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GIUSEPPINA CAPRA

HPV infection in semen: results from a new molecular approach

  • Autori: Capra, G.; Schillaci, R.; Bosco, L.; Roccheri, M.; Perino, A.; Ragusa, M.
  • Anno di pubblicazione: 2019
  • Tipologia: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
  • Parole Chiave: HPV infection; male infertility; semen infection; semen parameters; sexually transmitted diseases; viral infection
  • OA Link: http://hdl.handle.net/10447/358229

Abstract

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is the agent of the most common sexually transmitted diseases causing a variety of clinical manifestations ranging from warts to cancer. Oncogenic HPV infection is the major cause of cervical cancer and less frequently of penile cancers. Its presence in semen is widely known, but the effects on fertility are still controversial. We developed a new approach to evaluate virus localisation in the different semen components. We analysed also the specific genotype localisation and viral DNA quantity by qPCR. Results show that HPV DNA can be identified in every fraction of semen: spermatozoa, somatic cells and seminal plasma. Different samples can contain the HPV DNA in different fractions and several HPV genotypes can be found in the same fraction. Additionally, different fractions may contain multiple HPV genotypes in different relative quantity. We analysed the wholeness of HPV DNA in sperm cells by qPCR. In one sample more than half of viral genomes were defective, suggesting a possible recombination event. The new method allows to easily distinguish different sperm infections and to observe the possible effects on semen. The data support the proposed role of HPV in decreased fertility and prompt new possible consequences of the infection in semen.