Turkish Journal of Urology
ANDROLOGY - Original Article

EBV induced loss of sperm quality


Department of Urology, University of Cologne Faculty of Medicine, University Hospital Cologne, Cologne, Germany

Turk J Urol 2021; 47: 287-292
DOI: 10.5152/tud.2021.21553
Read: 155 Downloads: 63 Published: 01 July 2021

Objective: To analyze the presence of Epstein–Barr-virus (EBV) in sperm samples from patients diagnosed with some impairment of the fertility parameters evaluated using seminogram and to observe if there is any difference with the normozoospermic samples. We hypothesize that an EBV infection is responsible for the upregulation of the miRNA 199-3p, which binds to the 3’UTR of endothelin-1 (ET-1). ET-1 is a key factor to produce Vimentin (Vim3), and therefore, it influences the expression of Vim3. Since Vim3 is predominantly detectable in sperms without any structural defects, the newly identified regulation mechanism can be responsible for the loss of sperm quality.

Material and methods: This study was performed from January 2017 to December 2020 and included 27 patients who provided ejaculated samples obtained by masturbation. Ejaculates were evaluated according to the Word Health Organization’s criteria. Posteriorly, the samples were sorted according to the seminogram diagnosis and further analyzed using different enzyme-linked absorbed immune assays to determine the level or concentration of Epstein–Barr nuclear antigen (EBNA), ET-1, and Vim3.

Results: All sperm samples with the impairment of fertility parameters contained the EBNA and presented a downregulation of ET-1 and Vim3. In addition, sperms located in the swim ups are also partially positive for the EBV virus in different clinical aspects.

Conclusion: Based on the regulation mechanism here presented, it seems that the EBV induces changes at the miRNA level, which are responsible for the decreasing of sperm quality.

Cite this article as: Huerta M, Tho¨nnisen J, Ko¨ditz B, et al. EBV induced loss of sperm quality. Turk J Urol. 2021;47(4):287-292.

EISSN 2149-3057