Author(s): Langford GA, Ainsworth L, Marcus GJ, Shrestha JN
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Abstract Adult rams were exposed to photoperiod treatments over 2 years to study the influence of light regimes on pituitary-testicular activity and semen quality. Initially, all rams (12 per group) were exposed to 3 months of long days (16L:8D). Group 1 was then exposed to a regime of continuous short days (8L:16D) and Groups 2, 3, and 4 were exposed to 4 months of short days alternated with 1, 2, or 4 months, respectively, of long days. Every 2 weeks, serum hormone levels and scrotal circumference were determined and semen quality was evaluated. Regular cycles in pituitary and testicular activities corresponding to the period of the lighting regime resulted in Groups 2, 3, and 4, but not in Group 1. In general, the change from long days to short days induced increases in follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), and testosterone levels, scrotal size and sperm numbers and a decrease in prolactin. The reverse occurred after subsequent exposure to long days. After 4 months of long days, testicular regression was complete, but when long-day exposure was reduced, less regression occurred. With continuous exposure to short days, FSH and testosterone remained above basal levels, prolactin levels were depressed, scrotal size remained near the maximum, and elevated numbers of motile sperm were sustained.
This article was published in Biol Reprod
and referenced in Journal of Aquaculture Research & Development