Stephen A. Krawetz, Ph.D., recently served on a panel at the Wall Street Journal’s Future of Everything Festival entitled “Fertility’s New Frontier: Fertility Breakthroughs and Building the Family of the Future.” Krawetz, co-director of the CS Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, and Charlotte B. Failing, professor of fetal therapy and diagnosis in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and the Center for Molecular Medicine and Genetics, Wayne State University School of Medicine, spoke about his research on the diagnostic potential of sperm RNAs as makers of fertility and health of the father and his offspring.
Krawetz’s research found that the fitness of the male contribution reflects the relative diversity of sperm RNAs that are constantly responding to the environment. These RNAs can provide an essential component for early post-fertilization events, acting as genetic and epigenetic impact factors of the fetal onset of adult disease. They are a timestamp of the physical and reproductive health of the father, providing the opportunity to develop a personal blueprint that promotes the birth and healthy life of his children.
Krawetz served on a panel with Rene Almeling (Yale University), Daisy Robinton (Oviva Therapeutics), Angela Stepancic (Reproductive Village Cryobank) and host Amy Marcus (Wall Street Journal), who posed a series of questions. Each member offered a complementary perspective on a couple’s reproductive health and building a family.
“It was a wonderful opportunity to reach out and share what the future can bring while we give back to the community,” Krawetz said. He joined the panel discussion and proposed to him what the future will bring “as innovation continues to drive non-invasive personal precision health diagnostics, and we describe the quality of the male contribution to the birth of a healthy child,” he said. . “Consider how it will lift the burden of the relatively well-diagnosed woman when the responsibility for the birth of a healthy child is now more evenly divided.”
Krawetz noted that this research should improve fertility rates among couples trying to conceive.
“When male fertility status can be known, those couples who were previously diagnosed with infertility of unknown cause will immediately feel the impact,” he said. “In some cases, the problem can be rectified with minimal intervention by simply taking the time.”