Roamntic couple
A new urine test can easily detect infertility in men.Gabriel Saldana/Flickr

No more confusion; a new urine test can easily detect infertility in men, even those which are often hard to detect with normal tests, according to latest research.

The study, reported in the Journal of Proteome Research, mainly concentrated on normozoospermic infertility. Sperm cells of men with this condition succeed in clearing all standard tests available for infertility in men, C&EN reported.

To find a proper solution for this problem, researchers from the UK and China, looked at 118 men. Of the total, 71 were fertile and 47 infertile. During their lab experiments, researchers identified 37 biomarkers in the urine samples.

The researchers, Francis L. Martin of Lancaster University and Heqing Shen of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, were later able to accurately distinguish fertile men from infertile by just looking at the levels of five small molecules in urine- leukotriene E4, 3-hydroxypalmitoylcarnitine, xanthosine , methoxytryptophan andaspartate.

Interestingly, nearly 86 percent of infertile cases and 87 percent of fertile cases detected using the urine test was accurate. Researchers said that the findings as highly promising as the currently available tests can detect only 75 percent of the cases.

"That is quite high," Martin told C&EN.

Unhealthy lifestyle, including poor diet and lack of exercise, can cause permanent damages to the sperm, stated researchers, while explaining the study. Proving this, they found oxidative stress and dysfunctional energy production in tissues that produce sperm.

The breakthrough discovery is expected to help in the development of an effective test for normozoospermic infertility.

Infertility is a term used to explain the inability of a couple to conceive even after nearly two years of constant efforts. Health experts from Stanford University in the US found male infertility mainly leading to this occurrence.

Experts from the University of Maryland Medical Center in US cite low sperm count and poor sperm quality playing a major role in about 90 percent of the cases. Apart from that, according to them, hormonal problems, genetic defects and anatomical problems can also lead to this occurrence.

Here are some factors that contribute to infertility in men, as provided by Stanford University and University of Maryland Medical Center in the US:

  • Habit of smoking
  • Addiction to drugs and alcohol
  • Use of anabolic steroids
  • Too much exercise
  • Vitamin C and Zinc deficiency
  • Regular use of tight underwear like Boxer shorts
  • Exposure to chronic stress
  • Anaemia caused by malnutrition
  • Prolonged exposure to toxins including paint, lead and radiation
  • Ageing
  • Varicocele, an enlarged varicose vein in testicle and scrotum
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD)