New study demonstrates comet technology for sperm dna analysis improves diagnosis of male infertility and predicts success of IVF and ICSI.

By Examen Team


Examen, a world leader in male fertility testing, is pleased to announce the results of its latest study conducted in collaboration with the renowned Lister Fertility Clinic in London. This study demonstrates that the use of COMET parameters in sperm DNA analysis improves the diagnosis of unexplained infertility and the prediction of the outcome of Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) and In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF), fertility treatments.

Examen’s COMET assay is the underlying technology in the company’s recently rebranded Exact range of tests, which measure the proportion of sperm with low and high DNA damage. Exact tests therefore provide fertility experts insight not currently offered by other fertility tests.

Sperm DNA damage, a leading cause of male infertility, is often insufficiently investigated, leading to under-treatment prior to IVF or ICSI. This reduces the likelihood of success of these treatments and can cause psychological, physical and financial burdens for couples.

Traditional semen analysis, reliant on measurements of quantity, morphology and motility, is less able to discriminate between the sperm quality of fertile and infertile men, hence sperm DNA damage analysis is a more robust biomarker for male infertility. To date this has been effective in predicting the outcome of IVF but not ICSI, which is the first choice Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) in many countries across Europe.

Examen’s Exact tests accurately measure sperm DNA damage using COMET parameters, to calculate the average level of DNA damage, the proportion of sperm with low DNA damage and the proportion with high DNA damage, respectively. The average COMET score has previously been shown to have a strong correlation with all fertility checkpoints, including live birth rate. This study aimed to establish whether new, more detailed measures of the proportion of sperm with low or high DNA damage improve the power of the test in the diagnosis of male infertility and the prediction of the success of IVF and ICSI.

The results confirm that the additional COMET measurements can be used to assist in the diagnosis of unexplained infertility as well as predicting the success of ICSI. These novel test parameters enable professionals to make more informed clinical decisions, improving fertility treatment outcomes.

Professor Sheena Lewis, CEO of Examen, commented

“The results of this study confirm that Exact tests utilising COMET technology to analyse sperm DNA damage are the most accurate male fertility tests currently available, not only for diagnosing male infertility but also in selecting the best treatment option. We are pleased to be able to offer this test to couples and healthcare professionals, providing valuable information which could improve fertility outcomes and ultimately help men become dads.”

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