By Mia De Graaf Health Editor For Dailymail.com
Published: 19:04 BST, 18 April 2019 | Updated: 19:04 BST, 18 April 2019
Scientists have found infertile male mice lack a crucial 'repair gene' - and they hope it could provide answers for drops in sperm counts and sperm quality being recorded across the world in humans.
The gene, XRCC1, is crucial for sperm development, to ensure a high sperm count, swift motility, normal shape, and solid concentration.
Previously, it wasn't clear how important XRCC1 was to male fertility.
But a new study by Chinese researchers found it was the one thing that determined sperm quality in a batch of male mice.
Experts say the finding warrants research in humans as data show a concerning rise in male infertility.
It's unclear, however, what might cause a deficiency in XRCC1.
The gene, XRCC1, is crucial for sperm development, to ensure a high sperm count, swift motility, normal shape, and solid concentration. Chinese scientists show it is lacking in infertile mice (file image)
'Even modest DNA damage in human spermatozoa can reduce fertility and increase the risk of disease in offspring,' said