DNA Fragmentation Testing
What is DNA fragmentation?
DNA fragmentation describes the process of DNA strands separating into pieces. It can occur normally, or laboratory personnel can do it intentionally. The accumulation of fragmentation that occurs in a cell refers to spontaneous DNA fragmentation. The TUNEL assay and Comet assay can measure it. The level of sperm DNA fragmentation is often high in men who have a defect of sperm mobility. The prediction of outcomes for IVF depends on the degree of the sperm cell’s DNA fragmentation. In the sperm, the integrity of genetic material is a determining factor to make the fertilization successful. It is also essential for the development of a normal embryo.
The usage of the term sperm DNA fragmentation denotes abnormal genetic material in a sperm. It can cause IVF failure, male subfertility, and miscarriages. The assessment of the sperm DNA cannot be done by the conventional semen analysis.
In the market, there are many sperm DNA fragmentation tests are available like the Sperm Comet test, SCSA, and TUNEL.
What can sperm DNA fragmentation lead to?
- It can affect the development of a blastocyst.
- It can increase the chance of miscarriage
- And can result in the failure of assisted conception treatment.
It has been seen that subfertile men with abnormal sperm parameters have a higher range of sperm DNA fragmentation, but it can also happen to men with normal sperm parameters.
What causes DNA fragmentation?
Oxidative stress has one of the major contributions to sperm DNA fragmentation. If the antioxidants do not neutralize the free radicals and unpaired electrons, it can cause built-up damage and results in oxidative stress. Infections, use of drugs, smoking, and exposure to pollutants, illness, diabetes, cancer and elevated testicular temperature can have an association with sperm DNA fragmentation.
It also has a relation with obesity and poor diet. Sometimes, the body is unable to repair the occurrence of a break-in DNA as it lacks the sufficient protein that helps in binding the DNA to keep it compact. In this condition, Sperm DNA fragmentation occurs.
How the DNA fragmentation test is performed?
The different Sperm DNA fragmentation tests include the deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling assay (TUNEL), the sperm chromatin dispersion test (SCD), the sperm chromatin structure assay (SCSA), and single-cell gel electrophoresis assay (COMET).
These tests verify DNA damage in the sample of semen. The procedure occurs in the outside laboratory and the semen sample is the primary matter here.
Understanding DNA test results
The understanding of DNA fragmentation test results is important. The meaning of high sperm DNA damage is the poor quality of sperm. Low sperm DNA damage shows the good quality of the sperm. In the exact test result, you will get to see a comparison between the three different indicators of DNA fragmentation and a fertile reference range.
Who should undergo this test?
There were many studies and investigations on the DNA fragmentation test. But the conclusion of the 2013 American Society for Reproductive Medicine Practice (ASRM) was that they don’t have sufficient data to support the relationship between reproductive outcomes and the increased DNA fragmentation. Only DNA fragmentation testing cannot predict the rates of pregnancy.
Benefits of DNA fragmentation test
There are a lot of benefits of DNA fragmentation tests. This test gives information about the arrested embryo development, recurrent miscarriage, unexplained infertility, varicocele, harmful substance exposure, failure in multiple treatments of in vitro fertilization, development of poor blastocyst, poor semen parameters.
What are treatment options in case of increased DNA Fragmentation?
Once you know the results, we can choose a way of treatment to correct it. If free radicals are the reason behind it, you can change your diet and lifestyle to decrease the DNA fragmentation levels. Other than this, antibiotics can help in the co-existing infection. You can include fresh foods in your diet along with foods that contain vitamin C, vitamin E, and antioxidants. You also need to quit smoking and consuming drugs. One should opt for ICSI. If you do the DNA fragmentation test, then you get to know about treatments to cure it.
In the workup for infertile males, the most used test is semen analysis. The research does not show that we can only rely on this test for the prediction of the fertility of men, or it can ensure the occurrence of the pregnancy with the treatment of infertility.
For the determination of the fertilizing capacity of men, researchers and clinicians find other ways. The requirement for developing a successful embryo is undamaged DNA from the sperm and egg. In infertile men, sperm DNA damage is more and can cause poor reproductive outcomes. So, doctors also assess fertility potential by testing DNA integrity.
