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Arch Androl. 2004 Mar-Apr;50(2):121-9.

Use of atomic force microscopy to reveal sperm ultrastructure in HIV-patients on highly active antiretroviral therapy.

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  • 1Departamento de Fisiología, Ave. Don Tulio, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de Los Andes, Mérida, Venezuela.


Atomic force microscopy (AFM) has been employed to examine morphological and topographical changes caused by human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and the effects of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) on spermatozoon of HIV infected patients. This powerful technique has allowed us to visualize morphological alterations present in the spermatozoa of patients either with or without treatment. In addition to this, even the minute details, such as viral particles, located on the membrane of the spermatozoa, and the merging of such particles on the surface of the spermatozoa were detected with precision. The most important aspect is that AFM, unlike electron microscopy, permits to image virions in their nearly natural environment. Excess of damage of spermatozoon is due to the chemicals involved in HAART rather than the damage made by virus.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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