Little information is available regarding the effect of melatonin on the quality and fertilization capability of sex-sorted bull sperm, and even less about the associated mechanism. Sex-sorted sperm from three individual bulls were washed twice in wash medium and incubated in a fertilization medium for 1.5 h, and each was supplemented with melatonin (0, 10−3 M, 10−5 M, 10−7 M, and 10−9 M). The reactive oxygen species (ROS) and endogenous antioxidant activity (glutathione peroxidase (GPx); superoxide dismutase (SOD); catalase (CAT)), apoptosis (phosphatidylserine [PS] externalization; mitochondrial membrane potential (∆ψm)), acrosomal integrity events (malondialdehyde (MDA) level; acrosomal integrity), capacitation (calcium ion [Ca2+]i level; cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP); capacitation level), and fertilization ability of the sperm were assessed. Melatonin receptor 1 (MT1) and 2 (MT2) expression were examined to investigate the involvement of melatonin receptors on sex-sorted bull sperm capacitation. Our results show that treatment with 10−5 M melatonin significantly decreased the ROS level and increased the GPx, SOD, and CAT activities of sex-sorted bull sperm, which inhibited PS externalization and MDA levels, and improved ∆ψm, acrosomal integrity, and fertilization ability. Further experiments showed that melatonin regulates sperm capacitation via MT1. These findings contribute to improving the fertilization capacity of sex-sorted bull sperm and exploring the associated mechanism.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Inorganic Chemistry
- Computer Science Applications
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Organic Chemistry