Different swimming behaviors of sterlet (Acipenser ruthenus) spermatozoa close to solid and free surfaces

Boryshpolets, S., Cosson, J., Bondarenko, V., Gillies, E., Rodina, M., Dzyuba, B. and Linhart, O. (2013) Different swimming behaviors of sterlet (Acipenser ruthenus) spermatozoa close to solid and free surfaces. Theriogenology, 79(1), pp. 81-86. (doi:10.1016/j.theriogenology.2012.09.011)

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Abstract

Spermatozoa tend to swim near surfaces. Such attraction toward surface vicinity was approximated by the force-dipole theoretical approach and hydrodynamic modeling, but the physical parameters of surfaces have not usually been included in these models and their effect on sperm mobility remains unknown. In spermatozoa, changes in wave parameters, together with rotation around their longitudinal axis and circling appear when movement takes place close to surfaces. Here we show, by analysis of microscopy images (including high-speed video), a strong influence of the liquid-solid interface on sterlet spermatozoa motility characteristics compared with motility near the liquid-gas interface. Sperm cells swam at 16% lower velocity near a liquid-solid interface, rotating at a stable frequency of 25 Hz, each 180° rotation corresponding to one beat cycle and circling clockwise (when observed from top). In case of spermatozoa close to a water-air interface, rotation and circling were sporadic and irregular. Sterlet spermatozoa movement near a surface affects their velocity and possibly causes rotation. These behaviors are highly dependent on the level of suppleness of the interface, as has been previously predicted by modeling. Our results enhance the understanding of how surfaces influence fish spermatozoa motility. These insights on the effects of surfaces on fish spermatozoa motility imply that widely used methods rating sperm motility, such as computer-assisted sperm analysis, might lead to erroneous results. Further study of sperm motility near surfaces is urgently needed to correct our rating methods and better understand sperm behavior in natural conditions. Improved evaluation of sperm motility behavior near surfaces could be used to determine physical properties of aquatic interfaces with various surfaces composed of different materials.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Gillies, Dr Eric
Authors: Boryshpolets, S., Cosson, J., Bondarenko, V., Gillies, E., Rodina, M., Dzyuba, B., and Linhart, O.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Aerospace Sciences
Journal Name:Theriogenology
ISSN:0093-691X
ISSN (Online):1879-3231
Published Online:29 October 2012

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