Professor Sukchareon and his team had been studying men with obstructive azoospermia, a condition where sperm are created but cannot be mixed with the ejaculatory fluid due to a physical obstruction (such as a vasectomy). He found that they had high rates of chromosomal aneuploidy (where an abnormal number of specific chromosomes or chromosome sets exist within the nucleus of the cell) and diploidy (containing two sets of chromosomes – unlike most cells in the body, the sex cells should only contain one set of chromosomes.
“The rate of abnormality was about 10 times higher than the aneuploidy and diploidy rate in normal fertile men”, said Professor Sukchareon. “This raised a lot of questions, so we decided to study the rates of these abnormalities in ejaculated sperm after vasectomy reversal. If these sperm continued to have a high rate of aneuploidy and diploidy, we would know that obstruction by vasectomy must affect spermatogenesis in the longer term.”
The scientists found a significant correlation between the duration of the obstruction in post vasectomy-reversal men and the number of abnormal sperm, and also between the time interval after vasectomy reversal and the total sex chromosome aneuploidy rate – i.e. the long ago the reversal the better the chances of producing normal sperm.
“This study raises a lot of questions”, said Professor Sukcharoen. “Is the abnormal spermatogenesis reversible, and if so, how long will it take before things get back to normal? Perhaps more importantly, will babies born after vasectomy reversal – either conceived naturally or by ART – have problems themselves?”
To date there have been no studies looking at these questions, he said, and his team are beginning the follow-up research. “We are collecting sperm during vasectomy reversal operations and will compare the aneuploidy rate of these and of the sperm we will collect each month in the future from the same men. This will help us understand what the dangers are. But in the meantime, I think that doctors need to be very aware of the possibility that babies born after vasectomy reversal may have problems.”
Their findings may not affect babies conceived naturally after such a procedure, says Professor Sukchareon, since the female genital tract may select the best sperm for fertilisation. “But this is still uncertain, and until we know more it would probably be safer to freeze ejaculated sperm before vasectomy. We need a lot more evidence and research on this issue before we can be certain of avoiding the dangers.”
Mary Rice | alfa
A promising target for kidney fibrosis
21.04.2017 | Brigham and Women's Hospital
Stem cell transplants: activating signal paths may protect from graft-versus-host disease
20.04.2017 | Technische Universität München
More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.
Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...
Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.
"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
24.04.2017 | Life Sciences
24.04.2017 | Earth Sciences
24.04.2017 | Machine Engineering