Use of water melon juice to evaluate functional membrane integrity of bull epididymal sperm
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Artificial insemination is a reproductive technology that is increasingly being used in developing countries. This is due to its advantages over nature breeding. However its use is still low in Uganda as compared to other countries like Kenya. This is partly due to shortage of reagents for analyzing semen to be used for artificial insemination. Due to this, some tests are ignored such as membrane integrity test which is very essential in predicting the fertilizing ability of spermatozoa. Therefore this study was done to evaluate the potential of watermelon solution in evaluation of fresh bull sperm membrane integrity. A total of eight testacles were collected from Kalerwe abattoir and transported to the COVAB genetics laboratory for the analysis. Watermelon was blended and a two-fold dilution made to obtain four different concentrations. Spermatozoa were extracted by retrograde flashing and mixed with standardized hypo osmotic solutions and water melon solutions at different concentrations. The mixture was then incubated at 370C for 60 minutes in an interval of 15 minutes. Based on the results, the average response of spermatozoa in HOST was 68.65±34.98 and that of 12.25% and 25% of whole water melon juice was 47.38±24.521 and 47.38±24.52 respectively. The HOST response at 15, 30, 45 and 60 min for all of solutions were positively correlated to each other and there was no significant difference between the spermatozoa responses in HOST at 15, 30, 45 and 60 min after incubation in all of solutions. The positive significant correlation of r (79) =0.99, p<0.01 was observed between HOST and watermelon solution at 12.25%. There was no significant correlation between HOST and all of watermelon solutions with staining of the spermatozoa by supravital staining. There was no sperm recorded as swollen with 100% watermelon and 50% watermelon solutions at any time of incubation. In conclusion, the water melon solution can be efficiently used for the evaluation of the functional integrity of the plasma membrane of fresh bull spermatozoa. Watermelon solution can be used to evaluate fresh bull spermatozoa. Application of HOST is better tests to evaluate bull sperm than only supravital staining.