ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 24  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 135-138

Assessment of SARS-CoV-2 RNA shedding in semen of 36 males with symptomatic, asymptomatic, and convalescent infection during the first and second wave of COVID-19 pandemic in Italy


1 Section of Urology, Department of Surgical, Oncological and Oral Sciences, University of Palermo, Palermo 90127, Italy Section of Microbiology, Department of Health Promotion, Mother and Child Care, Internal Medicine and Medical Specialties, University of Palermo, Palermo 90127, Italy Section of Internal Medicine, Department of Health Promotion, Mother and Child Care, Internal Medicine and Medical Specialties, University of Palermo, Palermo 90127, Italy

Correspondence Address:
Giovanni M Giammanco
Section of Microbiology, Department of Health Promotion, Mother and Child Care, Internal Medicine and Medical Specialties, University of Palermo, Palermo 90127
Italy
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/aja2021103

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The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) receptor, angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), has been identified in the human testis, but the risk of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 through sexual intercourse still needs to be defined. The goal of our study was to determine if SARS-CoV-2 is detectable in the semen of patients suffering or recovering from coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19), still testing positive at nasopharyngeal swabs but showing mild or no symptoms at the time of sampling. Detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in semen was performed by real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and nested PCR targeting open reading frame (ORF) 1ab. Medical history of the enrolled patients was taken, including COVID-19-correlated symptoms, both at the time of diagnosis and at the time of interview. Results of real-time RT-PCR and nested PCR in semen showed no evidence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in the 36 patients suffering or recovering from COVID-19 but still positive in a nasopharyngeal swab, from over 116 patients enrolled in the study. SARS-CoV-2 detection and persistence in semen would have an impact on both clinical practice and public health strategies, but our results would suggest that SARS-CoV-2 is not present in the semen of men recovering from COVID-19.


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