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Seasonal variations in the heterologous binding of viscacha spermatozoa. A scanning electron microscope study

CLAUDIA AGUILERA MERLO, ESTELA MUÑOZ, SUSANA DOMINGUEZ, MABEL FÓSCOLO*, LUIS SCARDAPANE, JUAN CARLOS DE ROSAS*
Cátedra de Histología y Embriología, Facultad de Química, Bioquímica y Farmacia, Universidad Nacional de San Luis, 5700 San Luis, Argentina.
* Instituto de Histología y Embriología (IHEM), Facultad de Ciencias Médicas, Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, CONICET, 5500 Mendoza, Argentina.
Address correspondence to: Bioq. Claudia Aguilera Merlo. Cátedra de Histología y Embriología, Facultad de Química, Bioquímica y Farmacia, Universidad Nacional de San Luis. Av. Ejército de los Andes 950 – 2º Piso, 5700 San Luis. ARGENTINA. Fax: (+54-2652) 422644 / 426756. E-mail: cleram@unsl.edu.ar

BIOCELL 2005, 29(3), 243-251. https://doi.org/10.32604/biocell.2005.29.243

Abstract

Seasonal changes in the reproductive activity of the adult male viscacha (Lagostomus maximus maximus) were investigated during the annual reproductive cycle. Assays of heterologous in vitro binding between compatible gametes were used to evaluate the ability of viscacha spermatozoa to achieve primary binding during its annual reproductive cycle. Sperm were collected by mincing cauda epididymis in HECM-3 medium and the sperm concentration and motility were evaluated. Cumulus-free and zona-free oocytes obtained from superovulated hamsters were inseminated in vitro with capacitated sperm suspensions, incubated at 37ºC, 5% CO2 for 3 h, and then processed for studies by scanning electronic microscopy. Statistical analysis was used to compare the quantitative differences. The number of spermatozoa significantly decreases during the regression period, while sperm motility was progressive speed in both periods. During the active period elevated sperm binding to cumulus-free and zona-free oocytes was observed, while the binding during the regression period decreased drastically. In both periods, oocyte microvilli covered sperm heads and tails. These results suggest that the ability of viscacha spermatozoa to participate in gamete recognition is profoundly affected. This would likely be related to different functional stages of the spermatozoa and their epididymal microenvironment during the annual reproductive cycle of viscacha.

Keywords

viscacha (Lagostomus maximus maximus), spermatozoa, heterologous binding, seasonal variations.

Cite This Article

AGUILERA, C. (2005). Seasonal variations in the heterologous binding of viscacha spermatozoa. A scanning electron microscope study. BIOCELL, 29(3), 243–251.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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