Rectal insemination modifies immune responses in rabbits

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Science  27 Apr 1984:
Vol. 224, Issue 4647, pp. 390-392
DOI: 10.1126/science.6608789


Weekly deposition of pooled rabbit semen into the rectum in healthy male rabbits resulted in the appearance of immune complexes and antibodies to sperm and to peripheral blood lymphocyte antigens. It also led to a decreased ability to mount a humoral immune response to T lymphocyte-dependent antigens, keyhole limpet hemocyanin, and sheep red blood cells. These findings suggest that repeated rectal deposition of semen may compromise some aspects of the immune system.