Selected sperm traits are simultaneously altered after scrotal heat stress and play specific roles in in vitro fertilization and embryonic development

Theriogenology. 2016 Sep 1;86(4):924-933. doi: 10.1016/j.theriogenology.2016.03.015. Epub 2016 Mar 19.

Abstract

Improvements in the estimation of male fertility indicators require advances in laboratory tests for sperm assessment. The aims of the present work were (1) to apply a multivariate analysis to examine sperm set of alterations and interactions and (2) to evaluate the importance of sperm parameters on the outcome of standard IVF and embryonic development. Bulls (n = 3) were subjected to scrotal insulation, and ejaculates were collected before (preinsulation = Day 0) and through 56 days (Days 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, 42, 49, and 56) of the experimental period. Sperm head morphometry and chromatin variables were assessed by a computational image analysis, and IVF was performed. Scrotal heat stress induced alterations in all evaluated sperm head features, as well as cleavage and blastocyst rates. A principal component analysis revealed three main components (factors) that represented almost 89% of the cumulative variance. In addition, an association of factor scores with cleavage (factor 1) and blastocyst (factor 3) rates was observed. In conclusion, several sperm traits were simultaneously altered as a result of a thermal insult. These sperm traits likely play specific roles in IVF and embryonic development.

Keywords: Bovine; Chromatin integrity; In vitro fertilization; Sperm-head morphometry.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cattle / physiology*
  • Cryopreservation / veterinary
  • Embryonic Development / physiology*
  • Fertilization in Vitro / veterinary*
  • Hot Temperature
  • Male
  • Scrotum / physiology*
  • Semen Preservation / veterinary
  • Spermatozoa / physiology*