Effect of n-3 fatty acids and α-tocopherol on post-thaw parameters and fatty acid composition of bovine sperm
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This study was designed to determine the combined effects of adding source of n-3 fatty acids (FA) and α-tocopherol (vitamin E, VE) to semen extender on freezability and FA composition of Brown Swiss bull sperm.
Semen samples were collected from 6 Brown Swiss bulls and pooled. In the first trial, semen was divided into 12 groups including 4 levels of n-3 FA (0, 1, 10, 100 ng ml−1) and 3 levels of VE (0. 0.2, 0.4 mM). Motility, viability and fatty acid composition of sperm were measured.
The treatment of 10 ng ml−1 n-3 FA and 0.4 mM VE had the best post-thaw sperm characteristics (P < 0.01). In the second trial, sperm lipid composition of this treatment and control (without FA and VE) was determined. Supplementing n-3 fatty acids during cryopreservation increased docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and the ratio of n-3 to n-6 FA in sperm before freezing and after thawing.
The results suggest that combining the optimal level of n-3 FA (10 ng ml−1) with the highest level of VE tested (0.4 mM) in a semen extender changed the membrane lipid composition and improved freezablity of Brown Swiss bull sperm.
KeywordsBull Semen n-3 fatty acid Vitamin E Cryopreservation
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