceratopogonidae) and of Odagmia pontina (Simulidae) was studied. A synapomorphic feature, consisting of nine kidney-shaped structures forming the centriole adjunct, was found in the chironomid species. All members of Chironomoidea share a mono-layered acrosome and a flagellar axoneme, provided with accessory tubules with 15 protofilaments in their tubular wall. The axoneme has a 9+9+2 pattern, but in an unidentified species of chironomid, a 9+9+0 model was observed where the central complex and the spokes are missing. Sperm motility is, however, maintained in all the examined species. The spermatozoa of this taxon have the tendency to complete maturation during their progression along the deferent ducts. Thus, in the proximal region of these ducts, they often show remnants of the spermatid cytoplasm. PMID:17531281

  8. Sperm ubiquitination in epididymal feline semen.

    PubMed

    Vernocchi, Valentina; Morselli, Maria Giorgia; Varesi, Sara; Nonnis, Simona; Maffioli, Elisa; Negri, Armando; Tedeschi, Gabriella; Luvoni, Gaia Cecilia

    2014-09-01

    Ubiquitin is a 8.5-kDa peptide that tags other proteins for proteasomal degradation. It has been proposed that ubiquitination might be responsible for the elimination of defective spermatozoa during transit through the epididymis in humans and cattle, but its exact biological function in seminal plasma has not yet been clarified. In the domestic cat (Felis catus), the percentage of immature, unviable, and abnormal spermatozoa decreases during the epididymal transit, indicating the existence of a mechanism that removes defective spermatozoa. Magnetic cell separation techniques, based on the use of magnetic beads coated with anti-ubiquitin antibodies, may allow the selective capture of ubiquitinated spermatozoa from semen, thus contributing to the identification of a potential correlation between semen quality and ubiquitination process. Moreover, the selective identification of all the ubiquitinated proteins in different epididymal regions could give a better understanding of the ubiquitin role in feline sperm maturation. The aims of this study were as follows: (1) to verify the possibility of separating ubiquitinated spermatozoa with magnetic ubiquitin beads and identify the morphological and acrosomal differences between whole sample and unbound gametes, (2) to characterize all the ubiquitinated proteins in spermatozoa retrieved in the three epididymal regions by a proteomic approach. The data indicated the presence of ubiquitinated proteins in cat epididymal semen. However, a correlation between abnormal and ubiquitinated spermatozoa has not been found, and ubiquitin cannot be considered as a biomarker of quality of epididymal feline spermatozoa. To the author's knowledge, this is the first identification of all the ubiquitinated proteins of cat spermatozoa collected from different epididymal regions. The proteomic pattern allows a further characterization of cat epididymal semen and represents a contribute to a better understanding of the ubiquitin role in

  9. Lectin binding of human sperm associates with DEFB126 mutation and serves as a potential biomarker for subfertility

    PubMed Central

    Xin, Aijie; Cheng, Li; Diao, Hua; Wu, Yancheng; Zhou, Shumin; Shi, Changgen; Sun, Yangyang; Wang, Peng; Duan, Shiwei; Zheng, Jufen; Wu, Bin; Yuan, Yao; Gu, Yihua; Chen, Guowu; Sun, Xiaoxi; Shi, Huijuan; Tao, Shengce; Zhang, Yonglian

    2016-01-01

    Coating on the sperm surface, glycocalyx, plays a key role in sperm motility, maturation and fertilization. A comprehensive profile of sperm surface glycans will greatly facilitate both basic researches and clinical studies. Because of the capability of recognizing different glycan moieties, lectins are widely used in glycobiology. However, lacking high-throughput technology, limited lectins have been reported for analyzing the glycan of human sperm. In this study, we employed a lectin microarray for profiling the surface glycans of human sperm, on which 54 out of 91 lectins showed positive binding. Based on this technique, we compared lectin binding profiling of sperm with homozygous DEFB126 mutation (del/del) with that of wild type (wt/wt). DEFB126 was reported to contribute to the sialylation on sperm surface and its homozygous mutation was related to male subfertility. Six lectins (Jacalin/AIA, GHA, ACL, MPL, VVL and ABA) were found to develop lower binding affinity to sperm with del/del. Further validation showed that these lectins, especially ABA and MPL, can be potential biomarkers for clinical diagnosis of subfertility due to the mutation of DEFB126. Our research provides insight into the detection of some unexplained male subfertility, and the lectin microarray is generally applicable for infertility/subfertility sperm biomarker discovery. PMID:26832966

  10. Lectin binding of human sperm associates with DEFB126 mutation and serves as a potential biomarker for subfertility.

    PubMed

    Xin, Aijie; Cheng, Li; Diao, Hua; Wu, Yancheng; Zhou, Shumin; Shi, Changgen; Sun, Yangyang; Wang, Peng; Duan, Shiwei; Zheng, Jufen; Wu, Bin; Yuan, Yao; Gu, Yihua; Chen, Guowu; Sun, Xiaoxi; Shi, Huijuan; Tao, Shengce; Zhang, Yonglian

    2016-01-01

    Coating on the sperm surface, glycocalyx, plays a key role in sperm motility, maturation and fertilization. A comprehensive profile of sperm surface glycans will greatly facilitate both basic researches and clinical studies. Because of the capability of recognizing different glycan moieties, lectins are widely used in glycobiology. However, lacking high-throughput technology, limited lectins have been reported for analyzing the glycan of human sperm. In this study, we employed a lectin microarray for profiling the surface glycans of human sperm, on which 54 out of 91 lectins showed positive binding. Based on this technique, we compared lectin binding profiling of sperm with homozygous DEFB126 mutation (del/del) with that of wild type (wt/wt). DEFB126 was reported to contribute to the sialylation on sperm surface and its homozygous mutation was related to male subfertility. Six lectins (Jacalin/AIA, GHA, ACL, MPL, VVL and ABA) were found to develop lower binding affinity to sperm with del/del. Further validation showed that these lectins, especially ABA and MPL, can be potential biomarkers for clinical diagnosis of subfertility due to the mutation of DEFB126. Our research provides insight into the detection of some unexplained male subfertility, and the lectin microarray is generally applicable for infertility/subfertility sperm biomarker discovery. PMID:26832966

  11. In vitro decondensation of the sperm chromatin in Holothuria tubulosa (sea cucumber) not affecting proteolysis of basic nuclear proteins.

    PubMed

    del Valle, Luis J

    2005-06-01

    Sea urchin and sea star oocyte extracts contain proteolytic activities that are active against sperm basic nuclear proteins (SNBP). This SNBP degradation has been related to the decondensation of sperm chromatin as a possible model to male pronuclei formation. We have studied the presence of this proteolytic activity in Holothuria tubulosa (sea cucumber) and its possible relationship with sperm nuclei decondensation. The mature oocyte extracts from H. tubulosa contain a proteolytic activity to SNBP located in the macromolecular fraction of the egg-jelly layer. SNBP degradation occurred both on sperm nuclei and on purified SNBP, histones being more easily degraded than protein Ø(o) (sperm-specific protein). SNBP degradation was found to be dependent on concentration, incubation time, presence of Ca(2+), pH, and this activity could be a serine-proteinase. Thermal denaturalization of the oocyte extracts (80 degrees C, 10-15 min) inactivates its proteolytic activity on SNBP but does not affect sperm nuclei decondensation. These results would suggest that sperm nuclei decondensation occurs by a mechanism different from SNBP degradation. Thus, the sperm nuclei decondensation occurs by a thermostable factor(s) and the removal of linker SNBP (H1 and protein Ø(o)) will be a first condition in the process of sperm chromatin remodeling. PMID:16026541

  12. An ultrastructural study of spermatogenesis and sperm morula breakdown in Arenicola marina (L.) (Annelida: Polychaeta)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pacey, A. A.; Bentley, M. G.

    1992-06-01

    Spermatogenesis in the lugworm Arenicola marina, in common with other members of Arenicolidae, occurs in the coelomic fluid and results in the formation of discs of mature spermatozoa known as a morulae. Within a morula, individual spermatozoa are connected by a common mass of cytoplasm called the cytophore and therefore make up a syncitium. Immediately prior to spawning, and in response to an endocrine substance known as “Sperm Maturation Factor” (SMF), the structure of the sperm morulae breaks down and free spermatozoa are liberated. These are subsequently spawned from the body cavity. The investigation described here uses transmission electron microscopy to investigate the ultrastructural changes, which accompany spermatogenesis and the breakdown of sperm morulae in response to SMF in vitro. The study demonstrates that the cytophore appears to have a key role both during spermatogenesis and during sperm morula breakdown. The ultrastructure of sperm morulae and of mature spermatozoa is described. The structure of spermatozoa is shown to be primitive with a single flagellum which appears to be coiled at its distal end. The phagocytosis of free spermatozoa by coelomocytes is also described and it is suggested that these may play a role in the resorption of unspawned gametes in vivo.

  13. GLUTATHIONE (GSH) CONCENTRATIONS VARY WITH THE CELL CYCLE IN MATURING HAMSTER OOCYTES, ZYGOTES AND PRE-IMPLANATION EMBRYOS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Abstract
    Glutathione (GSH) is thought to play critical roles in oocyte function including spindle maintenance and provision of reducing power needed to initiate sperm chromatin decondensation. Previous observations that GSH concentrations are higher in mature than immature o...

  14. Bayesian sperm competition estimates.

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Beatrix; Clark, Andrew G

    2003-01-01

    We introduce a Bayesian method for estimating parameters for a model of multiple mating and sperm displacement from genotype counts of brood-structured data. The model is initially targeted for Drosophila melanogaster, but is easily adapted to other organisms. The method is appropriate for use with field studies where the number of mates and the genotypes of the mates cannot be controlled, but where unlinked markers have been collected for a set of females and a sample of their offspring. Advantages over previous approaches include full use of multilocus information and the ability to cope appropriately with missing data and ambiguities about which alleles are maternally vs. paternally inherited. The advantages of including X-linked markers are also demonstrated. PMID:12663555

  15. Seminal CD38 Enhances Human Sperm Capacitation through Its Interaction with CD31

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Byung-Ju; Park, Dae-Ryoung; Nam, Tae-Sik; Lee, Seo Ho; Kim, Uh-Hyun

    2015-01-01

    Human sperm have to undergo a maturational process called capacitation in the female reproductive tract. Capacitation confers upon the sperm an ability to gain hypermotility and undergo acrosome reaction. Previous studies have suggested that seminal plasma proteins induce the capacitation of sperm in the female reproductive tract for the successful fertilization of the oocyte. However, the function of seminal plasma proteins in capacitation remains largely unclear. To the end, we found that soluble CD38 (sCD38) in seminal plasma increases the capacitation of sperm via specific interactions between sCD38 and the CD31 on the sperm. Upon the association of sCD38 with CD31, tyrosine kinase Src phosphorylates CD31, a process blocked by Src inhibitors. Shc, SHP-2, Grb2, and SOS, as well as Src kinase were found to associate with the phosphorylated CD31. The sCD38-induced phosphorylation of CD31 initiates a cascade reaction through the phosphorylation of Erk1/2, which results in the acrosome reaction, and sperm hypermotility. These processes were prevented by Src, Ras and MEK inhibitors. Taken together, these data indicate that the sCD38 present in seminal plasma plays a critical role in the capacitation of sperm. PMID:26407101

  16. A high-fat diet negatively affects rat sperm mitochondrial respiration.

    PubMed

    Ferramosca, A; Conte, A; Moscatelli, N; Zara, V

    2016-05-01

    Recent evidences have linked abdominal obesity, insulin resistance, and dyslipidemia to male infertility. Since a defective energy metabolism may play an important role in the impairment of sperm quality, the aim of this study is to investigate the sperm energetic metabolism in rats fed with a high-fat diet, an animal model associated with metabolic syndrome development. Sexually mature male Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into two groups and fed for 4 weeks a standard diet (control group) or a diet enriched in 35% of fat (high fat group). Liver and adipose tissue weight, plasma glucose, insulin, and lipid concentrations were determined. Activities of enzymes involved in sperm energetic metabolism were evaluated by spectrophotometric assays. Sperm mitochondrial respiratory activity was evaluated with a polarographic assay of oxygen consumption. The administration of a high-fat diet caused a significant increase in body weight of rats and provoked hyperglycemia, hyperinsulinemia, and dyslipidemia. In these animals, we also observed a reduction in sperm concentration and motility. The investigation of sperm energetic metabolism in animals fed a high-fat diet revealed an impairment in the activity of pyruvate and lactate dehydrogenase, citrate synthase, and respiratory chain complexes. A parallel reduction in the cellular levels of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and an increase in oxidative damage were also observed. A defective energy metabolism may play an important role in the impairment of sperm quality in the high-fat diet fed rats. PMID:27062222

  17. Comparison among different cryoprotectants for cryopreservation of epididymal sperm from agouti (Dasyprocta leporina).

    PubMed

    Castelo, T S; Silva, A M; Bezerra, L G P; Costa, C Y M; Lago, A E A; Bezerra, J A B; Campos, L B; Praxedes, E C G; Silva, A R

    2015-12-01

    We verify the effects of different cryoprotectants on the cryopreservation of agouti (Dasyprocta leporina) epididymal sperm. We used 16 pairs of testes-epididymis complexes of sexually mature animals. We immediately evaluated epididymal sperm obtained by retrograde flushing for concentration, motility, vigor, viability, osmotic response, and morphology. Samples were extended in a coconut water extender plus 20% egg yolk, containing glycerol, ethylene glycol, dimethylsulfoxide - DMSO, or dimethylformamide. Finally, samples were stored in 0.25 mL straws, frozen in liquid nitrogen, and thawed after one week, being reevaluated and assessed for membrane integrity using fluorescent probes. The higher values for postthawing sperm motility, vigor, and membrane integrity were achieved by the usage of glycerol, when compared to ethylene glycol and dimethylformamide (P < 0.05); however, no differences were found between glycerol and DMSO (P > 0.05). All cryoprotectants provided a similar effect on the preservation of sperm morphology, osmotic response, and viability (P > 0.05). Therefore, here onwards, there was testing of glycerol and DMSO at 3 and 6% concentrations using the same freezing-thawing protocol reported previously. As the main result, DMSO at 6% concentration provided a decrease in sperm parameters, as well as in the chromatin integrity and in the binding capability of sperm. In conclusion, glycerol 3 or 6% and DMSO 3% can be used as alternative cryoprotectants for agouti epididymal sperm cryopreservation. PMID:26408846

  18. Arylsulfatase of sea urchin sperm--distribution of arylsulfatase in the gonads and gametes of echinoderms.

    PubMed

    Moriya, T; Hoshi, M

    1979-01-01

    1. Fairly high activities of arylsulfatase are found in the sperm and mature testes of all the sea urchins studied; Strongylocentrotus intermedius, Strongylocentrotus nudus, Hemicentrotus pulcherrimus and Anthocidaris crassispina, whereas the activities in the ovaries and eggs of these animals are low. 2. Neither the sand dollar, Clypeaster japonicus nor the starfishes, Asterias amurensis and Asterina pectinifera prove to have considerable activities of the enzyme in their gonads and gametes. 3. Most of the activity of arylsulfatase in the sperm of S. intermedius is found in the seminal plasma, but the significant activity is bound to the spermatozoa. 4. Part, if not all, of the spermatozoa-borne arylsulfatase is suggested to exist on the surface of spermatozoa or in the acrosome or both. 5. The ubiquitous distribution of sperm arylsulfatase in sea urchins on the contrary to its absence in starfish or sand dollar is discussed in connection with the penetration of sperm through egg investments. PMID:318308

  19. Bisphenol A accelerates capacitation-associated protein tyrosine phosphorylation of rat sperm by activating protein kinase A.

