Date of Award


Degree Type


University or Center

Atlanta University (AU)

Degree Name




First Advisor

Dr. Clyde E. Johnson. Jr.


This study was undertaken to determine the effects of Norman-Johnson II (Cl) and III (N03) diluents on physiologic activities of New Zealand white rabbit spe~tozoa as indicated by changes in motility, oxygen and carbohydrate uptake, lactic acid production and incidence of death.

Semen was obtained by using a teaser doe and an artificial vagina. Samples were pooled, divided equally, and were washed in N-J diluents. OXygen uptake was determined by the direct method of Warburg. Glucostat reagent was used for the enzymatic determination of glucose concentrations. Lactate levels were determined following a modification of the procedures for the assay of lactic acid dehydrogenase as outlined by Nachlas, et al. (1960), and for lactic acid by Friedland and Dietrich (1961). Motility was evaluated on the basis of percent motile sperm and the quality of movement displayed by these cells. Percent live-dead cells was dete~ined by differential staining technique utilizing the nigrosineosin stain. Sperm concentrations were determined hemocytometrically.

Results indicated that oxygen uptake of cells in N-J III diluent was 65% greater than that of sperm in the N-J II diluent. Glucose utilization was 78% greater in the nitrate diluent than in chloride. Differences in both 02 and glucose utilization were significant (P<0.05). No differences in motility or percent live-dead ratio of incubated sperm were detected. No significant difference in lactate production was observed. Johnson (1966) reported that only 40% of the glucose uptake by bovine and porcine sperm in N-J diluents could be accounted for in terms of oxygen uptake and lactic acid production; 97-100% of the glucose taken up by rabbit sperm in this study could be accounted for in terms of oxygen uptake in both N-J diluents. It appears that rabbit sperm use, almost exclusively, an aerobic metaboliC pathway.

This work demonstrated that inorganic ions exert definite influences on the physiologic activity of rabbit spermatozoa.

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