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J Assist Reprod Genet. 2013 Jun;30(6):843-8. doi: 10.1007/s10815-013-0015-0. Epub 2013 Jun 1.

High prevalence of isolated sperm DNA damage in infertile men with advanced paternal age.

Author information

1
Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Sperm DNA damage is associated with male infertility, lower pregnancy rates and pregnancy loss.

OBJECTIVE:

The primary aim of our study was to evaluate the prevalence of sperm DNA damage in younger and older men with normozoospermia.

DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS:

We obtained semen from 277 consecutive non-azoospermic men presenting for sperm DNA testing.

OUTCOME MEASUREMENTS AND STATISTICAL ANALYSIS:

The main outcome measures included sperm % DNA fragmentation index (%DFI, using sperm chromatin structure assay), sperm concentration, motility and morphology, and, paternal age.

RESULTS AND LIMITATIONS:

Sperm % DFI was positively correlated with paternal age (r = 0.20, P < 0.001) and inversely correlated % progressive motility (r = -0.16, P = 0.01). Sperm %DFI was significantly higher in older (≥40 years) compared to younger (<40 years) normozoospermic men (17 ± 13 vs. 12 ± 8, respectively P = 0.008), whereas, sperm concentration, progressive motility and morphology were not significantly different in these two groups. Moreover, the prevalence of high levels of sperm DNA damage (>30 % DFI) was significantly higher in older compared to younger normozoospermic men (17 % vs. 3 %, respectively, P < 0.001).

CONCLUSION:

The data indicate that a conventional semen analysis can often fail to detect a defect in spermatogenesis (high %DFI) in older men and suggest that infertile couples with advanced paternal age, including those with normal semen parameters, should consider sperm DNA testing as part of the couple evaluation.

PMID:
23722935
PMCID:
PMC3696445
DOI:
10.1007/s10815-013-0015-0
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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