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Institut Marquès launches male fertility studies in Ireland and Italy

14-Jan-2019

Under the motto #Toxicsarebreakingourballs, Institut Marquès, an internationally renowned centre in Gynaecology, Obstetrics and Assisted Reproduction, is launching a trial on male fertility in Ireland and Italy, the countries that record the highest and the lowest birth rate of Europe, respectively.

The goal of the study is to have Irish and Italian men evaluate the quality of their semen for free and anonymously. To do so, they must enrol in the trial by filling up the corresponding forms on lesostanzetossichehannorottolepalle.it or toxicsarebreakingourballs.ie. Furthermore, Institut Marquès has launched a campaign to raise awareness about the effects that environmental pollution by toxic chemicals has on male fertility. As shown by previous studies carried out in Spain by Institut Marquès’ scientific team, environmental toxins would have a greater negative effect on male fertility than other causes typically attributed to the decline in sperm quality, such as stress and alcoholism.

The first contact with chemical toxics starts at the beginning of life, when the so- called endocrine disruptors that behave as oestrogens interfere in the action of testosterone during the testicular development of the foetus, after getting to it from the maternal blood through the placenta. These substances are very resistant to biodegradation. They are present in our food and in the environment, they accumulate in the organism, mainly in fat, and human and animals are not designed to remove them. Environmental pollution by chemical toxics is the main cause of deterioration in the quality of the semen that is happening in the industrialised areas as well as in rural areas in contact with pesticides.

After demonstrating the impact that pollution has on health and fertility, Institut Marquès is fighting against this worrying trend. Furthermore, the centre supports the manifesto "Citizens for Science in Pesticide Regulation", a citizen platform that calls for a reform of the use of pesticides in the EU and advocates for an independent regulation without vested interests. In addition, Institut Marquès launched the "Forest of Embryos", a Corporate Social Responsibility project in collaboration with the environmental organisation "L’Escurçó" in Tarragona. With their help, a tree is planted for each child born thanks to their Assisted Reproduction treatments.

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