M Dahlbom

University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Province of Southern Finland, Finland

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Publications (11)17.57 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The semen of a 3-year-old golden retriever was examined for breeding purposes. When the morphology of the spermatozoa was analysed for the first time, 37% were observed to have giant heads. In most of the giant heads, a diadem defect was also found. The dog was successfully used for breeding. On re-examination, the percentage of giant heads was found to be greater than before. The right testicle exhibited tissue softening. To determine the reason for the defect, an aspiration needle biopsy was performed and ultrasound examination undertaken. In the biopsy smears, both normal spermatozoa and spermatozoa with giant heads were found. On ultrasonography, the echogenicities of both testicles were the same, and normal. DNA flow cytometry was performed to determine the DNA content of the spermatozoa. Two populations of sperm cells were detected, one having a median fluorescent intensity twice as high as that of normal spermatozoa, suggesting a diploid DNA content. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) was performed to find out whether the altered intensity correlated with the ultrastructure of the spermatozoa. The nuclei of the sperm heads showed a normal chromatin condensation. Semen quality became worse over a period of 2 years, with 60% giant heads in the last sample. The process was considered to be progressive spermatogenic degeneration with diploidy. Relatives examined did not suggest any hereditary predisposition to the problem. The male was still fertile at the time of the last sample collected and sired a litter of 10 healthy puppies.
    Andrologia 01/2009; 29(1):49-55. · 1.75 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We compared the serological status of Brucella canis and canine herpesvirus-1 (CHV-1) in Finnish breeding kennels with and without reproductive problems. Dogs from kennels with reproductive problems had significantly higher CHV-1 titres than dogs from kennels having no reproductive problems (p < 0.001). In dogs from kennels with reproductive problems 100% (32/32) had positive titres, whereas in dogs from kennels without reproductive problems 65% (22/34) had positive titres. The median titre for dogs from kennels with reproductive problems was 1 : 160 and for dogs from kennels without reproductive problems 1 : 80. The high prevalence of positive CHV-1 titres in this study indicates that prevention of the disease is difficult and reinforces the need to minimize the reproductive problems caused by CHV-1. All 388 dogs from 94 kennels had negative B. canis titres.
    Reproduction in Domestic Animals 09/2008; 44(1):128-31. · 1.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The effects of artificial insemination (AI) using sexed sperm on pregnancy rates have seldom been studied in lactating dairy cows on commercial dairy farms. We evaluated pregnancy results after AI of 306 lactating dairy cows, of which 157 were inseminated with 2x10(6) frozen/thawed sexed sperm and 149 with 15x10(6) frozen/thawed unsexed sperm. The average pregnancy and calving rates were 21.0% and 20% for the sexed-sperm AIs and 46% and 45% for the unseparated control-sperm AIs respectively (p<0.001). The proportion of female calves derived from sexed-sperm AI was 82% compared with 49% for control AI (p<0.01). The proportion of live and healthy calves in single births was 100% for sexed-sperm AI and 97% for control AI (p>0.05). Our results indicate that AI with low-dose sexed sperm under field conditions in commercial dairy herds without oestrus synchronization results in significantly reduced pregnancy rates compared with normal-dose AI. Improved insemination strategies combined with increased sperm doses are needed before the use of sexed sperm can be of any significant benefit for the dairy and beef industry.
    Reproduction in Domestic Animals 04/2006; 41(2):95-7. · 1.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The effects of low-dose artificial insemination (AI) on pregnancy rates have seldom been studied in lactating dairy cows. We evaluated the pregnancy results after AI with doses of 2 and 15 million frozen-thawed spermatozoa and the effect of semen deposition in lactating dairy cows. A total of 284 first inseminations with 2 million spermatozoa and 312 first inseminations with 15 million spermatozoa were performed on 480 dairy farms. Low-dose inseminations (2 million spermatozoa) under field conditions in commercial dairy herds, without estrus synchronization, generally resulted in significantly reduced pregnancy rates compared with normal doses (15 million spermatozoa). The bull x technician effect on fertility was statistically significant. This finding indicates that there is a high variability in fertility among bulls using 2 million spermatozoa per dose. The semen deposition site did not influence pregnancy rates. It is concluded that a dose of 2 million frozen-thawed spermatozoa is probably too low for most bulls to achieve acceptable pregnancy rates in dairy cows.
    Theriogenology 06/2004; 61(7-8):1583-8. · 2.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The daily quality control of semen at a Finnish artificial insemination (AI) bull station is based on subjective motility and sperm morphology of young bulls entering the semen collection program. Semen quality dropped suddenly in autumn 1998. During 5 consecutive months, the number of rejected ejaculates and discarded frozen semen batches due to poor motility increased, and the number of all forms of abnormal spermatozoa increased. However, for the accepted ejaculates, a 60 day nonretum rate was normal. The summer of 1998 in Finland was rainy, and the hay used in the AI station was visibly moldy. Immunoassay and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) detected Fusarium mycotoxins HT-2 and T-2, but no zearalenone in the hay. Occurrence of mycotoxins such as T-2 and HT-2 in the moldy hay coincided with, and may have been responsible for the impaired semen quality in AI bulls. This case report will draw the attention to the possible hazards when feeding moldy hay.
