Tracking research trends and hotspots in sperm DNA fragmentation testing for the evaluation of male infertility: A scientometric analysis

Saradha Baskaran, Ashok Agarwal, Manesh Kumar Panner Selvam, Renata Finelli, Kathy Amy Robert, Concetta Iovine, Peter Natesan Pushparaj, Luna Samanta, Avi Harlev, Ralf Henkel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Background: This article describes the research trends in sperm DNA fragmentation (SDF) over the past 20 years (1999-2018) using a scientometric approach. Methods: A stepwise approach was adopted to retrieve scientometric data (articles per year, authors, affiliations, journals, countries) from Scopus and analyze the publication pattern of SDF with reference to key areas of research in the field of Andrology. Results: A total of 2121 articles were retrieved related to SDF. Our data revealed an increasing research trend in SDF (n = 33 to n = 173) over the past 20 years (R2 = 0.894). Most productive country in publications was the USA (n = 450), while Agarwal A. (n = 129) being the most productive author. Most of the articles in SDF were primarily focused on lifestyle (n = 157), asthenozoospermia (n = 135) and varicocele (130). Mechanistic studies on SDF were published twice as much as prognostic/diagnostic studies, with significant emphasis on oxidative stress. Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL) was the most widely used technique to evaluate SDF. Publications on SDF related to assisted reproductive techniques also showed a linear increasing trend (R2 = 0.933). Conclusions: Our analysis revealed an increasing trend in SDF publications predominantly investigating lifestyle, asthenozoospermia and varicocele conditions with TUNEL being the most widely used technique. A substantial increase in research is warranted to establish SDF as prognostic/diagnostic parameter to evaluate clinical scenarios and ART outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number110
JournalReproductive Biology and Endocrinology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 26 Dec 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • DNA fragmentation
  • Diagnosis
  • Infertility, male
  • Prognosis
  • Publications
  • Scientometric analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Endocrinology
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Developmental Biology


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