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Lipids. 2017 Oct;52(10):857-869. doi: 10.1007/s11745-017-4283-9. Epub 2017 Aug 11.

The Phospholipid Composition of Kangaroo Spermatozoa Verified by Mass Spectrometric Lipid Analysis.

Author information

1
Institute of Medical Physics and Biophysics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Leipzig, Härtelstr. 16/18, 04107, Leipzig, Germany. kathrin.engel@medizin.uni-leipzig.de.
2
Institute of Medical Physics and Biophysics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Leipzig, Härtelstr. 16/18, 04107, Leipzig, Germany.
3
Reproduction Biology, Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research, Alfred-Kowalke-Str. 17, 10315, Berlin, Germany.
4
Function of Bioactive Lipids Unit, Institute of Muscle Biology and Growth, Leibniz Institute for Farm Animal Biology, Willhelm-Stahl-Allee 2, 18196, Dummerstorf, Germany.

Abstract

Cryopreservation of kangaroo sperm has not been successful so far, and yet there is no promising cryopreservation protocol for these cells available. However, conservation of gametes is extremely important, particularly in the context of preserving endangered species. As spermatozoa are comprised of different membrane systems, the composition of these membranes might account for difficulties in cryopreservation. Lipids, as the main components, affect the physical properties of biological membranes and play a major role in sperm maturation. Therefore, knowledge of the lipid composition is crucial for any further step toward the preservation of the species. We used MALDI-TOF, ESI-IT, tandem mass spectrometry, and thin layer chromatography to investigate the lipid composition of epididymal spermatozoa of four different kangaroo species. Spectra of these species were very similar with respect to the identified lipid species. Tremendous changes in the lipid composition during the transit of sperm from caput to cauda epididymis could be seen, specifically an increase in poly-unsaturated fatty acids, ether lipids, and plasmalogens, as well as a reduction in mono- and di-unsaturated fatty acids. Additionally, phosphatidylcholines containing docosatrienoic acid (22:3), a heretofore unknown fatty acid for sperm membranes, showed the highest abundance in kangaroo sperm.

KEYWORDS:

Cryopreservation; ESI-IT MS; Epididymis; Kangaroo spermatozoa; Lipids; MALDI-TOF MS; Plasma membrane

PMID:
28801719
DOI:
10.1007/s11745-017-4283-9
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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