Washington (USA) | Jagran News Desk: The highly contagious coronavirus is spreading at an alarming rate across the world. The dreadful virus has infected over 3.8 million people and claimed the lives of more than 2,67,000 across the world.

With the world still learning about the infection and how does it spread, a new study has claimed that the virus which causes COVID-19 can be found in semen. However, it is still unclear whether the sexual transmission of the virus is possible or not.

In a small report from Shangqiu Municipal Hospital in China published in JAMA Network Open, the researchers said that the COVID-19 virus was detected in semen from six of 38 men hospitalised with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19.

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The researchers, however, in their study said that there was no long-term follow-up so it is not known how long the virus may remain in semen or if men can spread it to their partners during sex.

The results contrast with a study of 34 Chinese men with COVID-19 was published last month in the journal Fertility and Sterility. US and Chinese researchers found no evidence of virus in semen tested between eight days and almost three months after diagnosis.

Co-author of the report, Dr. John Hotaling of the University of Utah said that the new study involved much sicker men, most with active disease.

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It's an important public health concern but that more research is needed to provide a definitive answer, he added.

The scientists, however, believe that the dreadful COVID-19 infection generally spreads from droplets produced when infected people cough, which are inhaled by people nearby.

Some researchers have found that vile coronavirus in blood, feces and tears or other fluid from people suffering from the infection. Evidence suggesting that other infectious viruses including Zika and Ebola may be sexually transmitted has prompted questions about the coronavirus.

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Meanwhile, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine said the new study shouldn’t be cause for alarm. “To be safe, though, it may be wise to avoid sexual contact with men until they are 14 days without symptoms,” said Dr. Peter Schlegel, the group's immediate past president, in a statement.

(With inputs from agencies)

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma