High Exposure to Boron in Drinking Water and Sperm Parameters in Chilean Young People

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookEmail this to someoneShare on Google+

Sandra Cortés; Omar Espinoza-Navarro & Catterina Ferreccio


Our aim was to describe sperm parameters in residents from Northern Chile. We evaluated in 101 volunteers (18 and 30 years old) urinary and drinking water Boron levels using Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry; semen parameters were measured with standardized methods. Each individual was categorized in 3 levels of exposure: low (B levels in urine ≤ 2.94 mgL- 1 or tap water ≤ 3.0 mgL-1), medium (urinary B between 2.95-7.4 mgL-1 and B in tap water with 3.0-7.0 mgL-1) and high (urinary B > 7.4 mgL-1 or tap water > 7.0 mgL-1). We found no significant differences among groups by pH, sperm concentration (45.1; 48.2 and 38 million/mL), motility 1th hour (38.1; 40.0 and 45.5 %) and vitality 1th hour (88.6; 88.0 and 76.9 %) respectively. Abnormal morphology was significant different (83.3; 90 and 83 %). Young men exposed to B in drinking water present sperm variations associated with the level of exposure. Most of these changes are positive at intermediate levels of B. For the highest exposures were observed negative changes in sperm morphology, concentration, motility and vitality, all relevant parameters of fertility. Beneficial effect is observed at medium exposure, like a “U curve”.

KEY WORDS: Boron, Semen, Seminal Parameters, Fertility, Boron exposure, Chile

How to cite this article

CORTÉS, S.; ESPINOZA-NAVARRO, O. & FERRECCIO, C. High exposure to boron in drinking water and sperm parameters in young Chilean people. Int. J. Morphol., 35(1):99-104, 2017.