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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
Production of F? offspring with vitrified sperm from a live-bearing fish, the green swordtail Xiphophorus hellerii.
Zebrafish
PUBLISHED: 09-01-2011
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This study reports the first production of offspring with vitrified sperm from a live-bearing fish Xiphophorus hellerii. The overall goal of this study was to develop streamlined protocols for integration into a standardized approach for vitrification of aquatic species germplasm. The objectives were to (1) estimate acute toxicity of cryoprotectants, (2) evaluate vitrification solutions, (3) compare different thawing methods, (4) evaluate membrane integrity of post-thaw sperm vitrified in different cryoprotectants, and (5) evaluate the fertility of vitrified sperm. Nine cryoprotectants and two commercial vitrification additives were tested for acute toxicity and glass forming ability, alone and in combination. Two vitrification solutions, 40% glycerol (Gly) and 20% Gly+20% ethylene glycol (EG) in 500?mOsmol/kg Hanks balanced salt solution (HBSS), were selected for vitrification of 10??L sperm samples using inoculating loops plunged into liquid nitrogen. Samples were thawed at 24°C (one loop in 5??L of HBSS or three loops in 500??L of HBSS). Samples thawed in 500??L were concentrated by centrifugation (1000 g for 5?min at 4°C) into 5??L for artificial insemination. Offspring were produced from virgin females inseminated with sperm vitrified with 20% Gly+20% EG and concentrated by centrifugation.
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Production of channel catfish with sperm cryopreserved by rapid non-equilibrium cooling.
Cryobiology
PUBLISHED: 03-25-2011
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This report describes the feasibility of using vitrification for fish sperm. Vitrification can be used to preserve samples in the field and offers an alternative to conventional cryopreservation, although it has not been systematically studied for sperm of aquatic species. The overall goal of the project was to develop streamlined protocols that could be integrated into a standardized approach for vitrification of aquatic species germplasm. The objectives of the present study in channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) were to: (1) evaluate the acute toxicity of 5%, 10%, 20% and 30% methanol, N,N-dimethyl acetamide, dimethyl sulfoxide, 1,2-propanediol, and methyl glycol; (2) evaluate a range of devices commonly used for cryopreservation and vitrification of mammalian sperm; (3) compare vitrification with and without cryoprotectants; (4) evaluate the post-thaw membrane integrity of sperm vitrified in different cryoprotectant solutions, and (5) evaluate the ability of vitrified sperm to fertilize eggs. Cryoprotectant concentrations of higher than 20% were found to be toxic to sperm. Methanol and methyl glycol were the least toxic at a concentration of 20% with an exposure time of less than 5 min. We evaluated a method reported for human sperm, using small volumes in loops (15 ?l) or cut standard straws (20 ?l) with and without cryoprotectants plunged into liquid nitrogen. Cryoprotectant-free vitrification using loops did not yield fertilization (assessed by neurulation), and the fertilization rates observed in two trials using the cut standard straws were low (~2%). In general, fertilization values for vitrification experiments were low and the use of low concentrations of cryoprotectants yielded lower fertilization (<10%) than the use of vitrification solutions containing high cryoprotectant concentrations (as high as 25%). The highest neurulation obtained was from a mixture of three cryoprotectants (20% methanol+10% methyl glycol+10% propanediol) with a single-step addition. This was reflected in the flow cytometry data from which the highest membrane integrity using loops was for 20% methanol+10% methyl glycol+10% propanediol (~50%). We report the first successful sperm vitrification in fish and production of offspring from vitrified sperm in channel catfish. Although the fertilization values were low, at present this technique could nevertheless be used to reconstitute lines (especially in small aquarium fishes), but it would require improvement and scaling up before being useful as a production method for large-bodied fishes such as catfish.
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Offspring production with cryopreserved sperm from a live-bearing fish Xiphophorus maculatus and implications for female fecundity.
Comp. Biochem. Physiol. C Toxicol. Pharmacol.
