The effects of lycopene-enriched extenders on motility, viability, osmotic resistance, DNA integrity and lipid peroxidation of rabbit sperm were examined after both chilled and frozen storage. Five pools of semen diluted in extenders containing 0, 0.05 or 0.1. mg/mL of lycopene were refrigerated at 5°C for 48. h or cryopreserved. Sperm quality was generally compromised after storage, especially post-freezing, however lycopene limited the amount of sperm lipid peroxidation after chilling and freezing. In chilled sperm, the highest dose of lycopene was provided to maintain the viability, acrosome and DNA intactness similar to that of fresh semen and contained the reduction of sperm motility, whereas in cryopreserved semen lycopene protected the DNA integrity of sperm, even if not in a dose-dependent way. So lycopene diminished sperm lipid peroxidation during refrigeration and cryopreservation, prolonging the survival of rabbit sperm after liquid storage, but it had a limited effect on sperm cryosurvival.
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