Development of methods for cryopreservation of rooster sperm from the endangered breed "Gallina Valenciana de Chulilla" using low glycerol concentrations
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Glycerol (11%; v:v) is the cryoprotectant most often used for the cryopreservation of rooster sperm. However, chicken breeds differ in the resistance of their sperm to the cryopreservation process and endangered or local breeds usually present low fertilizing ability when conventional sperm cryopreservation protocol S are used. The objective of this study was to optimize the protocol for the cryopreservation of the sperm from the endangered breed "Gallina Valenciana de Chulilla". For this purpose, 10 pools of semen from 43 roosters of this breed were cryopreserved using 8%, 7%, 6%, or 4% glycerol, and the sperm quality was determined immediately after thawing and in the insemination doses. Lohmann Brown Classic laying hens (n = 40) were used for the insemination trials. The sperm quality after cryopreservation progressively decreased as the glycerol concentration was reduced (P < 0.01); samples frozen using 4% glycerol exhibited the lowest quality (38% total motile sperm and 49% live sperm), and samples frozen using 8% glycerol exhibited the highest quality (67% total motile sperm and 66% live sperm). These differences were also observed after the glycerol was removed (P < 0.01). However, the sperm fertilizing ability was similar for all the treatments (23%-30% fertilized eggs), and increased as the glycerol concentration decreased. In conclusion, semen from roosters frozen using 4% glycerol exhibited lower sperm quality but similar fertilizing ability compared with samples processed using higher glycerol concentrations. These results may provide useful information for developing cryopreservation protocols for other breeds. (C) 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.