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Diabetes damages male fertility

A new study conducted by researchers in Belfast, Northern Ireland, indicates that diabetic men could have their DNA damaged by the disease, a complication that could affect fertility levels.
The study, the first of its kind, compared sperm quality amongst diabetics and non-diabetics. They found that amongst diabetic men the DNA was more fragmented. The news was published online in the journal Human Reproduction.
Dr. Ishola Agbaje reportedly commented: “As far as we know, this is the first report of the quality of DNA in the nucleus and mitochondria of sperm in diabetes . Our study identifies important evidence of increased DNA fragmentation of nuclear DNA and mitochondrial DNA deletions in sperm from diabetic men. These findings cause concer, as they may have implications for fertility.”
He reportedly concluded: “If the increasing trend in the incidence of type I diabetes continues, this will result in a 50% increase over the next ten years. As a consequence, diabetes will affect many more men prior to and during their reproductive years. Infertility is already a major health problem in both the developed and developing world, with up to one in six couples requiring specialist investigation or treatment in order to conceive. Moreover, the last 50 years have seen an apparent decline in semen quality. Sperm disorders are thought to cause or contribute to infertility in 40-50% of infertile couples. The increasing incidence of systemic diseases such as diabetes may further exacerbate this decline in male fertility . However, it is not clear to what extent clinics consider information about the diabetic status of their patients when investigating fertility problems.”

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