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Testis expressed 101 (TEX101) and extracellular matrix protein 1 (ECM1) as biomarkers to identify subtypes of infertile azoospermia patients

TEX101 and ECM1 could be used as infertility biomarkers to help identify patients with azoospermia. Azoospermia patients do not produce measurable levels of sperm in semen, and current methods to diagnose the condition require a testicular biopsy. In seminal plasma samples from patients with two distinct types of azoospermia, ECM1 levels distinguished between the 2 conditions with 100% sensitivity and 73% specificity and identified azoospermia patients from fertile controls with 100% specificity. In the samples, high levels of TEX101 could further distinguish subtypes of the disease, which could help guide assisted reproduction technique choices. Next steps include developing clinical-grade assays and validating the assays for clinical applications.

SciBX 7(1); doi:10.1038/scibx.2014.39
Published online Jan. 9, 2014

Patent filed covering biomarkers; licensed in the U.S. to an undisclosed company; available for licensing in Europe

Drabovich, A.P. et al. Sci. Transl. Med.; published online Nov. 20, 2013;
Contact: Eleftherios P. Diamandis, Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto,
Ontario, Canada