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M. C. CHANG, J. H. CASAS and DOROTHY M. HUNT

Summary.

When 4- or 6-day ferret eggs were transferred to the Fallopain tubes of rabbits for 2 or 3 days and retransferred into uteri of pseudopregnant ferrets, only 4 to 8% of transferred eggs developed into foetuses. Following storage at 1 to 5° C for 2 or 3 days in a medium containing 20% of ferret serum, no 4-day ferret egg implanted but 8% of the 6-day eggs developed into foetuses. Following culture at 38° C in the same medium for 2 to 3 days, none of the 4-day eggs, but 59% of the 6-day eggs could have implanted.

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M. C. CHANG, A. HANADA and DOROTHY M. HUNT

In spite of advancement in the knowledge of the biochemistry of semen (White & Macleod, 1963; Mann, 1965), the physiological significance of seminal plasma for the fertilizing capacity of spermatozoa, except as a vehicle for sperm transport, is still obscure. When superovulated rabbits were inseminated with a minimal effective number of rabbit spermatozoa suspended in fructose Ringer solution or in rabbit seminal plasma, there was no significant difference in the proportion of eggs fertilized. When these sperm suspensions were allowed to stand at room temperature for 1 hr before insemination, however, the proportion of eggs fertilized was significantly higher for the spermatozoa suspended in rabbit seminal plasma (Chang, 1949). The present experiment was designed to determine whether seminal plasma, due to its various contents, might be beneficial for sperm transport when insemination was carried out

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M. C. CHANG, DOROTHY M. HUNT and J. H. MARSTON

Hybrid fertilization can occur between several mammalian species (Chang & Hancock, 1967), but there is no conclusive proof that spermatozoa need to be capacitated before they can effect such fertilization. The time required for hybrid capacitation and the ability of spermatozoa to retain their fertilizing capacity in the female tract of another species has not been studied. Nevertheless, it has been shown that rabbit spermatozoa can slowly complete part, if not all, of their capacitation for normal fertilization in the uterus of the rat and bitch (Bedford & Shalkovsky, 1967; Hamner, Jones & Sojka, 1968). This paper reports (1) the capacitation time for hybrid fertilization of snowshoe hare spermatozoa in the rabbit Fallopian tube, and (2) their fertilizing life in the female tract of the domesticated rabbit.

Sexually mature snowshoe hares, Lepus americanus, were killed or