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B. AHLUWALIA and R. T. HOLMAN

Summary.

Bull, boar, rabbit and human semen was fractionated into seminal plasma, sperm tails and sperm heads. The fatty acid composition of total lipid, phopholipid, phosphatidyl choline, triglycerides and diglycerides was determined in each fraction. Qualitative and quantitative differences in the fatty acid contents were found between the species and between the semen fractions. Bull and rabbit seminal plasma contained relatively higher proportions of polyunsaturated acids (PUFA) (ω6 and ω3) than that of man and boar. The sperm tails contained in all four species more PUFA than did the sperm heads. The higher metabolites of oleic acid were not present in measurable amounts. The 20- and 22-carbon acids were present in semen in much larger quantities than thus far reported, in any other mammalian tissue.

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B. S. AHLUWALIA and E. F. GRAHAM

Summary.

A total of eighteen amino acids were determined quantitatively in the seminal plasma and spermatozoa of fowl semen. Glutamic acid was the major component in both fractions. In the spermatozoan fraction, only six amino acids were detected, namely glutamic acid, lysine, arginine, serine, aspartic acid and threonine. Except for serine and lysine, the amino acid concentrations in the spermatozoan fraction were much smaller than in the seminal plasma. In general, the amino acid content of turkey seminal plasma is similar to chicken seminal plasma with a few quantitative differences.

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B. AHLUWALIA, J. WILLIAMS and P. VERMA

Endocrine Research Laboratory, Departments of Medicine and Obstetrics and Gynecology, Howard University College of Medicine, Washington, D.C. 20059, U.S.A.

(Received 4th December 1974)

Lipid biosynthesis in the adult testis in several species has been reported (Davis, Bridges & Coniglio, 1966; Bridges & Coniglio, 1970; Carpenter, 1971; Ayala, Gaspar, Brenner, Peluffo & Kunau, 1973). Similar studies in the fetal testis are not available. The purpose of this study was to investigate the ability of the testis of the human fetus during the first trimester to synthesize fatty acids from labelled substrates.

The compounds purchased from the Applied Science Laboratory, State College, Pennsylvania, were 99% pure [1-14C]linoleic acid (all cis; sp. act., 52·5 mCi/mmol) and 99% pure [1-14C]arachidonic acid (all cis; sp. act., 52·5 mCi/mmol); [1,2-14C]sodium acetate (sp. act., 54 mCi/mmol) was received from New England Nuclear Corp., Boston, Massachusetts.

Undamaged abortuses were obtained from the

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K. K. GAMBHIR and B. S. AHLUWALIA

Summary.

Bull semen was collected artificially and vitamin A was determined in the intact spermatozoa, the acrosomes and the sperm tails. The results show that over 90% of the total vitamin A in the spermatozoa was present in the acrosomes and that the sperm tails were completely devoid of vitamin A. The concentration of vitamin A varied from 224 to 364 ng/109 spermatozoa.

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B. AHLUWALIA, S. SHIMA and G. PINCUS

Summary.

Slices of testes from normal rats and rats fed diets deficient in essential fatty acids (EFA) were incubated with [1-14C]acetate, [7α-3H]cholesterol and [4-14C]progesterone as substrates. Incorporation of activity in testosterone and androstenedione was measured.

With [1-14C]acetate and [7α-3H]cholesterol as substrates there was an approximate doubling in the yield of testosterone and androstenedione in the testes of EFA-deficient rats, but with [4-14C]progesterone as substrate the differences between groups were not marked. It is postulated that increased biosynthesis of androgens (from acetate and cholesterol substrates) in EFA-deficient animals is perhaps due to structural changes in the mitochondrial wall causing increased permeability of the substrate to the mitochondrial enzymes. No change in the yield of androgens with [4- 14C]progesterone as precursor is perhaps due to non-involvement of mitochondria for synthesis of progesterone→androgens in the rat testis.

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B. S. AHLUWALIA and E. F. GRAHAM

Summary.

Three main carbohydrate components were isolated and identified by paper chromatography from the seminal plasma of fowl semen; namely, inositol, glucose and glycerol. Similarly, three carbohydrate components were isolated and identified from the washed sperm cells. These are inositol, glucose and erythritol.