Sunday, March 30, 2008

What Happens to Sperm DNA With Advancing Age

Published online on June 9, 2006, 10.1073/pnas.0506468103

Advancing age has differential effects on DNA damage, chromatin integrity, gene mutations, and aneuploidies in sperm


A. J. Wyrobek *, B. Eskenazi , S. Young , N. Arnheim ¶, I. Tiemann-Boege ¶, E. W. Jabs , R. L. Glaser **, F. S. Pearson *, and D. Evenson
*Biosciences Directorate, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, P.O. Box 808, Livermore, CA 94550; School of Public Health, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-7380; ¶Molecular and Computational Biology Program, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089; Institute of Genetic Medicine, Center for Craniofacial Development and Disorders, Departments of Pediatrics, Medicine, and Surgery, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD 21205; **Department of Biology, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, North Adams, MA 01247; and Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD 57007

Edited by James E. Cleaver, University of California, San Francisco, CA, and approved April 21, 2006 (received for review August 12, 2005)

This study compares the relative effects of advancing male age on multiple genomic defects in human sperm [DNA fragmentation index (DFI), chromatin integrity, gene mutations, and numerical chromosomal abnormalities], characterizes the relationships among these defects and with semen quality, and estimates the incidence of susceptible individuals for a well characterized nonclinical nonsmoking group of 97 men (22-80 years). Adjusting for confounders, we found major associations between age and the frequencies of sperm with DFI and fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 gene (FGFR3) mutations associated with achondroplasia (P < r =" -0.65,">

Ageing and quality of sperm

Last Updated: Sunday, 6 April 2008, 9:34 GMT Previous Page

Ageing and Quality of Sperm

Source: Prof. E. Y. Kwawukume - Obstetrician and Gynaecologist and Chief Executive of Women's Health Foundation-Ghana/The Mirror

Lifestyle and exposure to certain environmental agents could affect the sperm and fertility or the ability to produce healthy sperm to optimise fertility. There are many couples in our society who, after several months of trying to achieve conception, have failed.

Many times, the man is not ready to seek infertility evaluation and they try as much as possible to do what they can on their own to produce healthy sperm. Unfortunately, in a majority of men, self-medication does not work!

Sperm, quantity and quality vary among male and there are several factors which can affect the production of healthy and optimum sperm. Some of these factors are directly under our control but others are not and there is not much that you can do alone but to seek help and have clear understanding about your health.

Women and egg production

The production of eggs by the female and the production of sperm by the male run different pathways. There is no strong evidence that sperms suffer the same age-related degradation or weakness as women's eggs, the older sperms do cause their fair share of genetic problems but in a much different way.

In contrast to females who are born with all their eggs, men have no sperm when they are born. They don't make any sperm until they reach puberty, when a prolific and persistent production begins.

The average man makes about 250 million sperms a day: that's about 6,000 sperm every time his heart beats. As a man ages, sperm production continues unabated, and there’s no strong clinical or scientific evidence that production decreases significantly even in 70 and 80 year-old men.

Sperm production is very high and the body has to cope with this production through DNA. It is therefore not surprising that this repeated copying can lead to small mistakes called mutations and mistakes invariably occur. This could lead to many diseases in the children of older fathers and grandfathers.

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