Semiquantitative promoter methylation of MLH1 and MSH2 genes and their impact on sperm DNA fragmentation and chromatin condensation in infertile men
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To investigate the semiquantitative methylation alterations of MLH1 and MSH2 and the possible association among methylation of MLH1 and MSH2, sperm DNA fragmentation and sperm chromatin condensation in idiopathic oligoasthenoteratozoospermic men. Seventy-five idiopathic infertile men and 52 fertile and/or normozoospermic men were included in the study. SDF was analysed using the TUNEL assay in semen samples of 100 men. Promoter methylation of MLH1 and MSH2 genes was assessed by semiquantitative methylight analysis in semen samples of 39 and 40 men respectively. Sperm chromatin condensation was evaluated using aniline blue staining in 114 men. MLH1 promoter methylation was positively correlated with the percentage of aniline blue positive spermatozoa (r = 0.401, p = 0.0188). On the other hand, MSH2 promoter methylation was negatively correlated with sperm concentration and total sperm count (r = −0.421, p = 0.0068 and r = 0.4408, p = 0.009 respectively).