Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics

, Volume 21, Issue 11, pp 397–400 | Cite as

Modified Isocratic Capillary Electrophoresis Detection of Cell-free DNA in Semen

  • Jennifer S. Chou
  • John D. Jacobson
  • William C. Patton
  • Alan King
  • Philip J. Chan


Purpose: The objectives were: i) to analyze semen for the presence of cell-free DNA and ii) to determine the association between sperm parameters and cell-free DNA.

Methods: Cell-free DNA in semen (N=25 cases) were detected using the modified capillary gel electrophoresis (CE) procedure. SYBR-Gold was used to stain high (12 Kb) and low (1 Kb) molecular weight DNA fragments and the images analyzed.

Results: The quantity of low-molecular weight cell-free DNA was positively correlated to rapid progression, curvilinear velocity (>40 μ/s), normal strict morphology and capacitation index. High-molecular weight cell-free DNA intensity index was negatively correlated to post-wash hyperactivation. Sperm concentration was not related to cell-free DNA quantity. The sperm freezing process did not increase cell-free DNA but reduced the more labile low-molecular weight cell-free DNA.

Conclusions: Cell-free DNA present in semen was correlated to important sperm parameters linked to normal sperm function. The data suggested the possible use of cell-free DNA as a marker of semen quality. This study reports on the novel finding of cell-free DNA released along with sperm during each ejaculation.

Apoptosis and active secretion circulating nucleic acids infertility spermatozoa 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jennifer S. Chou
    • 1
  • John D. Jacobson
    • 1
  • William C. Patton
    • 1
  • Alan King
    • 1
  • Philip J. Chan
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Gynecology and ObstetricsLoma Linda University School of MedicineLoma LindaU.S.A.

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