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Biological Research

Print version ISSN 0716-9760


TLACHI-LOPEZ, José L et al. Rat dorsal prostate is necessary for vaginal adhesion of the seminal plug and sperm motility in the uterine horns. Biol. Res. [online]. 2011, vol.44, n.3, pp.259-267. ISSN 0716-9760.

The rat prostate comprises dorsal, ventral and lateral lobes that are morphologically and biochemically distinct. Lesions to these structures are expected to affect the quality of the ejaculate and male fertility. In experiment 1, we analyzed ejaculate parameters of males that had chemical lesions of the dorsal or ventral lobes. At pre-lesion and at 5 and 20 days post-lesion males were mated, and after ejaculation, seminal fluid and seminal plug were obtained from the mated females. In experiment 2, the ventral lobes were ablated, and the ejaculate was analyzed. In experiment 3, the fertility of males with chemically-lesioned dorsal lobes or ablation of the ventral lobes was evaluated. Chemical lesion of the dorsal lobe prevented the adhesion of the seminal plug to vaginal walls. When these males were tested at 5-days postlesion, no sperm were found in uterus, and at 20-days post-lesion, the few sperm encountered showed slow progressive motility. None of the females that mated with dorsal lobe-lesioned males became pregnant. However, chemical lesion or ablation of the ventral lobes did not affect ejaculate or fertility. Our results indicate that the dorsal prostatic lobes are indispensable for reproductive success in males, and define parameters of ejaculate with which fertility can be estimated.

Keywords : ejaculation; characteristics of semen; copulatory plug; prostate; seminal analysis; sperm number.

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