PUBLISHED: 03-18-2011
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Xiphophorus fishes are well-established models for biomedical research of spontaneous or induced tumors, and their use in research dates back to the 1930s. Currently, 58 well-pedigreed lines exist among 24 Xiphophorus species housed as live animals at the Xiphophorus Genetic Stock Center. The technique of sperm cryopreservation has been applied to preserve these valuable genetic resources, and production of offspring has been reported with cryopreserved sperm in two species (X. helleri and X. couchianus). The goal of this research was to establish protocols for sperm cryopreservation and artificial insemination that yield live young in X. maculatus, a widely used research species. The objectives were to: 1) collect basic biological characteristics of males, and quantify the sperm production yield after crushing of dissected testis; 2) cryopreserve sperm from X. maculatus by adapting as necessary the protocols for sperm cryopreservation of X. helleri and X. couchianus; 3) use cryopreserved sperm to inseminate virgin females of X maculatus and other species (X. helleri and X. couchianus), and 4) compare experimental trials over a 3-year period to identify opportunities for improving female fecundity. In total, 117 males were used in this study with a standard length of 2.5 ± 0.3 cm (mean ± SD), body weight of 0.474 ± 0.149 g, and dissected testis weight of 7.1 ± 3.7 mg. Calculation of sperm availability showed 5.9 ± 2.8 × 10(6) sperm cells per mg of testis weight. Offspring were produced from cryopreserved sperm. Male-to-male variation (1-70%) was observed in post-thaw motility despite little variation in motility before freezing (60-90%) or genetic variation (~100 generations of sib-mating). Comparisons of biological factors of males did not have significant correlations with the production of live young, and the influence of females on production of young was identified from the comparison of artificial insemination over 3 years. Overall, this study describes offspring production from cryopreserved sperm in a third species of Xiphophorus fishes, and identifies the opportunities for improving female fecundity which is essential for establishment of germplasm repositories for Xiphophorus fishes.
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Outlook for development of high-throughput cryopreservation for small-bodied biomedical model fishes.
Comp. Biochem. Physiol. C Toxicol. Pharmacol.
PUBLISHED: 02-28-2011
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With the development of genomic research technologies, comparative genome studies among vertebrate species are becoming commonplace for human biomedical research. Fish offer unlimited versatility for biomedical research. Extensive studies are done using these fish models, yielding tens of thousands of specific strains and lines, and the number is increasing every day. Thus, high-throughput sperm cryopreservation is urgently needed to preserve these genetic resources. Although high-throughput processing has been widely applied for sperm cryopreservation in livestock for decades, application in biomedical model fishes is still in the concept-development stage because of the limited sample volumes and the biological characteristics of fish sperm. High-throughput processing in livestock was developed based on advances made in the laboratory and was scaled up for increased processing speed, capability for mass production, and uniformity and quality assurance. Cryopreserved germplasm combined with high-throughput processing constitutes an independent industry encompassing animal breeding, preservation of genetic diversity, and medical research. Currently, there is no specifically engineered system available for high-throughput of cryopreserved germplasm for aquatic species. This review is to discuss the concepts and needs for high-throughput technology for model fishes, propose approaches for technical development, and overview future directions of this approach.
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Outlook for development of high-throughput cryopreservation for small-bodied biomedical model fishes.
Comp. Biochem. Physiol. C Toxicol. Pharmacol.
PUBLISHED: 02-28-2011
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With the development of genomic research technologies, comparative genome studies among vertebrate species are becoming commonplace for human biomedical research. Fish offer unlimited versatility for biomedical research. Extensive studies are done using these fish models, yielding tens of thousands of specific strains and lines, and the number is increasing every day. Thus, high-throughput sperm cryopreservation is urgently needed to preserve these genetic resources. Although high-throughput processing has been widely applied for sperm cryopreservation in livestock for decades, application in biomedical model fishes is still in the concept-development stage because of the limited sample volumes and the biological characteristics of fish sperm. High-throughput processing in livestock was developed based on advances made in the laboratory and was scaled up for increased processing speed, capability for mass production, and uniformity and quality assurance. Cryopreserved germplasm combined with high-throughput processing constitutes an independent industry encompassing animal breeding, preservation of genetic diversity, and medical research. Currently, there is no specifically engineered system available for high-throughput of cryopreserved germplasm for aquatic species. This review is to discuss the concepts and needs for high-throughput technology for model fishes, propose approaches for technical development, and overview future directions of this approach.
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Sperm quality assessments for endangered razorback suckers Xyrauchen texanus.
