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Newly discovered sperm movements may help diagnose and treat male infertility

PhD candidate Sushil Khanal (left) and professor of biological science Dr. Tomer Avidor-Reiss draw cryopreserved semen samples from a liquid nitrogen tank kept at -196 degrees Celsius. Researchers have discovered that the role of the centriole in sperm has evolved from functioning as a shock absorber to a transmission system. This is a discovery that may lead to innovative methods that help diagnose and treat male infertility.Credits: Daniel Miller, University of Toledo

Scientists at the University of Toledo have discovered a new movement of sperm that provides an innovative tool for the diagnosis and treatment of male infertility.


Studies published in Nature Communications You can see that it is atypical Centriole In sperm The neck acts as a transmission system that controls sperm head spasms, mechanically synchronizing the sperm tail. Move For new head movements.

The centriole has historically been regarded as a rigid structure that acts like a shock absorber.

“We believe that the atypical centriole on the sperm’s neck is an evolutionary innovation that has the ability to improve sperm movement,” said Tomer Avidor, Ph.D. in Biological Sciences, U Tiredo University of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. -Dr. Reiss says. “Reproductive success depends on the ability of sperm to pass through the barriers of the female reproductive tract and compete with rivals to fertilize an egg.”

PhD-led research candidate Sushil Khanal is based on a breakthrough discovery of human sperm in the lab. Reproductive biology: The father donates two centrioles instead of one through sperm during fertilization, and a newly discovered sperm structure called atypical centriole contributes to infertility, miscarriage, and birth defects. There is a possibility.

“Together, these studies require a correction of the understanding of sperm centriole in both sperm movement and early embryos,” said Avidor-Reiss.

Avidor-Reiss believes that this finding can open the door to new possibilities that will help families understand why they have problems with pregnancy.

If the sperm’s head and tail are not moving together, the sperm will not move efficiently enough to reach the egg.

“A defect in the centriole will result in a defect in this bond between the sperm’s tail and head,” said Avidor-Reiss. “In patients who don’t know what’s wrong, they may be able to look at how the sperm tail moves and reverse engineer it to determine centriole function and determine couple infertility.”

He also said that finding this movement could be used in the future to predict which sperm have a good centriole that can support life.

“For now, people don’t know what to fix,” Avidor-Reiss said. “We can identify the problem. This knowledge allows us to identify previously undisclosed subgroups of men with infertility.”

New studies show that in mammalian sperm, internal slip formation into the atypical distal centriole of the neck, the typical proximal centriole, and the surrounding material that connects the beating of the tail with an asymmetric head twist. There is a cascade of.

Using the STORM immunofluorescence microscope at the UToledo Instrumentation Center, researchers were able to show that the left and right sides of the atypical centriole move about 300 nanometers from each other. Although small in number, they show dramatic movement within the cell, given that the average diameter of the protein is 5 nanometers.

Luke Atinger, a student with a bachelor’s degree in biology and a recent graduate from U Toledo, sang bass as an undergraduate in the university’s finest choral ensemble, wrote lyrics about new discoveries in his lab, and wrote, ” The song “Twitch, Roll” explained how the new movement works, Yo said. “

“We love to promote science and art. In this case, it shows that sperm are united and beating. The sperm head is not isolated from the tail. Atypical and typical center. The neck, including the sperm brain, may act as a morphological computer, or regulate sperm movement. “

“This song is a creative way to understand big changes. The centriole has always looked the same over the last billion years. It’s one of the most conservative structures in the cell. Evolving from the shock, I found something else that works the other way around. An absorber to the transmission system. “

This study is an international collaboration with Dr. Tzviya Zeev-Ben-Mordehai’s laboratory at the University of Utrecht, the Netherlands, and carried out state-of-the-art cryo-electron microscopy of sperm necks. Bristol, England, which performed mathematical and waveform analysis.


Men may contribute to infertility through newly discovered parts of sperm


For more information:
Sushil Khanal et al, a dynamic basal complex that regulates mammalian sperm movement, Nature Communications (2021). DOI: 10.1038 / s41467-021-24011-0

Quote: Newly discovered sperm movement is male infertility obtained on June 28, 2021 from https://phys.org/news/2021-06-newly-sperm-movement-male-infertility.html May be useful for diagnosis and treatment (June 28, 2021)

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Newly discovered sperm movements may help diagnose and treat male infertility

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