In vitro effects of beta-carotene for the motility, ATP, and intracellular free Ca(2+) concentrations of fowl spermatozoa

Molecular Reproduction and Development
K AshizawaY Tsuzuki

Abstract

The motility of intact fowl spermatozoa was vigorous at 25 degrees C, but decreased gradually following the addition of 0-100 microM beta-carotene in a dose-dependent manner. Even in the presence of stimulators of fowl sperm motility, such as Ca(2+) or calyculin A, the motility of intact spermatozoa at both 25 and 40 degrees C remained inhibited following the addition of beta-carotene. Under all of these circumstances, sperm ATP concentrations were not reduced by the addition of beta-carotene. Moreover, the motility of demembranated spermatozoa was not inhibited by the addition of the same concentrations of beta-carotene. No changes in intracellular free Ca(2+) concentrations, measured by means of a fluorescent Ca(2+) indicator, fura-2, were observed in intact beta-carotene -treated spermatozoa. These results suggest that beta-carotene is involved in the inhibition of the flagellar movement of fowl spermatozoa without change in energy production, and that the target of beta-carotene might be present in the cytoplasmic matrix and/or the plasma membrane, but not retained in the axoneme and/or accessory cytoskeletal components.

References

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