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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2009

Comparison of density gradient and single layer centrifugation of stallion spermatozoa: Yield, motility and survival

Morrell, J. M.; Dalin, A-M.; Rodriguez-Martinez, H.


Reasons for performing study: A new, simpler, technique of colloidal centrifugation has recently been developed, designated single layer centrifugation (SLC). This technique requires evaluation by comparison with a density gradient for its ability to select the best quality spermatozoa and its practicality of use on studfarms.Objective: To compare the effect of 2 methods of colloidal centrifugation, density gradient centrifugation and single layer centrifugation, on stallion sperm motility, yield and survival. using freshly collected extended stallion semen.Methods: Aliquots of extended stallion semen from 10 stallions (38 ejaculates) were processed by the 2 methods of colloidal centrifugation. For both uncentrifuged and centrifuged samples, sperm yield was calculated and subjective sperm motility assessed over several days to provide an estimate of sperm survival. Some stored semen samples, held at TV overnight, were also available for testing.Results: For fresh, extended semen, a similar recovery yield of motile spermatozoa was seen for the 2 methods of preparation for single layers and density gradients, respectively. Sperm motility and survival rate Were significantly improved by colloidal centrifugation compared to unprocessed ejaculate, without any significant difference between methods (SLC vs. gradient). However, the yield was reduced by 18-20% when cold-stored semen was used for centrifugation compared to fresh semen, and more variation between ejaculates was observed than for fresh ejaculates. Again, sperm motility and sperm survival were improved in the centrifuged sperm preparations compared to stored, unprocessed ejaculates.Potential relevance: The 2 colloid centrifugation techniques produce equivalent sperm preparations in terms of sperm quality. However, the SIX method would be more practical and convenient for use in the field.


horse; colloidal centrifugation; stallion spermatozoa; sperm motility; sperm survival; sperm yield

Published in

Equine Veterinary Journal
2009, volume: 41, number: 1, pages: 53-58

Authors' information

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Clinical Sciences
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Clinical Sciences
Rodriguez, Heriberto
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Clinical Sciences

UKÄ Subject classification

Animal and Dairy Science
Veterinary Science

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