We have used the technique of fluorescence recovery after photobleaching to measure the diffusibility of the fluorescent lipid analogue, 1,1'-dihexadecyl 3,3,3',3'-tetramethylindocarbocyanine perchlorate on the morphologically distinct regions of the plasma membranes of mouse spermatozoa, and the changes in lipid diffusibility that result from in vitro hyperactivation and capacitation with bovine serum albumin. We found that, as previously observed on ram spermatozoa, lipid analogue diffusibility is regionalized on mouse spermatozoa, being fastest on the flagellum. The bovine serum albumin induced changes in diffusibility that occur with hyperactivation are also regionalized. Specifically, if we compare serum incubated in control medium, which maintains normal motility, with those hyperactivated in capacitating medium, we observe with hyperactivation an increase in lipid analogue diffusion rate in the anterior region of the head, the midpiece, and tail, and a decrease in diffusing fraction in the anterior region of the head.

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