Reproduction
PUBLISHED: 10-18-2010
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Flow cytometry (FCM) and computer-assisted sperm motion analysis (CASA) methods were developed and validated for use with endangered razorback suckers Xyrauchen texanus collected (n=64) during the 2006 spawning season. Sperm motility could be activated within osmolality ranges noted during milt collections (here 167-343?mOsm/kg). We hypothesized that sperm quality of milt collected into isoosmotic (302?mOsm/kg) or hyperosmotic (500?mOsm/kg) Hanks balanced salt solution would not differ. Pre-freeze viabilities were similar between osmolalities (79%±6 (s.e.m.) and 76%±7); however, post-thaw values were greater in hyperosmotic buffer (27%±3 and 12%±2; P=0.0065), as was mitochondrial membrane potential (33%±4 and 13%±2; P=0.0048). Visual estimates of pre-freeze motility correlated with total (r=0.7589; range 23-82%) and progressive motility (r=0.7449) by CASA and were associated with greater viability (r=0.5985; P<0.0001). Count (FCM) was negatively correlated with post-thaw viability (r=-0.83; P=0.0116) and mitochondrial function (r=-0.91; P=0.0016). By FCM-based assessments of DNA integrity, whereby increased fluorochrome binding indicated more fragmentation, higher levels were negatively correlated with count (r=-0.77; P<0.0001) and pre-freeze viabilities (r=-0.66; P=0.0004). Fragmentation was higher in isotonic buffer (P=0.0234). To increase reproductive capacity of natural populations, the strategy and protocols developed can serve as a template for use with other imperiled fish species, biomonitoring, and genome banking.
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Sperm cryopreservation of the critically endangered olive barb (Sarpunti) Puntiussarana (Hamilton, 1822).
Cryobiology
PUBLISHED: 09-13-2010
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The present study focused on development of a sperm cryopreservation protocol for the critically endangered olive barb Puntiussarana (Hamilton, 1822) collected from two stocks within Bangladesh and reared in the Fisheries Field Laboratory, Bangladesh Agricultural University (BAU). The sperm were collected in Alsevers solution prepared at 296mOsmol kg(-1). Sperm were activated with distilled water (24mOsmol kg(-1)) to characterize motility. Maximum motility (90%) was observed within 15s after activation, and sperm remained motile for 35s. Sperm activation was evaluated in different osmolalities and motility was completely inhibited when osmolality of the extender was ?287mOsmol kg(-1). To evaluate cryoprotectant toxicity, sperm were equilibrated with 5%, 10% and 15% each of dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and methanol. Sperm motility was noticeably reduced within 10min, when sperm were equilibrated with 15% DMSO, indicating acute toxicity to spermatozoa and therefore this concentration was excluded in further trials. Sperm were cryopreserved using DMSO at concentrations of 5% and 10% and methanol at 5%, 10% and 15%. The one-step freezing protocol (from 5°C to -80°C at 10°C/min) was carried out in a computer-controlled freezer (FREEZE CONTROL® CL-3300; Australia) and 0.25-ml straws containing spermatozoa were stored in liquid nitrogen for 7-15days at -196°C. The highest motility in thawed sperm 61±8% (mean±SD) was obtained with 10% DMSO. The fertilization and hatching rates were 70% and 37% for cryopreserved sperm, and 72% and 62% for fresh sperm. The protocol reported here can be useful for hatchery-scale production of olive barb. The use of cryopreserved sperm can facilitate hatchery operations, and can provide for long-term conservation of genetic resources to contribute in the recovery of critically endangered fish such as the olive barb.
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Determination of sperm concentration for small-bodied biomedical model fishes by use of microspectrophotometry.
