Low risk of malformation in children fathered by men treated for testicular germ-cell cancer

Jun 17, 2019

In June Lunds University announced the results of this nation-wide register study, which was published in PLOS Medicine and has been co-funded by ReproUnion. 

According to PLOS Medicine the study investigates whether receiving treatment for testicular cancer, being the most common cancer among young men (in child-having ages), leads to a higher risk of fathering a child with a birth defect. 

Chemotherapy and radiotherapy have both been shown to cause mutations and genetic damage in animal studies, leading to fears that men being treated with these therapies might be more prone to have children with genetic diseases and birth defects.

By accessing data from Swedish national registries, scientists gathered data on more than 2 million newborns and their fathers. Among them, 2,380 fathers had testicular cancer and they had, in total, 4,207 children.

“When comparing the children conceived after the father received cancer treatment to the children born before treatment, we could not find any evidence showing that chemotherapy or radiotherapy leads to an increased risk of birth defects”, said Yahia Al-Jebari, Post Doc, Reproductive Medicine at Lunds University. He carried out the research with amongst others Aleksander Giwercman, Professor in Reproductive Medicine at Lund’s University and chief physicians at Skåne’s University Hospital.

You can find the Publication via this link to PLOS Medicine, as well as the first news release from Lunds University (in Swedish)