Fertility: 'Groundbreaking' male infertility test could bring hope

7th June 2011

A 'groundbreaking' test for male infertility could put an end to heartache for millions of couples, scientists have said.

Researchers at Queen's University in Belfast have developed the SpermComet test which looks for damaged DNA in sperm which may lead to infertility.

It can also predict the likelihood of success in fertility treatment and could see couples who are most likely to succeed fast-tracked to earlier treatment.

The test is the result of over a decade of work by researchers, and could save a lot of expense, time, and heartache for couples involved.

Professor Sheena Lewis, who headed up the development team, said: "One in six couples has difficulty in having a family. In 40 per cent of cases, the problems are related to the man. Until now, there have been few accurate ways of measuring a man's fertility. The SpermComet Test is the most sensitive test available for sperm DNA testing."

The test is now being marketed, and is available through a number of fertility clinics.

Deficiencies in semen are often the cause of male fertility.

Posted by Jeanette Royston

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