Cash-strapped students are being offered a £75 Amazon voucher in exchange – for their SPERM.
The study needs male volunteers aged between 18-30. Though they must be available for 12 weeks between April and July to consume lycopene. Or the red pigment found in tomatoes and other red fruits. However, they need to do this whilst also donating semen samples.
Trial researchers hope to discover whether lycopene has a positive effect on participants’ sperm and scientists say a nutrient found in the “tomato pill” could supercharge sperm by up to 7%. Which could potentially offer new hope to childless couples in the future!
This is because the antioxidant properties of lycopene counteract the damage inflicted on sperm caused by oxidative stress.
Professor Allan Pacey of the University of Sheffield is one of Britain’s leading experts on male factor infertility. He is recruiting 60 healthy male students and university staff to take part in the three-month study.
He said: “There is enough evidence out there to indicate this study is worth doing so I am cautiously optimistic. If it works in the volunteers and we would then consider testing it in infertile patients.
“So, the production of sperm takes three months. This study will tell us if lycopene improves the quality of semen already in development by reducing DNA damage and whether it produces an overall increase in the number of mature semen produced overall.”