Some possible roles for selenium in the reproductive physiology of the male graytailed vole (Microtus canicaudus) Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/1n79h742v

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  • The testes of the gray-tailed vole (Microtus canicaudus Miller) exhibited a high affinity for selenium relative to other selected tissues. Uptake of selenium-75 in the testis-epididymis complex was delayed relative to uptake by the whole body, kidney, and liver. This pattern of uptake suggested that selenium was metabolically incorporated into developing sperm. Challenge with unlabeled selenite following ⁷⁵Se administration reduced subsequent retention by the whole body and testis, but failed to reduce epididymal retention. Challenge with sulfite failed to reduce subsequent retention in any of these compartments. These results suggested that observed ⁷⁵Se retention patterns in voles were not simply a reflection of metabolic substitution of selenium for sulfur. Investigation of the intracellular distribution of ⁷⁵Se in sperm revealed that most of the incorporated selenium was localized in the nucleus and mitochondria. This observation was consistent with sperm autoradiographs. These latter results indicated that the nuclear selenium was associated with the nuclear envelope and the nucleus proper, where a dense, but patchy distribution was evidenced. The mitochondrial selenium appeared to be mainly associated with the outer mitochondrial membrane. In the absence of dietary vitamin E, the addition of sufficient selenium to a torula yeast ration significantly reduced the incidence of sperm abnormalities. Body weight and testes weight were significantly increased under these conditions. When no selenium was added to the diet, 60 ppm vitamin E in the ration significantly increased testes weight relative to body weight. With 60 ppm vitamin E in the diet, the addition of selenium produced no significant changes in measured physiological parameters. Males placed on a vitamin E-supplemented low selenium diet for four weeks or eight weeks did not exhibit impaired reproductive performance relative to selenium-supplemented males.
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