ABSTRACT 1. Aim of this study was the development of an optimised cryopreservation pellet procedure for chicken semen and the assessment of DNA and membrane integrity in frozen/thawed spermatozoa in a Hubbard F15 meat type selected strain. 2. The following semen processing conditions were studied: spermatozoa working concentration (SWC), 1.5 vs 2 × 109 cells/ml in pre-freezing extender; equilibration of diluted semen at 5°C, 20 vs 40 min; dimethylacetamide concentration, 6% vs 9%; dimethylacetamide equilibration time at 5°C, 1 vs 30 min; thawing at 60°C for 10 vs 50°C for 30 sec. Spermatozoa viability (EtBr exclusion procedure – stress test), mobility (Accudenz® swim-down test) and subjective motility were assessed in fresh and frozen-thawed semen. 3. The lower SWC (1.5 × 109 cells/ml) and the higher dimethylacetamide concentration (9%) had positive significant effects on the recovery rate of motile (22% vs 16%) and viable spermatozoa (39 vs 34%), respectively. 4.Membrane (SYBR14-PI staining) and DNA integrity (comet assay) were assessed before and after freezing/thawing according to the optimised protocol. 5. Recovery rates of spermatozoa with undamaged plasma membrane and DNA were 41% and 76%, respectively. The distribution of spermatozoa in classes of DNA damage was also analysed and discussed. 6. It was concluded that pellet cryopreservation was a damaging process mainly for plasma membrane rather than nuclear DNA in chicken spermatozoa.