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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 175-182

Seminal plasma cadmium/zinc ratio among nonoccupationally exposed men investigated for infertility

1 Department of Medical Laboratory Science, School of Basic Medical Sciences, University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria
2 Department of Medical Laboratory Science, College of Natural and Applied Sciences, Achievers University, Owo, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Prof. Mathias Abiodun Emokpae
Department of Medical Laboratory Science, School of Basic Medical Sciences, University of Benin, Benin City
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/fsr.fsr_49_20

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Introduction: The declining trend of male reproductive health in recent times has raised concern among investigators and the contribution of environmental toxicants to this public health disorder has not been sufficiently evaluated in our setting. Objective: To evaluate the seminal plasma levels of lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), zinc (Zn), and serum testosterone of nonoccupationally exposed infertile males. Materials and Methods: A total of 70 infertile males investigated for infertility and 50 men of proven fertility were evaluated. The seminal plasma Pb, Cd, and Zn levels were determined by atomic absorption spectrophotometer (Buck Scientific Model VGP-210, Germany), while the serum testosterone was assayed by Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) technique using reagent supplied by Diagnostic Products Monobind Inc. Lake Forest, CA 92630, USA). Semen analyses were performed using standard techniques as recommended by the World Health Organization. The results were compared between infertile and fertile groups using unpaired Students t test. Results: Mean seminal plasma Pb, Cd, and Cd/Zn ratio were significantly higher (P<0.001) in infertile males than controls. Cd/Zn ratio (r = −0.242; P<0.04) correlated negatively (P<0.001) with serum testosterone. Mean serum Zn level was significantly lower (P<0.001) in infertile men than controls, but the difference in the level of serum testosterone was not significant (P<0.415). Conclusion: Evaluation of seminal plasma Cd, Pb, Zn, and Cd/Zn ratio may be considered in a comprehensive investigation of the infertile men while informed risk modeling to preventing exposure to toxic metals may help to mitigate their health consequences.

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