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Fertil Steril. 2010 Feb;93(3):802-6. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2008.10.050. Epub 2008 Dec 18.

Human papillomavirus found in sperm head of young adult males affects the progressive motility.

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Department of Histology, Microbiology and Medical Biotechnologies, Section of Clinical Pathology and Centre for Male Gamete Cryopreservation, University of Padova, Italy.



To evaluate the prevalence of human papillomavirus (HPV) sperm infection and its correlation with sperm parameters in a cohort of young adult males.


Cross-sectional clinical study.


Andrology and Microbiology sections at a university hospital.


A cohort of 200 young adult male volunteers (18 years old), 100 with previous sexual intercourse and 100 without previous sexual intercourse.


Seminal parameters, sperm culture for HPV and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis for HPV detection in the sperm head. Statistical analysis was performed with a two-tailed Student's t-test.


Results of HPV investigation were compared to sperm parameters and results of FISH analysis. HPV infection was present in sperm cells of 10 subjects among those 100 young adults who already had unprotected intercourse and its presence was associated with reduced sperm motility. Furthermore, infected samples showed that about 25% of sperm had an HPV DNA positivity at the head site, but it is unclear whether it was integrated in the nucleus or not.


This is the first report estimating the percentage of HPV-positive sperm in infected subjects and the association between HPV infection and sperm motility.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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