GAA supplementation for semen quality and fertility
Decreased semen quality and fertility rate is a common feature in broiler breeder roosters. This decrease is associated with dysfunction of Sertoli cells and defective spermatogenesis. Guanidinoacetic acid (GAA), as a precursor of creatine, plays an important role in the proper functioning of Sertoli cells and energy metabolism in sperm. Twenty, 29-wk-old broiler breeder roosters (Ross 308) were randomly allotted to 4 treatment groups and fed diets supplemented with different levels of GAA, including 0 (GAA-0), 600 (GAA-600), 1200 (GAA-1200), and 1800 (GAA-1800) mg GAA/kg of diet for 26 successive weeks. During a 24-wk period, the seminal characteristics were weekly evaluated. At the end of experiment, sperm penetration and fertility rates were determined, using 68 artificially inseminated age-matched broiler breeder hens of the same strain (for 2 weeks). Semen concentration (P = 0.003), total sperm number (P = 0.005) and sperm forward motility (P = 0.01) were increased by GAA-1200 group. Also, sperm plasma membrane functionality was marginally affected (P = 0.06) in roosters received all levels of GAA. Sperm abnormality and plasma membrane integrity were not affected by dietary GAA. The highest number of sperm penetration holes was recorded for the GAA-1200 group (P = 0.08). Interestingly, fertility rate was increased by the feeding of all levels of GAA (P = 0.01). In conclusion, dietary GAA was associated with improvement in most of the rooster’s seminal characteristics and fertility rate, suggesting a potential for using GAA to attenuate the age-related sub-fertility in commercial broiler breeder roosters.
Tapeh RS, Zhandi M, Zaghari M, Akhlaghi A. Effects of guanidinoacetic acid diet supplementation on semen quality and fertility of broiler breeder roosters. Theriogenology. 2017 Feb;89:178-182. doi: 10.1016/j.theriogenology.2016.11.012. Epub 2016 Nov 16. PMID: 28043349.