Dr. Stuart Meyers - Semen Evaluation, Quality, and Effects of Aging

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Presentation Abstract

Semen quality in dogs has not been assessed in a longitudinal study that includes endpoints of female fertility and pregnancy. While use of artificial insemination with chilled semen is increasingly used in canine reproduction, the resultant level of predictability and odds of fertile matings for dogs is still not fully understood. This research provides, for the first time, comprehensive semen evaluation in a large population of dogs in which fertility has been tracked. Duplicate ejaculates were obtained from 39 Labrador retriever males of the Guide Dogs for the Blind (San Rafael, CA) breeding program. Sperm endpoints were determined in fresh semen and extended chilled semen at 48hr post-collection. Evaluation included total and progressive motility, average path velocity, morphology, membrane lipid peroxidation, presence of sperm reactive oxygen species, sperm chromatin structure, and mitochondrial DNA copy number. Male age ranged from 1 to 10 years, and were grouped as young (Y; 1 to 3 years, n=21), middle-aged (M; 4 to 6 years, n=13), and senior (S; 7 years or greater, n=5) for analysis. The effects of age and sperm state (fresh vs. chilled) on the above sperm endpoints were determined using a linear mixed effects model. Semen endpoint values for all parameters were established for this group of fertile males. Progressive motility was only lower in the senior male chilled samples compared to all other groups, fresh and chilled (P

CHF Grant 2192-A: Advanced Semen Analysis in Labrador Retrievers

Biography

Dr. Stuart Meyers is a Theriogenologist specializing in male fertility with more than 60 publications in this area. He obtained his BS and DVM degrees from Michigan State University, his MS degree in Animal Science from Oregon State University, and his PhD from the University of California, Davis in Comparative Pathology. He is board-certified in Theriogenology having completed a residency at Texas A&M University. He is a member of the faculty at UC Davis and teaches reproduction and anatomy in the School of Veterinary Medicine. Additionally, Dr. Meyers has experience in veterinary mixed and equine practice. His laboratory has studied sperm cryopreservation in horses, dogs, and fish as well as embryo biology in horses and nonhuman primates.

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