Comparison of sperm selection techniques in donkeys: motile subpopulations from a practical point of view
Isabel Ortiz, Jesús Dorado, Jane M. Morrell, Maria Angeles Diaz-Jimenez, Blasa Pereira, César Consuegra, Manuel Hidalgo
The aim of this study was to compare the post-thaw distribution of motile sperm subpopulations, following simple or colloid centrifugation. A new analysis was used to evaluate the available number of sperm from each subpopulation after each centrifugation protocol. Frozen/thawed semen samples were divided into the following after-thawing treatments: uncentrifuged control (UDC), sperm washing (SW) and two colloid centrifugation procedures (Equipure, SLC-E, and Androcoll, SLC-A). Percentage of total and progressive motility (TM and PM), as well as sperm motility kinematics, distribution of motile sperm subpopulations, and recovery rates, were statistically compared among treatments. The SLC treatments showed higher (P < 0.001) TM and PM than UDC and SW. Following each SLC procedure, different percentages of the subpopulation with the most vigorous and progressive sperm (sP4) were obtained. SLC-A recovered a larger number of sperm belonging to sP4 than SLC-E, but not significantly higher than SW. From a practical point of view, sperm washing, the standard centrifugation procedure for equine semen processing, recovered the same amount of fast and progressive sperm as colloid centrifugation, apparently the best treatment according to traditional analysis. In conclusion, samples processed by SLC have higher motility percentages than SW and UDC but, after combining the available number of sperm, SLC and SW techniques are equally efficient in recovering sperm from the most vigorous, fast and progressive motile subpopulation (sP4).
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