If Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone can be friendly exes, then there’s hope for all of us
If Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone can be friendly exes, then there’s hope for all...

Sarah Finnan

‘Happiness is not something that happens to you. It’s something you have to choose, everyday’
‘Happiness is not something that happens to you. It’s something you have to choose, everyday’

IMAGE

‘It was three in the morning when Lisa and Dave said goodbye’
‘It was three in the morning when Lisa and Dave said goodbye’

Sophie White

Bella Hadid said posting crying selfies on social helped her manage her ‘depressive episodes’
Bella Hadid said posting crying selfies on social helped her manage her ‘depressive episodes’

Sarah Finnan

Can we stop pretending men aren’t willing participants in marriage?
Can we stop pretending men aren’t willing participants in marriage?

Victoria Stokes

Francis Bourgeois: Trainspotter, Gucci model and close friend of Joe Jonas (apparently)
Francis Bourgeois: Trainspotter, Gucci model and close friend of Joe Jonas (apparently)

Sarah Finnan

‘I wake up exhausted’: how to get a good night’s sleep, according to an Irish sleep expert
‘I wake up exhausted’: how to get a good night’s sleep, according to an Irish...

Grace McGettigan

Mercury is in retrograde again: Here’s what it means for you
Mercury is in retrograde again: Here’s what it means for you

Grace McGettigan

Rixo has launched their first sustainable denim collection
Rixo has launched their first sustainable denim collection

Sarah Finnan

The best maternity leggings and jeans, according to new and expectant mums
The best maternity leggings and jeans, according to new and expectant mums

Lauren Heskin

Image / Editorial

Why is Male Fertility Declining?


By Jeanne Sutton
26th Jan 2015
Why is Male Fertility Declining?

You may not know this, but male fertility has been experiencing a bit of a worrying slump in recent years.

Various studies have found sperm counts in decline with an important 2013 study of French men finding sperm concentrations dropped by nearly 2% each year from 1996 to 2005. ?In further alarming news, rates of testicular cancer and genital birth defects are on the rise.

Newsweek reports scientists researching these male reproductive problems are blaming endocrine-disrupting chemicals for the increase in reported cases and the steady decline in sperm counts. Niels Skakkebaek, a Danish researcher as the University of Copenhagen, told the publication, ?There is little doubt that factors in our environment have adverse effects on human testicles.?

And now the scientific journal PLOS Genetics has published a paper pointing to the endocrine-disruptor bisphenol A (BPA) as one of the most likely reasons for this decline of male fertility. BPA is found in many materials with which humans come into contact on a daily basis, including plastics and receipts. It mimics the effects of the predominantly female hormone estrogen, over-exposure to which researchers claim negatively affects human physiology.

This study exposed mice – not humans, so the effects on actual men have yet to be proven – at birth to different levels of BPA concentrations for short periods. By the time the mice were sexually mature their sperm count was significantly lower in two out of three cases. The only strain of mice not affected by BPA was the inbred kind.

To see if there was any way to reverse this lowering of sperm count, scientists transplanted mice with stem cells, but there was no change from before. This is yet more bad news, as it suggests BPA exposure leads to a permanently-lowered sperm count.

Pretty scary findings. So we guess its organic everything if you’re hoping to become a father?

Follow Jeanne Sutton on Twitter @jeannedesutun

LOVE this? Why not have IMAGE delivered directly to your door each month? Check out this month’s offer here.