Use of Flow Cytometry to Analyze ROS Generation by Spermatozoa

A possible solution to the weaknesses inherent in the chemiluminescence approach to measuring ROS in human sperm suspensions can be found in a variety of redox-sensitive fluorescence probes which can be loaded into spermatozoa and monitored by flow cytometry. With this technology platform, the readout for such probes can be focused specifically on the sperm population via the appropriate setting of gates. Of course, such assays are again only semiquantitative because they just indicate the percentage of cells exhibiting a high level of activity, without indicating the concentration or cellular content of the metabolites being evaluated. Nevertheless, they are sensitive, easy to use, and clinically valuable.

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