Aerobic and anaerobic swimming speeds of spermatozoa investigated by twin beam laser velocimetry

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Abstract

The motility of bovine and ovine spermatozoa has been studied under aerobic and anaerobic conditions, using a dual beam laser velocimeter. Cells swimming under aerobic conditions were found to be characterized by a translational swimming speed and a rotation rate that were approximately double those of cells swimming in an anaerobic environment. Both types of spermatozoa have been found to exhibit a sudden coordinated transition between fast and slow swimming states when the available oxygen is exhausted. This transition from aerobic to anaerobic swimming states has also been shown to be reversible. Studies of the duration of aerobic motility using the same apparatus have shown that the cells have a constant motile efficiency over the temperature range 32 degrees-42 degrees C. © 1987, The Biophysical Society. All rights reserved.

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Wilson, M. C., Harvey, J. D., & Shannon, P. (1987). Aerobic and anaerobic swimming speeds of spermatozoa investigated by twin beam laser velocimetry. Biophysical Journal, 51(3), 509–512. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0006-3495(87)83373-8

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