Zebrafish
PUBLISHED: 06-03-2010
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The goal of this study was to establish an efficient method for determination of sperm concentration requiring only 1-2 microL of sample by use of microspectrophotometry. The objectives were (1) determination of wavelengths with absorbance profiles appropriate for analysis of sperm suspensions from zebrafish Danio rerio, green swordtail Xiphophorus helleri, and medaka Oryzias latipes collected by crushing of dissected testis or by stripping of live males; (2) generation of standard curves and equations between sperm sample absorbance and sperm concentration estimated by hemocytometer counts; (3) accuracy verification of equations for estimating concentration by microspectrophotometry; and (4) analysis of the precision in generating equations and estimation of sperm concentration. Within the visible wavelengths (380-750 nm) there was no single maximal absorbance peak. For zebrafish, a linear correlation was established with an effective absorbance range of 0.034-0.936 for crushed samples, and 0.028-0.961 for stripped samples at 400 nm. For Xiphophorus, the effective absorbance range was 0.014-1.154 for crushed samples, and the effective range was 0.038-1.082 for stripped samples. For medaka, the effective range was 0.041-0.896 for crushed samples. The accuracy of these equations was verified by comparison of sample concentrations counted with hemocytometer and calculated with equations, and no significant differences (p = 0.447) were observed. Measurement of serially diluted aliquots from pooled samples verified the precision of techniques used. Overall, this confirmed that microspectrophotometric estimation of sperm concentration is accurate, efficient, and sample-saving for use with small-bodied fishes.
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High-throughput cryopreservation of spermatozoa of blue catfish (Ictalurus furcatus): Establishment of an approach for commercial-scale processing.
Cryobiology
PUBLISHED: 05-03-2010
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Hybrid catfish created by crossing of female channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) and male blue catfish (Ictalurus furcatus) are being used increasingly in foodfish aquaculture because of their fast growth and efficient food conversion. However, the availability of blue catfish males is limited, and their peak spawning is at a different time than that of the channel catfish. As such, cryopreservation of sperm of blue catfish could improve production of hybrid catfish, and has been studied in the laboratory and tested for feasibility in a commercial dairy bull cryopreservation facility. However, an approach for commercially relevant production of cryopreserved blue catfish sperm is still needed. The goal of this study was to develop practical approaches for commercial-scale sperm cryopreservation of blue catfish by use of an automated high-throughput system (MAPI, CryoBioSystem Co.). The objectives were to: (1) refine cooling rate and cryoprotectant concentration, and evaluate their interactions; (2) evaluate the effect of sperm concentration on cryopreservation; (3) refine cryoprotectant concentration based on the highest effective sperm concentration; (4) compare the effect of thawing samples at 20 or 40°C; (5) evaluate the fertility of thawed sperm at a research scale by fertilizing with channel catfish eggs; (6) test the post-thaw motility and fertility of sperm from individual males in a commercial setting, and (7) test for correlation of cryopreservation results with biological indices used for male evaluation. The optimal cooling rate was 5°C/min (Micro Digitcool, IMV) for high-throughput cryopreservation using CBS high-biosecurity 0.5-ml straws with 10% methanol, and a concentration of 1×10(9)sperm/ml. There was no difference in post-thaw motility when samples were thawed at 20°C for 40s or 40°C for 20s. After fertilization, the percentage of neurulation (Stage V embryos) was 80±21%, and percentage of embryonic mobility (Stage VI embryo) was 51±22%. There was a significant difference among the neurulation values produced by thawed blue catfish sperm, fresh blue catfish sperm (P=0.010) and channel catfish sperm (P=0.023), but not for Stage VI embryos (P?0.585). Cryopreserved sperm from ten males did not show significant variation in post-thaw motility or fertility at the neurulation stage. This study demonstrates that the protocol established for high-throughput cryopreservation of blue catfish sperm can provide commercially relevant quantities and quality of sperm with stable fertility for hybrid catfish production and provides a model for establishment of commercial-scale approaches for other aquatic species.
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Evaluation of cryoprotectant and cooling rate for sperm cryopreservation in the euryhaline fish medaka Oryzias latipes.
