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Gynecol Obstet Fertil. 2004 Jan;32(1):34-41.

[A simple, low-cost and non-invasive method for screening Y microdeletions in infertile men].

[Article in French]

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  • 1Laboratoire de biologie de la reproduction, hôpital Nord, 42055 Saint-Etienne, France.



Recent investigations showed a high prevalence of Y chromosome microdeletions in men with severely impaired spermatogenesis. Screening for these men is recommended prior to assisted reproduction techniques. The aim of this study was to set up a simple method to detect Y deletion in infertile men. First, we tested the feasibility of cytobrush to collect oral cells as source of DNA. Second, we compared a classic PCR corresponding to European recommendations to the Promega kit.


Seventeen infertile male patients with previously characterized deletions were included in the present study, after fully informed written consent. Both oral cells and blood were used for DNA extraction. A specific DNA extraction protocol was carried out on the buccal cells. The DNAs were tested for Y deletion screening by two different methods.


We retrieved between 4 and 10 microg of DNA per brush from buccal cells, allowing several multiplex PCR. The Promega kit detected all the deletions but one: an AZFa deletion was not detected by the two markers of the kit covering this region. In addition, sY130, sY133 and SY153, included in the kit, are not reliable.


Buccal cells represent a convenient substitute for blood in testing for Y microdeletions. Both false negative and false positive results were obtained with Promega Kit. On the opposite, PCR according to the European recommendations allow the accurate detection of Y microdeletion in our 17 cases, at a lower cost.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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