    PubMed

    Wan, Xiaofeng; Ru, Yanfei; Chu, Chen; Ni, Zimei; Zhou, Yuchuan; Wang, Shoulin; Zhou, Zuomin; Zhang, Yonglian

    2016-06-01

    Bisphenol A (BPA) is a synthetic estrogen-mimic chemical. It has been shown to affect many reproductive endpoints. However, the effect of BPA on the mature sperm and the mechanism of its action are not clear yet. Here, our in vitro studies indicated that BPA could accelerate sperm capacitation-associated protein tyrosine phosphorylation in time- and dose-dependent manners. In vivo, the adult male rats exposed to a high dose of BPA could result in a significant increase in sperm activity. Further investigation demonstrated that BPA could accelerate capacitation-associated protein tyrosine phosphorylation even if sperm were incubated in medium devoid of BSA, HCO3 (-), and Ca(2+) However, this action of BPA stimulation could be blocked by H89, a highly selective blocker of protein kinase A (PKA), but not by KH7, a specific inhibitor of adenylyl cyclase. These data suggest that BPA may activate PKA to affect sperm functions and male fertility. PMID:27174873

  20. A comparative analysis of the morphology and evolution of permanent sperm depletion in spiders.

    PubMed

    Michalik, Peter; Rittschof, Clare C

    2011-01-01

    Once thought to be energetically cheap and easy to produce, empirical work has shown that sperm is a costly and limited resource for males. In some spider species, there is behavioral evidence that sperm are permanently depleted after a single mating. This extreme degree of mating investment appears to co-occur with other reproductive strategies common to spiders, e.g. genital mutilation and sexual cannibalism. Here we corroborate that sperm depletion in the golden orb-web spider Nephila clavipes is permanent by uncovering its mechanistic basis using light and electron microscopy. In addition, we use a phylogeny-based statistical analysis to test the evolutionary relationships between permanent sperm depletion (PSD) and other reproductive strategies in spiders. Male testes do not produce sperm during adulthood, which is unusual in spiders. Instead, spermatogenesis is nearly synchronous and ends before the maturation molt. Testis size decreases as males approach their maturation molt and reaches its lowest point after sperm is transferred into the male copulatory organs (pedipalps). As a consequence, the amount of sperm available to males for mating is limited to the sperm contained in the pedipalps, and once it is used, males lose their ability to fertilize eggs. Our data suggest that PSD has evolved independently at least three times within web-building spiders and is significantly correlated with the evolution of other mating strategies that limit males to monogamy, including genital mutilation and sexual cannibalism. We conclude that PSD may be an energy-saving adaptation in species where males are limited to monogamy. This could be particularly important in web-building spiders where extreme sexual size dimorphism results in large, sedentary females and small, searching males who rarely feed as adults and are vulnerable to starvation. Future work will explore possible energetic benefits and the evolutionary lability of PSD relative to other mate

  1. A Comparative Analysis of the Morphology and Evolution of Permanent Sperm Depletion in Spiders

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Once thought to be energetically cheap and easy to produce, empirical work has shown that sperm is a costly and limited resource for males. In some spider species, there is behavioral evidence that sperm are permanently depleted after a single mating. This extreme degree of mating investment appears to co-occur with other reproductive strategies common to spiders, e.g. genital mutilation and sexual cannibalism. Here we corroborate that sperm depletion in the golden orb-web spider Nephila clavipes is permanent by uncovering its mechanistic basis using light and electron microscopy. In addition, we use a phylogeny-based statistical analysis to test the evolutionary relationships between permanent sperm depletion (PSD) and other reproductive strategies in spiders. Male testes do not produce sperm during adulthood, which is unusual in spiders. Instead, spermatogenesis is nearly synchronous and ends before the maturation molt. Testis size decreases as males approach their maturation molt and reaches its lowest point after sperm is transferred into the male copulatory organs (pedipalps). As a consequence, the amount of sperm available to males for mating is limited to the sperm contained in the pedipalps, and once it is used, males lose their ability to fertilize eggs. Our data suggest that PSD has evolved independently at least three times within web-building spiders and is significantly correlated with the evolution of other mating strategies that limit males to monogamy, including genital mutilation and sexual cannibalism. We conclude that PSD may be an energy-saving adaptation in species where males are limited to monogamy. This could be particularly important in web-building spiders where extreme sexual size dimorphism results in large, sedentary females and small, searching males who rarely feed as adults and are vulnerable to starvation. Future work will explore possible energetic benefits and the evolutionary lability of PSD relative to other mate

  2. Sperm of Doradidae (Teleostei: Siluriformes).

    PubMed

    Quagio-Grassiotto, I; Ortiz, R J; Pérez, M H Sabaj; Oliveira, C

    2011-02-01

    Spermatic characteristics were studied in 10 species representing several distinct groups within the catfish family Doradidae. Interestingly, different types of spermatogenesis, spermiogenesis and spermatozoa are correlated with intrafamilial groups previously proposed for Doradidae. Semi-cystic spermatogenesis, modified Type III spermiogenesis, and biflagellate sperm appear to be unique within Doradidae to the subfamily Astrodoradinae. Other doradid species have sperm with a single flagellum, cystic spermatogenesis, and spermiogenesis of Type I (Pterodoras granulosus, Rhinodoras dorbignyi), Type I modified (Oxydoras kneri), or Type III (Trachydoras paraguayensis). Doradids have an external mode of fertilization, and share a few spermatic characteristics, such as cystic spermatogenesis, Type I spermiogenesis and uniflagellate sperm, with its sister group Auchenipteridae, a family exhibiting sperm modifications associated with insemination and internal fertilization. Semi-cystic spermatogenesis and biflagellate spermatozoa are also found in Aspredinidae, and corroborate recent proposals that Aspredinidae and Doradoidea (Doradidae+Auchenipteridae) are sister groups and that Astrodoradinae occupies a basal position within Doradidae. The co-occurrence in various catfish families of semi-cystic spermatogenesis and either biflagellate spermatozoa (Aspredinidae, Cetopsidae, Doradidae, Malapturidae, Nematogenyidae) or uniflagellate sperm with two axonemes (Ariidae) reinforces the suggestion that such characteristics are correlated. Semi-cystic spermatogenesis and biflagellate sperm may represent ancestral conditions for Loricarioidei and Siluroidei of Siluriformes as they occur in putatively basal members of each suborder, Nematogenyidae and Cetopsidae, respectively. However, if semi-cystic spermatogenesis and biflagellate sperm are ancestral for Siluriformes, cystic spermatogenesis and uniflagellate sperm have arisen independently in multiple lineages including

  3. 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

  4. Visco-elasticity of seminal fluid in relation to the epididymal and accessory sex gland function and its impact on sperm motility.

    PubMed

    ELzanaty, S; Malm, J; Giwercman, A

    2004-04-01

    Seminal viscopathy was shown to be associated with male infertility. However, our knowledge about the regulatory mechanism of this process is still limited. In semen samples from 411 men attending for fertility assessment, traditional semen parameters including visco-elasticity were assessed according to the World Health Organization guidelines. Sperm motility was evaluated by use of computer aided sperm analysis (CASA). Seminal activity of neutral alpha-glucosidase (NAG) and concentrations of prostate-specific antigen (PSA), zinc, and fructose were measured. The activity of NAG, and the concentrations of PSA and zinc were significantly lower in hyper-visco-elastic semen samples (medians: 5 vs. 8 mU/mL; 741 vs. 924 mg/L; 1 vs. 2 mM/L), than in those with normal visco-elasticity (p = 0.004, 0.005 and 0.011, respectively). When comparing the total amounts, only for seminal fructose there was a difference between samples with high visco-elasticity as compared with those of normal visco-elasticity (median: 74 vs. 53 microM/ejaculate, p = 0.007) This seminal marker was the only significant independent parameter in predicting seminal visco-elasticity in a multiple logistic regression analysis (odds ratio for the highest quartile = 4.67). Hyper-visco-elasticity was associated with a lower percentage of motile spermatozoa (43 vs. 50%, p = 0.045). Similar trend was found for the CASA motility characteristics curvilinear velocity (VCL), average path length (VAP), amplitude of lateral head displacement (ALH) (p = 0.008, 0.038 and 0.020, respectively). Our study demonstrated the interplay between the regulatory effect of post-testicular organs on semen visco-elasticity. Hyper-visco-elasticity was associated with asthenozoospermia and lower levels of VCL, VAP and ALH. PMID:15149467

  5. 75 FR 81584 - Endangered and Threatened Species; Recovery Plan for the Sperm Whale

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-12-28

    ... endangered species under the ESA on December 2, 1970 (35 FR 18319). Sperm whales have a global distribution... comments from the public on July 6, 2006 (71 FR 38385). A summary of comments and NMFS responses to... of extinction in 100 years) and the global population has at least 1,500 mature,...

  6. Market maturity

    SciTech Connect

    Meade, B.; Bowden, S.; Ellis, M

    1995-02-01

    The power sector in the Philipines provides one of the most mature independent power markets in Asia. Over the past five years, National Power Corp. (NPC), the government owned utility, has actively invited the power sector into power generation. Distribution has remained in the hands of private and rural cooperative utilities. Private utilities have been operating as full requirements customers of NPC while the growth in capacity additions by independent power producers (IPPs) has outpaced NPC`s for the second year in a row. With a recovering economy and regulatory reform proceeding, the outlook for independent power remains strong through the end of the decade. The Philipine Congress is now reviewing draft legislation that will decentralize NPC and begin the process of privatization and market-based reforms throughout the country`s power sector.

  7. Barriers to male transmission of mitochondrial DNA in sperm development.

    PubMed

    DeLuca, Steven Z; O'Farrell, Patrick H

    2012-03-13

    Across the eukaryotic phylogeny, offspring usually inherit their mitochondrial genome from only one of two parents: in animals, the female. Although mechanisms that eliminate paternally derived mitochondria from the zygote have been sought, the developmental stage at which paternal transmission of mitochondrial DNA is restricted is unknown in most animals. Here, we show that the mitochondria of mature Drosophila sperm lack DNA, and we uncover two processes that eliminate mitochondrial DNA during spermatogenesis. Visualization of mitochondrial DNA nucleoids revealed their abrupt disappearance from developing spermatids in a process requiring the mitochondrial nuclease, Endonuclease G. In Endonuclease G mutants, persisting nucleoids are swept out of spermatids by a cellular remodeling process that trims and shapes spermatid tails. Our results show that mitochondrial DNA is eliminated during spermatogenesis, thereby removing the capacity of sperm to transmit the mitochondrial genome to the next generation. PMID:22421049

  8. 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

  9. Targeted inactivation of the mouse epididymal beta-defensin 41 alters sperm flagellar beat pattern and zona pellucida binding.

    PubMed

    Björkgren, Ida; Alvarez, Luis; Blank, Nelli; Balbach, Melanie; Turunen, Heikki; Laajala, Teemu Daniel; Toivanen, Jussi; Krutskikh, Anton; Wahlberg, Niklas; Huhtaniemi, Ilpo; Poutanen, Matti; Wachten, Dagmar; Sipilä, Petra

    2016-05-15

    During epididymal maturation, sperm acquire the ability to swim progressively by interacting with proteins secreted by the epididymal epithelium. Beta-defensin proteins, expressed in the epididymis, continue to regulate sperm motility during capacitation and hyperactivation in the female reproductive tract. We characterized the mouse beta-defensin 41 (DEFB41), by generating a mouse model with iCre recombinase inserted into the first exon of the gene. The homozygous Defb41(iCre/iCre) knock-in mice lacked Defb41 expression and displayed iCre recombinase activity in the principal cells of the proximal epididymis. Heterozygous Defb41(iCre/+) mice can be used to generate epididymis specific conditional knock-out mouse models. Homozygous Defb41(iCre/iCre) sperm displayed a defect in sperm motility with the flagella primarily bending in the pro-hook conformation while capacitated wild-type sperm more often displayed the anti-hook conformation. This led to a reduced straight line motility of Defb41(iCre/iCre) sperm and weaker binding to the oocyte. Thus, DEFB41 is required for proper sperm maturation. PMID:26987518

  10. The Voltage-Gated Sodium Channel Nav1.8 Is Expressed in Human Sperm

    PubMed Central

    Cejudo-Roman, Antonio; Pinto, Francisco M.; Subirán, Nerea; Ravina, Cristina G.; Fernández-Sánchez, Manuel; Pérez-Hernández, Natalia; Pérez, Ricardo; Pacheco, Alberto; Irazusta, Jon; Candenas, Luz

    2013-01-01

    The role of Na+ fluxes through voltage-gated sodium channels in the regulation of sperm cell function remains poorly understood. Previously, we reported that several genes encoding voltage-gated Na+ channels were expressed in human testis and mature spermatozoa. In this study, we analyzed the presence and function of the TTX-resistant VGSC α subunit Nav1.8 in human capacitated sperm cells. Using an RT-PCR assay, we found that the mRNA of the gene SCN10A, that encode Na v1.8, was abundantly and specifically expressed in human testis and ejaculated spermatozoa. The Na v1.8 protein was detected in capacitated sperm cells using three different specific antibodies against this channel. Positive immunoreactivity was mainly located in the neck and the principal piece of the flagellum. The presence of Na v1.8 in sperm cells was confirmed by Western blot. Functional studies demonstrated that the increases in progressive motility produced by veratridine, a voltage-gated sodium channel activator, were reduced in sperm cells preincubated with TTX (10 μM), the Na v1.8 antagonist A-803467, or a specific Na v1.8 antibody. Veratridine elicited similar percentage increases in progressive motility in sperm cells maintained in Ca2+-containing or Ca2+-free solution and did not induce hyperactivation or the acrosome reaction. Veratridine caused a rise in sperm intracellular Na+, [Na+]i, and the sustained phase of the response was inhibited in the presence of A-803467. These results verify that the Na+ channel Na v1.8 is present in human sperm cells and demonstrate that this channel participates in the regulation of sperm function. PMID:24086692

