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Volume 15, Issue 5 (September 2013) 15, 630–633; 10.1038/aja.2013.83

Mitochondrial DNA haplogroup associated with sperm motility in the Han population

Guo-Fang Feng1, Jing Zhang2, Li-Min Feng3, Nai-Xian Shen3, Le-Jun Li4 and Yi-Min Zhu1

1Department of Reproductive Endocrinology, Women's Hospital, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310006, China
2Department of Gynaecologic Oncology, Women's Hospital, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310006, China
3Department of Clinical Laboratory, The First Affiliated Hospital, School of Medicine, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310003, China
4Key Laboratory of Women's Reproductive Health of Zhejiang Province, Hangzhou 310006, China

Correspondence: Dr YM Zhu, (zhuyim@zju.edu.cn)

Received 13 March 2013; Revised 2 May 2013; Accepted 29 May 2013 Advance online publication 5 August 2013


In this study, we aimed to determine whether the main mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplogroups of the Han people have an impact on spermatozoa motility. We recruited 312 men who were consecutively admitted to two affiliated hospitals of College of Medicine, Zhejiang University from May 2011 to April 2012 as part of fertility investigations. Semen and whole blood samples were collected from the men. We determined the mtDNA haplogroups by analysing the sequences of mtDNA hypervariable segment I and testing diagnostic polymorphisms in the mtDNA coding region with DNA probes. No significant differences were found in the clinical characteristics of the mtDNA haplogroup R and non-R (P>0.05). Our results suggest that mtDNA haplogroup R is a strong independent predictor of sperm motility in the Han population, conferring a 2.97-fold (95% confidence interval: 1.74–4.48, P<0.001) decreased chance of asthenozoospermia compared with those without haplogroup R.

Keywords: asthenozoospermia; haplogroup; mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA)

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