To compare the effectiveness of various sperm preparation methods, we examined sperm concentration, percentage of progressive motility, recovery rate, and various motion characteristics in 32 semen samples after Percoll and IxaPrep preparations. Except for sperm concentration, which was much higher after IxaPrep preparation, no statistical differences existed between these two methods in terms of motile sperm concentration (MSC), recovery rate, mean curvilinear velocity (VCL), mean straight-line velocity (VSL) and mean amplitude of lateral head displacement (ALH). Among 22 samples that were allocated in a 37°C, 5% CO 2 incubator, the mean MSC after 3 hours was significantly higher following IxaPrep preparation than following Percoll preparation (63.2 x 10 6 /mL vs. 42.8 x 10 6 /mL, p < .03). VCL and VSL were much higher after IxaPrep preparation than after Percoll preparation, both at 3 hours (p < .01) and at 24 hours (p < .03). ALH was also higher after IxaPrep preparation than after Percoll preparation, and it was statistically significant after 3 hours of incubation (p < .03). We conclude that the IxaPrep gradient may be adopted as the preferred method to the Percoll gradient in preparing spermatozoa for assisted reproduction because of the spermatozoa's persistent and better motion activities after incubation.
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