  11. Is the hook of muroid rodent's sperm related to sperm train formation?

    PubMed

    Tourmente, M; Zarka-Trigo, D; Roldan, E R S

    2016-06-01

    Competition between spermatozoa of rival males to gain fertilizations has led to a wide array of modifications in sperm structure and function. Sperm cells of most muroid rodents have hook-shaped extensions in the apical-ventral tip of the head, but the function of this structure is largely unknown. These 'hooks' may facilitate aggregation of spermatozoa in so-called 'trains', as an adaptation to sperm competition, because sperm in trains may swim faster than free-swimming cells. However, there is controversy regarding the role of the hook in train formation, and in relation to whether it is selected by sperm competition. We examined spermatozoa from muroid rodents with varying levels of sperm competition to assess whether (i) sperm aggregates are common in these taxa, (ii) presence of a hook relates to the formation of sperm aggregations, and (iii) formation of sperm aggregations is explained by sperm competition. Our analyses in 25 muroid species revealed that > 92% of spermatozoa swim individually in all species, with the exception of the wood mouse, Apodemus sylvaticus, which has ~50% spermatozoa swimming freely. Species with hooked spermatozoa had higher sperm competition levels and longer sperm than species whose sperm lack a hook. Neither the presence of hook nor sperm competition levels were related to the percentage of sperm in aggregations. Thus, (i) sperm aggregates in muroid rodents are an exceptional trait found only in a few species, (ii) evolution of the sperm hook is associated to sperm competition levels, but (iii) the hook is unlikely to be related to the formation of sperm aggregates. The evolutionary significance of the sperm head hook thus remains elusive, and future studies should examine potential roles of this pervasive structure in sperm's hydrodynamic efficiency and sperm-female tract interactions. PMID:26969911

  12. Protective effects of vitamin E and Cornus mas fruit extract on methotrexate-induced cytotoxicity in sperms of adult mice

    PubMed Central

    Zarei, Leila; Sadrkhanlou, Rajabali; Shahrooz, Rasoul; Malekinejad, Hassan; Eilkhanizadeh, Behroz; Ahmadi, Abbas

    2014-01-01

    This study was aimed to assess the protective effects of Cornus mas fruit extract (CMFE) and vitamin E (Vit E) on sperm quality parameters in the methotrexate (MTX)-treated mice. Forty-eight young adult male mice (8-12 weeks) were randomly divided into six groups including control and test groups. The control group received normal saline orally , and the test groups were treated MTX (20 mg kg-1, ip, once weekly), MTX + CMFE (250 mg kg-1), MTX + CMFE (500 mg kg-1), MTX + CMFE (1000 mg kg-1), and MTX + Vit E (100 IU kg-1, po) for 35 consecutive days. On day 35, after euthanasia the epididymal sperms were isolated. Then the total mean sperm count, sperm viability and motility were determined. The total antioxidant capacity (TAOC) of all experimental groups were also evaluated. The MTX-treated animals showed a significant changes in all parameters of sperm quality assessment compared to the control group. Both Vit E and CMFE were able to protect from MTX-induced effects on sperm maturity and DNA damage. Co-administration of MTX and CMFE and/or Vit E resulted in protection from MTX-reduced TAOC. In conclusion, these data suggested that MTX administration could adversely affect the sperm quality. Moreover, the protective effect of Vit E and CMFE on MTX-induced sperm toxicity was also documented. PMID:25568688

  13. No evidence of sperm conjugate formation in an Australian mouse bearing sperm with three hooks

    PubMed Central

    Firman, Renée C; Bentley, Blair; Bowman, Faye; Marchant, Fernando García-Solís; Parthenay, Jahmila; Sawyer, Jessica; Stewart, Tom; O'Shea, James E

    2013-01-01

    Sperm conjugation occurs when two or more sperm physically unite for motility or transport through the female reproductive tract. In many muroid rodent species, sperm conjugates have been shown to form by a single, conspicuous apical hook located on the sperm head. These sperm “trains” have been reported to be highly variable in size and, despite all the heads pointing in roughly the same direction, exhibit a relatively disordered arrangement. In some species, sperm “trains” have been shown to enhance sperm swimming speed, and thus have been suggested to be advantageous in sperm competition. Here, we assessed the behavior of sperm in the sandy inland mouse (Pseudomys hermannsburgensis), a muroid rodent that bears sperm with three apical hooks. First, we accrued genetic evidence of multiple paternity within “wild” litters to unequivocally show that sperm competition does occur in this species. Following this we utilized both in vitro and in vivo methodologies to determine whether sandy inland mouse sperm conjugate to form motile trains. Our observations of in vitro preparations of active sperm revealed that sandy inland mouse sperm exhibit rapid, progressive motility as individual cells only. Similarly, histological sections of the reproductive tracts of mated females revealed no in vivo evidence of sperm conjugate formation. We conclude that the unique, three-hooked morphology of the sandy inland mouse sperm does not facilitate the formation of motile conjugates, and discuss our findings in relation to the different hypotheses for the evolution of the muroid rodent hook/s. PMID:23919134

  14. Ultrastructure of bovine sperm chromatin.

    PubMed

    Filho, Romualdo Morandi; Beletti, Marcelo Emilio; de Oliveira, Fabio

    2015-12-01

    Mammalian semen chromatin comprises DNA, protamine, and, at lower levels, other proteins. This constitution confers intense compaction to the chromatin, helping to protect the DNA and causing the head of the sperm to be very small, facilitating the safe transport of its genetic contents. It is known that changes in the sperm chromatin compaction lead to fertility problems in bulls, justifying studies of this structure. Although there are theoretical models of sperm chromatin because of its high compaction, there is no morphological evidence of such models. The aim of this study was to demonstrate the ultrastructure of bovine sperm chromatin in an attempt to corroborate the theoretical chromatin models existing today. The isolated bull sperm heads had their chromatin partially unpacked by chemical treatment using sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) and dithiothreitol (DTT) and were then embedded in Epon resin. Using an ultramicrotome, ultrathin sections were obtained, which were contrasted with uranyl acetate and lead citrate, and then viewed under transmission electron microscopy. The methodology used allowed the visualization of toroidal structures interconnected by a filamentous nuclear matrix, which is entirely consistent with the most current theoretical models. PMID:26515508

  15. Drosophila sperm motility in the reproductive tract.

    PubMed

    Yang, Yong; Lu, Xiangyi

    2011-05-01

    Motile cilia and flagella exhibit many waveforms as outputs of dynein activation sequences on the highly conserved axoneme. Motility change of sperm in the reproductive tract is difficult to study and remains an important area of investigation. Sperm typically execute a sinusoidal waveform. Increased viscosity in the medium induces somewhat unusual arc-line and helical waveforms in some sperm. However, whether the latter two waveforms occur in vivo is not known. Using green fluorescence protein imaging, we show that Drosophila sperm in the uterus move in circular foci via arc-line waves, predominantly in a tail-leading orientation. From the uterus, a small fraction of the sperm enters the seminal receptacle (SR) in parallel formations. After sperm storage and coincident with fertilization of the egg, the sperm exit the SR via head-leading helical waves. Consistent with the observed bidirectional movements, the sperm show the ability to propagate both base-to-tip and tip-to-base flagellar waves. Numerous studies have shown that sperm motility is regulated by intraflagellar calcium concentrations; in particular, the Pkd2 calcium channel has been shown to affect sperm storage. Our analyses here suggest that Pkd2 is required for the sperm to adopt the correct waveform and movement orientation during SR entry. A working model for the sperm's SR entry movement is proposed. PMID:21293028

  16. Human sperm rheotaxis: a passive physical process.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhuoran; Liu, Jun; Meriano, Jim; Ru, Changhai; Xie, Shaorong; Luo, Jun; Sun, Yu

    2016-01-01

    A long-standing question in natural reproduction is how mammalian sperm navigate inside female reproductive tract and finally reach the egg cell, or oocyte. Recently, fluid flow was proposed as a long-range guidance cue for sperm navigation. Coitus induces fluid flow from oviduct to uterus, and sperm align themselves against the flow direction and swim upstream, a phenomenon termed rheotaxis. Whether sperm rheotaxis is a passive process dominated by fluid mechanics, or sperm actively sense and adapt to fluid flow remains controversial. Here we report the first quantitative study of sperm flagellar motion during human sperm rheotaxis and provide direct evidence indicating that sperm rheotaxis is a passive process. Experimental results show that there is no significant difference in flagellar beating amplitude and asymmetry between rheotaxis-turning sperm and those sperm swimming freely in the absence of fluid flow. Additionally, fluorescence image tracking shows no Ca(2+) influx during sperm rheotaxis turning, further suggesting there is no active signal transduction during human sperm rheotaxis. PMID:27005727

  17. Human sperm rheotaxis: a passive physical process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Zhuoran; Liu, Jun; Meriano, Jim; Ru, Changhai; Xie, Shaorong; Luo, Jun; Sun, Yu

    2016-03-01

    A long-standing question in natural reproduction is how mammalian sperm navigate inside female reproductive tract and finally reach the egg cell, or oocyte. Recently, fluid flow was proposed as a long–range guidance cue for sperm navigation. Coitus induces fluid flow from oviduct to uterus, and sperm align themselves against the flow direction and swim upstream, a phenomenon termed rheotaxis. Whether sperm rheotaxis is a passive process dominated by fluid mechanics, or sperm actively sense and adapt to fluid flow remains controversial. Here we report the first quantitative study of sperm flagellar motion during human sperm rheotaxis and provide direct evidence indicating that sperm rheotaxis is a passive process. Experimental results show that there is no significant difference in flagellar beating amplitude and asymmetry between rheotaxis-turning sperm and those sperm swimming freely in the absence of fluid flow. Additionally, fluorescence image tracking shows no Ca2+ influx during sperm rheotaxis turning, further suggesting there is no active signal transduction during human sperm rheotaxis.

  18. SPERM COUNT DISTRIBUTIONS IN FERTILE MEN

    EPA Science Inventory

    Sperm concentration and count are often used as indicators of environmental impacts on male reproductive health. Existing clinical databases may be biased towards subfertile men with low sperm counts and less is known about expected sperm count distributions in cohorts of fertil...

  19. Human sperm rheotaxis: a passive physical process

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhuoran; Liu, Jun; Meriano, Jim; Ru, Changhai; Xie, Shaorong; Luo, Jun; Sun, Yu

    2016-01-01

    A long-standing question in natural reproduction is how mammalian sperm navigate inside female reproductive tract and finally reach the egg cell, or oocyte. Recently, fluid flow was proposed as a long–range guidance cue for sperm navigation. Coitus induces fluid flow from oviduct to uterus, and sperm align themselves against the flow direction and swim upstream, a phenomenon termed rheotaxis. Whether sperm rheotaxis is a passive process dominated by fluid mechanics, or sperm actively sense and adapt to fluid flow remains controversial. Here we report the first quantitative study of sperm flagellar motion during human sperm rheotaxis and provide direct evidence indicating that sperm rheotaxis is a passive process. Experimental results show that there is no significant difference in flagellar beating amplitude and asymmetry between rheotaxis-turning sperm and those sperm swimming freely in the absence of fluid flow. Additionally, fluorescence image tracking shows no Ca2+ influx during sperm rheotaxis turning, further suggesting there is no active signal transduction during human sperm rheotaxis. PMID:27005727

  20. Epididymosomes: transfer of fertility-modulating proteins to the sperm surface

    PubMed Central

    Martin-DeLeon, Patricia A

    2015-01-01

    A variety of glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI)-linked proteins are acquired on spermatozoa from epididymal luminal fluids (ELF) during sperm maturation. These proteins serve roles in immunoprotection and in key steps of fertilization such as capacitation, acrosomal exocytosis and sperm-egg interactions. Their acquisition on sperm cells is mediated both by membrane vesicles (epididymosomes, EP) which were first reported to dock on the sperm surface, and by lipid carriers which facilitate the transfer of proteins associated with the membrane-free fraction of ELF. While the nonvesicular fraction is more efficient, both pathways are dependent on hydrophobic interactions between the GPI-anchor and the external lipid layer of the sperm surface. More recently proteomic and hypothesis-driven studies have shown that EP from several mammals carry transmembrane (TM) proteins, including plasma membrane Ca2+-ATPase 4 (PMCA4). Synthesized in the testis, PMCA4 is an essential protein and the major Ca2+ efflux pump in murine spermatozoa. Delivery of PMCA4 to spermatozoa from bovine and mouse EP during epididymal maturation and in vitro suggests that the docking of EP on the sperm surface precedes fusion, and experimental evidence supports a fusogenic mechanism for TM proteins. Fusion is facilitated by CD9, which generates fusion–competent sites on membranes. On the basis of knowledge of PMCA4's interacting partners a number of TM and membrane-associated proteins have been identified or are predicted to be present, in the epididymosomal cargo deliverable to spermatozoa. These Ca2+-dependent proteins, undetected in proteomic studies, play essential roles in sperm motility and fertility, and their detection highlights the usefulness of the hypothesis-driven approach. PMID:26112481

  1. Low physiological levels of prostaglandins E2 and F2α improve human sperm functions.

    PubMed

    Rios, Mariana; Carreño, Daniela V; Oses, Carolina; Barrera, Nelson; Kerr, Bredford; Villalón, Manuel

    2016-03-01

    Prostaglandins (PGs) have been reported to be present in the seminal fluid and cervical mucus, affecting different stages of sperm maturation from spermatogenesis to the acrosome reaction. This study assessed the effects of low physiological PGE2 and PGF2α concentrations on human sperm motility and on the ability of the spermatozoa to bind to the zona pellucida (ZP). Human spermatozoa were isolated from seminal samples with normal concentration and motility parameters and incubated with 1μM PGE2, 1μM PGF2α or control solution to determine sperm motility and the ability to bind to human ZP. The effects of both PGs on intracellular calcium levels were determined. Incubation for 2 or 18h with PGE2 or PGF2α resulted in a significant (P<0.05) increase in the percentage of spermatozoa with progressive motility. In contrast with PGF2α, PGE2 alone induced an increase in sperm intracellular calcium levels; however, the percentage of sperm bound to the human ZP was doubled for both PGs. These results indicate that incubation of human spermatozoa with low physiological levels of PGE2 or PGF2α increases sperm functions and could improve conditions for assisted reproduction protocols. PMID:25123052

  2. Live Pups from Evaporatively Dried Mouse Sperm Stored at Ambient Temperature for up to 2 Years

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jie; Lee, Gloria Y.; Lawitts, Joel A.; Toner, Mehmet; Biggers, John D.

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to develop a mouse sperm preservation method based on evaporative drying. Mouse sperm were evaporatively dried and stored at 4°C and ambient temperature for 3 months to 2 years. Upon rehydration, a single sperm was injected into a mature oocyte to develop into a blastocyst after culture or a live birth after embryo transfer to a recipient female. For the samples stored at 4°C for 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months, the blastocyst formation rate was 61.5%, 49.1%, 31.5%, 32.2%, and 41.4%, respectively. The blastocyst rate for those stored at ambient temperature (∼22°C) for 3, 6, 12, and 18 months was 57.8%, 36.2%, 33.6%, and 34.4%, respectively. Fifteen, eight and three live pups were produced from sperm stored at room temperature for 12, 18, and 24 months, respectively. This is the first report of live offspring produced from dried mouse sperm stored at ambient temperature for up to 2 years. Based on these results, we suggest that evaporative drying is a potentially useful method for the routine preservation of mouse sperm. PMID:24924588

  3. 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

  4. Roles of the reproductive tract in modifications of the sperm membrane surface

    PubMed Central

    KUO, Yu-Wen; LI, Sheng-Hsiang; MAEDA, Kei-Ichiro; GADELLA, Bart M.; TSAI, Pei Shiue J.

