Genetic variants in the RABL2A gene in fertile and oligoasthenospermic infertile men

Capsule:
Among RABL2A genetic variants in male infertility, the 114391996 delC variant may confer a risk for oligoasthenospermia in Australian men.

Authors:
Duangporn Jamsai, Ph.D., Jennifer Chi Yi Lo, Ph.D., Robert I. McLachlan, Ph.D., Moira K. O’Bryan, Ph.D.

Volume 102, Issue 1, Pages 223–229

Abstract:

Objective:
To define RABL2A localization in human sperm and to assess any potential association between RABL2A variants and male infertility associated with oligoasthenospermia.

Design:
Genetic association study.

Setting:
Public university.

Patient(s):
Australian men: 110 oligoasthenospermic infertile and 105 proven fertile.

Intervention(s):
Human semen samples processed by immunostaining with high-throughput-sequencing platform to screen the entire protein-coding and flanking exon/intron regions of the RABL2A gene.

Main Outcome Measure(s):
Presence of RABL2A in human sperm and frequencies of RABL2A genetic variants in fertile and infertile men.

Result(s):
RABL2A localization in sperm was highly conserved between mouse and human, being localized to the tail. Direct DNA sequencing revealed 23 RABL2A genetic variants, including 16 intronic, 6 untranslated region (UTR), and one exonic missense variants. Of these, eight variants have not been previously reported. Although the majority of these variants showed no significant association with fertility status, allelic frequency of the intronic variant 114391996 delC was significantly increased in oligoasthenospermic men. Bioinformatics analysis suggested that the 114391996 delC allele would alter the splicing of RABL2A pre-mRNA.

Conclusion(s):
Our data suggest the 114391996 delC allele in the RABL2A gene may act as a risk factor for oligoasthenospermic infertility in Australian men.

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