Effect of SARS-COV-2 on Spermatogenesis

Muhammad Sarfaraz1, Fehmeeda Bibi1 and Faiza Rao1,2

¹Department of Zoology, University of Education Lahore, Multan Campus
²Centre to advance level of research and development, Multan

Email : fehmeada.bibi@ue.edu.pk

The objectives of the study were to evaluate the influence of Covid-19, produced by SARS COV-2 that is a single-stranded RNA virus of the large family coronaviridae known to cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases including respiratory, cardiovascular, and gastrointestinal. The spermatogenesis process includes the production of sperms from primordial germ cells assisted by Sertoli and Leydig cells. These cells produce androgen and testosterone under the pituitary luteinizing hormone (LH) control.

SARS COV-2 binds with angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 receptors (ACE2) which have a high affinity for the COVID-19 virus. It is mainly expressed in the lungs and especially in spermatogonia, Sertoli cells, and Leydig cells with the help of Transmembrane protease, serine 2 (TMPRSS2) receptor cofactor that plays a vital role in SARS COV-2 entry by priming spikes(S) proteins. However, the study demonstrates the effect of SARS-COV-2 on spermatogenesis, sperm count, motility, and hormone disturbance by the effect on Leydig cells and also decreased sperm concentration. According to WHO, covid spread to more than 222 countries, 265 million people were affected, and more than 5.2 million deaths occurred. Although COVID-19 negatively affects the male reproductive system, we need a long-term follow-up study for the complete mechanism.

Keywords: SARS COV-2, ACE2, spermatogenesis, Covid-19

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