Cryobiology
PUBLISHED: 04-12-2010
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Medaka Oryzias latipes is a well-recognized biomedical fish model because of advantageous features such as small body size, transparency of embryos, and established techniques for gene knockout and modification. The goal of this study was to evaluate two critical factors, cryoprotectant and cooling rate, for sperm cryopreservation in 0.25-ml French straws. The objectives were to: (1) evaluate the acute toxicity of methanol, 2-methoxyethanol (ME), dimethyl sulfoxide (Me(2)SO), N,N-dimethylacetamide (DMA), N,N-dimethyl formamide (DMF), and glycerol with concentrations of 5%, 10%, and 15% for 60min of incubation at 4°C; (2) evaluate cooling rates from 5 to 25°C/min for freezing and their interaction with cryoprotectants, and (3) test fertility of thawed sperm cryopreserved with selected cryoprotectants and associated cooling rates. Evaluation of cryoprotectant toxicity showed that methanol and ME (5% and 10%) did not change the sperm motility after 30min; Me(2)SO, DMA, and DMF (10% and 15%) and glycerol (5%, 10% and 15%) significantly decreased the motility of sperm within 1min after mixing. Based on these results, methanol and ME were selected as cryoprotectants (10%) to evaluate with different cooling rates (from 5 to 25°C/min) and were compared to Me(2)SO and DMF (10%) (based on their use as cryoprotectants in previous publications). Post-thaw motility was affected by cryoprotectant, cooling rate, and their interaction (P?0.000). The highest post-thaw motility (50±10%) was observed at a cooling rate of 10°C/min with methanol as cryoprotectant. Comparable post-thaw motility (37±12%) was obtained at a cooling rate of 15°C/min with ME as cryoprotectant. With DMF, post-thaw motility at all cooling rates was ?10% which was significantly lower than that of methanol and ME. With Me(2)SO, post-thaw motilities were less than 1% at all cooling rates, and significantly lower compared to the other three cryoprotectants (P?0.000). When sperm from individual males were cryopreserved with 10% methanol at a cooling rate of 10°C/min and 10% ME with a rate of 15°C/min, no difference was found in post-thaw motility. Fertility testing of thawed sperm cryopreserved with 10% methanol at a rate of 10°C/min showed average hatching of 70±30% which was comparable to that of fresh sperm (86±15%). Overall, this study established a baseline for high-throughput sperm cryopreservation of medaka provides an outline for protocol standardization and use of automated processing equipment in the future.
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Sperm cryopreservation of a live-bearing fish, Xiphophorus couchianus: male-to-male variation in post-thaw motility and production of F(1) hybrid offspring.
Comp. Biochem. Physiol. C Toxicol. Pharmacol.
PUBLISHED: 04-29-2009
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Fishes of the genus Xiphophorus are well-studied biomedical research models, and some species, such as X. couchianus, are currently listed as endangered in the wild. Sperm cryopreservation in these live-bearing fishes has begun recently. Thus far, live young have been produced with cryopreserved sperm only in one species (Xiphophorus helleri). In this study, the goal was to develop a practical protocol for sperm cryopreservation of Xiphophorus couchianus, and to produce live young with cryopreserved sperm. Sperm were collected by crushing of testis in Hanks balanced salt solution at an osmolality of 500 mOsmol/kg (HBSS500), and were cryopreserved with 14% glycerol (v/v) as cryoprotectant at a cooling rate of 20 degrees C/min from 5 to -80 degrees C in 250-microL French straws. For artificial insemination, samples were thawed at 40 degrees C for 5 s in a water bath, washed once using fresh HBSS500 by centrifuging at 1000 g for 5 min at 4 degrees C, concentrated into approximately 5 microL, and injected into virgin females of Xiphophorus maculatus. The inseminated females were monitored for 90 days for subsequent discharge of live young. Results from 2006 and 2007 showed considerable male-to-male variation in post-thaw motility (from 1 to 70%). Offspring were produced by cryopreserved sperm in two tanks (of three) at 36 and 66 days after insemination in 2007. Paternity was confirmed via phenotypes (body color) and genotypes (microsatellite genetic marker) of the hybrid offspring. Overall, a practical protocol for sperm cryopreservation and artificial insemination is provided to preserve X. couchianus, which is an important biomedical research model, and also currently listed as an endangered species in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) red list.
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Current status of sperm cryopreservation in biomedical research fish models: zebrafish, medaka, and Xiphophorus.
Comp. Biochem. Physiol. C Toxicol. Pharmacol.
PUBLISHED: 04-29-2009
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Aquarium fishes are becoming increasingly important because of their value in biomedical research and the ornamental fish trade, and because many have become threatened or endangered in the wild. This review summarizes the current status of sperm cryopreservation in three fishes widely used in biomedical research: zebrafish, medaka, and live-bearing fishes of the genus Xiphophorus, and will focus on the needs and opportunities for future research and application of cryopreservation in aquarium fish. First, we summarize the basic biological characteristics regarding natural habitat, testis structure, spermatogenesis, sperm morphology, and sperm physiology. Second, we compare protocol development of sperm cryopreservation. Third, we emphasize the importance of artificial fertilization in sperm cryopreservation to evaluate the viability of thawed sperm. We conclude with a look to future research directions for sperm cryopreservation and the application of this technique in aquarium species.
