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While studying I read that sperm needs alkaline medium for its survival.But when I studied the composition of semen it revealed that semen contains citric acid which acts as a sperm nutrient along with fructose.It also contain acid phosphatases.So in such sitution how can the sperm survive?

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  • $\begingroup$ Can you provide some sources? $\endgroup$
    – Chris
    Apr 9, 2014 at 10:38
  • $\begingroup$ From TextBook of Medical Physiology By Guyton and Hall. $\endgroup$
    – Akshay
    May 1, 2014 at 8:39

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Citric acid is a weak acid so in the context of a buffered physiological medium (semen pH 7.7) it will not cause any significant acidification. Acid phosphatases are enzymes with a pH optimum below 7 (as distinct from alkaline pho sphatases). Their presence has no implications for the pH of semen, although it is interesting to speculate why an alkaline fluid would contain an acid phosphatase.

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    $\begingroup$ Vaginal pH is ~4. The acid phosphatases likely have some function in this environment. $\endgroup$
    – stords
    Apr 10, 2014 at 6:26

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