Their sperm could benefit from a rapid-freezing process which preserves up to 80 per cent of sperm activity for IVF treatment, compared with up to 40 per cent using existing slow-freezing techniques.
The new vitrification method – which sees sperm plunged into liquid nitrogen – sees seminal plasma removed, meaning HIV and other viruses can be taken out, say experts from Chile and Germany.
Vitrification is already used to quick-freeze eggs and embryos successfully for IVF treatment.
The findings were ‘very exciting’, said Ian Cooke, professor emeritus at Sheffield University.
‘In addition, the prospect of use with HIV positive patients has great potential, although we’d want to confirm the absence of residual HIV in sperm samples.’