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Infertility is a major reproductive and social problem with a worldwide prevalence of 10-15%. While 11.8-39.0% of infertility cases are attributable to the female, 15.8-42.4% is attributed to the male and 8.0-11.1% to unknown factors. The study investigated the efficacy of the single versus combined regimes of antioxidant vitamins C and E oral supplements on sperm motility in the reproductively matured Wistar rats. Twenty (20) male Wistar rats aged 12 weeks and weighing between 182g and 252g were randomly grouped into 4 experimental blocks (A-D) of 5 rats each. Block A rats were served combined daily dose of 90mg vitamin C and 15mg vitamin E, block B rats had no treatment and served as control, block C rats were served daily dose of 15mg vitamin E only while block D rats were served daily dose of 90mg vitamin C only; all treatments were administered for 28 days. On the 29th day, the rats were humanely sacrificed and semen analyzed for sperm motility. The study showed that treatment with vitamins C and E as single regime significantly improved (p<0.01) the forward, progressive (category ‘a’) mean percentage sperm motility by 70 and 75 folds respectively while significantly decreasing (p<0.01) the nonprogressive (category ‘c’) mean percent sperm motility by 8 and 5 folds respectively compared to the control mean percent sperm motility. We therefore conclude that sperm motility in the Wistar rats is significantly improved with the separate oral supplements of vitamins C and E as compared with the combined supplements.
Key words: Infertility, antioxidant vitamins, semen, sperm motility