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Biol Reprod. 1989 Aug;41(2):199-203.

Sex preselection in rabbits: live births from X and Y sperm separated by DNA and cell sorting.

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  • 1Reproduction Laboratory, Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Maryland 20705.


Intact, viable X and Y chromosome-bearing sperm populations of the rabbit were separated according to DNA content with a flow cytometer/cell sorter. Reanalysis for DNA of an aliquot from each sorted population showed purities of 86% for X-bearing sperm and 81% for Y-bearing sperm populations. Sorted sperm were surgically inseminated into the uterus of rabbits. From does inseminated with sorted X-bearing sperm, 94% of the offspring born were females. From does inseminated with sorted Y-bearing sperm from the same ejaculates, 81% of the offspring were males. The probability of the phenotypic sex ratios differing from 50:50 were p less than 0.0003 for X-sorted sperm and p less than 0.004 for Y-sorted sperm. Thus, the phenotypic sex ratio at birth was accurately predicted from the flow-cytometrically measured proportion of X- and Y-bearing sperm used for insemination.

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