Simple Summary The conservation of local chicken breeds is globally considered because of their interesting characteristics, such as their tolerance to heat stress, resistance to diseases and capacity to survive in severe environments. In recent years, conservation programs of native chicken breeds have been developed in Italy, and this work has focused on Bionda Piemontese, Bianca di Saluzzo and Pepoi, the first two of which are catalogued as endangered and the third as a 'critically maintained' breed. Semen cryopreservation is the only method that is currently feasible for the ex situ management of genetic diversity in birds, and poultry sperm shows a greater susceptibility during the freezing/thawing process due to its unique features. Therefore, the choice of the most suitable rooster sperm donor is fundamental in the establishment of a semen cryobank. The present study aims to analyze the efficiency of bird and semen management required for the implementation of the Italian Semen Cryobank of Autochthonous Chicken and Turkey Breeds created with the "TuBAvI" project. Our results suggest that male donors need to be selected based on the quality of fresh ejaculates, regardless of sperm outcome after freezing/thawing, in order to identify individuals who can ensure the survival of a breed with regard to increased fertilizing capacity.Abstract Native breed conservation is an important component of poultry biodiversity. The aim of this work is to describe different steps that lead to donor selection for the implementation of the Italian Semen Cryobank of Autochthonous Chicken and Turkey Breeds. The variability within and between breeds was evaluated, and the stored semen reproductive capacity was in vivo tested using artificial insemination. Semen from Bionda Piemontese, Bianca di Saluzzo and Pepoi roosters was collected and processed. Concentration, volume, sperm membrane integrity, total motile sperm, progressive motile sperm and kinetic parameters were analyzed; sperm parameters accounting for bird variability were used to select male donors. Fresh semen quality parameters measured in donor ejaculates showed significant differences between breeds; no differences were found after cryopreservation. Variability in the fertilizing ability of cryopreserved semen was found within a breed (5-16%) and between birds within a breed (BP = 3-7%; BS = 7-31%; PP = 6-22%); only sperm quality parameters measured in fresh ejaculates, not frozen/thawed, may be associated with in vivo fertility results. In conclusion, sperm concentration and progressive motility were successfully used as selection parameters to identify chicken male donors with improved sperm quality for sperm cryobanking. However, new reliable sperm markers to predict cryopreserved semen's fertilizing ability are required.

Selection of Male Donors in Local Chicken Breeds to Implement the Italian Semen Cryobank: Variability in Semen Quality, Freezability and Fertility

Iaffaldano, Nicolaia;Di Iorio, Michele;Cerolini, Silvia
2024-01-01

Abstract

Simple Summary The conservation of local chicken breeds is globally considered because of their interesting characteristics, such as their tolerance to heat stress, resistance to diseases and capacity to survive in severe environments. In recent years, conservation programs of native chicken breeds have been developed in Italy, and this work has focused on Bionda Piemontese, Bianca di Saluzzo and Pepoi, the first two of which are catalogued as endangered and the third as a 'critically maintained' breed. Semen cryopreservation is the only method that is currently feasible for the ex situ management of genetic diversity in birds, and poultry sperm shows a greater susceptibility during the freezing/thawing process due to its unique features. Therefore, the choice of the most suitable rooster sperm donor is fundamental in the establishment of a semen cryobank. The present study aims to analyze the efficiency of bird and semen management required for the implementation of the Italian Semen Cryobank of Autochthonous Chicken and Turkey Breeds created with the "TuBAvI" project. Our results suggest that male donors need to be selected based on the quality of fresh ejaculates, regardless of sperm outcome after freezing/thawing, in order to identify individuals who can ensure the survival of a breed with regard to increased fertilizing capacity.Abstract Native breed conservation is an important component of poultry biodiversity. The aim of this work is to describe different steps that lead to donor selection for the implementation of the Italian Semen Cryobank of Autochthonous Chicken and Turkey Breeds. The variability within and between breeds was evaluated, and the stored semen reproductive capacity was in vivo tested using artificial insemination. Semen from Bionda Piemontese, Bianca di Saluzzo and Pepoi roosters was collected and processed. Concentration, volume, sperm membrane integrity, total motile sperm, progressive motile sperm and kinetic parameters were analyzed; sperm parameters accounting for bird variability were used to select male donors. Fresh semen quality parameters measured in donor ejaculates showed significant differences between breeds; no differences were found after cryopreservation. Variability in the fertilizing ability of cryopreserved semen was found within a breed (5-16%) and between birds within a breed (BP = 3-7%; BS = 7-31%; PP = 6-22%); only sperm quality parameters measured in fresh ejaculates, not frozen/thawed, may be associated with in vivo fertility results. In conclusion, sperm concentration and progressive motility were successfully used as selection parameters to identify chicken male donors with improved sperm quality for sperm cryobanking. However, new reliable sperm markers to predict cryopreserved semen's fertilizing ability are required.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11695/135849
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 0
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 0
social impact