CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 · Ibnosina Journal of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences 2014; 06(03): 145-151
DOI: 10.4103/1947-489X.210375

Significance of some trace elements in semen of infertile men

Abdalla Abed
1   Biology and Biotechnology Department, Faculty of Science, Islamic University of Gaza, Gaza, Palestine
Amad Jarad
2   Ministry of Health, Gaza, Palestine
› Author Affiliations

Objectives: The biological significance of trace elements in male infertility was studied. Levels of Zinc, Copper, Iron and Magnesium in the seminal plasma of infertile men and controls were measured. The relationships between these elements, seminal characteristics, and serum reproductive male hormones were explored. Patients and Methods: Seventy two infertile men on no treatment were selected from the central infertility center, Al Shifa hospital, Gaza, Palestine were studied and 72 known fertile males were used as controls. Semen samples were analyzed according to WHO criteria and seminal plasma trace elements were analyzed by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Serum hormonal levels were measured by conventional methods. Results: The mean values of Zinc and Magnesium were significantly lower in infertile men than controls (69 vs. 122 mg/L and 67 vs 120 mg/L) respectively. All studied seminal parameters (sperm count, forward motility, weak motile and non-motile) were significantly lower in the infertile group than in controls. Serum luteinizing hormone and testosterone were significantly lower in the infertile group than in controls (p<0.05). No significant difference in serum follicle stimulating hormone levels was detected between groups. Within the infertile group, seminal plasma Zinc and Magnesium levels correlated directly to the sperm count (r=0.376, P=0.001 and r=0.293, P=0.013 respectively), and testosterone (r=0.293, P=0.012 and r=0.324, P=0.003 respectively). Zinc and Magnesium were inversely related to the seminal volume (r=-0.251, P=0.034 and r=-0.369 P=0.001 respectively). Conclusion: Our findings supports a possible role for Zinc and Magnesium in spermatogenesis and steroidogenesis.

Publication History

Received: 16 February 2013

Accepted: 07 December 2013

Article published online:
07 July 2022

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