Background: The difficulties encountered in surgical spermatozoa retrieval for intracytoplasmic sperm injection procedure in azoospermic men have stressed the dire need for a robust biomarker for the prediction of spermatozoa retrieval. Data have highlighted the role of JMJD1A (Jumonji domain-containing 1A), a histone H3K9 demethylase, and other nuclear proteins, protamines (PRM) and transition nuclear proteins (TNP), as biomarkers in male infertility. Objective: To access successful spermatozoa retrieval at the time of intracytoplasmic sperm injection by evaluating the mRNA expression profile of JMJD1A, TNP, and PRM in testicular tissue. Materials/Methods: About 100 azoospermic patients, who visited the Australian Concept Infertility Medical Center, Karachi for spermatozoa retrieval by testicular sperm extraction or microsurgical testicular sperm extraction participated in the study. mRNA expression of the JMJD1A, TNP1, TNP2, PRM1, and PRM2 genes was determined. Patients were categorized into successful spermatozoa retrieval (n = 42) group and unsuccessful spermatozoa retrieval (n = 58) group. Results: Azoospermic men in successful spermatozoa retrieval had significantly increased expression of JMJD1A, TNP2, and PRM2. The hormonal parameters – follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, and thyroid-stimulating hormone were significantly higher in unsuccessful spermatozoa retrieval. Multivariate analysis showed a significant association between JMJD1A, TNP2, PRM2, and successful spermatozoa retrieval. The area under the receiver operating characteristics curve showed a significant discriminatory ability to predict the spermatozoa retrieval outcome in azoospermic patients for mRNA expression of JMJD1A, TNP2, and PRM2 was 71, 72, and 73%, respectively. The area under the curve for follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, and thyroid-stimulating hormone was 0.67, 0.81, and 0.65, respectively. Discussion: Our study demonstrates that the mRNA expression profile of JMJD1A, TNP2, and PRM2 along with hormonal parameters, is a useful marker to assess the probability of spermatozoa retrieval before intracytoplasmic sperm injection intervention. Conclusion: The probability of spermatozoa retrieval in azoospermic patients is increased when the mRNA expression profile of JMJD1A, TNP2, and PRM2 in testicular tissue is increased.
- spermatozoa retrieval