Scientists at CellOxess publish their latest findings on the mechanisms behind Sperm Oxidative Stress, now recognized as a common cause for low sperm motility, count and particularly DNA integrity
26th May, 2015; Princeton, NJ--Sperm Oxidative Stress (SOS) is now widely accepted as a key male fertility factor. In fact, 60% of men seeking fertility assistance have been shown to have elevated levels of oxidative stress, resulting in reduced sperm count and motility, poor morphology, and most importantly, DNA damage.
SOS is caused by reactive metabolites, called Reactive Oxygen Species, or ROS, that attack proteins, DNA, and the fatty acids that make up cell membranes. These radicals induce a chain reaction by stealing electrons from nearby molecules, forming new radicals and propagating a cycle of reactive molecules. Sperm membranes are particularly vulnerable to ROS because of their high unsaturated fatty acid content, making them a prime target for oxidative attack. The product of these reactions is a variety of lipid aldehydes, which are particularly toxic molecules that can themselves react with other structures in the cell.
As it turns out, not all of these lipid aldehydes are equally damaging. Scientists at CellOxess as well as collaborators from the Aitken lab at the University of Newcastle (Newcastle, Australia) have discovered that only some of these aldehydes are actually toxic to sperm cells. Furthermore, their toxicity is related to their structure.
Three common aldehydes, 4-hydroxynonenol (4-HNE), acrolein, and malondialdehyde (MDA), were tested in human sperm cells for their effects on cell viability, motility, ROS production, and DNA damage. They found that, while 4-HNE and acrolein were highly toxic to cells, with damaging effects seen after only 2 hours, MDA did not cause any observable toxicity or adverse effects in the cells. Since 4-HNE and MDA are widely used as biomarkers of oxidative stress, their relative toxicity may have implications for determining the biomarker of choice. While they appear to be equally sensitive in cases with induced lipid peroxidation, further study is required to determine which molecule is better suited for clinical testing of sperm oxidative stress.
These results will be presented in detail at the ESHRE 2015 Annual Conference in Lisbon, Portugal, at the International Lisbon Fair, and have been published in the prestigious journal Molecular Human Reproduction. The official conference abstract can be found here, and the paper can be accessed at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25837702. The published paper is also attached to this PR.
CellOxess will also be showcasing at the conference, with several representatives present to discuss interest in CellOxess products and opportunities for collaboration. For more information, visit www.celloxess.com and www.fertilix.com, or visit booth #F10 from June 14th-17th on the conference floor.
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