Sperm Encapsulation from 1985 to Date: Technology Evolution and New Challenges in Swine Reproduction

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ContentsIn the last 30 years, encapsulation technology has been applied to different species to minimize the loss of spermatozoa after artificial insemination. In particular, the vehiculation of boar sperm cells in barium alginate membrane has proved a valid strategy to reduce the risk of polyspermy and optimize in vivo fertilizing yields. Controlled release of male gametes into the female genital tract has reduced the minimum fertilizing dose of spermatozoa. Notwithstanding these results, encapsulation has not yet reached commercial application, largely due to the additional costs of production. However, encapsulation could be useful in advanced reproductive technology, such as sex sorting, to store sorted boar semen. The controlled release of flow cytometrically sorted spermatozoa could be a promising strategy to reduce the number of cells necessary for each insemination and hence allow the widescale use of sex sorting in this species.

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