00369-A: Analysis of the Ultrastructure of the Canine Zona Pellucida

Grant Status: Closed

Grant Amount: $10,701.66
Shirley J. Wright, PhD; University of Dayton
July 1, 2004 - June 30, 2007


Breed(s): -All Dogs
Research Program Area: Reproductive Conditions
Donate to Support this Research Program Area


Our objective is to assess the ultrastructure and molecular composition of the canine zona pellucida (ZP), and examine canine sperm interactions with the ZP. The ZP is the extracellular matrix that surrounds both immature and ovulated oocytes. Sperm must bind to and interact with the ZP for successful fertilization. In other mammals, the ZP is a promising contraceptive target. While contraceptive antibodies targeted against ZP proteins have been developed, they also induce a T cell response in mice that can lead to autoimmune ovarian disease. Clearly there is need for better contraceptive methods. Because of many differences in canine reproductive physiology compared to other mammals, it has not been possible to directly extrapolate reproductive information from other species and apply it directly to dogs. The need for canine-specific, basic research is critical before new applied contraceptive methods can be achieved. The ultimate goal of our research is to create a safe, effective long-acting contraceptive that is reversible, inexpensive, and feasible to administer with little or no side effect.


Lunn, M. O., & Wright, S. J. (2009). Imaging the Zona Pellucida of Canine and Feline Oocytes Using Scanning Electron Microscopy. Microscopy and Microanalysis, 15(01), 2–14. https://doi.org/10.1017/S1431927609090084
Lunn, M. O., & Wright, S. J. (2013). Distinct subtypes of zona pellucida morphology reflect canine oocyte viability and cumulus-oocyte complex quality. Theriogenology, 80(5), 498–506. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.theriogenology.2013.05.013
Lunn, M., & Wright, S. (2006). Analysis of the Ultrastructure of the Canine Zona Pellucida. Microscopy and Microanalysis, 12(S02), 270–271. https://doi.org/10.1017/S1431927606066281

Help Future Generations of Dogs

Participate in canine health research by providing samples or by enrolling in a clinical trial. Samples are needed from healthy dogs and dogs affected by specific diseases.

Learn How to Help

Get Canine Health News:
Please leave this field empty
American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation, Inc

8051 Arco Corporate Dr.
Suite 300
Raleigh, NC 27617

Tax ID# 13-3813813


© 2021 AKC Canine Health Foundation | Privacy Policy | Site Map

Site by Blackbaud, Inc.