During 2020, Cryos scientists investigated if semen can contain the SARS-CoV-2 virus and thereby pass it on to their sexual partners. Reassuringly, the Cryos study indicates that the infection cannot be transmitted through semen.
The study, which was carried out by the Cryos International Sperm and Egg Bank, examined the semen samples from men whose average age was 32 years old. PCR tests were carried out on the ejaculates of men who had previously been diagnosed with COVID-19, with the length of time from diagnosis to providing a specimen, ranging from 1 to 28 days. The average time between the first positive PCR-test for COVID-19 and the analysis of the ejaculate was six days.
Great news for couples and singles going through fertility treatment
This is an interesting study in relation to COVID-19 in a wider perspective, and of course, also reassuring for the many people going through fertility treatment all over the world during the pandemic.
“We are pleased to see there was no contamination risks connected to the semen of the men who took part in our study. The outcome of our research is certainly reassuring for us, as the largest international donor sperm bank, for our collaborating IVF clinics, and most importantly, for our patients,” said Saghar Kasiri, Cryos Director of European Operations and Tissue Bank Director of Cryos Cyprus.
In the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, fertility treatments were put on pause all over the world as a precaution. “Everyone has been waiting eagerly for scientific research to provide more information about the impact of this new virus,” said Mrs. Kasiri. “With our knowledge from this study, we feel people will be reassured that there is no chance of contamination from the COVID-19 virus in semen being used to treat fertility patients.”
The study was published in the prestigious Journal of Reproductive Physiology and Disease. “I am very proud to have been part of this study, Cryos has a strong team of scientists who are dedicated to research, which benefit patients, and bring us closer to our vision of helping people make their dream of having a child come true,” Mrs. Kasiri commented.
Cryos is currently engaged in further research investigating semen quality
In addition to the concern about whether SARS-CoV-2 could be present in semen, scientists have been interested in learning if the virus has any long-term effects on semen quality. That question might also be answered very soon.
In collaboration with the Danish Hvidovre Hospital and CooperSurgical, Cryos International is participating in a new study that is looking at the semen quality of men who have recovered from a COVID-19 infection.
“Several studies have pointed to an increased risk for reduced semen quantity and quality after a COVID-19 diagnoses. But these studies have been met with criticism from experts, due to only focusing on short term analysis, or the lack of transparency. Therefore, it is important that we investigate if the semen quality is affected by the virus both in the short- and long-term interval, post COVID-19 infection,” Mrs. Kasiri commented.
Does the disease course matter?
This new study plans to take the participants in the study and have them provide a series of blood and semen samples, together with several PCR-tests, over a period of 6 months after being diagnosed with COVID-19. The intention is to discover whether the severity of the disease course can influence semen quality.
“The more we understand about the impact of COVID-19 on both the male and female reproductive system, the more we can help them in their journey to have a family,” adds Mrs. Kasiri. “As the largest Donor Sperm and Egg Bank in the world, we also have a responsibility towards the safety of our donors, as well as providing high quality sperm and eggs from extensively screened donors of all ethnicities and phenotypes.”
For the results of the research, click here
Cryos is an international company with over 33 years’ experience supplying donor sperm and eggs to more than 100 countries worldwide. In 2018, Cryos International expanded to Cyprus and established the first Independent Donor Sperm and Egg Bank in the country. Cryos Cyprus welcomes egg and sperm donors to its new State of Art clinic in Nicosia, and the highly expert staff can be reached online: www.cryosinternational.com/el-gr/cy-shop/Ιδιώτης/ , by phone at 22007656, and by email firstname.lastname@example.org.