Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 30848
Improvement of Semen Quality in Holstein Bulls during Heat Stress by Supplementing Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Authors: Hamid. Gholami, Mohammad. Chamani, Armin. Towhidi, Mohammad. H. Fazeli


The aim of current study was to investigate the changes in the quality parameters of Holstein bull semen during the heat stress and the effect of feeding a source of omega-3 fatty acids in this period. Samples were obtained from 19 Holstein bulls during the expected time of heat stress in Iran (June to September 2009). Control group (n=10) were fed a standard concentrate feed while treatment group (n=9) had this feed top dressed with 100 g of an omega-3 enriched nutriceutical. Semen quality was assessed on ejaculates collected after 1, 5, 9 and 12 weeks of supplementation. Computer-assisted assessment of sperm motility, viability (eosinnigrosin) and hypo-osmotic swelling test (HOST) were conducted. Heat stress affected sperm quality parameters by week 5 and 9 (p<0.05). Supplementation has significantly increased total motility, progressive motility, HOST and average path velocity in the fresh semen of bulls (P<0.05).

Keywords: Heat Stress, spermatozoa, Bull, omega-3 fatty acids

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 2328


[1] Gwazdauskas FC. Effects of climate on reproduction in cattle. J Dairy Sci 1984;68:1568-1578.
[2] Marai, IFM, Haeeb AAM. Buffalo-s biological functions as affected by heat stress- A review. Livestock Science 127 (2010) 89-109.
[3] Rensis DF, Scaramuzzi RJ. Heat stress and seasonal effects on reproduction in the dairy cowÔÇöa review. Theriogenology 2003;60:1139-1151.
[4] Anderson, J. The Semen of Animals and its Use for Artificial Insemination. Imp. Bur. An. Breeding and Genetics, T. C. 1945.
[5] Murugaiyah, M., 1992. Changes in the semen characteristics of Kambing Katjan crossbreed buck under hot and humid environmental temperatures. In: Lokeshan, R.R. (Ed), Recent Advances in Goat Production. Proc. 5th Int. Conf. Goats, New Delhi, pp. 1126-1129.
[6] Santos JEP, Bilby TR, Thatcher WW, Staples CR, Silvestre FT. Long chain fatty acids of diet as factor influencing reproduction in cattle. 2008 Reprod Dom Anim 43:23-30.
[7] Robinson JJ, Ashworth CJ, Rooke JA, Mitchell LM, McEvoy TG. Nutrition and fertility in ruminant livestock. Anim Feed Sci Technol 2006;126:259-276.
[8] Conquer JA, Martin JB, Tummon I, Watson L, Tekpetey F Effect of DHA supplementation on DHA status and sperm motility in asthenozoospermic males. Lipids 2000;35:149-54.
[9] Kelso KA, Cerolini S, Noble RC, Sparks NH, Speake BK. The effects of dietary supplementation with docosahexaenoic acid on the phospholipid fatty acid composition of avian spermatozoa. Comp Biochem Physiol B 1997;118:65-9.
[10] Zaniboni L, Rizzi R, Cerolini S. Combined effect of DHA and atocopherol enrichment on sperm quality and fertility in the turkey. Theriogenology 2006;65:1813-1827.
[11] Paulenz H, Taugb├©l O, Kommisrud E and Grevle IS. Effect of dietary supplementation with cod liver oil on cold shock and freezability of boar semen. Reprod Dom Anim 1999;34:431-435.
[12] Rooke JA, Shao CC, Speake BK. Effects of feeding tuna oil on the lipid composition of pig spermatozoa and in vitro characteristics of semen. Reproduction 2001;121:315-322.
[13] Brinsko SP, Dickson DV, Charles CL, Blancharda TL, Dayc BC, Wilson ME. Effect of feeding a DHA-enriched nutriceutical on the quality of fresh, cooled and frozen stallion semen. Theriogenology 2005;63:1519- 1527.
[14] Harris MA, Baumgard LH, Arns MJ, Webel SK. Stallion spermatozoa membrane phospholipids dynamics following dietary n-3 supplementation. Anim Reprod Sci 2005;89:234-237.2, Aug. 1987, pp. 740-741