    2016-01-01

    Successful fertilization requires viable and functional spermatozoa to recognize and fuse with the oocyte. In most mammalian species, mature spermatozoa are not capable of fertilizing the oocytes immediately after ejaculation. However, unlike somatic cells, spermatozoa, after leaving the testis, are transcriptionally and translationally silent; therefore, upon completion of spermiogenesis, spermatozoa carry only a minimal amount of essential proteins on their membranes as well as within their restricted volume of cytoplasm. To develop into a fully functional and competent sperm that is capable of successful fertilization, modifications of the sperm membrane surface during its transit in the reproductive tracts is critical. These post-spermatogenesis modifications advance the maturation of epididymal spermatozoa. In addition, components secreted into the lumen of the reproductive tracts that are later added onto the sperm membrane surface also regulate (inhibit or activate) the functions of the spermatozoa. This acquisition of additional proteins from the reproductive tracts may compensate for the inactivity of morphologically mature spermatozoa. In this review, we discuss the contributions of the male and female genital tracts to modifications of the sperm membrane surface at different stages of fertilization. PMID:27009019

  5. Flow cytometric sexing of mammalian sperm.

    PubMed

    Garner, Duane L

    2006-03-15

    This review reexamines parameters needed for optimization of flow cytometric sexing mammalian sperm and updates the current status of sperm sexing for various species where this technology is currently being applied. Differences in DNA content have provided both a method to differentiate between these sex-determining gametes and a method to sort them that can be used for predetermining sex in mammals. Although the DNA content of all cells for each mammalian species is highly conserved, slight but measurable DNA content differences of sperm occur within species even among cattle breeds due to different sizes of Y-chromosomes. Most mammals produce flattened, oval-headed sperm that can be oriented within a sorter using hydrodynamic forces. Multiplying the percentage the difference in DNA content of the X- or Y-chromosome bearing sperm times the area of the flat profile of the sperm head gives a simple sorting index that suggests that bull and boar sperm are well suited for separation in a flow sorter. Successful sperm sexing of various species must take into account the relative susceptibilities of gametes to the stresses that occur during sexing. Sorting conditions must be optimized for each species to achieve acceptable sperm sexing efficiency, usually at 90% accuracy. In the commercial application of sperm sexing to cattle, fertility of sex-sorted bull sperm at 2 x 10(6)/dose remains at 70-80% of unsexed sperm at normal doses of 10 to 20 x 10(6) sperm. DNA content measurements have been used to identify the sex-chromosome bearing sperm populations with good accuracy in semen from at least 23 mammalian species, and normal-appearing offspring have been produced from sexed sperm of at least seven species. PMID:16242764

  6. Reactive oxygen species and boar sperm function.

    PubMed

    Awda, Basim J; Mackenzie-Bell, Meghan; Buhr, Mary M

    2009-09-01

    Boar spermatozoa are very susceptible to reactive oxygen species (ROS), but ROS involvement in damage and/or capacitation is unclear. The impact of exposing fresh boar spermatozoa to an ROS-generating system (xanthine/xanthine oxidase; XA/XO) on sperm ROS content, membrane lipid peroxidation, phospholipase (PL) A activity, and motility, viability, and capacitation was contrasted to ROS content and sperm function after cryopreservation. Exposing boar sperm (n = 4-5 ejaculates) to the ROS-generating system for 30 min rapidly increased hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and lipid peroxidation in all sperm, increased PLA in dead sperm, and did not affect intracellular O2- (flow cytometry of sperm labeled with 2',7'-dichlorodihydrofluorscein diacetate, BODIPY 581/591 C11, bis-BODIPY-FL C11, hydroethidine, respectively; counterstained for viability). Sperm viability remained high, but sperm became immotile. Cryopreservation decreased sperm motility, viability, and intracellular O2- significantly, but did not affect H2O2. As expected, more sperm incubated in capacitating media than Beltsville thawing solution buffer underwent acrosome reactions and protein tyrosine phosphorylation (four proteins, 58-174 kDa); which proteins were tyrosine phosphorylated was pH dependent. Pre-exposing sperm to the ROS-generating system increased the percentage of sperm that underwent acrosome reactions after incubation in capacitating conditions (P < 0.025), and decreased capacitation-dependent increases in two tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins (P < or = 0.035). In summary, H2O2 is the major free radical mediating direct ROS effects, but not cryopreservation changes, on boar sperm. Boar sperm motility, acrosome integrity, and lipid peroxidation are more sensitive indicators of oxidative stress than viability and PLA activity. ROS may stimulate the acrosome reaction in boar sperm through membrane lipid peroxidation and PLA activation. PMID:19357363

  7. No evidence for sperm priming responses under varying sperm competition risk or intensity in guppies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Jonathan P.

    2009-07-01

    Sperm competition theory predicts that males should tailor their investment in ejaculates according to the number of rival males competing to fertilize a female’s eggs. Research spanning several taxa supports this prediction by showing that males are often sensitive to the level of sperm competition and adjust their investment in sperm numbers accordingly. More recent work has revealed that males may also tailor the quality of sperm according to the number of males competing for fertilization. Here I test for both effects in guppies ( Poecilia reticulata) in an experiment that simultaneously evaluates the risk and intensity models of sperm competition. The experiment determined whether male guppies adjust the number (stripped ejaculate size) and quality (sperm velocity and viability) of sperm that are primed over a 3-day period according to experimental changes in the perceived level of sperm competition. A total of 136 focal males were initially stripped of all retrievable sperm and assayed for these sperm traits before being allocated at random to one of four treatments simulating different levels of sperm competition risk and intensity. During the 3-day treatment phase, focal males had visual and olfactory access to a sexually receptive (initially virgin) female maintained with different numbers of stimulus males to simulate variation in the risk and intensity of sperm competition. Following this, males were assayed again for the sperm traits. Contrary to predictions, there was no significant change in any of the measured variables among treatments, although qualitatively the patterns for sperm velocity and viability did conform to expectation. The lack of any trend for the number of sperm primed was unequivocal and future work examining the effects of sperm competition on sperm production should focus on whether males differentially allocate sperm numbers among matings that differ in the level of sperm competition.

  8. Cryopreservation of sea urchin (Evechinus chloroticus) sperm.

    PubMed

    Adams, Serean L; Hessian, Paul A; Mladenov, Philip V

    2004-01-01

    A method was developed for cryopreserving sperm of the sea urchin, Evechinus chloroticus. Sperm fertilisation ability, mitochondrial function and membrane integrity were assessed before and after cryopreservation. Highest post-thaw fertilisation ability was achieved with lower concentrations (2.5%-7.5%) of dimethyl sulphoxide (DMSO). In contrast, post-thaw mitochondrial function and membrane integrity were higher for sperm frozen in intermediate and high DMSO concentrations (5%-15%). Surprisingly, some sperm frozen in seawater only, without DMSO, were able to survive post-thawing, although the fertilisation ability (10(6) sperm/ml; approximately 50% fertilisation), mitochondrial function and membrane integrity of these sperm were notably lower than of sperm frozen with DMSO (10(6) sperm cells/ml; 2.5%-7.5% DMSO; >85% fertilisation) at the concentrations tested. Amongst sperm from individual males, fertilisation ability varied before and after cryopreservation for both males frozen with and without cryoprotectant. Specific differences among males also varied. Sperm mitochondrial function and membrane integrity was similar among males before cryopreservation but differed considerably after cryopreservation. Cryopreserved sperm were able to fertilise eggs and develop to pluteus stage larvae. This study has practical applications and will provide benefits such as reduced broodstock conditioning costs, control of parental input and opportunities for hybridisation studies. PMID:15375439

  9. Nuclear microscopy of sperm cell elemental structure

    SciTech Connect

    Bench, G.S.

    1994-12-31

    Theories have suggested that there is a link between protamine concentrations in individual sperm and sperm fertility. At present, biochemical analyses have only been performed on bulk populations and existing methods have not been able to determine what percentage of morphologically normal sperm are biochemically defective and potentially infertile. As part of an investigation into male sperm fertility, nuclear microscopy has been utilized to measure elemental profiles at the single sperm level. By measuring the ratio of Phosphorus to Sulfur the authors have been able to determine the amount of protamine 1 and protamine 2 in individual cells from bulk fertile samples of bull and mouse sperm. Preliminary results show that, for each species, the relative amounts of protamine 1 and protamine 2 in morphologically normal sperm agree well with expected values.

  10. Sperm in "parhenogenetic" freshwater gastrotrichs.

    PubMed

    Weiss, M J; Levy, D P

    1979-07-20

    Freshwater members of the phylum Gastrotricha have been considered obligate parthenogens. In Lepidodermelia squammata, the species for which there is most evidence for parthenogenesis, sperm have been discovered. This finding will necessitate reexamination of the nature of sexuality and life cycles and of the concept of "species" in freshwater gastrotrichs. PMID:17747043

  11. Sperm competition promotes diversity of sperm bundles in Ohomopterus ground beetles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takami, Yasuoki; Sota, Teiji

    2007-07-01

    Diversification of sperm morphology has been investigated in the context of sperm competition, but the adaptive significance of sperm bundles is still unclear. In analyzing 10 taxa of the genus Carabus subgenus Ohomopterus and one related Carabus ground beetles, we found that dimorphic sperm bundles occurred in most species with varied degrees of bimodality, whereas sperm were generally monomorphic. Comparative analyses with phylogenetically independent contrasts revealed that the sizes of large and small sperm bundles evolved more rapidly than, and were not correlated with, the length of sperm, suggesting more intense selection on sperm bundle sizes and their independent responses to different evolutionary forces. The size of large sperm bundles was positively correlated with male genital morphology (pertinent to displacement of rival spermatophores) and postcopulatory guarding duration as well as male body length, suggesting that larger sperm bundles have been favored when the risk of spermatophore displacement is high. Larger sperm bundles may be advantageous because of their ability to migrate more rapidly into the spermatheca. In contrast, no clear association was detected between the small sperm bundle size and mating traits despite its rapid diversification. The present study provides the first record of heteromorphic sperm bundles, the diversity of which may be promoted by sperm competition.

  12. SLC6 family transporter SNF-10 is required for protease-mediated activation of sperm motility in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Fenker, Kristin E.; Hansen, Angela A.; Chong, Conrad A.; Jud, Molly C.; Duffy, Brittany A.; Norton, J. Paul; Hansen, Jody M.; Stanfield, Gillian M.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Motility of sperm is crucial for their directed migration to the egg. The acquisition and modulation of motility are regulated to ensure that sperm move when and where needed, thereby promoting reproductive success. One specific example of this phenomenon occurs during differentiation of the amoeboid sperm of C. elegans as they activate from a round spermatid to a mature, crawling spermatozoon. Sperm activation is regulated by redundant pathways to occur at a specific time and place for each sex. Here, we report the identification of the solute carrier 6 (SLC6) transporter protein SNF-10 as a key regulator of C. elegans sperm activation in response to male protease activation signals. We find that SNF-10 is present in sperm and is required for activation by the male but not by the hermaphrodite. Loss of both snf-10 and a hermaphrodite activation factor render sperm completely insensitive to activation. Using in vitro assays, we find that snf-10 mutant sperm show a specific deficit in response to protease treatment but not to other activators. Prior to activation, SNF-10 is present in the plasma membrane, where it represents a strong candidate to receive signals that lead to subcellular morphogenesis. After activation, it shows polarized localization to the cell body region that is dependent on membrane fusions mediated by the dysferlin FER-1. Our discovery of snf-10 offers insight into the mechanisms differentially employed by the two sexes to accomplish the common goal of producing functional sperm, as well as how the physiology of nematode sperm may be regulated to control motility as it is in mammals. PMID:24929237

  13. Hyaluronic acid (Sperm Select) improves retention of sperm motility and velocity in normospermic and oligospermic specimens.

    PubMed

    Huszar, G; Willetts, M; Corrales, M

    1990-12-01

    The effects of Sperm Select (Pharmacia AB, Uppsala, Sweden), a hyaluronic acid medium, on the motility and membrane integrity properties of sperm were studied. In 15 normospermic specimens after overnight incubation, the motility parameters in the control versus the Sperm Select group were as follows (mean +/- SEM): motility, 18.8% +/- 2.8% versus 27.4% +/- 2.9%; velocity, 21.5 +/- 2.4 versus 27.2 +/- 2.2 microns/s; linearity, 3.8 +/- 0.3 versus 4.4 +/- 0.2; lateral head displacement, 1.5 +/- 0.2 versus 1.9 +/- 0.1 microns; and tail beat/cross frequency, 8.8 +/- 1.3 versus 10.8 +/- 1.4 Hz. The density of motile sperm was 10.8 +/- 2.3 versus 18.5 +/- 2.5 X 10(6) sperm/mL. Finally, the velocity coefficient, the multiple of the sperm motility and linear velocity, was 4.6 +/- 1.1 versus 8.1 +/- 1.4. However, we found no Sperm Select related differences when testing sperm membrane integrity with hypoosmotic swelling and supravital staining. Thus, Sperm Select improves the retention of sperm motility (most prominently velocity) apparently due to a direct action of hyaluronic acid on sperm metabolism or contractility rather than to preservation of sperm membrane integrity. In 20 oligospermic specimens, Sperm Select caused similar improvements in sperm motility, and the duration of motility could be predicted from the degree of enhancement in sperm velocity after short-term Sperm Select exposure. A modified Sperm Select protocol is described that further increases motile sperm yield without a centrifugation step. PMID:1700958

  14. Why small males have big sperm: dimorphic squid sperm linked to alternative mating behaviours

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Sperm cells are the target of strong sexual selection that may drive changes in sperm structure and function to maximize fertilisation success. Sperm evolution is regarded to be one of the major consequences of sperm competition in polyandrous species, however it can also be driven by adaptation to the environmental conditions at the site of fertilization. Strong stabilizing selection limits intra-specific variation, and therefore polymorphism, among fertile sperm (eusperm). Here we analyzed reproductive morphology differences among males employing characteristic alternative mating behaviours, and so potentially different conditions of sperm competition and fertilization environment, in the squid Loligo bleekeri. Results Large consort males transfer smaller (average total length = 73 μm) sperm to a female's internal sperm storage location, inside the oviduct; whereas small sneaker males transfer larger (99 μm) sperm to an external location around the seminal receptacle near the mouth. No significant difference in swimming speed was observed between consort and sneaker sperm. Furthermore, sperm precedence in the seminal receptacle was not biased toward longer sperm, suggesting no evidence for large sperm being favoured in competition for space in the sperm storage organ among sneaker males. Conclusions Here we report the first case, in the squid Loligo bleekeri, where distinctly dimorphic eusperm are produced by different sized males that employ alternative mating behaviours. Our results found no evidence that the distinct sperm dimorphism was driven by between- and within-tactic sperm competition. We propose that presence of alternative fertilization environments with distinct characteristics (i.e. internal or external), whether or not in combination with the effects of sperm competition, can drive the disruptive evolution of sperm size. PMID:21831296

  15. Porcine embryos produced after intracytoplasmic sperm injection using xenogeneic pig sperm from neonatal testis tissue grafted in mice.

