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Contraception. 1981 May;23(5):527-41.

Effect of steroid hormones on the metabolism of human spermatozoa.

Abstract

Information relating to the effect of steroids on the metabolism and motility of human spermatozoa is limited despite the increasing interest in the use of these hormones for the purpose of contraception. In the present study it was shown that progesterone, testosterone, and 11-beta-OH-progesterone significantly inhibit the CO2 production of human spermatozoa. Estrone was ineffective. Progesterone and testosterone, but not estrone, also significantly depressed O2 uptake. In contrast to CO2 production and O2 uptake, lactic acid production was not significantly affected by any of the steroids studied. The inability of estrone to inhibit sperm metabolism was not due to its lower solubility relative to the other steroids tested. The data indicate that the effective steroids inhibit sperm respiration, but not the sperm glycolytic pathway.

PIP:

Some steroids have been studied as part of a general evaluation of the influence of biological fluids on human spermatozoa. The effect of various androgens, progesterones and estrogens on the oxidative and glycolytic metabolism and on the motility and viability of washed sperm are reported. Semen specimens were provided by 4 healthy volunteers with normal semen analysis and were used within 2 hours after collection. Each experiment was conducted with a single ejaculate and not with sperm pooled from several donors. A portion of the sample was used as the control; the remainder was divided for treatment with various steroids. Progesterone, testosterone, and 11-B-OH-progesterone significantly inhibited the carbon dioxide production of human spermatozoa. Estrone was ineffective. Progesterone and testosterone also significantly depressed oxygen uptake. Lactic acid production was not significantly affected by any of the steroids studied. The inability of estrone to inhibit sperm metabolism was not because of its lower solubility relative to the other steroids tested. The data indicated that although the effective steroids inhibited sperm respiration they did not inhibit the sperm glycolytic pathway.

PMID:
6793300
DOI:
10.1016/0010-7824(81)90080-9
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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