Effect of Staining and Freezing Media on Sortability of Stallion Spermatozoa and their Post-thaw Viability After Sex-sorting and Cryopreservation


Author’s address (for correspondence): Chis Maxwell, Faculty of Veterinary Science, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia. E-mail: chis.maxwell@sydney.edu.au


Sex-sorted, frozen–thawed stallion spermatozoa remain out of reach of commercial horse breeders because of the low efficiency of the sex-sorting process and unacceptable fertility rates after insemination. Two experiments were designed to test the effects of alternative staining and freezing media to improve the viability of sex-sorted frozen–thawed stallion spermatozoa. Experiment 1 compared two freezing media, INRA 82® and a modified lactose-ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA), for the cryopreservation of sex-sorted stallion spermatozoa. No significant differences between the two freezing media could be identified, suggesting that both cryodiluents would be suitable for incorporation into a sex-preselection protocol for stallion spermatozoa. Experiment 2 compared Kenney’s modified Tyrode’s (KMT) and Sperm TALP (Sp-TALP) as the staining and incubation medium for stallion spermatozoa prior to sex-sorting. A significant increase in the percentage of acrosome-reacted spermatozoa occurred after staining and incubation in the clarified Sp-TALP compared with KMT. As no improvements in sorting rates were achieved using Sp-TALP, it was concluded that stallion sorting protocols could include KMT as the staining and incubation medium while either INRA 82® or lactose-EDTA could be employed as a cryodiluents.