About this Research Topic
Male reproductive health is capturing more attention in the scientific community in recent years. Meta-regression data show an apparently idiopathic decline of sperm concentration and total sperm count in the last decades all over the world. Moreover, despite an extensive diagnostic work-up, the etiology of male infertility remains undiagnosed (idiopathic) in up to ⁓70% of cases. Worryingly, the spermatozoon contribute to embryo development has been commonly restricted to the sperm DNA, neglecting the possible involvement of sperm transcriptome and proteome released into the oocyte. Research into the causes of apparently idiopathic male infertility and the improvement of diagnostic work-up is needed to face this wide-spread issue.
There is growing evidence of a role for sperm epigenetics, sperm-carried RNAs, and sperm proteome in embryo development. Accordingly, the development of current high-throughput “-omic” technologies have revealed a deeper complexity of the spermatozoon, which carries thousands of RNAs and proteins. The overall contribution of the sperm genome (including epigenetic regulation), transcriptome, and proteome to embryo formation and development needs to be investigated to identify novel molecular targets responsible for male infertility. Therefore, the aim of this Research Topic is to gather available evidence and recent findings in the field of male idiopathic infertility, including genetic of male infertility, sperm epigenetic, transcriptome and proteome and their impact on embrio-placental growth and development.
Specifically, this Research Topic welcomes Reviews and Original Articles on basic, clinical, and translational research on novel molecular targets responsible for male idiopathic infertility.
Keywords: Spermatogenetic failure, sperm epigenetics, sperm transcriptome, sperm proteome, embryo growth
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