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Sperm cryopreservation of the Indian major carp, Labeo calbasu: effects of cryoprotectants, cooling rates and thawing rates on egg fertilization.
Anim. Reprod. Sci.
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A sperm cryopreservation protocol for the Indian major carp, Labeo calbasu, was developed for long-term preservation and artificial fertilization. Milt collected from mature male fish were placed in Alsevers solution (296mOsmolkg(-1)) to immobilize the sperm. Cryoprotectant toxicity was evaluated by motility assessment with dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and methanol at 5, 10 and 15% concentrations. DMSO was more toxic at higher concentrations than methanol, and consequently 15% DMSO was excluded from further study. A one-step cooling protocol (from 5 to 80°C) with two cooling rates (5 and 10°C/min) was carried out in a computer-controlled freezer (FREEZE CONTROL(®) CL-3300; Australia). Based on post-thaw motility, the 10°C/min cooling rate with either 10% DMSO or 10% methanol yielded significantly higher (P=0.011) post-thaw motility than the other rate and cryoprotectant concentrations. Sperm thawed at 40°C for 15s and fresh sperm were used to fertilize freshly collected L. calbasu eggs and significant differences were observed (P=0.001) in percent fertilization between cryopreserved and fresh sperm as well as among different sperm-to-egg ratios (P=0.001). The highest fertilization and hatching rates were observed for thawed sperm at a sperm-to-egg ratio of 4.1×10(5):1. The cryopreservation protocol developed can facilitate hatchery operations and long-term conservation of genetic resources of L. calbasu.
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Sources of variation in flow cytometric analysis of aquatic species sperm: The effect of cryoprotectants on flow cytometry scatter plots and subsequent population gating.
Aquaculture
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The use of fluorescent staining and flow cytometry to assess sperm quality in aquatic species has increased over the past decade, but comparisons among studies are difficult or impossible due to variation in application, analysis, and reporting of protocols and data.The goal of the present study was to determine the effect of exposure to two cryoprotectants commonly used for cryopreservation of sperm from aquatic species on the accuracy of flow cytometric assessment of sperm quality.Membrane integrity of zebrafish (Danio rerio) sperm exposed to 10% and 20%methanol and dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO)in 300 mOsm kg(-1) Hanks balanced salt solution (HBSS) or calcium-free HBSSwas determined using SYBR 14/propidium iodide staining. Both cryoprotectants significantly affected forward-scatter and side-scatter characteristics of sperm samples, resulting in significant changes in the number of total and gated events, and in the number and percentage of intact cells. These results indicate that it cannot be assumed that the approach to flow cytometric analysis of fresh sperm will be applicable to cryoprotectant-treated or cryopreserved sperm. In total, we document examples of five potentially interacting factors that produce errors of 5 to 50% each, resulting in underestimates and overestimates of total and intact sperm (actual numbers and percentages) in the presence of the two most commonly used cryoprotectants at the concentrations used most often for cryopreservation of sperm from aquatic species. This study provides methods to reduce or eliminate these errors and recommendations necessary for standardization and reporting.
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Sperm cryopreservation in live-bearing Xiphophorus fishes: offspring production from Xiphophorus variatus and strategies for establishment of sperm repositories.
Zebrafish
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Cryopreservation of sperm from Xiphophorus fishes has produced live young in three species: X. hellerii, X. couchianus, and X. maculatus. In this study, the goal was to establish protocols for sperm cryopreservation and artificial insemination to produce live young in X. variatus, and to identify needs for repository development. The objectives were to: 1) collect basic biological characteristics of males; 2) cryopreserve sperm from X. variatus, 3) harvest live young from cryopreserved sperm, and 4) discuss the requirements for establishment of sperm repositories. The 35 males used in this study had a body weight of 0.298±0.096 g (mean±SD), body length of 2.5±0.2 cm, and testis weight of 6.4±3.4 mg. The sperm production per gram of testis was 2.33±1.32×10(9) cells. After freezing, the post-thaw motility decreased significantly to 37%±17% (ranging from 5% to 70%) (p=0.000) from 57%±14% (40%-80%) of fresh sperm (N=20). Artificial insemination of post-thaw sperm produced confirmed offspring from females of X. hellerii and X. variatus. This research, taken together with previous studies, provides a foundation for development of strategies for sperm repositories of Xiphophorus fishes. This includes: 1) the need for breeding strategies for regeneration of target populations, 2) identification of minimum fertilization capacity of frozen samples, 3) identification of fish numbers necessary for sampling and their genetic relationships, 4) selection of packaging containers for labeling and biosecurity, 5) assurance of quality control and standardization of procedures, 6) information systems that can manage the data associated with cryopreserved samples, including the genetic data, 7) biological data of sampled fish, 8) inventory data associated with frozen samples, and 9) data linking germplasm samples with other related materials such as body tissues or cells saved for DNA and RNA analyses.
