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What testing is done on donor sperm?

August 31, 2019

The screening process is intentionally designed to be rigorous and exclude any applicant that does not meet our industry leading standards. Less than 1% of donor applicants are accepted by Fairfax Cryobank.

First donors must pass a preliminary evaluation.

All sperm donor applicants must be 18 to 39 years of age. Each applicant is required to complete an application form that includes a medical and genetic history of the applicant and family members, and a consent and specimen release document.

Then the sperm samples undergo analysis for quality.

Each sperm specimen submitted for analysis is evaluated for volume, pH, count, motility, progression, viability, abnormality and white blood cells. The specimens are frozen and subsequently thawed for post-thaw analysis.

Fairfax Cryobank has the highest standards for testing for Infectious Diseases.

Two techniques are used to detect infectious disease. Serological testing, the industry standard, looks for the presence of the body’s reaction (antibodies) to an infection. The other methodology, extensively utilized at Fairfax Cryobank is Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) testing (also called NAT for Nucleic acid Testing), a far more sensitive method which uses molecular genetic techniques to identify for the presence of the DNA of the infecting agent.

For the current list: Infectious Screening Tests

Donors have a medical and genetic evaluation.

Each applicant has a complete physical examination and their medical and genetic history is evaluated by a clinical geneticist. Fairfax Cryobank provides the expertise of board-certified clinical geneticists in evaluation of the donor’s medical and family history as well as reviewing the test results of the extensive genetic screening performed on all sperm donor applicants.

For the current list: Genetic Disease Testing

Testing donations post-acceptance.

Once an applicant is accepted into the donor program, each sperm specimen is evaluated individually both pre-freeze and post-thaw. Any specimen not meeting the minimum standard requirements is discarded. All specimens are quarantined six months and the donor retested for HIV-1, HIV-2, HTLV-I & II, hepatitis B surface antigen, hepatitis C, syphilis (RPR), CMV, Neisseria gonorrhea, and Chlamydia trachomatis prior to release for use.

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