Functional Assessment of Diluent Choice for Semen Cryopreservation from Stallions with High and Low Freezability

Heder Nunes Ferreira, José Carlos Ferreira-Silva, Jorge Motta Rocha, Pamela Ramos-Deus, Joane Isis Travassos Ribeiro, Marcelo Tigre Moura, José Pompeu Santos Filho, Marcos Antonio Lemos Oliveira

Abstract


Background: fertility rates using horse frozen-thawed semen remain lower than in other livestock species. This fact further suggests that horse semen hold intrinsic sensitivity to cryoinjury that must be investigated. Moreover, there is a substantial influence of genetic factors and diluent choice upon horse cryopreservation outcome. Collectively, these genetic and technical properties of horse semen could be explored to identify factors or conditions that may increase semen viability after freeze-thawing. The aim of this work was to evaluate the effect of diluents Botu-Crio®,Lactose-EDTA®, and INRA-82® on cryopreserved semen from stallions with high (HFA) and low freezability (LFA).

Materials, Methods & Results: frozen-thawed semen was evaluated for motility, membrane integrity, and sperm DNA fragmentation using the thermoresistance test (TRT). Comparisons for each parameter were done in a pair-wise fashion between HFA and LFA semen at one-hour intervals during the TRT (0 h - 4 h). Sperm motility in HFA, regardless of the diluent, was larger (P < 0.05) than LFA, both on 0h and 1h. In the 2h evaluation, sperm motility using Botu-Crio® and Lactose-EDTA® was greater (P < 0.05) for HFA. Analysis of sperm membrane integrity was similar between HFA and LFA semen (P > 0.05) at 0 h and 3 h. Sperm DNA fragmentation was lower (P < 0.05) in HFA semen at 0 h and 1 h.

 Discussion: frozen-thawed semen from stallions of high freezing ability showed greater motility at all analysis, irrespectively of diluent choice, suggesting a strong influence of genetic factors on cryopreservation outcome. Membrane integrity was similar immediately after thawing but did differ later on other TRT time-points, irrespectively of diluent choice. As observed for motility, it was expected that sperm cells of stallions of HFA would show higher membrane integrity than their LFA counterparts. Sperm DNA fragmentation was quite low for both groups, as described in horses. Surprisingly, sperm DNA fragmentation incidence was constant throughout the analysis for both HFA and LFA. It was initially envisioned that increased DNA fragmentation would be found in semen from LFA stallions, since it is caused by multiple origins such as genetic factors. In conclusion, the semen diluent affects horse sperm motility after thawing, particularly from stallions with lower semen freezability.


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.22456/1679-9216.89906

Copyright (c) 2019 Heder Nunes Ferreira, José Carlos Ferreira-Silva, Jorge Motta Rocha, Pamela Ramos-Deus, Joane Isis Travassos Ribeiro, Marcelo Tigre Moura, José Pompeu Santos Filho, Marcos Antonio Lemos Oliveira

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