The relationship between the motility and morphology of spermatozoa in human semen.
High-speed videomicrography was used to assess simultaneously the morphology and motility of seminal spermatozoa from 10 fertile donors and 10 patients being evaluated for infertility. In both donors and patients, morphologically normal spermatozoa were more likely to be motile and had significantly higher straight line velocity, greater rolling frequency and flagellar beat frequency than abnormally shaped cells. For donors and patients there were highly significant, linear correlations (R = 0.7 to R = 0.98) between the movement characteristics of morphologically normal and abnormal spermatozoa within an ejaculate. A greater percentage of normal donor spermatozoa were motile than were the normal spermatozoa from patients (56% vs. 28%, respectively, P less than 0.005) and normal donor spermatozoa also swam faster than normal patient spermatozoa (49.1 +/- 3.2 microns/sec vs. 37.4 +/- 4.3 microns/sec, mean +/- sem, respectively, P less than 0.05). Overall, a multivariate analysis of variance, including straight line velocity, rolling frequency, beat frequency, and flagellar beat amplitude, demonstrated that these movement characteristics were significantly greater for the normal cells from donors than for the normal spermatozoa from patients. These biologic distinctions notwithstanding, the discrimination between semen from donors and patients was not improved when only morphologically normal cells were analyzed for motility.
Morales, P; Katz, DF; Overstreet, JW; Samuels, SJ; Chang, RJ
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