Background: The aim of this study was to investigate seminal oxidant-antioxidant activity in idiopathic and varicocele infertility in men.
Methods: Total anti-oxidant capacity (TAC), total oxidant status (TOS), paraoxonase (PON1), aryl esterase (ARE), and total thiol levels (TTL) were measured in seminal plasma with an autoanalyzer. The TOS/TAC ratio was determined as the oxidative stress index (OSI). A histopathological evaluation of the sperm was performed in the andrology laboratory of the hospital. Number, motility, morphology, volume, pH, and leukocytes were evaluated in all samples according to World Health Organization criteria. The three study groups were as follows: G1, males with idiopathic infertility; G2, males with varicocele infertility; and G3, normal healthy males (had fathered a child in the last 2 years). Each group was composed of 36 men (age, 25 - 40 years). The Rel Assay Diagnostics kit was used to determine the levels of the parameters. The study was conducted according to the principles of the declaration of Helsinki and was approved by Sakarya University Medicine Faculty Ethic Committee (e.n: 16214662/050.01.04/07). Statistical significance was assumed if p < 0.05. All statistical evaluations were performed using SPSS (version 20.0 for Windows; SPSS, Inc., Chicago, IL, USA).
Results: No differences were detected between the mean values of antioxidant parameters among the three groups (Kruskal-Wallis test). The p-values of the test parameters (TAC, TOS, PON1, ARE, TTL, OSI) are respectively: 0.494, 0.548, 0.068, 0.151, 0.202, 0.873. The antioxidant parameters of all subjects were compared using the MannWhitney U-test in both groups as fertile (G3) and infertile (G1 + G2). The PON1 levels in infertile subjects were significantly higher than those in fertile subjects. There was a statistically significant difference (p = 0.042). The other antioxidant parameters had no statistically significant difference (p > 0.05). The ARE was not performed in group 3 (control) due to a methodological problem.
Conclusions: PON1 levels in infertile subjects were significantly higher than those of fertile subjects.