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Microfluidic mixing for sperm activation and motility analysis of pearl Danio zebrafish.
Theriogenology
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Sperm viability in aquatic species is increasingly being evaluated by motility analysis via computer-assisted sperm analysis (CASA) following activation of sperm with manual dilution and mixing by hand. User variation can limit the speed and control over the activation process, preventing consistent motility analysis. This is further complicated by the short interval (i.e., less than 15 s) of burst motility in these species. The objectives of this study were to develop a staggered herringbone microfluidic mixer to: 1) activate small volumes of Danio pearl zebrafish (Danio albolineatus) sperm by rapid mixing with diluent, and 2) position sperm in a viewing chamber for motility evaluation using a standard CASA system. A herringbone micromixer was fabricated in polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) to yield high quality smooth surfaces. Based on fluorescence microscopy, mixing efficiency exceeding 90% was achieved within 5 s for a range of flow rates (from 50 to 250 ?L/h), with a correlation of mixing distances and mixing efficiency. For example, at the nominal flow rate of 100 ?L/h, there was a significant difference in mixing efficiency between 3.5 mm (75±4%; mean±SD) and 7 mm (92±2%; P=0.002). The PDMS micromixer, integrated with standard volumetric slides, demonstrated activation of fresh zebrafish sperm with reduced user variation, greater control, and without morphologic damage to sperm. Analysis of zebrafish sperm viability by CASA revealed a statistically higher motility rate for activation by micromixing (56±4%) than manual activation (45±7%; n=5, P=0.011). This micromixer represented a first step in streamlining methods for consistent, rapid assessment of sperm quality for zebrafish and other aquatic species. The capability to rapidly activate sperm and consistently measure motility with CASA using the PDMS micromixer described herein will improve studies of germplasm physiology and cryopreservation.
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Preserving and using germplasm and dissociated embryonic cells for conserving Caribbean and Pacific coral.
PLoS ONE
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Coral reefs are experiencing unprecedented degradation due to human activities, and protecting specific reef habitats may not stop this decline, because the most serious threats are global (i.e., climate change), not local. However, ex situ preservation practices can provide safeguards for coral reef conservation. Specifically, modern advances in cryobiology and genome banking could secure existing species and genetic diversity until genotypes can be introduced into rehabilitated habitats. We assessed the feasibility of recovering viable sperm and embryonic cells post-thaw from two coral species, Acropora palmata and Fungia scutaria that have diffferent evolutionary histories, ecological niches and reproductive strategies. In vitro fertilization (IVF) of conspecific eggs using fresh (control) spermatozoa revealed high levels of fertilization (>90% in A. palmata; >84% in F. scutaria; P>0.05) that were unaffected by tested sperm concentrations. A solution of 10% dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) at cooling rates of 20 to 30°C/min most successfully cryopreserved both A. palmata and F. scutaria spermatozoa and allowed producing developing larvae in vitro. IVF success under these conditions was 65% in A. palmata and 53% in F. scutaria on particular nights; however, on subsequent nights, the same process resulted in little or no IVF success. Thus, the window for optimal freezing of high quality spermatozoa was short (?5 h for one night each spawning cycle). Additionally, cryopreserved F. scutaria embryonic cells had?50% post-thaw viability as measured by intact membranes. Thus, despite some differences between species, coral spermatozoa and embryonic cells are viable after low temperature (-196°C) storage, preservation and thawing. Based on these results, we have begun systematically banking coral spermatozoa and embryonic cells on a large-scale as a support approach for preserving existing bio- and genetic diversity found in reef systems.
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