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Had a great experience with Dr. Gunjan. We visited the clinic as we had some queries regarding the conception process. Dr. Gunjan listened to the queries and answered all those with patience. And we had good news at the next consultation itself. Dr. Gunjan is very experienced, is soft-spoken, and very diligent with the process. Highly recommended!
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A team of Specialists working together as a team with a single Goal: Patient Satisfaction
Dr. Gunjan Gupta Govil
MRCOG(UK), MD(Gynae) – Founder & CEO
She is a Gynaecologist with specialization in IVF, Infertility & Laparoscopy specialist doctor and has close to 2 decades of experience in treating Infertility, performing Gynae Laparoscopy (Keyhole Surgeries) & Handing high-risk Pregnancies. She is a noted speaker in National and International level conferences and has also chaired various sessions on Infertility
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- 86% (218 Votes)
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Dr. Pradyot Kumar
Dr. Pradyot Kumar is the founder and CEO of Gunjan IVF World. He is a Neurosurgeon with specialization
(20+ years of experience)
Mr. Gaurav Singhai
Co-Founder & COO
He has 15 years of Managerial Experience from various National & International Organizations like TCS, Fiserv & Sopra Steria. He has lived and worked with various MNCs in the US, UK, France & The Netherlands and gained immense experience and skills which he now contributes to Gunjan’s IVF World assiduously.
Dr. Abhishek Parihar
He is a dedicated & experienced Gynaecologist offering comprehensive fertility practice oriented towards fertility treatment. He has vast experience in dealing with infertile couples and providing health care assistance to them during course of their treatment.
He is a highly experienced and successful Embryologist with more than 10 years of experience in IVF. He has done M.Sc. in Biotechnology from MIMS, Jaipur. He has done more than 4000 IVFs and 3000+ ICSI cases till date.)
Dr. Arshi khan
She is another proud member of our medical team & while serving as a RMO for the past few years, she assists Dr. Gunjan during her session with various patients. Moreover, She is a graduate in BUMS and aspire to achieve greater heights in her career in the future.
Ms. Nivedita Rai
She is the Head Counselor at Gunjan IVF world who counsels and coordinates with our patients during the course of their treatment. Patients hold a very high regard for her. She has pursued her MBA from IMT Ghaziabad & been a part of our Gunjan IVF world Family since past many years.
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Do you know the success rate of pregnancy with the IUI procedures ranges from 15% to 20% per cycle? Yes, this is true. IUI, which is Intrauterine insemination, is a kind of artificial insemination that helps in treating infertility issues. This a quick process in which the pre-selected sperm is directly injected into your uterus or womb.
IUI or Intrauterine insemination is a less invasive procedure when compared to IVF or In vitro fertilization. Couples get many benefits from this procedure as the chances of pregnancy increase a lot because of IUI.
The reasons for an unsuccessful implantation are very uncommon and rare as well. Blastocyst provides a greater chance of becoming pregnant therefore the procedure is handled properly as well.
Before jumping to the immediate question first let’s have a small brief of what is blastocyst transfer. Blastocyst transfer is the transfer of embryos that have achieved a higher stage of development.
Normally in natural pregnancy, when a period cycle starts, an egg gets matured in the ovaries. When it becomes 18-20 mm then it is released at that time. After a physical relationship between a couple, the sperms fertilize this mature egg in the fallopian tube. Once the fertilization occurs, this fertilized egg converts into an embryo and sticks to the uterus that causes pregnancy.
If we talk about the term “Secondary Infertility” it generally refers to a situation when a woman is going through certain infertility issues even after carrying a baby already in her life. Moreover, this type of Infertility results in almost 50 percent of total infertility cases in women around the world. This is most common in couples who think of having a baby in their late 30s and 40s.
Egg freezing, medically known as human oocyte cryopreservation. It is an effective procedure allows the woman to go against the biological clock. It enables women to postpone pregnancy to a later date. In this phenomenon, eggs extracted, frozen and stored. The success rate of the procedure depends on the age of the woman and ranges from approximately 14% to 30%.