[Dig. 9th Annu. Conf. Magnetics Japan, 1982, p. 301].
[15] Garcia-Peniche, T.B., Cassell, B.G., Pearson, R.E., Misztal, I., 2005. Comparisons of Holsteins with Brown Swiss and Jersey cows on the same farm for age at first calving and first calving interval. J. Dairy Sci. 88, 790-796.
[16] Mader, T. L., M. S. Davis, and T. Brown-Brandl. Environmental factors influencing heat stress in feedlot cattle. J Anim Sci 2006;84:712-719.
[17] Ax RL, Dally MA, Lenz RW, Love CC, Varner DD, Hafez B, Bellin ME. Semen Evaluation. In: Reproduction in farm animals, Hafez B, Hafez ESE (Eds.), 7th Edn. Lippincote Williams and Wilkins, Philadelphia, 2000. pp.365-373.
[18] Goovaerts IGF, Hoflack GG, Van Soom A, Dewulf J, Nichi M, Kruif A, Bols PEJ. Evaluation of epididymal semen quality using the Hamilton- Thorne analyser indicates variation between the two caudae epididymides of the same bull. Theriogenology 2006;66:323-330.
[19] Barth AD, Oko R. Abnormal morphology of bovine spermatozoa. Ames: Iowa State University Press; 1989.
[20] Revell SG, Mrode RA. An osmotic resistance test for bovine semen. Anim Reprod Sci 1994;36:77-86.
[21] Celeghini ECC, Arruda RP, Andrade AFC, Nascimento J, Raphael CF, Rodrigues PHM. Effects that bovine sperm cryopreservation using two different extenders has on sperm membranes and chromatin. Anim Reprod Sci 2008;104:119-131.
[22] Armstrong DV. Heat Stress Interaction with Shade and Cooling. J Dairy Sci 1994; 77:2044-2050.
[23] Waites, G.M.H., 1970. Temperature regulation and the testis. In: Johnson, A.D., Gomes, W.R., Vandemark, N.L. (Eds.), The Testis, vol. 1. Academic Press, London, pp. 241-279.
[24] Saunders PTK. Germ cell-somatic cell interactions during spermatogenesis. Reprod Suppl 2003;61:91-101.
[25] Meyerhoeffer, D.C., Wettemann, R.P., Coleman, S.W., Wells, M.E., 1985. Reproductive criteria of beef bulls during and after exposure to increased ambient temperature. J. Anim Sci. 60 (2), 352-357.
[26] Dolatpanah MB, Towhidi A, Farshad a, Rashidi A, Rezayazdi. Effect of fish oil on semen quality of goats. Asian Aust Anim Sci 2008;21:29-34.
[27] Towhidi A, Samadian F, Rezayazdi K, Rostami F Ghaziani F. Feeding n-3 fatty acid source improves semen quality by increasing n3/n6 fatty acids ratio in sheep. Book of abstracts of 10th World Conference on Animal Production 2008. pp. 65.
[28] Poulos A, Sharp P, Johnson D, White I, Fellenberg A. The occurrence of polyenoic fatty acids with greater than 22 carbon atoms in mammalian spermatozoa. Biochem J 1986; 240:891-895.
[29] Connor WE, Lin DS, Wolf DP, Alexander M. Uneven distribution of desmosterol and docosahexaenoic acid in heads and tails of monkey sperm. J Lipid Res 1998;39:1404-1411.
[30] Speake BK, Surai PF, Rooke JA. Regulation of avian and mammalian sperm production by dietary fatty acids. In: DeVriese S, Christophe AB, editors. Male fertility and lipid metabolism. Champaign, IL, USA: AOCS Press; 2003. p. 96-117.
[31] Adeel M, Ijaz A, Aleem M, Rehman H, Yousaf MS, Jabbar MA. Improvement of liquid and frozen-thawed semen quality of Nili-Ravi buffalo bulls (Bubalus bubalis) through supplementation of fat. Theriogenology 2009;71:1220- 1225.
[32] Cerolini S, Zaniboni L, Maldjian A, Gliozzi T. Effect of docosahexaenoic acid and ╬▒-tocopherol enrichment in chicken sperm on semen quality, sperm lipid composition and susceptibility to peroxidation. Theriogenology 2006;66:877-886.
[33] Kelso KA, Redpath A, Noble RC, Speake BK. Lipid and antioxidant changes in spermatozoa and seminal plasma throughout the reproductive period of bulls. J Reprod Fert 1997;109:1-6.
[34] Neuringer M, Anderson GJ, Conner WE. The essentiality of n-3 fatty acids for the development and function of the retina and brain. Annu Rev Nutr 1988;8:517-541.