FEPOS Semen Quality

The Fetal Programming of Semen quality (FEPOS) cohort was founded to examine if fetal exposures can interfere with fetal reproductive development and ultimately lead to reduced semen quality and reproductive hormone imbalances in young adult men.

Young adult men aged 18 years and 9 months as a minimum and born to mothers in the Danish National Birth Cohort living in relative proximity to Copenhagen or Aarhus and for whom a maternal blood sample and two maternal interviews during pregnancy were available were invited to FEPOS.

Recruitment began in March 2017 and ended in December 2019. The participants answered a comprehensive questionnaire and underwent a physical examination where they delivered a semen, urine, and hair sample, measured their own testicular volume, and had blood drawn.

With its 1058 young adult men, the FEPOS cohort is the largest population-based male-offspring cohort worldwide specifically designed to investigate prenatal determinants of semen quality.

Wide-ranging information on maternal health, lifestyle, socioeconomic status, occupation, and serum concentrations of potential reproductive toxicants during pregnancy combined with biological markers of fertility in their sons collected after puberty allow for in-depth investigations of the 'fetal origins of adult disease hypothesis'.

FEPOS Documentation in Danish and English

Kodebog på dansk for FEPOS' spørgeskema

Code book in English for the FEPOS Questionnaire

Kodebog for kliniske undersøgelser i FEPOS

Code book for FEPOS clinical examination

Supplement to Code book - in Danish and English


Supplementary reading: 

Keglberg Hærvig K, Bonde JP, Ramlau-Hansen CH, Toft G, Hougaard KS, Specht IO, Giwercman A, Nybo Andersen AM, Olsen J, Lindh C, Bjerre Høyer B, Tøttenborg SS.
Fetal Programming of Semen Quality (FEPOS) Cohort - A DNBC Male-Offspring Cohort.
Clin Epidemiol. 2020 Jul 17;12:757-770. doi: 10.2147/CLEP.S242631. PMID: 32765110; PMCID: PMC7373412.

Gaml-Sørensen A, Brix N, Tøttenborg SS, Hougaard KS, Hærvig KK, Bonde JPE, Henriksen TB, Toft G, Ramlau-Hansen CH.
Selection bias in a male-offspring cohort investigating fecundity: is there reason for concern?
Hum Reprod. 2023 Feb 1;38(2):293-305. doi: 10.1093/humrep/deac241. PMID: 36370427.