BACKGROUND: Despite the fact that the father contributes half the genome to a child, associations between paternal factors and birth defects are poorly understood.OBJECTIVES: To investigate the association between preconception paternal health and birth defects in the offspring.MATERIALS AND METHODS: We conducted analysis of a national cohort study utilizing the IBM Marketscan Research Database, which includes data on reimbursed private healthcare claims in the United States from 2007 to 2016. The potential association between paternal comorbidities, as measured by the components of metabolic syndrome (MetS), and any birth defect in the offspring was analyzed.RESULTS: Of the 712,774 live births identified, 21.2% of children were born to fathers with at least one component of the metabolic syndrome (MetS =1) prior to conception. Compared to infants born to fathers with no components of the metabolic syndrome, a modestly higher percentage of infants with cardiac birth defects were born to fathers with more components of MetS (MetS=1, OR [95% CI]: 1.07 [1.01-1.13]; MetS =2, 1.17 [1.08-1.26], in comparison to MetS=0) after adjusting for maternal and paternal factors. Similarly, a higher percentage of infants with respiratory defects were born to fathers with two or more components of metabolic syndrome (MetS =2, OR [95% CI]: 1.45 [1.22-1.71]).DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: In this private insurance claims-based study, we found that fathers with metabolic syndrome-related diseases before conception were at increased risk for having a child affected by birth defects, especially cardiac and respiratory defects, and this association was not influenced by paternal age or assessed maternal factors.
View details for DOI 10.1002/bdr2.2082
View details for PubMedID 36106720