In Translational animal science
Assessment of swine semen quality is important as it is used as an estimate of the fertility of an ejaculate. There are many methods to measure sperm morphology, concentration, and motility, however, some methods require expensive instrumentation or are not easy to use on-farm. A portable, low-cost, automated device could provide the potential to assess semen quality in field conditions. The objective of this study was to validate the use of Fertile-Eyez (FE), a smartphone-based device, to measure sperm concentration, total motility, and morphology in boar ejaculates. Semen from six sexually mature boars were collected and mixed to create a total of 18 unique semen samples for system evaluations. Each sample was then diluted to 1:4, 1:8, 1:10, and 1:16 (for concentration only) with Androhep Plus semen extender (n = 82 total). Sperm concentration was evaluated using FE and compared to results measured using a Nucleocounter and computer assisted sperm analysis (CASA: Ceros II, Hamilton Thorne). Sperm motility was evaluated using FE and CASA. Sperm morphological assessments were evaluated by a single technician manually counting abnormalities and compared to FE deep-learning technology. Data were analyzed using both descriptive statistics (mean, standard deviation, intra-assay coefficient of variance, and residual standard deviation [RSD]) and statistical tests (correlation analysis between devices and Bland-Altman methods). Concentration analysis was strongly correlated (n = 18; r > 0.967; P < 0.0001) among all devices and dilutions. Analysis of motility showed moderate correlation and was significant when all dilutions are analyzed together (n = 54; r = 0.558; P < 0.001). The regression analysis for motility also showed the RSD as 3.95% between FE and CASA indicating a tight fit between devices. This RSD indicates that FE can find boars with unacceptable motility (boars for example with less than 70%) which impact fertility and litter size. The Bland-Altman analysis showed that FE-estimated morphological assessment and the conventionally estimated morphological score were similar, with a mean difference of ~1% (%95 Limits of Agreement: -6.2 to 8.1; n = 17). The results of this experiment demonstrate that FE, a portable and automated smartphone-based device, is capable of assessing concentration, motility, and morphology of boar semen samples.
Suárez-Trujillo Aridany, Kandula Hemanth, Kumar Jasmine, Devi Anjali, Shirley Larissa, Thirumalaraju Prudhvi, Kanakasabapathy Manoj Kumar, Shafiee Hadi, Hart Liane
based semen analysis, smartphone, swine