Waddlia chondrophila and Male Infertility

Microorganisms. 2020 Jan 17;8(1):136. doi: 10.3390/microorganisms8010136.


Waddlia chondrophila, a Chlamydia-like bacterium, has been previously associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes. Analogously to Chlamydia trachomatis, W. chondrophila also negatively impacts human semen and may be a source of impaired male fertility. In this study, we analyzed W. chondrophila seroprevalence in a population of male patients of infertile couples and the impact of past exposition to this bacterium on semen parameters. Our results show a surprisingly high seroprevalence of W. chondrophila, which contrasts with a previous study focusing on a population of healthy men. Nevertheless, we did not observe any significant association between positive serology and abnormal sperm parameters. This may suggest that a negative impact on semen is observed only during an ongoing infection. Alternatively, W. chondrophila may have an immune impact on male fertility, as previously postulated for women with adverse pregnancy outcomes.

Keywords: Waddlia; chlamydia-like; male infertility; semen.