Timing of oviductal fluid collection steroid concentrations and sperm preservation method affect porcine in vitro fertilization efficiency

Changes in steroid concentrations during the reproductive cycle are delayed in oviductal fluid (OF) compared with serum. Oocyte incubation with pre- or postovulatory OF differentially affects in vitro fertilization efficiency.

Laura Ballester, M.Sc., Jon Romero-Aguirregomezcorta, M.Sc., Cristina Soriano-Úbeda, M.Sc., Carmen Matás, Ph.D., Raquel Romar, Ph.D., Pilar Coy, Ph.D.

Volume 102, Issue 6, Pages 1762-1768


To determine optimal conditions for the inclusion of oviductal fluid (OF) in IVF protocols.

Experimental prospective study.

Mammalian reproduction research laboratory.

Oviducts and ovaries from porcine females were collected at a slaughterhouse. A total of 30 oviducts and 1,285 oocytes were used. Boar-ejaculated spermatozoa were also used.

In vitro–matured porcine oocytes were preincubated with OF collected from animals before or after ovulation and later fertilized in vitro. Zona pellucida digestion time in oocytes after preincubation in OF was assessed. Concentrations of E2 and P4 in OF were measured. IVF was performed, including within the culture media the E2 and P4 concentrations found in the preovulatory OF. The effect of preovulatory OF on IVF efficiency was compared between fresh and frozen-thawed spermatozoa.

Main Outcome Measure(s):
E2 and P4 concentrations in OF; penetration and monospermy rates; number of spermatozoa within the ooplasm and on the zona pellucida after IVF under different experimental conditions; zona pellucida resistance to protease digestion.

Preincubation of oocytes in OF collected before ovulation enhances IVF efficiency in the pig compared with OF collected after ovulation (29.58 ± 3.84 vs. 11.03 ± 2.69). When frozen-thawed spermatozoa are used for the IVF of these OF-treated oocytes, their fertilization ability increases compared with fresh semen. OF collected before and after ovulation shows significantly different concentrations of E2 (99.00 ± 8.72 vs.

Preincubation of oocytes in OF collected before ovulation is a suitable protocol for increasing the efficiency of IVF with fresh semen in the pig model and could be a useful tool to increase the fertilization ability of frozen-thawed spermatozoa in other species. E2 concentrations in preovulatory OF are higher than those reported in blood serum at the same phase of the estrous cycle.

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