    PubMed

    Honaramooz, Ali; Cui, Xiang-Shun; Kim, Nam-Hyung; Dobrinski, Ina

    2008-01-01

    Embryo development after homologous intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) with sperm from testis tissue xenografts from pigs or any other farm animal species has not been evaluated critically. Here, we report development of porcine embryos in vitro following ICSI with sperm retrieved from xenografted neonatal pig testis. Small pieces of testis tissue from newborn piglets were grafted under the back skin of castrated immunodeficient mice (n = 4) and the xenografts were collected 8 months after grafting. Spermatozoa were recovered by mincing of the grafted tissue. For comparison, testicular, epididymal and ejaculated spermatozoa were also collected from mature boars. Oocytes injected with xenogeneic spermatozoa were either fixed to determine fertilisation processes (n = 89 in five replicates) or allowed to develop in vitro (n = 143 in four replicates). Xenogeneic porcine spermatozoa were fertilisation competent (24% v. 58%, 68%, 62% or 0% for xenogeneic v. control testicular, epididymal and ejaculated spermatozoa or no spermatozoa, respectively) and embryos developed to the blastocyst stage (8% v. 22%, 27%, 25% or 0%, respectively). These results demonstrate that porcine spermatozoa derived from immature testis tissue xenografted into mice are fertilisation competent, albeit at a lower rate than testicular, epididymal or ejaculated spermatozoa from control boars, and support embryo development after ICSI. PMID:18842182

  16. Heterologous in vitro fertilization and sperm capacitation in an endangered African antelope, the scimitar-horned oryx (Oryx dammah).

    PubMed

    Roth, T L; Weiss, R B; Buff, J L; Bush, L M; Wildt, D E; Bush, M

    1998-02-01

    Scimitar-horned oryx sperm function was studied using protocols developed for domestic cattle. Objectives were to assess sperm 1) viability and motility in vitro over time, 2) capacitation in heparin- or calcium-supplemented medium, and 3) function in an in vitro fertilization system using heterologous (domestic cow) oocytes. Seminal aliquots were washed, and sperm were resuspended in 1) Talp with 5% fetal calf serum (TALP), 2) TALP + 10 microM heparin, 3) TALP + 20 microM heparin, and 4) TALP + 10 mM CaCl. At 0, 3, and 6 h, aliquots were evaluated for sperm motility, viability (using Hoechst 33258), and ability to acrosome-react when exposed to lysophosphatidylcholine (LC). Sperm function was assessed by evaluating fertilization and embryo development after coculture of in vitro-matured domestic cow oocytes with oryx sperm. Overall mean percentages of motile and viable sperm remained high at 6 h (> 60% and > 70%, respectively). Fewer (p < 0.05) sperm incubated in TALP + 10 microM heparin for 6 h contained intact acrosomes after exposure to LC, but there were no differences between LC and control samples after incubation in TALP without heparin. LC-treated sperm in TALP + 10 mM CaCl contained fewer (p < 0.05) intact acrosomes at 3 and 6 h (52.6% and 31.2%, respectively) than paired controls (83.6% and 70.0%, respectively). Oryx sperm from all males were capable of fertilizing cow oocytes (range 17 of 26 [65.4%] to 25 of 26 [96.2%]). Of the 55 2-cell embryos produced, 34 (61.8%) developed to > or = 8 cells. Of the 24 uncleaved oocytes, 7 (29.2%) were polyspermic. These data demonstrate that processed sperm from the endangered scimitar-horned oryx remain vigorous in vitro for at least 6 h. Capacitation can be induced using cattle sperm-processing techniques, with sperm appearing most responsive to elevated CaCl concentrations. Most interesting was the successful production and development of hybrid embryos after coincubation of oryx sperm with cow oocytes, suggesting

  17. Impact of dietary fatty acids on muscle composition, liver lipids, milt composition and sperm performance in European eel.

    PubMed

    Butts, Ian Anthony Ernest; Baeza, Rosa; Støttrup, Josianne Gatt; Krüger-Johnsen, Maria; Jacobsen, Charlotte; Pérez, Luz; Asturiano, Juan F; Tomkiewicz, Jonna

    2015-05-01

    In order for European eel aquaculture to be sustainable, the life cycle should be completed in captivity. Development of broodstock diets may improve the species' reproductive success in captivity, through the production of high-quality gametes. Here, our aim was to evaluate the influence of dietary regime on muscle composition, and liver lipids prior to induced maturation, and the resulting sperm composition and performance. To accomplish this fish were reared on three "enhanced" diets and one commercial diet, each with different levels of fatty acids, arachidonic acid (ARA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Neutral lipids from the muscle and liver incorporated the majority of the fatty acid profile, while phospholipids incorporated only certain fatty acids. Diet had an effect on the majority of sperm fatty acids, on the total volume of extractable milt, and on the percentage of motile sperm. Here, our results suggest that the total volume of extractable milt is a DHA-dependent process, as we found the diets with the highest DHA levels induced the most milt while the diet with the lowest DHA level induced the least amount of milt. The diet with the highest level of ARA induced medium milt volumes but had the highest sperm motility. EPA also seems important for sperm quality parameters since diets with higher EPA percentages had a higher volume of milt and higher sperm motility. In conclusion, dietary fatty acids had an influence on fatty acids in the tissues of male eel and this impacted sperm performance. PMID:25638567

  18. Scorpion toxins that block T-type Ca2+ channels in spermatogenic cells inhibit the sperm acrosome reaction.

    PubMed

    López-González, Ignacio; Olamendi-Portugal, Timoteo; De la Vega-Beltrán, José L; Van der Walt, Jurg; Dyason, Karin; Possani, Lourival D; Felix, Ricardo; Darszon, Alberto

    2003-01-10

    The acrosome reaction (AR) is a Ca(2+)-dependent event required for sperm to fertilize the egg. The activation of T-type voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels plays a key role in the induction of this process. This report describes the actions of two toxins from the scorpion Parabuthus granulatus named kurtoxin-like I and II (KLI and KLII, respectively) on sperm Ca(2+) channels. Both toxins decrease T-type Ca(2+) channel activity in mouse spermatogenic cells and inhibit the AR in mature sperm. Saturating concentrations of the toxins inhibited at most approximately 70% of the whole-cell Ca(2+) current, suggesting the presence of a toxin-resistant component. In addition, both toxins inhibited approximately 60% of the AR, which is consistent with the participation of T-type Ca(2+) channels in the sperm AR. PMID:12504099

  19. Comparison of DNA Fragmentation Assay in Frozen-Thawed Cat Epididymal Sperm.

    PubMed

    Kunkitti, P; Sjödahl, A; Bergqvist, A-S; Johannisson, A; Axnér, E

    2016-08-01

    DNA fragmentation of frozen-thawed feline epididymal sperm from corpus and cauda regions was evaluated by three different techniques. The DNA fragmentation index (DFI) was compared between techniques: the sperm chromatin structural assay (SCSA(®) ), acridine orange staining techniques (AOT) and the sperm chromatin dispersion (SCD). There were significant differences in DFI among the techniques (p < 0.05) with no correlations. Only DFI values obtained from SCD revealed a significantly higher DFI in corpus compared with cauda spermatozoa (p < 0.05). The discrepancy between techniques might be due to the sensitivity of each technique, differences in severity of DNA damaged that can be detected. The difference in DFI between epididymal regions from SCD technique might indicate different maturational stages of spermatozoa, with less chromatin condensation of spermatozoa in corpus compared with cauda epididymis. PMID:27321406

  20. Phagocytosis of sperm by follicle cells of the carnivorous sponge Asbestopluma occidentalis (Porifera, Demospongiae).

    PubMed

    Riesgo, Ana

    2010-06-01

    During spermatogenesis of the carnivorous sponge Asbestopluma occidentalis, follicle cells that lined the spermatocysts phagocytosed unreleased mature sperm. Such follicle cells are part of the complex envelope that limits spermatocysts of A. occidentalis, which is also comprised of a collagen layer, a thick layer of intertwined cells, and spicules. Follicle cells showed vesicles containing single phagocytosed spermatozoa within their cytoplasm. Additionally, lipids and other inclusions were observed within the cytoplasm of follicle cells. It is likely that follicle cells recapture nutrients by phagocytosing spermatozoa and use them to form lipids and other inclusions. Such sperm phagocytosis is usually performed in higher invertebrates and vertebrates by Sertoli cells that are located in the testis wall. While Sertoli cells develop a wide range of functions such as creating a blood-testis barrier, providing crucial factors to ensure correct progression of spermatogenesis, and phagocytosis of aberrant, degenerating, and unreleased sperm cells, sponge follicle cells may only display phagocytotic activity on spermatogenic cells. PMID:20409567

  1. Sperm morphology of salamandrids (Amphibia, Urodela): implications for phylogeny and fertilization biology.

    PubMed

    Selmi, M G; Brizzi, R; Bigliardi, E

    1997-12-01

    Mature spermatozoa belonging to four salamander species, Salamandrina terdigitata, Triturus alpestris, Triturus carnifex and Triturus vulgaris, have been investigated by electron microscopy. The sperm ultrastructure of these species was compared with that of previously examined urodeles (36 species and 20 genera) and with that of anurans and caecilians. Many phylogenetic considerations may be inferred as a consequence of comparative spermatology. Urodela appears to be a monophyletic order characterized by three sperm synapomorphies: the acrosomal barb, nuclear ridge and marginal filament. Cryptobranchoidea are confirmed to form a monophyletic suborder having two synapomorphic characters: absence of mitochondria in the tail, and cylindrical shape of the tail axial rod. Within the family Salamandridae, sperm morphology confirms the phylogenetic distance between Salamandrina and Triturus, as already pointed out on the basis of molecular and morphological characters. The very complex ultrastructure of spermatozoa confirms a previous opinion that internal fertilization is the ancestral condition of the Amphibia. PMID:18627832

  2. 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.

  3. Impact of glycosylation on the unimpaired functions of the sperm

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    One of the key factors of early development is the specification of competence between the oocyte and the sperm, which occurs during gametogenesis. However, the starting point, growth, and maturation for acquiring competence during spermatogenesis and oogenesis in mammals are very different. Spermatogenesis includes spermiogenesis, but such a metamorphosis is not observed during oogenesis. Glycosylation, a ubiquitous modification, is a preliminary requisite for distribution of the structural and functional components of spermatids for metamorphosis. In addition, glycosylation using epididymal or female genital secretory glycans is an important process for the sperm maturation, the acquisition of the potential for fertilization, and the acceleration of early embryo development. However, nonemzymatic unexpected covalent bonding of a carbohydrate and malglycosylation can result in falling fertility rates as shown in the diabetic male. So far, glycosylation during spermatogenesis and the dynamics of the plasma membrane in the process of capacitation and fertilization have been evaluated, and a powerful role of glycosylation in spermatogenesis and early development is also suggested by structural bioinformatics, functional genomics, and functional proteomics. Further understanding of glycosylation is needed to provide a better understanding of fertilization and embryo development and for the development of new diagnostic and therapeutic tools for infertility. PMID:26473106

  4. On the origin of sperm epigenetic heterogeneity.

    PubMed

    Laurentino, Sandra; Borgmann, Jennifer; Gromoll, Jörg

    2016-05-01

    The influence of epigenetic modifications on reproduction and on the function of male germ cells has been thoroughly demonstrated. In particular, aberrant DNA methylation levels in sperm have been associated with abnormal sperm parameters, lower fertilization rates and impaired embryo development. Recent reports have indicated that human sperm might be epigenetically heterogeneous and that abnormal DNA methylation levels found in the sperm of infertile men could be due to the presence of sperm populations with different epigenetic quality. However, the origin and the contribution of different germ cell types to this suspected heterogeneity remain unclear. In this review, we focus on sperm epigenetics at the DNA methylation level and its importance in reproduction. We take into account the latest developments and hypotheses concerning the functional significance of epigenetic heterogeneity coming from the field of stem cell and cancer biology and discuss the potential importance and consequences of sperm epigenetic heterogeneity for reproduction, male (in)fertility and assisted reproductive technologies (ART). Based on the current information, we propose a model in which spermatogonial stem cell variability, either intrinsic or due to external factors (such as endocrine action and environmental stimuli), can lead to epigenetic sperm heterogeneity, sperm epimutations and male infertility. The elucidation of the precise causes for epimutations, the conception of adequate therapeutic options and the development of sperm selection technologies based on epigenetic quality should be regarded as crucial to the improvement of ART outcome in the near future. PMID:26884419

  5. The Bull Sperm MicroRNAome and the Effect of Fescue Toxicosis on Sperm MicroRNA Expression

    PubMed Central

    Stowe, Heather M.; Calcatera, Samantha M.; Dimmick, Marcy A.; Andrae, John G.; Duckett, Susan K.; Pratt, Scott L.

    2014-01-01

    Tall fescue [Schedonorus phoenix (Scop.) Holub] accounts for nearly 16 million hectares of pasture in the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic U.S. due to its heat, drought, and pest resistance, conferred to the plant by its symbiotic relationship with the endophyte Neotyphodium coenophialum. The endophyte produces ergot alkaloids that have negative effects on the growth and reproduction of animals, resulting in the syndrome known as fescue toxicosis. The objectives of our study were to identify microRNA (miRNA) present in bovine sperm and to evaluate the effects of fescue toxicosis on sperm miRNA expression. Angus bulls were assigned to treatments of either toxic or non-toxic fescue seed diets. Semen was collected and subjected to RNA isolation. Three samples from each treatment group were chosen and pooled for deep sequencing. To compare miRNA expression between treatment groups, a microarray was designed and conducted. For each of the top ten expressed miRNA, target prediction analysis was conducted using TargetScan. Gene ontology enrichment was assessed using the Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery. Sequencing results elucidated the presence of 1,582 unique small RNA present in sperm. Of those sequences, 382 were known Bos taurus miRNA, 22 were known but novel to Bos taurus, and 816 were predicted candidate miRNA that did not map to any currently reported miRNA. Of the sequences chosen for microarray, twenty-two showed significant differential expression between treatment groups. Gene pathways of interest included: regulation of transcription, embryonic development (including blastocyst formation), Wnt and Hedgehog signaling, oocyte meiosis, and kinase and phosphatase activity. MicroRNA present in mature sperm appears to not only be left over from spermatogenic processes, but may actually serve important regulatory roles in fertilization and early developmental processes. Further, our results indicate the possibility that environmental

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection outcomes with cryopreserved testicular sperm aspiration samples.

