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Inhibitory effect of Lycium barbarum polysaccharide on sperm damage during cryopreservation

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With the development of cryopreservation technology, marked progress has been made regarding sperm cryopreservation. However, as conventional cryopreservation agents are not effective at freezing weak sperm, improved cryopreservation agents are in demand. In the present study, the addition of Lycium barbarum polysaccharides to glyceroleggyolkcitrate sperm cryopreservation agent was determined to improve sperm forward speed, reduce the DNA fragmentation index and improve the mitochondrial membrane potential. Furthermore, during the freezing and thawing of sperm, the improved cryopreservative increased the content of Bcl2 while reducing the content of Bax, cytochrome C and caspase3. These results indicated that polysaccharides added as a protective agent preserved the normal function of sperm mitochondria. Transmission electron microscopy also confirmed the protective effect of the polysaccharides on the structure of mitochondria. It was also indicated that improved cryopreservative lowered the levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) during the freezethawing process. Therefore, it is hypothesized that improved cryopreservative agents may be beneficial for maintaining the structure and function of the mitochondria of weak sperm when cryopreserved, which may be facilitated via reducing the production of ROS in the freezingthawing process, thus avoiding activation of the apoptotic pathway in sperm mitochondria and protecting mitochondrial structure and sperm function.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Ningxia Human Sperm Bank, General Hospital of Ningxia Medical University, Yinchuan, Ningxia 750001, P.R. China 2: National Health Committee Key Laboratory of Male Reproduction and Genetics, Family Planning Research Institute of Guangdong Province, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510600, P.R. China 3: Department of Pathology, Ningxia Medical University, Yinchuan, Ningxia 750004, P.R. China 4: Reproductive Center, General Hospital of Ningxia Medical University, Yinchuan, Ningxia 750001, P.R. China

Publication date: October 1, 2020

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  • Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine aims to ensure the expedient publication, in both print and electronic format, of studies relating to biology, gene therapy, infectious disease, microbiology, molecular cardiology and molecular surgery. The journal welcomes studies pertaining to all aspects of molecular medicine, and studies relating to in vitro or in vivo experimental model systems relevant to the mechanisms of disease are also included.

    All materials submitted to this journal undergo the appropriate review via referees who are experts in this field. All materials submitted follow international guidelines with regard to approval of experiments on humans and animals.
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