Systematic Analysis of Breed, Methodological, and Geographical Impact on Equine Sperm Progressive Motility

Jodie Perrett, Imogen Thea Harris, Christy Maddock, Mark Farnworth, Alison Z. Pyatt, Rebecca Nicole Sumner

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
52 Downloads (Pure)


Over the past five decades, there has been increasing evidence to indicate global declines in human semen quality. Parallel adverse trends measured in male animals indicate a potential environmental aetiology. This study evaluated the progressive motility (PM) of stallion ejaculate through a systematic review and meta-analysis. A total of 696 estimates of equine PM from 280 studies, which collected semen samples between the years 1990 and 2018, were collated for meta-analysis. The method of motility analysis, breed, season of collection, and geographical location were extracted. Simple linear regression determined temporal trends in stallion PM. Studies using microscopy estimated PM to be significantly greater compared to computer-automated methods (p ≤ 0.001). For Arabian breeds, PM was consistently higher than other breeds. Over time, there was a significant decline in PM for studies from Europe (n = 267) but a significant increase for studies from North America (n = 259). Temporal trends indicate the fertilising capacity of equine ejaculate has remained consistently high in the last three decades. That being so, variations observed suggest methodological, geographical, and individual stallion differences may significantly influence actual and reported stallion fertility potential.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere3088
Issue number11
Early online date29 Oct 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2021


  • equine
  • progressive motility
  • temporal trends
  • semen analysis
  • breed
  • seasonality
  • geographical location


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