(Yicai Global) March 12 -- While most Covid-19 infections damage the lungs and immune systems, researchers at one of China's top medical schools in the disease epicenter of Wuhan believe that the virus can also harm the testicles and affect male fertility.
Though these claims have yet to be scientifically verified, Covid-19 has been found to invade receptors on the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2, a central regulator for cardiovascular function and one that is found in great number on the reproductive cells in testicles, according to a science article posted today on the Hubei provincial government's website.
The coronavirus that causes Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS, resembles Covid-19 and also targets ACE2 receptors, said Li Yufeng, a professor at the Center of Reproductive Medicine at the Tongji Medical College of Huazhong University of Science and Technology.
Though the SARS virus has yet to be found in the testicles, a SARS infection can cause severe damage to the reproductive cells in this organ, he added.
In theory, therefore, Covid-19 can also harm the testicles and impair the creation of sperm and testosterone. Those seriously affected can be rendered infertile.
Men of reproductive age who have recovered from a novel coronavirus infection should have their sperm quality and androgen hormone levels tested, the article said.
Editor: Kim Taylor