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Keywords:

  • dry shipper;
  • cryopreservation;
  • Epinephelus septemfasciatus;
  • sperm;
  • fertilization rate;
  • hatching rate

Abstract

This study examined the usage of a dry shipper for cryopreservation of Epinephelus septemfasciatus (Thunberg) spermatozoa. Milt was diluted 1:49 with 5% dimethyl sulfoxide plus 95% foetal bovine serum for cryopreservation. Computer-assisted sperm analysis was used to analyse sperm motility, while fertilization and hatching trials were conducted to gauge the applicability of the cryopreservation method for aquaculture. We showed that cooling rates of the dry shipper were stable for 14 days and could be manipulated by the use of different sized freezing straws and use of a simple polystyrene foam container (5 × 5 × 12 cm and 1 cm thickness on all sides with the upper layer exposed). Dry shipper cryopreserved spermatozoa had significantly lower post-thaw per cent motility and velocity than fresh sperm, but linearity of movement was unchanged. Fertilization and hatching rates were not significantly different at all tested sperm to egg ratios (3000:1–243000:1). The results indicated that 0.33 mL of milt when cryopreserved was sufficient to fertilize up to 450 g of oocytes. Application of this technology will help improve seed production in aquaculture and further develop breeding and genetics studies.