Use of hydrogen peroxide to assess the sperm susceptibility to oxidative stress in subjects presenting a normal semen profile. Academic Article uri icon


  • Human sperm susceptibility to oxidative stress is vital as it affects various characteristics of sperm function. In the present study, we report a simple, sensitive and quick method of assessing the capacity of the sperms to withstand increased oxidative stress. The basis for the test was derived from the fact that human sperms suspended in Ham's F-10 medium tend to lose the forward progressive motility when co-incubated with H(2)O(2) (600 microm). Replacement of the medium with seminal plasma (1: 1) was able to reduce the loss of sperm motility (40%). Retention of sperm motility in semen (0-30%) following 10 min of H(2)O(2) (600 microm) exposure was taken as the criteria for delineating the quality of sperm as poor, moderate, good and excellent types. The protocol was tested in 87 subjects presenting a normal semen profile. On the basis of this test, 44% of the semen samples were classified as poor and the rest as moderate, good or excellent. Lipid peroxidation was found higher in the sperms from the 'poor' category. Activities of superoxide dismutase and catalase were also significantly elevated in the seminal plasma of these subjects as compared with combined categories of good or excellent. The test described here can be used routinely in laboratory investigations to assess sperm susceptibility to oxidative stress in subjects presenting a normal semen profile.

published proceedings

  • Int J Androl

author list (cited authors)

  • Misro, M. M., Choudhury, L., Upreti, K., Gautam, D., Chaki, S. P., Mahajan, A. S., & Babbar, R.

citation count

  • 29

complete list of authors

  • Misro, MM||Choudhury, L||Upreti, K||Gautam, D||Chaki, SP||Mahajan, AS||Babbar, R

publication date

  • April 2004