A study published in 2017 by Iranian researchers has demonstrated the influence of taking vitamin B9 (or folic acid) on human sperm parameters.
Folic acid: useful in case of pregnancy but also for better fertility
Vitamin B9 intake has long been considered crucial in a pregnancy project, especially in women, to prevent neural tube defects in the embryo by bypassing mutations in the MTHFR gene.
It seems, according to Iranian researchers, that folic acid also plays an important role in improving the quality of sperm and thus allow better male fertility.
The effects of mutations in the MTHFR gene (a gene that converts folic acid into metabolically active folic acid that can be used by the body) on male fertility have often been controversial and uncertain: this is why the researchers decided to conduct this study by evaluating the effect of taking vitamin B (and especially folic acid and vitamin B12) on the various parameters of human sperm and the possible relationship with mutation of the MTHFR gene.
The study was conducted on 280 men with different spermatogenic problems:
- Asthenozoospermia : low mobility of spermatozoa (more than 65% are immobile)
- Oligospermia and severe oligospermia : low sperm count in sperm (less than 15 million sperm per ml)
- Azoospermia : total absence of spermatozoa in sperm
Vitamin B intake was measured using frequent questionnaires on the type of food consumed, while B9 and B12 levels in the body were measured using serum samples from 60 participants.
The first finding was that subjects with oligospermia and azoospermia more frequently had a specific mutation in the MTHFR gene. The researchers also found that sufficient consumption of folic acid and vitamin B12 had a positive influence on sperm quality in humans, especially those with a particular mutation in the MTHFR gene leading to spermatogenic problems.