Assessing centrosomal function of infertile males using heterologous ICSI

Tomoko Yoshimoto-Kakoi, Yukihiro Terada, Masahito Tachibana, Takashi Murakami, Nobuo Yaegashi, Kunihiro Okamura

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


The human spermatozoal centrosome acts as a microtubule organizing center and is essential for male and female pronuclear migration and apposition. In this study, we assess centrosomal function of spermatozoa from infertile patients using heterologus intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) into bovine eggs. Spermatozoa from 15 infertile patients undergoing assisted reproductive technology (ART) treatment and 3 fertile donors were tested. Microtubules and DNA were imaged by immuocytochemistry and epifluorescence microscopy. Decondensed female chromosomes and sperm nuclei, pronuclear formation and sperm aster formation were examined. The average rate of sperm aster formation using spermatozoa from infertile individuals was lower (47.0%) than that with spermatozoa from fertile individuals (66.1%). We compared the sperm aster formation rates after ART with various clinical parameters, including semen characteristics, pronuclear formation rates, embryonic cleavage rates and pregnancy outcome. Clinical semen characteristics and the rate of pronuclear formation appeared independent of sperm centrosomal function. In contrast, the centrosomal function had a substantial effect on embryonic cleavage rate and pregnancy after ART. These results suggested that centrosomal function is essential for pregnancy and embryonic development. The method described using bovine eggs is suitable to assay human centrosome function and predict pregnancy after ART.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)135-142
Number of pages8
JournalSystems Biology in Reproductive Medicine
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • bovine egg
  • centrosome
  • ICSI
  • infertility
  • sperm aster


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