Cryopreservation of Semen from Captive Golden-Headed Lion Tamarins (Leontopithecus chrysomelas)
American Association of Zoo Veterinarians Conference 2014
Paloma C. Henrique1,2, DVM; Fernanda M. Carvalho3, DVM, MSc; Rodrigo P.G. Lopez1, DVM; Rodrigo R. Valle1,4, DVM, MSc, PhD
1Fundação Parque Zoológico de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil; 2Aquário de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil; 3Faculdade de Medicina Veterinaria e Zootecnia, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil; 4Instituto de Ciências da Saúde, Universidade Paulista, São Paulo, SP, Brazil.


Leontopithecus chrysomelas is part of a genus in which all species are listed as endangered1 and little is known about reproductive characteristics. Eighteen semen samples were collected using penile vibratory stimulation2 from six adult captive males from Fundação Parque Zoológico de São Paulo in Brazil. Immediately after collection, samples were diluted using coconut water solution3 and acetylcysteine, and incubated for 30 minutes at 37° C to allow coagulum dissolution. After semen analysis, the commercial extender Botubov®a was added. The sample was kept at 4° C for two hours and transferred to 100 µl French straws, which were kept in nitrogen vapor for 10 minutes and then plunged in liquid nitrogen for storage. Samples were thawed at 37° C for 15 seconds, diluted 1:1 with coconut water solution, incubated for 10 minutes and analyzed. Mean volume of fresh semen was 46.25±28.6 µL and mean concentration 330±170.18 x 106 sperm/ml. Results (mean ± SD) for pre- and post-thaw analysis, respectively, were as follows: total motility 67.25%±3.7 and 27.25%±4.58; progressive motility 53.5%±5.06 and 17.35%±3.44; plasma membrane integrity 74.05%±1.86 and 58.9%±3.28; acrosome integrity 89.55%±1.30 and 79.35%±2.97; and mitochondrial activity class I 41.07%±4.68 and 25.75%±2.90, class II 28.21%±2.60 and 40%±2.65, class III 13.21%±1.95 and 21.45%±1.97, and class IV 17.5%±4.40 and 12.8%±2.98. Means obtained in this study were higher than those obtained for other neotropical primates. Although there was a decrease in all parameters post-thaw, a good percentage of the sperm were still viable. These results may serve as basis for future studies with this and other neotropical primate species.

aBotubov-Botupharma Ind. e Com. de Prod. Veterinários Ltda.

Literature Cited

1.  IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.1. Accessed June 14, 2014.

2.  Yeoman RR, Sonksen J, Gibson SV, Rizk BM, Abee CR. Penile vibratory stimulation yields increased spermatozoa and accessory gland production compared with rectal electroejaculation in a neurologically intact primate (Saimiri boliviensis). Hum Reprod. 1998;13(9):2527–2531.

3.  Araújo L, Lima JS, Oliveira KG, Muniz JAPC, Valle RR, Domingues SFS. Uso de solução à base de água de coco a 37°C como diluidor de sêmen de Cebus apella (macaco-prego) mantido em cativeiro. Ciênc Anim Bras. 2009;10:588–594.


Speaker Information
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Paloma C. Henrique, DVM
Fundação Parque Zoológico de São Paulo
Aquário de São Paulo
São Paulo, SP, Brazil

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