    PubMed

    Roque, M; Valle, M; Marques, F; Sampaio, M; Geber, S

    2016-04-01

    Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) may be performed with testicular frozen-thawed spermatozoa in patients with nonobstructive azoospermia (NOA). Sperm retrieval can be performed in advance of oocyte aspiration, as it may avoid the possibility of no recovery of spermatozoa on the day of oocyte pickup. There are few studies available in the literature concerning the use of frozen-thawed spermatozoa obtained from testicular sperm aspiration (TESA). To evaluate the effects and the outcomes of ICSI with frozen-thawed spermatozoa obtained by TESA, we performed a retrospective analysis of 43 ICSI cycles using frozen-thawed TESA. We obtained acceptable results with a fertilisation rate of 67.9%, an implantation rate (IR) of 17.1%, and clinical and ongoing pregnancy rates of 41.9% and 37.2% respectively. The results of this study suggest that performing ICSI using cryopreserved frozen-thawed testicular spermatozoa with TESA as a first option is a viable, safe, economic and effective method for patients with NOA. PMID:25998234

  9. The reproductive system of Osedax (Annelida, Siboglinidae): ovary structure, sperm ultrastructure, and fertilization mode

    PubMed Central

    Katz, Sigrid; Rouse, Greg W

    2013-01-01

    Osedax is a genus of siboglinid annelids in which the females live on dead vertebrate bones on the seafloor. These females have a posterior end that lies within the bone and contains the ovarian tissue, as well as the “roots” involved with bone degradation and nutrition. The males are microscopic and live as “harems” in the lumen of the gelatinous tube that surrounds the female trunk, well away from the ovary. Females are known to spawn fertilized primary oocytes, suggesting internal fertilization. However, little is known about sperm transfer, sperm storage, or the location of fertilization, and the morphology of the female reproductive system has not been described and compared with the reproductive systems of other siboglinids. A 3D-reconstruction of the ovisac of Osedax showed ovarian tissue with multiple lobes and mature oocytes stored in a “uterus” before being released through the single oviduct. The oviduct emerges as a gonopore on the trunk and travels along the trunk to finally open to the seawater as a thin cylindrical tube among the crown of palps. Light and transmission electron microscopy of mature Osedax sperm revealed elongate heads consisting of a nucleus with helical grooves occupied by mitochondria. In contrast to other Siboglinidae, Osedax sperm are not packaged into spermatophores or spermatozeugmata, and Osedax females lack a discrete region for sperm storage. Transmission electron microscopy and fluorescence microscopy allowed detection of sperm associated with ovarian tissue of the female ovisac of four different Osedax species. This provides the first evidence for the site of internal fertilization in Osedax. A heart body was found in the circulatory system, as seen in other siboglinids and some other annelids. The possible presence of nephridia in the anterior ovisac region was also documented. These morphological features provide new insights for comparing the regionalization of Osedax females in relation to other siboglinids

  10. 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

  11. Expression of Aquaporins in the Efferent Ductules, Sperm Counts, and Sperm Motility in Estrogen Receptor-α Deficient Mice Fed Lab Chow Versus Casein

    PubMed Central

    RUZ, RICARDO; GREGORY, MARY; SMITH, CHARLES E.; CYR, DANIEL G.; LUBAHN, DENNIS B.; HESS, REX A.; HERMO, LOUIS

    2006-01-01

    functions when ERα is expressed, but inhibiting these same functions when ERα is missing. Taken together the data underscore the importance of estrogens and ERα in maintaining sperm maturation and preventing male infertility. PMID:16261609

  12. Porcine oviduct sperm binding glycoprotein and its deleterious effect on sperm: a mechanism for negative selection of sperm?

    PubMed

    Teijeiro, Juan M; Dapino, Dora G; Marini, Patricia E

    2011-01-01

    In their journey through the oviduct some subpopulations of sperm are preserved in a reservoir, while others are negatively selected. Sperm binding glycoprotein (SBG) is a pig oviductal epithelial cell glycoprotein that produces, under capacitating conditions, acrosome alteration, p97 tyrosine-phosphorylation and reduction of the motility of sperm. In this paper, we show that SBG is accessible at the extracellular surface of the oviductal epithelial cells, supporting a sperm interaction biological role in situ. We analyze the possible dependence of the tyrosine-phosphorylation of p97 on the PKA mechanism, finding that apparently it is not PKA dependent. Also, after SBG treatment the phosphorylated proteins locate mainly at the detached periacrosomal region and at the tail of sperm; the latter may be related to SBG's motility reduction effect. The study of the time course effect of SBG on sperm as detected by chlortetracycline (CTC) staining and of its binding to sperm by immunodetection in conjunction with CTC, shows results in agreement with the hypothesis that this glycoprotein is involved in the alteration of acrosomes in a specific sperm subpopulation. The results suggest that SBG may be part of a mechanism for negative selection of sperm. PMID:22446595

  13. Methods for sperm concentration determination.

    PubMed

    Björndahl, Lars

    2013-01-01

    Proper assessment of the number of spermatozoa is essential not only as an initial step in every clinical infertility investigation [Björndahl et al (2010) A practical guide to basic laboratory andrology, 1st edn. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge] but also when attempting to establish the total sperm production in the testis [Amann (Hum Reprod 25:22-28, 2010); Amann (J Androl 30:626-641, 2009); Amann and Chapman (J Androl 30:642-649, 2009)]. Reliable methods combined with an understanding of the specific physiology involved as well as the main sources of errors related to the assessment of sperm concentration are critical for ensuring accurate concentration determination [Björndahl et al (2010) A practical guide to basic laboratory andrology, 1st edn. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge; World Health Organization (2010) WHO laboratory manual for the examination and processing of human semen. WHO, Geneva]. This chapter therefore focuses on these three aspects. PMID:22992898

  14. Protective effects of ethyl pyruvate on sperm quality in cyclophosphamide treated mice

    PubMed Central

    Bakhtiary, Zahra; Shahrooz, Rasoul; Ahmadi, Abbas; Zarei, Leila

    2015-01-01

    Background: One of the affecting factors in disturbance process of spermatogenesis is chemotherapeutic-induced oxidative stress resulted from cyclophosphamide (CP) treatment which leads to diminished sperm quality via interference in spermatogenesis process. Objective: This study was conducted to investigate the effects of ethyl pyruvate (EP) in reducing the CP-induced side effects on reproductive system. Materials and Methods: 24 mature male mice were randomly divided into 3 equal groups and were undergone therapy for 35 days. Control group received normal saline (0.1 ml/day, IP). CP group were injected CP (15 mg/kg/week, IP) and CP+EP group received EP (40 mg/kg/day, IP) as well as CP. In the end of the treatment period, the mice were euthanized by cervical dislocation. Then, the epididymis was incubated with CO2 in a human tubal fluid medium (1 ml) for half an hour in order to float sperm. Then, the number, motility, viability (eosin-nigrosin staining), DNA breakage (acridine orange staining), nucleus maturity, and sperm morphology (aniline blue staining) were analyzed. Results: The average (15.87±1.28), motility (35.77±2.75), viability (40±3.03), nucleus maturity (36±2.79) and sperm morphology (61.75±0.85) were decreased significantly in CP group in comparison with control and EP groups, whereas EP caused significant increase of these parameters. Also, the percentage of DNA damage was increased significantly in CP group (41.75±3.75) in comparison with control (2±0.71) and EP groups (22.5±4.13). Conclusion: The results of this study revealed ameliorating effects of EP on sperm quality of CP treated animals. PMID:26221128

  15. Capacitation-Associated Glycocomponents of Mammalian Sperm.

    PubMed

    Liu, Min

    2016-05-01

    Mammalian fertilization is a series of events that are mostly carbohydrate mediated. The male gamete glycocomponents are extensively synthesized and modified during sperm development and sperm transport in the reproductive tracts. Freshly ejaculated mammalian sperm are required to undergo capacitation, which takes place in the female reproductive system, in order to become fully fertilizable. Several lines of evidence reveal changes in glycosylated sperm constituents during capacitation. Although the contributions of these molecular changes to capacitation are not completely understood, the presence, rearrangement, and/or modification of these sperm glycocomponents have been demonstrated to be important for fertilization. The following review summarizes mammalian sperm glycoconstituents, with emphasis on their molecular changes during capacitation. PMID:26363036

  16. Nuclear microscopy of sperm cell elemental structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bench, Graham S.; Balhorn, Rod; Friz, Alexander M.

    1995-05-01

    Theories suggest there is a link between protamine concentrations in individual sperm and male fertility. Previously, biochemical analyses have used pooled samples containing millions of sperm to determine protamine concentrations. These methods have not been able to determine what percentage of morphologically normal sperm are biochemically defective and potentially infertile. Nuclear microscopy has been utilized to measure elemental profiles at the single sperm level. By measuring the amount of phosphorus and sulfur, the total DNA and protamine content in individual sperm from fertile bull and mouse semen have been determined. These values agree with results obtained from other biochemical analyses. Nuclear microscopy shows promise for measuring elemental profiles in the chromatin of individual sperm. The technique may be able to resolve theories regarding the importance of protamines to male fertility and identify biochemical defects responsible for certain types of male infertility.

  17. Nuclear microscopy of sperm cell elemental structure

    SciTech Connect

    Bench, G.S.; Balhorn, R.; Friz, A.M.; Freeman, S.P.H.T.

    1994-09-28

    Theories suggest there is a link between protamine concentrations in individual sperm and male fertility. Previously, biochemical analyses have used pooled samples containing millions of sperm to determine protamine concentrations. These methods have not been able to determine what percentage of morphologically normal sperm are biochemically defective and potentially infertile. Nuclear microscopy has been utilized to measure elemental profiles at the single sperm level. By measuring the amount of phosphorus and sulfur, the total DNA and protamine content in individual sperm from fertile bull and mouse semen have been determined. These values agree with results obtained from other biochemical analyses. Nuclear microscopy shows promise for measuring elemental profiles in the chromatin of individual sperm. The technique may be able to resolve theories regarding the importance of protamines to male fertility and identify biochemical defects responsible for certain types of male infertility.

  18. 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

  19. Enzymatic digestion improves testicular sperm retrieval in non-obstructive azoospermic patients

    PubMed Central

    Modarresi, Tahereh; Sabbaghian, Marjan; Shahverdi, Abdolhossein; Hosseinifar, Hani; Akhlaghi, Ali Asghar; Sadighi Gilani, Mohammad Ali

    2013-01-01

    Background: In patients with non-obstructive azoospermia (NOA), vital spermatozoa from the tissue is obtained from testes by enzymatic treatment besides the mechanical treatment. Objective: To increase the sperm recovery success of testicular sperm extraction (TESE), with enzymatic digestion if no sperm is obtained from testis tissue by mechanical method. Materials and Methods: Tissue samples were collected from 150 men who presented with clinical and laboratory data indicating NOA by means of TESE and micro dissection TESE methods. Initially, mature spermatozoa were examined for by mechanical extraction technique shredding the biopsy fractions. In cases whom no spermatozoa was observed after maximum 30 min of initial searching under the inverted microscope, the procedure was followed by enzymatic digestion using DNaseI and collagenase type IV. Surgery type, pathology, AZF, karyotype, hormones and testis size were compared in patients. Results: Of 150 cases with NOA, conventional mincing method extended with enzymatic treatment yielded successful sperm recovery in 13 (about 9%) patients. Comparison of parameters revealed that level of FSH and LH were significantly different (p=0.04 and 0.08 respectively) between two groups that response negative and positive to enzymatic digestion. Conclusion: The combination of conventional TESE and enzymatic digestion is an effective method to recover spermatozoa. The benefit of the mincing combined with enzyme to sperm retrieval for NOA firstly shorten the mechanical searching time, leading to minimizing further cellular damage as well as exposure to external conditions, and secondly reduce the number of cases with sperm recovery failures. Also, the serum level of FSH and LH are factors that influence the chance of sperm retrieval. PMID:24639777

  20. Mechanism of infertility in male guinea pigs immunized with sperm PH-20.

    PubMed

    Tung, K S; Primakoff, P; Woolman-Gamer, L; Myles, D G

    1997-05-01

    PH-20, a testis-specific protein first expressed in haploid germ cells, is present on the posterior head plasma membrane and inner acrosomal membrane of mature guinea pig sperm. PH-20 is bifunctional, having a hyaluronidase activity that allows sperm to penetrate the cumulus layer and a separate activity required for binding of acrosome-reacted sperm to the zona pellucida. The immunization of male guinea pigs with PH-20 reproducibly results in infertility with a duration of 6-12 mo or longer. In this study, we analyzed the immunopathology in the reproductive tract of PH-20-immunized males to probe the mechanism(s) responsible for the induced infertility and found two separate effects. Remarkably, in almost all infertile, PH-20-immunized males, the caudae epididymides were empty (contained no sperm) or contained only abnormal sperm. The complete loss of normal sperm in the epididymis apparently results in infertility. A second effect was the induction of experimental autoimmune orchitis (EAO), representing the first report of EAO induced by a purified testis/sperm molecule of known functions. PH-20-induced EAO differed from EAO induced by crude testis antigens in two respects: 1) an absence of epididymitis with abscess and granuloma and 2) the presence of antibody on germ cells within seminiferous tubules and inside the cauda epididymidis. The former suggests that crude testis antigens other than PH-20 are responsible for epididymitis, and the latter suggests a possible role of antibody in EAO pathogenesis and infertility induction. Return to fertility, after 6-12 mo, was accompanied by regression of EAO and reappearance of spermatozoa in the caudae epididymides. PMID:9160711

  1. Diazinon alters sperm chromatin structure in mice by phosphorylating nuclear protamines

    SciTech Connect

    Pina-Guzman, B.; Solis-Heredia, M.J.; Quintanilla-Vega, B. . E-mail: mquintan@mail.cinvestav.mx

    2005-01-15

    Organophosphorus (OP) pesticides, widely used in agriculture and pest control, are associated with male reproductive effects, including sperm chromatin alterations, but the mechanisms underlying these effects are unknown. The main toxic action of OP is related to phosphorylation of proteins. Chemical alterations in sperm nuclear proteins (protamines), which pack DNA during the last steps of spermatogenesis, contribute to male reproductive toxicity. Therefore, in the present study, we tested the ability of diazinon (DZN), an OP compound, to alter sperm chromatin by phosphorylating nuclear protamines. Mice were injected with a single dose of DZN (8.12 mg/kg, i.p.), and killed 8 and 15 days after treatment. Quality of sperm from epididymis and vas deferens was evaluated through standard methods and chromatin condensation by flow cytometry (DNA Fragmented Index parameters: DFI and DFI%) and fluorescence microscopy using chromomycin-A{sub 3} (CMA{sub 3}). Increases in DFI (15%), DFI% (4.5-fold), and CMA{sub 3} (2-fold) were observed only at 8 days post-treatment, indicating an alteration in sperm chromatin condensation and DNA damage during late spermatid differentiation. In addition, an increase of phosphorous content (approximately 50%) in protamines, especially in the phosphoserine content (approximately 73%), was found at 8 days post-treatment. Sperm viability, motility, and morphology showed significant alterations at this time. These data strongly suggest that spermatozoa exposed during the late steps of maturation were the targets of DZN exposure. The correlation observed between the phosphorous content in nuclear protamines with DFI%, DFI, and CMA{sub 3} provides evidence that phosphorylation of nuclear protamines is involved in the OP effects on sperm chromatin.

