Seeking the elusive genes associated with varicocele: a step forward

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It is well established that varicocele can harm testicular function and fertility, mainly through thermal damage and oxidative stress (1). However, the reasons why the disease affects each individual’s fertility in differing ways are not entirely understood. Moreover, the exact genetic background of familial varicocele and whether genetic factors increase the predisposition to varicocele occurrence are unknown. The multiplicity of phenotypes associated with varicocele suggests a complex multifactorial disorder in which genetic, epigenetic, and environmental factors seem to play a decisive role (1, 2).