Spermatozoa micro ribonucleic acid 34c level is correlated with intracytoplasmic sperm injection outcomes

Spermatozoa miR-34c levels are correlated with the quality of day-3 embryos, pregnancy rate, implantation rate, and live birth rate and can be used as an indicator of ICSI outcomes.

Long Cui, M.Sc., Li Fang, M.Sc., Biwei Shi, M.Sc., Sunquan Qiu, M.Sc., Yinghui Ye, M.D., Ph.D.

Volume 104, Issue 2, Pages 312-317


To assess the effects of micro ribonucleic acid (miR)-34b/c expression levels in human spermatozoa on intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) outcomes.

Retrospective observational study.

In vitro fertilization center.

A total of 162 patients with idiopathic male infertility who had undergone first ICSI cycles.


Main Outcome Measure(s):
The levels of miR-34b/c in spermatozoa were measured using real-time polymerase chain reaction. Fertilization, early cleavage, day-3 good-quality embryo, pregnancy, implantation, and live birth rate were assessed. A receiver operating characteristic curve was employed to analyze the cutoff values.

No correlation was found between the spermatozoa miR-34b/c levels and the 2 pronuclei early cleavage rate. A correlation was seen between an increased level of miR-34c and a higher percentage of good-quality embryos on day 3. Although miR-34b and miR-34c levels were higher in the pregnancy group, compared with the nonpregnancy group, receiver operating characteristic curve analysis showed that miR-34c levels in spermatozoa were more strongly correlated with ICSI treatment outcomes, compared with miR-34b (area under the curve = 0.75). Patients in the miR-34c–positive group were more likely to exhibit higher rates of good-quality embryos, implantation, pregnancy, and live birth. A multivariable logistic regression analysis showed that miR-34c in spermatozoa (odds ratio: 5.699, with 95% confidence interval [CI]: 2.687–12.088) and woman’s age (odds ratio: 0.843, with 95% CI: 0.736–0.966) were the 2 parameters that were significantly correlated with pregnancy.

Our results demonstrate that miR-34c levels in spermatozoa are correlated with ICSI outcomes, suggesting that paternal miR-34c may play a role in the early phases of embryonic development. Levels of MiR-34c in human spermatozoa may be used as an indicator for ICSI outcomes.

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