Sperm Cryopreservation in Brown Bear (Ursus arctos): Preliminary Aspects
Área de conocimiento
Datos de la obra
Reproduction in Domestic Animals, 2008, vol. 43, n. 8
John Wiley & Sons
The development of sperm cryopreservation procedures in brown bear is the basis for establishing a specific genetic resource bank aimed at the preservation of a Cantabric brown bear population, which is seriously threatened. Several issues complicate the development of these cryopreservation procedures: lack of previous specific studies, a high incidence of urospermia and spermagglutination observed in bear ejaculates. Moreover, the availability of individuals for research from these threatened populations is problematic. In the case of the Cantabric brown bear, we have used males from other populations, but of the same species, as surrogates, to carry out a direct extrapolation of the results. Urospermia – Moreover, 70% of the ejaculates are urine contaminated and spermagglutination have a detrimental effect on post‐thawing cell quality recovery in this species. Considering the high value of these samples (autochthonous population with few individuals), a pre‐selection of the ejaculates is not a viable alternative. Preventive methods reducing the mentioned detrimental effects need to be developed. On the basis of previous data, we can suppose that bear spermatozoa resist freezing injuries well. Nevertheless, because of the scarcity of this information, it is necessary to conduct further research on bear semen freezing under field conditions. Epidydimal spermatozoa can be important for genetic resource banking of threatened populations and thus specific cryobiological protocols need to be assayed. To date, 168 brown bear ejaculates have been frozen by the ITRA‐ULE group at the University of León (Spain) in the development of methodologies for the preservation of brown bear sperm.
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