Andrologia 2016 8 3() doi 10.1111/and.12664
Association of hepatitis C virus (HCV) with autoimmune phenomena and impaired semen parameters has been previously reported. The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of HCV infection on the development of antisperm antibodies (ASAs) in HCV-positive males. The study was conducted on 30 HCV-infected individuals and 30 healthy control subjects. In both patients and control groups, liver enzymes and reproductive hormones were measured; computer-assisted semen analysis (CASA) was performed; HCV-RNA in serum was measured and IgG and IgA ASAs in semen were determined. Free testosterone, sperm concentration, progressive and total motility were significantly lower in HCV patients than in the control group, whereas ASAs of the IgG and IgA classes were significantly higher in HCV patients. However, correlations between viral load and the examined semen parameters and ASAs were nonsignificant. In conclusion, HCV may be responsible for the increased ASAs detected in HCV patients in the present study, possibly providing another plausible explanation for the decreased sperm motility reported in HCV patients. These findings could be of value in fertility management of HCV patients.