Life and Medical Sciences
Cell & Developmental Biology
Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
Flow cytometric techniques were used to measure relative DNA content of X and Y chromosome-bearing bull, boar, and ram sperm populations and to separate the two sex-determining populations. Neat semen was prepared for flow cytometric analysis by washing, light sonication, and staining with 9 μM Hoechst 33342. Computer analysis of the bimodal histograms showed mean X-Y DNA differences of 3.9, 3.7, and 4.2% for bull, boar, and ram, respectively. Flow cytometric reanalysis of sorted bull, boar, and ram sperm showed purities greater than 90%. Bull, boar, and ram sperm nuclei were microinjected into hamster oocytes. Microinjected sperm were either unsorted, sorted, unsorted plus dithio-threitol (DTT) exposure, or sorted plus DTT exposure. Following microinjection, eggs were incubated 3 hr, fixed, and stained. A total of 579 eggs was observed for sperm activation (decondensation or formation of a male pronucleus). A lower percentage of sorted than unsorted (3 vs. 23%) boar sperm was activated (P 〈.05). However, sorted and unsorted DTT-exposed boar sperm or sorted and unsorted bull or ram sperm, regardless of DTT treatment, did not differ significantly. Sorted sperm nuclei of both rams and bulls exhibited higher activation rates than sorted boar sperm (P 〈.05). Treatment of sperm with DTT increased the activation rate (P 〈 .05) for sorted boar sperm but not for bull or ram sperm. These data represent the first separation of bull, boar, and ram X and Y chromosome-bearing sperm populations and the first evidence that sperm of domestic animals sorted on the basis of DNA by flow cytometric procedures have the ability to decondense and to form pronuclei upon injection into a hamster egg.
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