Effects of combined antioxidant supplementation on human sperm motility and morphology during sperm manipulation in vitro

Capsule:
Combined treatment with taurine, cysteine, and glutathione improves the quality of human sperm by decreasing the rate of reduction in sperm motility during in vitro manipulation.

Authors:
Jung Im Yun, Ph.D., Seung Pyo Gong, Ph.D., Young Han Song, Ph.D., Seung Tae Lee, Ph.D.

Volume 100, Issue 2, Pages 373-378, August 2013

Abstract:

Objective:
To evaluate the effect of antioxidant combinations on human sperm motility and morphologic normality during preparation and in vitro incubation to improve sperm quality for assisted reproductive technology (ART).

Design:
Prospective study.
Setting:
Laboratory.

Patient(s):
Six fertile males, 21 to 25 years of age, after 3 days of sexual abstinence.

Intervention(s):
Sperm retrieved from patients with normal fertility prepared and incubated in vitro in medium supplemented with taurine, cysteine, and/or glutathione.

Main Outcome Measure(s):
Motility indices, including motility (MOT), average path velocity (VAP), curvilinear velocity (VCL), straight-line velocity (VSL), and morphologic normality.

Result(s):
Taurine supplementation during sperm preparation had no significant effects on motility or morphologic normality. However, when sperm was incubated for 24 hours under taurine-supplemented conditions, the rates of reduction in MOT, VAP, VCL, and VSL were statistically significantly decreased compared with taurine-free conditions. Morphologic normality was maintained, regardless of taurine treatment. The optimal taurine concentration for improving sperm motility and morphologic normality during preparation and in vitro incubation was 1 mM. Subsequently, combined treatment with 1 mM taurine, 1 mM cysteine, and 1 mM glutathione induced statistically significant synergistic effects on MOT, VAP, VCL, and VSL without any alteration of morphologic normality.

Conclusion(s):
Combined treatment with taurine, cysteine, and glutathione statistically significantly ameliorated the reduction in sperm motility during in vitro manipulation of human sperm.

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