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Am J Hum Genet. 2001 Nov;69(5):1046-54. Epub 2001 Oct 1.

Frequency of XY sperm increases with age in fathers of boys with Klinefelter syndrome.

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  • 1Biology and Biotechnology Research Program, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA 94550, USA.

Abstract

With increasing availability of drugs for impotence and advanced reproductive technologies for the treatment of subfertility, more men are fathering children at advanced ages. We conducted a study of the chromosomal content of sperm of healthy men aged 24-57 years to (a) determine whether father's age was associated with increasing frequencies of aneuploid sperm including XY, disomy X, disomy Y, disomy 21, and sperm diploidy, and (b) examine the association between the frequencies of disomy 21 and sex-chromosomal aneuploidies. The study group consisted of 38 fathers of boys with Klinefelter syndrome (47, XXY) recruited nationwide, and sperm aneuploidy was assessed using multicolor X-Y-21 sperm FISH ( approximately 10,000 sperm per donor). Paternal age was significantly correlated with the sex ratio of sperm (Y/X; P=.006) and with the frequency of XY sperm (P=.02), with a clear trend with age by decades (P<.006). Compared with fathers in their 20s (who had an average frequency of 7.5 XY sperm per 10,000), the frequencies of XY sperm were 10% higher among fathers in their 30s, 31% higher among those in their 40s, and 160% higher among those in their 50s (95% CI 69%-300%). However, there was no evidence for age effects on frequencies of sperm carrying nullisomy sex; disomies X, Y, or 21; or meiosis I or II diploidies. The frequencies of disomy 21 sperm were significantly associated with sex-chromosomal aneuploidy (P=.04)-in particular, with disomy X (P=.004), but disomy 21 sperm did not preferentially carry either sex chromosome. These findings suggest that older fathers produce higher frequencies of XY sperm, which may place them at higher risk of fathering boys with Klinefelter syndrome, and that age effects on sperm aneuploidy are chromosome specific.

PMID:
11582569
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC1274351
Free PMC Article

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