  2. Sperm Bundles in the Seminal Vesicle of the Crematogaster victima (Smith) Adult Males (Hymenoptera: Formicidae).

    PubMed

    Oliveira, C M; Moreira, J; Gomes, L F; Camargo-Mathias, M I; Lino-Neto, J

    2014-06-01

    This study establishes the presence of spermatodesm in the seminal vesicles of sexually mature males of Crematogaster victima (Smith). In this species, the spermatozoa are maintained together by an extracellular matrix in which the acrosomal regions are embedded. This characteristic has not yet been observed in any other Aculeata. However, the sperm morphology in this species is similar to that described for other ants. The spermatozoa measure on average 100 μm in length, and the number of sperm per bundle is up to 256. They are composed of a head formed by the acrosome and nucleus; this is followed by the flagellum, which is formed by the centriolar adjunct, an axoneme with a 9 + 9 + 2 microtubule pattern, two mitochondrial derivatives, and two accessory bodies. The acrosome is formed by the acrosomal vesicle and perforatorium. The nucleus is filled with compact chromatin with many areas of thick and non-compacted filaments. Both mitochondrial derivatives have the same shape and diameters. The presence of sperm bundles in sexually mature males differentiates C. victima from other ants; however, the similarities in the sperm ultrastructure support the monophyly of this insect group. PMID:27193615

  3. Sperm chromatin condensation, DNA integrity, and apoptosis in men with spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Talebi, Ali Reza; Khalili, Mohammad Ali; Vahidi, Serajodin; Ghasemzadeh, Jalal; Tabibnejad, Nasim

    2013-01-01

    Objectives To evaluate the effect of cord injury on (1) sperm parameters and (2) DNA chromatin status. Design Case–control study. Setting Data were collected from men referred to Research and Clinical Center for Infertility, Yazd, Iran. Participants Thirty infertile men with the presence of any level of spinal cord injury (SCI) were compared with 30 healthy donors with definite fertility and normal sperm parameters. Interventions Not applicable. Outcome measures Sperm chromatin integrity was assessed using aniline blue (AB), chromomycin A3 (CMA3), toluidine blue (TB), and acridine orange (AO) assays. The rate of apoptotic spermatozoa was evaluated with terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labelling (TUNEL) staining. Results Sperm concentration, motility, and morphology in men with SCI were significantly decreased compared with control group (P < 0.05). In addition, with regard to cytochemical staining and TUNEL test, the rate of reacted spermatozoa was increased significantly in SCI group when compared with the controls (P < 0.05). The majority of AB, TB, AO, and CMA3-reacted spermatozoa were higher than the “cut-off” value in men with SCI, as were the number of apoptotic spermatozoa stained with TUNEL. Conclusion Results showed that SCI disturbs sperm parameters, nuclear maturity, and DNA integrity of spermatozoa. Therefore, the production of spermatozoa with less condensed chromatin and more apoptotic rate increases after cord injury and this may be one possible cause of infertility following SCI. PMID:23809529

  4. Bovine binder-of-sperm protein BSP1 promotes protrusion and nanotube formation from liposomes

    SciTech Connect

    Lafleur, Michel; Courtemanche, Lesley; Karlsson, Goeran; Edwards, Katarina; Schwartz, Jean-Louis; Manjunath, Puttaswamy

    2010-08-27

    Research highlights: {yields} Binder-of-sperm protein 1 (BSP1) modifies the morphology of lipidic vesicles inducing bead necklace-like and thread-like structures. {yields} In the presence of multilamellar liposomes, BSP1 leads to the formation of long nanotubes. {yields} The insertion of BSP1 in the external lipid leaflet of membranes induces local changes in bilayer curvature. -- Abstract: Binder-of-sperm (BSP) proteins interact with sperm membranes and are proposed to extract selectively phosphatidylcholine and cholesterol from these. This change in lipid composition is a key step in sperm capacitation. The present work demonstrates that the interactions between the protein BSP1 and model membranes composed with phosphatidylcholine lead to drastic changes in the morphology of the lipidic self-assemblies. Using cryo-electron microscopy and fluorescence microscopy, we show that, in the presence of the protein, the lipid vesicles elongate, and form bead necklace-like structures that evolve toward small vesicles or thread-like structures. In the presence of multilamellar vesicles, where a large reservoir of lipid is available, the presence of BSP proteins lead to the formation of long nanotubes. Long spiral-like threads, associated with lipid/protein complexes, are also observed. The local curvature of lipid membranes induced by the BSP proteins may be involved in lipid domain formation and the extraction of some lipids during the sperm maturation process.

  5. 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

  6. Autoradiographic visualization of the mouse egg's sperm receptor bound to sperm

    SciTech Connect

    Bleil, J.D.; Wassarman, P.M.

    1986-04-01

    The extracellular coat, or zona pellucida, of mammalian eggs contains species-specific receptors to which sperm bind as a prelude to fertilization. In mice, ZP3, one of only three zona pellucida glycoproteins, serves as sperm receptor. Acrosome-intact, but not acrosome-reacted, mouse sperm recognize and interact with specific O-linked oligosaccharides of ZP3 resulting in sperm-egg binding. Binding, in turn, causes sperm to undergo the acrosome reaction; a membrane fusion event that results in loss of plasma membrane at the anterior region of the head and exposure of inner acrosomal membrane with its associated acrosomal contents. Bound, acrosome-reacted sperm are able to penetrate the zona pellucida and fuse with the egg's plasma membrane (fertilization). In the present report, we examined binding of radioiodinated, purified, egg ZP3 to both acrosome intact and acrosome reacted sperm by whole-mount autoradiography. Silver grains due to bound 125I-ZP3 were found localized to the acrosomal cap region of heads of acrosome-reacted sperm. Under the same conditions, 125I-fetuin bound at only background levels to heads of both acrosome-intact and -reacted sperm, and 125I-ZP2, another zona pellucida glycoprotein, bound preferentially to acrosome-reacted sperm. These results provide visual evidence that ZP3 binds preferentially and specifically to heads of acrosome intact sperm; properties expected of the mouse egg's sperm receptor.

  7. 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

  8. Prophase I Mouse Oocytes Are Deficient in the Ability to Respond to Fertilization by Decreasing Membrane Receptivity to Sperm and Establishing a Membrane Block to Polyspermy1

    PubMed Central

    Kryzak, Cassie A.; Moraine, Maia M.; Kyle, Diane D.; Lee, Hyo J.; Cubeñas-Potts, Caelin; Robinson, Douglas N.; Evans, Janice P.

    2013-01-01

    ABSTRACT Changes occurring as the prophase I oocyte matures to metaphase II are critical for the acquisition of competence for normal egg activation and early embryogenesis. A prophase I oocyte cannot respond to a fertilizing sperm as a metaphase II egg does, including the ability to prevent polyspermic fertilization. Studies here demonstrate that the competence for the membrane block to polyspermy is deficient in prophase I mouse oocytes. In vitro fertilization experiments using identical insemination conditions result in monospermy in 87% of zona pellucida (ZP)-free metaphase II eggs, while 92% of ZP-free prophase I oocytes have four or more fused sperm. The membrane block is associated with a postfertilization reduction in the capacity to support sperm binding, but this reduction in sperm-binding capacity is both less robust and slower to develop in fertilized prophase I oocytes. Fertilization of oocytes is dependent on the tetraspanin CD9, but little to no release of CD9 from the oocyte membrane is detected, suggesting that release of CD9-containing vesicles is not essential for fertilization. The deficiency in membrane block establishment in prophase I oocytes correlates with abnormalities in two postfertilization cytoskeletal changes: sperm-induced cortical remodeling that results in fertilization cone formation and a postfertilization increase in effective cortical tension. These data indicate that cortical maturation is a component of cytoplasmic maturation during the oocyte-to-egg transition and that the egg cortex has to be appropriately primed and tuned to be responsive to a fertilizing sperm. PMID:23863404

  9. Assessment of sperm for cryopreservation using the hypoosmotic viability test.

    PubMed

    Chan, P J; Tredway, D R; Pang, S C; Corselli, J; Su, B C

    1992-10-01

    In summary, the hypoosmotic viability parameter was significantly correlated with the outcome of the thawed sperm motility. The prefreeze supravital staining for sperm viability and the hypoosmotic sperm swelling test were not predictive of the thawed sperm total motility. The hypoosmotic viability parameter was not correlated to the postwarmed sperm motility after refrigeration. The results indicated that the integrity of the sperm membranes at the head were more important than the tail membrane. PMID:1426337

  10. Relationship between the nuclear morphology of the sperm of 10 bulls and their fertility.

    PubMed

    Vieytes, A L; Cisale, H O; Ferrari, M R

    2008-11-22

    The relationships between the fertility and nuclear morphology, chromatin maturity and chromatin condensation of the sperm of three bulls with a calving rate over a year of more than 65 per cent, four bulls with a calving rate between 65 per cent and 35 per cent, and three bulls with a calving rate of less than 35 per cent were studied. The sperm nuclei were stained with the Feulgen reaction, and chromatin condensation and maturation were evaluated in situ by staining with toluidine blue and acid aniline blue. Nuclear chromatin decondensation was induced with dithiothreitol; this showed that in the bulls with low fertility, more than 35 per cent of nuclei were decondensed, and that one of them had the lowest percentage of normal nuclei (64.9 per cent) and stronger positive reactions to the acid aniline blue and toluidine blue stains than the other bulls. PMID:19029109

  11. ATPases, ion exchangers and human sperm motility.

    PubMed

    Peralta-Arias, Rubén D; Vívenes, Carmen Y; Camejo, María I; Piñero, Sandy; Proverbio, Teresa; Martínez, Elizabeth; Marín, Reinaldo; Proverbio, Fulgencio

    2015-05-01

    Human sperm has several mechanisms to control its ionic milieu, such as the Na,K-ATPase (NKA), the Ca-ATPase of the plasma membrane (PMCA), the Na(+)/Ca(2) (+)-exchanger (NCX) and the Na(+)/H(+)-exchanger (NHE). On the other hand, the dynein-ATPase is the intracellular motor for sperm motility. In this work, we evaluated NKA, PMCA, NHE, NCX and dynein-ATPase activities in human sperm and investigated their correlation with sperm motility. Sperm motility was measured by Computer Assisted Semen Analysis. It was found that the NKA activity is inhibited by ouabain with two Ki (7.9 × 10(-9) and 9.8 × 10(-5) M), which is consistent with the presence of two isoforms of α subunit of the NKA in the sperm plasma membranes (α1 and α4), being α4 more sensitive to ouabain. The decrease in NKA activity is associated with a reduction in sperm motility. In addition, sperm motility was evaluated in the presence of known inhibitors of NHE, PMCA and NCX, such as amiloride, eosin, and KB-R7943, respectively, as well as in the presence of nigericin after incubation with ouabain. Amiloride, eosin and KB-R7943 significantly reduced sperm motility. Nigericin reversed the effect of ouabain and amiloride on sperm motility. Dynein-ATPase activity was inhibited by acidic pH and micromolar concentrations of Ca(2) (+). We explain our results in terms of inhibition of the dynein-ATPase in the presence of higher cytosolic H(+) and Ca(2) (+), and therefore inhibition of sperm motility. PMID:25820902

  12. Sperm Dynamics in Spiders (Araneae): Ultrastructural Analysis of the Sperm Activation Process in the Garden Spider Argiope bruennichi (Scopoli, 1772)

    PubMed Central

    Vöcking, Oliver; Uhl, Gabriele; Michalik, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Storage of sperm inside the female genital tract is an integral phase of reproduction in many animal species. The sperm storage site constitutes the arena for sperm activation, sperm competition and female sperm choice. Consequently, to understand animal mating systems information on the processes that occur from sperm transfer to fertilization is required. Here, we focus on sperm activation in spiders. Male spiders produce sperm whose cell components are coiled within the sperm cell and that are surrounded by a proteinaceous sheath. These inactive and encapsulated sperm are transferred to the female spermathecae where they are stored for later fertilization. We analyzed the ultrastructural changes of sperm cells during residency time in the female genital system of the orb-web spider Argiope bruennichi. We found three clearly distinguishable sperm conditions: encapsulated sperm (secretion sheath present), decapsulated (secretion sheath absent) and uncoiled sperm (cell components uncoiled, presumably activated). After insemination, sperm remain in the encapsulated condition for several days and become decapsulated after variable periods of time. A variable portion of the decapsulated sperm transforms rapidly to the uncoiled condition resulting in a simultaneous occurrence of decapsulated and uncoiled sperm. After oviposition, only decapsulated and uncoiled sperm are left in the spermathecae, strongly suggesting that the activation process is not reversible. Furthermore, we found four different types of secretion in the spermathecae which might play a role in the decapsulation and activation process. PMID:24039790

  13. Sperm dynamics in spiders (Araneae): ultrastructural analysis of the sperm activation process in the garden spider Argiope bruennichi (Scopoli, 1772).