    Theriogenology 12/2002; 58(8):1497-502. · 2.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The artificial insemination (AI) industry is in need of an objective and rapid, but inexpensive method to evaluate frozen thawed bull semen ejaculates. This study presents a new fluorescence method that uses an automatized fluorometer and fluorophore stain propidium iodide that stains only those cells with damaged membranes. The fluorescence of the semen sample and the totally killed subsample were measured simultaneously, and viability was calculated. Every semen batch was analyzed before use in AI. For fertility evaluation, the nonreturn rates (NR%) obtained from 92,120 inseminations with the analyzed batches were recorded from 166 bulls (436 batches). This study confirms a 3.9% better NR% for the Finnish Holstein-Friesian breed than for Finnish Ayrshire. There was a clear seasonality in NR%: it differed (5.3%) significantly, being best in summer to autumn (June to October) and lowest in winter (January to March). The fluorometer method was fast and easy. The correlation between the total number of viable spermatozoa in an insemination dose and field fertility was low but significant (r = 0.051, P = 0.016), suggesting that the plasma membrane integrity evaluation can serve as a cost-beneficial quality control method of frozen-thawed semen at bull stations.
    Theriogenology 10/2001; 56(4):677-84. · 2.08 Impact Factor
  • M Dahlbom, M Andersson, J Juga, M Alanko
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    ABSTRACT: The reproductive performance of 25 male Irish wolfhounds was examined in a two-year follow-up study. Results of a previous study showed that 37 Irish wolfhounds had lower libidos, smaller testicles and poorer semen quality than 67 control dogs examined. This study was undertaken to determine whether fertility parameters had changed after a further two years. Forty-four dogs of 21 breeds were used as controls. No change in libido was observed in either group after two years; the Irish wolfhounds still exhibited lower libidos than the control dogs. In both studies, the Irish wolfhounds showed a softening of testicular tissue with a significantly higher incidence than control dogs. This difference became more marked after two years. Semen quality had declined in Irish wolfhounds and the differences between the two groups became more accentuated. Inbreeding coefficients for the Irish wolfhounds were low, suggesting that this was a factor contributing to the poor reproductive function. However, several Irish wolfhounds had been ill during the follow-up period which, together with the decline in reproductive efficiency, may reflect a change due to ageing.
    Journal of Small Animal Practice 01/1998; 38(12):547-50. · 1.18 Impact Factor
  • M Dahlbom, A Mäkinen, J Suominen
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    ABSTRACT: The results of testicular aspirate cytology taken from clinical patients with a history of infertility were compared with the clinical and histological findings. Azoospermia was the most common and the most rewarding indication for the examination. Samples were also taken from cases with suspected testicular tumours, orchitis, epididymitis, severe oligo- and teratozoospermia, lack of libido and unilateral testicular atrophy. Histological and cytological findings were found to correlate well. Identification of cell types from normal germinal epithelium was relatively easy. No immediate adverse effects of aspiration were noted. Five normospermic dogs were monitored for two to six months after aspiration, and there were no marked deleterious effects on testicular consistency, testicular histology or semen characteristics. Testicular cytology obtained by fine needle aspiration may, at least to some extent, be used to assist clinical diagnosis, especially in azoospermic dogs and dogs with palpable changes of testicular tissue.
    Journal of Small Animal Practice 12/1997; 38(11):506-12. · 1.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Combining the traditional morphologic evaluation of spermatozoa with computer assisted image analysis adds randomness, objectivity, repeatability and accuracy to morphometric measurements. We collected semen from 10 fertile, normospermic dogs aged 1 to 7 yr and from 3 teratozoospermic breed-matched dogs. Sperm head morphology was examined in Giemsa-stained smears by light microscopy, using a computer-assisted image analyzer and by transmission electron microscopy. We found significant variation in sperm head area, length, width and degree of roundness among normospermic individual dogs, indicating that it would be necessary to examine many more dogs before the size and shape of normal dog spermatozoa could be determined. The normospermic dogs were used as controls for the teratozoospermic cases. Case 1: A 2-yr-old subfertile Cavalier King Charles Spaniel had semen with small and narrow-based sperm heads and a proximal cytoplasmic droplet in most of the spermatozoa. With the image analysis system, sperm heads were shown to be smaller and more oval than in normospermic dogs. The variatons in size and shape were similar in magnitude to those of control dogs. An examined infertile half-brother had similar semen quality. Case 2: A 3-yr-old Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen with 2 unsuccesfull matings exhibited spermatozoa with severe abnormalities. Measured by image analyzer, sperm heads were irregular in shape and very small in area. One of the two littermates examined had semen of the same quality as the case dog. Case 3: A 3-yr-old fertile Golden Retriever had semen with giant sperm heads in about 50% of spermatozoa. Image analyzing results revealed 2 populations of different sized sperm heads. Giant heads consisted of 52.2% of all spermatozoa. The results of the study reported here suggest that the image analysis technique may be useful in evaluating structural changes in sperm morphology, supplementing visual assessment that is used in conventional methods.
    Theriogenology 10/1997; 48(4):687-98. · 2.08 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Small Animal Practice 01/1997; 38(12):547-550. · 1.18 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: On the basis of clinical observations, Irish wolfhounds were suspected as being subject to a relatively high incidence of soft testicular consistency and low semen quality. Thirty-seven Irish wolfhounds and 67 dogs of other breeds (control group) were therefore examined. Conventional andrological studies were performed in both groups, these included libido testing, palpation and measurement of testes and semen evaluation. Semen evaluation was performed both manually and by videomicrographic analysis. Testosterone concentrations were measured both before and after human chorionic gonadotropin challenge in the Irish wolfhounds. The Irish wolfhounds had lower libidos than the control group. More Irish wolfhounds (21.2 per cent) exhibited low semen quality than the control group (6.1 per cent). Soft testicular consistency occurred more frequently in Irish wolfhounds (25.7 per cent) than in the control group (10.5 per cent). In the control group, bodyweight correlated significantly with total sperm count. Serum testosterone concentration did not correlate with semen quality parameters.
    Journal of Small Animal Practice 01/1996; 36(12):547-52. · 1.18 Impact Factor