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Gamete Res. 1989 Oct;24(2):127-34.

Lipid peroxidation in human spermatozoa as related to midpiece abnormalities and motility.

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Centre d'Etude et de Conservation du Sperme Humain, Hôpital du Kremlin-Bicêtre, Le Kremlin-Bicêtre, France.


The formation of malondialdehyde (MDA), a product of lipid peroxidation (LPO), was measured in human spermatozoa from 27 subjects with normal sperm characteristics. Peroxidation of lipids in washed spermatozoa was induced by catalytic amounts of ferrous ions and ascorbate and malondialdehyde determined by thiobarbituric method. MDA formation varied considerably from one sample to another. The studied population showed a strong correlation between lipid peroxidation potential (amount of MDA formed by 10(8) spermatozoa after 1 hour of incubation) and 1) initial motility r = -0.623, P = 0.001; and 2) morphologic abnormalities of the midpiece r = 0.405, P = 0.05. These results suggest that poor motility is linked with membrane fragility and that spermatozoa with midpiece abnormalities probably have membrane and/or cytoplasmic antiperoxidant system defects. Because LPO potential is related to the two most important characteristics of fertility, it seems possible that it has the potential to become a good biochemical index of semen quality.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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