Inhibitors of serine proteases decrease sperm penetration during porcine fertilization in vitro by inhibiting sperm binding to the zona pellucida and acrosome reaction.
Beek J., Nauwynck H., Appeltant R., Maes D., Van Soom A.
Serine proteases are involved in mammalian fertilization. Inhibitors of serine proteases can be applied to investigate at which point these enzymes exert their action. We selected two serine protease inhibitors, 4-(2-aminoethyl)benzenesulfonyl fluoride hydrochloride (AEBSF, 100 μM) and soybean trypsin inhibitor (STI, 5 μM) from Glycine max, via previous dose-response IVF experiments and sperm toxicity tests. In the present study, we evaluated how these inhibitors affect porcine fertilization in vitro as calculated on total fertilization rate, polyspermy rate, and the sperm number per fertilized oocyte of cumulus-intact, cumulus-free, and zona-free oocytes. In the control group (no inhibitor), these parameters were 86%, 49%, and 2.2 for cumulus-intact oocytes and 77%, 43%, and 2.2 for cumulus-free oocytes (6-hour gamete incubation period, 1.25 × 10(5) spermatozoa/mL). 4-(2-Aminoethyl)benzenesulfonyl fluoride hydrochloride and STI significantly reduced total fertilization and polyspermy rate in cumulus-intact and cumulus-free oocytes (P