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Detection of HPV, HSV, CMV viruses

Intracellular pathogenic viruses testing

Viruses are non-independent forms of life. In order to survive and multiply, they must enter another cell, called a host cell. Viruses enter, live and multiply also inside the spermatozoa, without always causing clinical symptoms, but their presence has negative consequences because they:

  • act as carriers that transmit the viruses to the female reproductive system through sexual intercourse.
  • act as carriers that bring viruses inside the egg, with a negative effect initially on the creation of the embryo and later on its development.
  • affect the parameters of the semen analysis

Special attention is required in the detection of viruses: due to their existence in other cells, they cannot grow in cultures and can only be detected by specialized molecular techniques.

There are many viruses that can be tested in various biological fluids or cells, such as human papillomavirus (HPV), cytomegalovirus (CMV) and other herpes viruses (HSV).

Human papillomavirus (HPV)

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a DNA virus that might be found in human cells. More than 150 different types of HPV (serotypes) have been detected, about 40 of which have been related to the genital system. Some types of HPV are called high risk because they can cause cancer and are also called oncogenic. Cancer can appear not only in the genital system but also in other areas of the body. In contrast, other types of HPV are considered low-risk, which can cause mild lesions that are not related to cancer.

In women, the most common types of HPV are types 16 and 18. They are responsible for about 75% of cervical cancers, which is the most common cancer in women, and for about 55% of high-grade precancerous lesions (grade 3) at the same point. Types 6 and 11 are the most common of the low-risk types and are blamed for about 90% of genital warts.

Men have a lower incidence of these cancers than women. Men appear to be mainly carriers of the infection, they can carry and transmit the HPV virus without getting sick. Low-risk types also cause the development of genital warts as in women.

All subtypes of HPV are transmitted through skin-to-skin contact and therefore do not require full sexual intercourse. However, other forms of the virus that also affect the genitals do not cause any symptoms.

HPV Diagnosis

The detection of HPV in the semen sample is accomplished with specialized detection techniques based on the analysis of the DNA (genome) of the virus by PCR technique (polymerase chain reaction). This technique detects HPV with great accuracy and accurately determines the virus serotype.

Herpesvirus (HSV)

Herpes viruses are a large family of viruses with many species and over 150 members. They infect almost all animal species. These are viruses that carry double-stranded DNA as genetic material, are surrounded by a capsule and range in size from 120-300 nm (or 120-300 x 10-9m).

Eight herpes viruses have been detected in humans, officially named “Human Herpes Virus 1-8” or simply HHV 1-8. The viruses of the herpes group, although they subside after treatment, do not leave the human body. Instead, they are kept dormant, which can later be activated and cause a recurrent infection.

Human herpes virus (HHV-1 and HHV-2) is also referred to as HSV-1 and HSV-2 (Herpes simplex virus 1 and 2) and can be transmitted through contact with infected people. The initial infection may be unnoticed and its severity varies. The mouth and lips are common areas of infection and transmission of HSV-1, while HSV-2 is transmitted mainly through sexual contact and is responsible for most localizations in the lower half of the body. Simultaneously with the initial infection, the virus settles in the body. As a result, there is a possibility of reactivation either silently or with symptoms of recurrent infection. The HSV1 virus, in addition to cold sores, can also cause genital herpes.

HSV Diagnosis

The HSV diagnosis in the semen sample is done with specialized virus detection techniques, based on the analysis of viral DNA by PCR (polymerase chain reaction). This method detects the HSV virus with great accuracy. This virus can also be detected by the SPI Test method.

Cytomegalovirus (CMV)

Cytomegalovirus (HHV-5) is a common virus that belongs to the herpesvirus family. These viruses have the common feature of remaining dormant in the human body for long periods of time.

Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is considered a human parasite with a very successful biological adaptation and is considered the largest of the human herpes viruses.

Primary cytomegalovirus infection is usually mild in people with normal immune function, but the virus can reactivate and cause widespread disease in people with low immune systems – such as those after an organ transplant who are on immunosuppressive therapy, people with AIDS etc.

CMV Diagnosis

The diagnosis of CMV in the semen sample is done with specialized virus detection techniques, which are based on the analysis of the DNA (genome) of the virus by PCR (polymerase chain reaction). This method detects CMV with great accuracy. This virus can also be detected by the SPI Test method.

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