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Moretti E.,Applied Biology Section | Castellini C.,University of Perugia | Mourvaki E.,University of Perugia | Capitani S.,University of Siena | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Andrology

The aim of this study was to investigate the presence of the different isoforms of tocopherol (T) in seminal plasma (P) and in the sperm fractions of individuals with abnormal (group 1) and normal (group 2) sperm parameters; the relationships between these isoforms and conventional sperm parameters were also explored. Two vitamin E homologues, α-T and δ-T, were identified in the semen of all participants. Although α-T and δ-T concentrations were similar in the semen of the 2 groups, group 1 showed a lower α-T ratio (S/P) (0.90 vs. 1.20, P <.001) and δ-T ratio (0.86 vs 1.13, P = .007) than group 2. In addition, both T ratios were correlated with the percentage of viable cells, detected by eosin staining. These results suggested that α-T and δ-T are not homogeneously distributed in the semen fractions; in normal semen they are more concentrated in the sperm membrane, whereas in abnormal semen the damaged sperm cells may release both Ts in the plasma. To verify whether sperm membrane breakage could alter α-T and δ-T distribution between the seminal plasma and the spermatozoa, normal sperm samples were sonicated; after sonication a consistent sperm plasma membrane fragmentation, highlighted by transmission electron microscopy, and a concomitant release of α-T and δ-T were observed. In conclusion, the Ts coupled directly with the sperm membrane seem to play the main protective role in the semen, and the release of α-T and δ-T in the P fraction is probably an index of lower antioxidant power and sperm quality. © American Society of Andrology. Source

Collodel G.,Applied Biology Section | Capitani S.,Applied Biology Section | Capitani S.,University of Siena | Pammolli A.,Applied Biology Section | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Andrology

This retrospective study was aimed at evaluating the effects of cigarette consumption on semen parameters in a group of men with Idiopathic Infertility. The semen quality of 2 groups of men with Idiopathic Infertility, smokers (n = 118) and nonsmokers (n = 153), were compared. Conventional semen analysis was performed and sperm morphology was assessed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM). TEM data were elaborated by means of a mathematical formula based on a Bayeslan technique able to furnish a fertility Index (Fl), and the percentages of sperm apoptosls, necrosis, and Immaturity. Values of normality recommended by World Health Organization guidelines were used as a control for conventional semen analysis, and values from sperm of 25 men of proven fertility were used for TEM indices. Infertile smoker and nonsmoker patients showed similar sperm parameters, although sperm motility and TEM analysis values In both groups were significantly impaired compared with controls. Smoker patients were then classified as mild (≥1 and ≤10 clgarettes/d), moderate (>10 and <20 cigarettes/day), or heavy smokers (≥20 clgarettes/d). Sperm concentration and Fl were significantly (P < .05) different among the 3 considered smoker classes. Comparing the pairs of smoker classes, sperm concentration and Fl In heavy smokers were significantly lower (P < .05) than that observed In mild smoker and nonsmoker groups. Although semen quality In males with idiopathic infertility seems not to be dramatically affected by cigarette consumption, heavy smokers show significantly lower sperm concentration and Fl: another strong reason to stop smoking. Copyright © American Society of Andrology. Source

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