The circle of life can be such a beautiful thing. Becoming a parent for some individuals is an exciting step they have always dreamed of doing. Hey, it's a natural process, right? Well, not necessarily. For someone trying unsuccessfully to become pregnant, the process can be a truly frustrating, long, and difficult road. In some cases, there can be a medical reason that's diagnosed and hopefully treatable. Other situations can prove to be a bit more complex.
The medical world suggests that if you've been trying to conceive after a year of not using contraception, it's time to learn a bit about infertility and meet with your medical professional. Both men and women can have issues related to infertility, and speaking to a specialist is the logical first step in your journey.
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New mutations are found to be a cause of male infertility
The medical community has made great strides over the years in its ability to pinpoint and even cure many roadblocks that prevent pregnancy. In a recent study, scientists over at Newcastle University discovered a genetic process they believe to be the contributing factor for major types of infertility in males. Discovering the origin of what causes a male to be infertile provides an extraordinary level of optimism in treating infertility patients.
The results of these experiments were published recently in Nature Communications, and they indicate that mutations transpire during reproduction. It's noted these mutations are not hereditary paternally or maternally, but rather, the changes occur in males during the DNA replication process and are found to be a cause of male infertility.
This newfound info can provide answers to infertile individuals who are trying unsuccessfully to conceive
The study was spearheaded by Professor Joris Veltman, Dean of the Bioscience Institute at Newcastle University in the UK. Veltman explains, "This is a real paradigm shift in our understanding of the causes of male infertility. Most genetic studies look at recessively inherited causes of infertility, whereby both parents are a carrier of a mutation in a gene, and the infertility occurs when the son receives both mutated copies, resulting in problems with their fertility. However, our research has found that mutations which occur when the DNA is replicated during reproduction in parents plays a significant role in the infertility in their sons."
The data from this study indicates that half of all cases of heterosexual couples who are dealing with infertility are related to the male. In addition, 7% of males are infertile. This newfound information is huge in providing hope for infertile individuals who are trying unsuccessfully to conceive, and it may potentially lead to additional alternatives for them in their journey.
So what's next on the agenda in the infertility spectrum? The researchers would like to continue their observations by increasing their patient base worldwide. The next phase would not only include studying individuals who are experiencing infertility, but their parents as well. The scientists' plan is to further research these mutated genes and observe the influence of spermatogenesis and human fertility.