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ISSN 2052-1472 (online)

Reproduction Abstracts (2014) 1 P232 | DOI: 10.1530/repabs.1.P232

Ultrastructural analysis of epididymis of agouti (Dasyprocta spp) during sexual development

Maria Angelica M Arroyo1, Paulo Ramos Silva Santos1, Moacir Franco Oliveira2 & Antonio Chaves de Assis Neto1


1School of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, University of Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil; 2Universidade Federal Rural do Semi-Árido, Mossoró, Brazil.


The agouti is a rodent found in the South America and one of the most predated species in Brazil, which has shown a significant decrease of population size. The principal function of epididymis is maturation of spermatozoa, in addition to conducting the same for the vas deferens. The study of sperm pathway, especially of epididymis, can promote morphophysiological information necessary for reproduction biotechnologies. The aim of this study was to describe the ultrastructure of the epididymis during sexual development of agoutis kept in captivity. The animals were kept at Center of Animal Wilds in northeastern, Mossoró, Brazil. The stages of testicular development (prepubescent, prepubertal, pubescent, and adult) were previously determined. Segments of the epididymis of agouti males at different stages of sexual development were performed to semithin cut and analyzed by transmission electron microscopy. This was a pioneer study in which it was observed that the epididymis of agoutis are composed of principal, basal, halogen, apical, and clean cells. During prepubescent and prepubertal stages were observed clean cells in addition to principal, basal, and halogen cells. On puberty apical cells were also present, and clean cells were not visible. We concluded that the pseudostratified stereociliated epithelium of the epididymis of agoutis undergo morphological and functional changes during sexual development. This range of information provides new approaches for future investigations involving the reproductive biology of agouti, which could be an important experimental model in reproductive biology research.

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