The utilization of the prostacyclin analogue iloprost in the cryopreservation of stallion spermatozoa
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The progress in the stallion semen cryopreservation industry has been slow, creating the need for further research and development directed toward improving post thaw parameters. Most producers utilize glycerol as the primary cryoprotectant when freezing stallion semen, fully knowing that the cell undergoes significant damage during the cryopreservation process as well as from the exposure to the cryoprotectant itself. The current study evaluated the potential of the prostacyclin analogue as a protective additive to stallion semen during cryopreservation. Collections were taken from 12 stallions and divided into four samples, one to be designated as control and the other three to be exposed to various levels of Iloprost (0.001 μg, 0.1 μg, and 1.0 μg). All samples were frozen using a mechanical controlled rate freezer. Semen was analyzed for standard parameters post thaw using a computer assisted semen analyzer at 0 hr, 3 hr, and 4 hr time points. Morphology and acrosome slides were also made. Analysis showed significant decreases in post thaw motility and rapid cell percentages associated with increasing concentrations of Iloprost, suggesting the Iloprost imposes damage to the cell that is detrimental to function.