    PubMed

    Vöcking, Oliver; Uhl, Gabriele; Michalik, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Storage of sperm inside the female genital tract is an integral phase of reproduction in many animal species. The sperm storage site constitutes the arena for sperm activation, sperm competition and female sperm choice. Consequently, to understand animal mating systems information on the processes that occur from sperm transfer to fertilization is required. Here, we focus on sperm activation in spiders. Male spiders produce sperm whose cell components are coiled within the sperm cell and that are surrounded by a proteinaceous sheath. These inactive and encapsulated sperm are transferred to the female spermathecae where they are stored for later fertilization. We analyzed the ultrastructural changes of sperm cells during residency time in the female genital system of the orb-web spider Argiope bruennichi. We found three clearly distinguishable sperm conditions: encapsulated sperm (secretion sheath present), decapsulated (secretion sheath absent) and uncoiled sperm (cell components uncoiled, presumably activated). After insemination, sperm remain in the encapsulated condition for several days and become decapsulated after variable periods of time. A variable portion of the decapsulated sperm transforms rapidly to the uncoiled condition resulting in a simultaneous occurrence of decapsulated and uncoiled sperm. After oviposition, only decapsulated and uncoiled sperm are left in the spermathecae, strongly suggesting that the activation process is not reversible. Furthermore, we found four different types of secretion in the spermathecae which might play a role in the decapsulation and activation process. PMID:24039790

  14. 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

  15. Investigation on the Origin of Sperm DNA Fragmentation: Role of Apoptosis, Immaturity and Oxidative Stress.

    PubMed

    Muratori, Monica; Tamburrino, Lara; Marchiani, Sara; Cambi, Marta; Olivito, Biagio; Azzari, Chiara; Forti, Gianni; Baldi, Elisabetta

    2015-01-01

    Sperm DNA fragmentation (sDF) represents a threat to male fertility, human reproduction and the health of the offspring. The causes of sDF are still unclear, even if apoptosis, oxidative assault and defects in chromatin maturation are hypothesized. Using multicolor flow cytometry and sperm sorting, we challenged the three hypothesized mechanisms by simultaneously evaluating sDF and signs of oxidative damage (8-hydroxy, 2'-deoxyguanosine [8-OHdG] and malondialdehyde [MDA]), apoptosis (caspase activity and cleaved poly[ADP-ribose] polymerase [cPARP]) and sperm immaturity (creatine phosphokinase [CK] and excess of residual histones). Active caspases and c-PARP were concomitant with sDF in a high percentage of spermatozoa (82.6% ± 9.1% and 53.5% ± 16.4%, respectively). Excess of residual histones was significantly higher in DNA-fragmented sperm versus sperm without DNA fragmentation (74.8% ± 17.5% and 37.3% ± 16.6%, respectively, p < 0.005), and largely concomitant with active caspases. Conversely, oxidative damage was scarcely concomitant with sDF in the total sperm population, at variance with live sperm, where 8-OHdG and MDA were clearly associated to sDF. In addition, most live cells with active caspase also showed 8-OHdG, suggesting activation of apoptotic pathways in oxidative-injured live cells. This is the first investigation on the origin of sDF directly evaluating the simultaneous presence of the signs of the hypothesized mechanisms with DNA breaks at the single cell level. The results indicate that the main pathway leading to sperm DNA breaks is a process of apoptosis, likely triggered by an impairment of chromatin maturation in the testis and by oxidative stress during the transit in the male genital tract. These findings are highly relevant for clinical studies on the effects of drugs on sDF and oxidative stress in infertile men and for the development of new therapeutic strategies. PMID:25786204

  16. Sperm-engulfing response of sea urchin egg surfaces inseminated with acrosome-reacted starfish sperm.

    PubMed

    Kyozuka, K; Osanai, K

    1988-10-01

    Sperm-egg interaction was examined in two interclass combinations of sea urchin (Strongylocentrotus nudus and Hemicentrotus pulcherrimus) eggs and starfish (Asterina pectinifera and Asterias amurensis) sperm. Cross-fertilization was unsuccessful between these combinations. When the vitelline coat-free sea urchin eggs were mixed with acrosome-reacted starfish sperm, the elongated microvilli on the egg surface wrapped the sperm head. This sperm-engulfing response observed on the denuded egg surface was induced only in sperm immediately after initiation of the acrosome reaction. Further fertilization events, such as gamete membrane fusion or discharge of cortical granules, did not proceed. These observations suggest that acrosome-reacted sperm can induce a local response on the heterologous egg surface, that is independent of gamete membrane fusion and egg activation. PMID:3229729

  17. Mature Teachers Matter

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berl, Patricia Scallan

    2005-01-01

    In this article, the author discusses the consequences of losing mature teachers due to voluntary separation or retirement and the mindset of a mature teacher that is different from younger teachers in a number of ways. Mature teachers are colleagues over 45 years of age possessing significant experience in the field. Future trends in teacher…

  18. REGULATION OF SPERM NUCLEAR REACTIVATION DURING FERTILIZATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Upon fusion of sperm and oocyte at fertilization, a series of events is initiated whereby the highly compacted sperm nucleus expands and is transformed into a male pronucleus capable of DNA synthesis. The regulation of these early post-fusion fertilization events has been studied...

  19. Predominance of sperm motion in corners

    PubMed Central

    Nosrati, Reza; Graham, Percival J.; Liu, Qiaozhi; Sinton, David

    2016-01-01

    Sperm migration through the female tract is crucial to fertilization, but the role of the complex and confined structure of the fallopian tube in sperm guidance remains unknown. Here, by confocal imaging microchannels head-on, we distinguish corner- vs. wall- vs. bulk-swimming bull sperm in confined geometries. Corner-swimming dominates with local areal concentrations as high as 200-fold that of the bulk. The relative degree of corner-swimming is strongest in small channels, decreases with increasing channel size, and plateaus for channels above 200 μm. Corner-swimming remains predominant across the physiologically-relevant range of viscosity and pH. Together, boundary-following sperm account for over 95% of the sperm distribution in small rectangular channels, which is similar to the percentage of wall swimmers in circular channels of similar size. We also demonstrate that wall-swimming sperm travel closer to walls in smaller channels (~100 μm), where the opposite wall is within the hydrodynamic interaction length-scale. The corner accumulation effect is more than the superposition of the influence of two walls, and over 5-fold stronger than that of a single wall. These findings suggest that folds and corners are dominant in sperm migration in the narrow (sub-mm) lumen of the fallopian tube and microchannel-based sperm selection devices. PMID:27211846

  20. Geometric Morphometrics of Rodent Sperm Head Shape

    PubMed Central

    Varea Sánchez, María; Bastir, Markus; Roldan, Eduardo R. S.

    2013-01-01

    Mammalian spermatozoa, particularly those of rodent species, are extremely complex cells and differ greatly in form and dimensions. Thus, characterization of sperm size and, particularly, sperm shape represents a major challenge. No consensus exists on a method to objectively assess size and shape of spermatozoa. In this study we apply the principles of geometric morphometrics to analyze rodent sperm head morphology and compare them with two traditional morphometry methods, that is, measurements of linear dimensions and dimensions-derived parameters calculated using formulae employed in sperm morphometry assessments. Our results show that geometric morphometrics clearly identifies shape differences among rodent spermatozoa. It is also capable of discriminating between size and shape and to analyze these two variables separately. Thus, it provides an accurate method to assess sperm head shape. Furthermore, it can identify which sperm morphology traits differ between species, such as the protrusion or retraction of the base of the head, the orientation and relative position of the site of flagellum insertion, the degree of curvature of the hook, and other distinct anatomical features and appendices. We envisage that the use of geometric morphometrics may have a major impact on future studies focused on the characterization of sperm head formation, diversity of sperm head shape among species (and underlying evolutionary forces), the effects of reprotoxicants on changes in cell shape, and phenotyping of genetically-modified individuals. PMID:24312234

  1. Segmentation of white rat sperm image

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bai, Weiguo; Liu, Jianguo; Chen, Guoyuan

    2011-11-01

    The segmentation of sperm image exerts a profound influence in the analysis of sperm morphology, which plays a significant role in the research of animals' infertility and reproduction. To overcome the microscope image's properties of low contrast and highly polluted noise, and to get better segmentation results of sperm image, this paper presents a multi-scale gradient operator combined with a multi-structuring element for the micro-spermatozoa image of white rat, as the multi-scale gradient operator can smooth the noise of an image, while the multi-structuring element can retain more shape details of the sperms. Then, we use the Otsu method to segment the modified gradient image whose gray scale processed is strong in sperms and weak in the background, converting it into a binary sperm image. As the obtained binary image owns impurities that are not similar with sperms in the shape, we choose a form factor to filter those objects whose form factor value is larger than the select critical value, and retain those objects whose not. And then, we can get the final binary image of the segmented sperms. The experiment shows this method's great advantage in the segmentation of the micro-spermatozoa image.

  2. Predominance of sperm motion in corners.

    PubMed

    Nosrati, Reza; Graham, Percival J; Liu, Qiaozhi; Sinton, David

    2016-01-01

    Sperm migration through the female tract is crucial to fertilization, but the role of the complex and confined structure of the fallopian tube in sperm guidance remains unknown. Here, by confocal imaging microchannels head-on, we distinguish corner- vs. wall- vs. bulk-swimming bull sperm in confined geometries. Corner-swimming dominates with local areal concentrations as high as 200-fold that of the bulk. The relative degree of corner-swimming is strongest in small channels, decreases with increasing channel size, and plateaus for channels above 200 μm. Corner-swimming remains predominant across the physiologically-relevant range of viscosity and pH. Together, boundary-following sperm account for over 95% of the sperm distribution in small rectangular channels, which is similar to the percentage of wall swimmers in circular channels of similar size. We also demonstrate that wall-swimming sperm travel closer to walls in smaller channels (~100 μm), where the opposite wall is within the hydrodynamic interaction length-scale. The corner accumulation effect is more than the superposition of the influence of two walls, and over 5-fold stronger than that of a single wall. These findings suggest that folds and corners are dominant in sperm migration in the narrow (sub-mm) lumen of the fallopian tube and microchannel-based sperm selection devices. PMID:27211846

  3. METHODS FOR ASSESSING RAT SPERM MOTILITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA) systems are becoming more widely used. ith this spread of technology come more data from toxicology studies, designed to determine if treatment with putative toxicants affects sperm motion parameters. hile these CASA methods provide us with...

  4. Predominance of sperm motion in corners

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nosrati, Reza; Graham, Percival J.; Liu, Qiaozhi; Sinton, David

    2016-05-01

    Sperm migration through the female tract is crucial to fertilization, but the role of the complex and confined structure of the fallopian tube in sperm guidance remains unknown. Here, by confocal imaging microchannels head-on, we distinguish corner- vs. wall- vs. bulk-swimming bull sperm in confined geometries. Corner-swimming dominates with local areal concentrations as high as 200-fold that of the bulk. The relative degree of corner-swimming is strongest in small channels, decreases with increasing channel size, and plateaus for channels above 200 μm. Corner-swimming remains predominant across the physiologically-relevant range of viscosity and pH. Together, boundary-following sperm account for over 95% of the sperm distribution in small rectangular channels, which is similar to the percentage of wall swimmers in circular channels of similar size. We also demonstrate that wall-swimming sperm travel closer to walls in smaller channels (~100 μm), where the opposite wall is within the hydrodynamic interaction length-scale. The corner accumulation effect is more than the superposition of the influence of two walls, and over 5-fold stronger than that of a single wall. These findings suggest that folds and corners are dominant in sperm migration in the narrow (sub-mm) lumen of the fallopian tube and microchannel-based sperm selection devices.

  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. Effect of boron supplementation on semen quality estimates in mature boars

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objective of the study was to determine the effect of dietary boron supplementation on sperm production and semen quality estimates in mature boars. Twelve crossbred boars (Landrace x Large White x Duroc x Hampshire) that were 2.5 +/- 0.2 years of age and 215 +/- 5 kg were randomly assigned to ...

  7. Dynamics of vegetative cytoplasm during generative cell formation and pollen maturation in Arabidopsis thaliana

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuang, A.; Musgrave, M. E.

    1996-01-01

    Ultrastructural changes of pollen cytoplasm during generative cell formation and pollen maturation in Arabidopsis thaliana were studied. The pollen cytoplasm develops a complicated ultrastructure and changes dramatically during these stages. Lipid droplets increase after generative cell formation and their organization and distribution change with the developmental stage. Starch grains in amyloplasts increase in number and size during generative and sperm cell formation and decrease at pollen maturity. The shape and membrane system of mitochondria change only slightly. Dictyosomes become very prominent, and numerous associated vesicles are observed during and after sperm cell formation. Endoplasmic reticulum appears extensively as stacks during sperm cell formation. Free and polyribosomes are abundant in the cytoplasm at all developmental stages although they appear denser at certain stages and in some areas. In mature pollen, all organelles are randomly distributed throughout the vegetative cytoplasm and numerous small particles appear. Organization and distribution of storage substances and appearance of these small particles during generative and sperm cell formation and pollen maturation are discussed.

  8. Partial deletion of chromosome 8 β-defensin cluster confers sperm dysfunction and infertility in male mice.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Yu S; Webb, Sheila; Lettice, Laura; Tardif, Steve; Kilanowski, Fiona; Tyrrell, Christine; Macpherson, Heather; Semple, Fiona; Tennant, Peter; Baker, Tina; Hart, Alan; Devenney, Paul; Perry, Paul; Davey, Tracey; Barran, Perdita; Barratt, Chris L; Dorin, Julia R

    2013-10-01

    β-defensin peptides are a family of antimicrobial peptides present at mucosal surfaces, with the main site of expression under normal conditions in the male reproductive tract. Although they kill microbes in vitro and interact with immune cells, the precise role of these genes in vivo remains uncertain. We show here that homozygous deletion of a cluster of nine β-defensin genes (DefbΔ9) in the mouse results in male sterility. The sperm derived from the mutants have reduced motility and increased fragility. Epididymal sperm isolated from the cauda should require capacitation to induce the acrosome reaction but sperm from the mutants demonstrate precocious capacitation and increased spontaneous acrosome reaction compared to wild-types but have reduced ability to bind the zona pellucida of oocytes. Ultrastructural examination reveals a defect in microtubule structure of the axoneme with increased disintegration in mutant derived sperm present in the epididymis cauda region, but not in caput region or testes. Consistent with premature acrosome reaction, sperm from mutant animals have significantly increased intracellular calcium content. Thus we demonstrate in vivo that β-defensins are essential for successful sperm maturation, and their disruption leads to alteration in intracellular calcium, inappropriate spontaneous acrosome reaction and profound male infertility. PMID:24204287

  9. Sequential focal and global elevations of sperm intracellular Ca2+ are initiated by the zona pellucida during acrosomal exocytosis.

    PubMed

    Florman, H M

    1994-09-01

    The acrosome reaction is a Cai(2+)-dependent secretory event that is initiated in mammalian sperm by ZP3, the stimulatory agonist in the egg's zona pellucida. Video image processing-enhanced fluorescence microscopy was used to monitor sperm Cai2+ responses to agonist during exocytosis. Two types of agonist-dependent Cai2+ transport pathways were defined. The first mediates small, transient Cai2+ elevations that are restricted to the sperm head. Dye emission and quenching studies indicate that this focal channel is not voltage-regulated, conducts several divalent metal cations (Co2+, Mn2+, and Ni2+) in addition to Ca2+, and has the properties of a poorly selective cation channel. The second transporter mediates sustained Cai2+ elevations throughout the cell and is pharmacologically identical to the L-type of voltage-sensitive Ca2+ channel. These channels are distinguished by inhibitor sensitivity and by their regulation during sperm maturation. A model is proposed in which ZP3 initiates a G protein-independent opening of the cation channel, producing depolarization of sperm membrane potential and consequent opening of L channels. The coordinate regulation of sperm Ca2+ channels by ZP3 during gamete adhesion promotes acrosomal exocytosis. PMID:8088433

  10. Why so many sperm cells?

    PubMed Central

    Reynaud, Karine; Schuss, Zeev; Rouach, Nathalie; Holcman, David

    2015-01-01

    A key limiting step in fertility is the search for the oocyte by spermatozoa. Initially, there are tens of millions of sperm cells, but a single one will make it to the oocyte. This may be one of the most severe selection processes designed by evolution, whose role is yet to be understood. Why such a huge redundancy is required and what does that mean for the search process? we discuss here these questions and consequently new lines of interdisciplinary research needed to find possible answers. PMID:26478772