ESPE Abstracts (2015) 84 P-3-987

From Prepuberty to Adulthood: Semen Quality and Its Predictors in a Prospective Cohort Study of Russian Young Men

Oleg Sergeyeva,b, Lidia Mínguez-Alarcónc, Russ Hauserc,d, Paige L Williamsd,e, Jane S Burnsc, Susan A Korrickc,f, Yury Dikovb, Liudmila Smigulinab, Boris Revichg & Mary M Leeh


aDepartment of Genomics and Human Genetics, Vavilov Institute of General Genetics, Russian Academy of Science, Moscow, Russia; bChapaevsk Medical Association, Chapaevsk, Russia; cDepartment of Environmental Health, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA; dDepartment of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA; eDepartment of Biostatistics, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA; fChanning Division of Network Medicine, Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA, USA; gInstitute of Economic Forecasting, Russian Academy of Science, Moscow, Russia; hPediatric Endocrine Division, Departments of Pediatrics and Cell Biology, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA, USA


Background: We are not aware of other longitudinal cohort studies of boys with annual assessments of pubertal development and long term follow-up to adulthood to evaluate semen quality.

Objective: To describe semen quality and investigate its predictors in a longitudinal cohort study of Russian boys followed from prepuberty until adulthood.

Design and methods: From 2003 to 2005, 516 prepubertal 8–9-year-old boys were enrolled (86% of all eligible Chapaevsk boys, Russia) and underwent annual growth and sexual development assessments for ten years, including Tanner staging and measurement of testicular volume. At age 18, the young men collected two semen samples one week apart. 150 men provided two samples and nine men one sample (total 309) for 54% participation among those eligible. Semen samples were analyzed for volume, sperm concentration and motility by one technician (LS) according to the NAFA-ESHRE manual. A total of 67 samples were excluded due to severe chronic illness (six), lost semen (nine), age>20 years (two) and long/short abstinence time (50). 98 matched pair samples were analysed by Wilcoxon signed-rank test to compare repeat semen parameters.

Results: No differences were found between first and second samples. Based on second samples (n=129), men had a median (interquartile range, IQR) volume, sperm concentration, progressive and total motility of 2.6 (2–3.7) ml, 48 (25.7–78.5)×106/ml, 56% (49–61%) and 64% (57–69%), respectively. Median (IQR) total sperm count and total motile sperm count were 126.0 (68.2–221.8) and 78.5 (38.4–144.4)×106/ejaculate respectively. 24, 16, 31 and 33% of men had semen parameters below ‘normal’ reference limits for volume (2 ml), sperm concentration (20×106/ml), total sperm count (80×106/ejaculate) and motility (60%) respectively. Data are being analysed for predictors of semen quality.

Conclusion: This is one of the first prospectively designed studies to follow a large cohort of boys annually from prepuberty until adulthood and collect semen samples.

Funding: This work was supported by the NIH (grants ## R01ES0014370, P30ES000002), the Russian Science Foundation (grant # 14-45-0065).