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What is Sperm DNA Fragmentation?

DNA Fragmentation is an additional parameter that can be used to measure the quality of a man’s sperm. All sperm samples show some degree of fragmentation, but if fragmentation exceeds thirty percent then it can negatively affect a couple’s possibilities for success with reproductive treatments. High levels of fragmentation can both influence fertilisation rates as well as lead to poor embryo quality – two conditions conducive to higher chances for repeated miscarriages and lower success rates with reproductive treatments. 

Normal Sperm DNA (without fragmentation)
Abnormal Sperm DNA (with fragmentation)
In order to evaluate sperm DNA fragmentation we use Halosperm®. This kit determines the DNA fragmentation index (DFI) of human sperm by relying on sperm chromatin dispersion (SCD) as an indicator.

An elevated sperm DNA fragmentation index is most likely one of the reasons for male infertility with an unknown cause or origin.

When is DNA fragmentation testing recommended?

  • When deciding which reproductive technique to use (IUI, IVF, ICSI).
  • When carrying out routine testing for patient and donor sperm quality.
  • When looking for the possible cause of male infertility with an unknown origin, repeated implantation failures and repeated miscarriages.