Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California


UCLA Previously Published Works bannerUCLA

The Seminal Microbiome and Male Factor Infertility


Purpose of review

Focusing on studies published within the last decade, we review the literature on the seminal microbiome and male factor infertility. We highlight potential mechanisms by which microbes may impact fertility and underscore key limitations and clinical implications of these studies.

Recent findings

The seminal microbiome encompasses a metabolically and phylogenetically diverse group of microorganisms. Lactobacillus was consistently associated with normal semen analysis parameters and fertility; Anaerococcus was negatively associated with semen quality. These microbes may participate in a complex cross-talk with the host immune system, thereby modulating local and perhaps systemic inflammatory responses, impacting semen quality.


Research investigating the intersection between the seminal microbiome and male fertility is still in its infancy. Recent investigations have been exclusively cross-sectional, correlational studies, limiting the clinical applicability of published research. Prospective studies with more sophisticated methodologies are necessary.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View