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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Oviducal Sperm Storage in Turkeys (Meleagris Gallopavo): the Infundibulum As a Secondary Sperm Storage Site, Or Is It?

Author
item BAKST, MURRAY

Submitted to: Congress of Zoology Athens Greece
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: September 1, 2000
Publication Date: January 1, 2001
Citation: Bakst, M.R. Oviducal Sperm storage in turkeys: The infundibulum as a secondary sperm storage site, Or is it? IN: The New Panorama of Animal Evolution Proceedings XVIII International Congress of Zoology, editors: A. Legakis, S Sfenthourakis, R. Polymeni and M. Thessalou-Legaki, Athens, Greece, pp. 447-450, 2002Bakst, M.R. Oviducal sperm storage in turkeys (meleagris gallopavo): the infundibulum as a secondary sperm storage site, or is it?. Congress of Zoology Athens Greece.

Interpretive Summary: The bird oviduct has a specialized region for the prolonged storage of sperm, referred to as the uterovaginal junction sperm-storage tubules (SST). Sperm released from the SST ascend to the site of fertilization, a region called the infundibulum. Previously, the infundibulum was viewed as a secondary sperm storage site. In this paper, I present evidence for the first time, which refutes this idea. My observations indicate that the infundibulum does not possess the characteristics of the SST, the true sperm storage site in the avian oviduct and therefore should not be referred as a secondary sperm storage site. This information provides new information for poultry scientist examining the fate of sperm within the hens oviduct as well as for scientist investigating paternity.

Technical Abstract: Oviducal sperm storage is the basis for sustained fertility in the turkey following a single artificial insemination. While sperm storage tubules (SST) localized in the uterovaginal junction (UVJ) are the primary sperm storage sites, it has been hypothesized that the infundibulum at the anterior end of the oviduct also serves as a site of sperm storage. To determine if the infundibulum is a sperm storage site, hens were inseminated with sperm stained with a nuclear fluorescent dye. Forty-eight hours later the infundibulum was examined using fluorescence light microscopy. No more than 1 to 3 sperm were observed in the infundibulum. The absence of sperm in significant numbers at the infundibulum indicates that while this region is the site of fertilization, it does not function as an oviducal sperm storage site.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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