Author(s): Reddy PS, Rani GP, Sainath SB, Meena R, Supriya Ch
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Abstract Arsenic is a well-known environmental toxic metalloid element and carcinogen that affects multiple organ systems including tissue lipid peroxidation and reproduction. The present study was aimed to investigate the protective role of N-acetylcysteine (NAC) on arsenic-induced testicular oxidative damage and antioxidant and steroidogeneic enzymes and sperm parameters in mice. Arsenic was administered through drinking water to mice at a concentration of 4.0 ppm sodium arsenite (actual concentration 2.3 ppm arsenic) for 35 days. The body weight of treated mice did not show significant change as compared with the control mice. In arsenic exposed mice there was a significant decrease in the weight of the testis, epididymis and prostate gland as compared with the control animals. Significant reduction was observed in epididymal sperm count, motile sperms and viable sperms in mice exposed to arsenic indicate decreased spermatogenesis and poor sperm quality. The activity levels of testicular 3β- and 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenases and circulatory levels of testosterone were also decreased in arsenic treated mice indicating reduced steroidogenesis. A significant increase in the activities of lipid peroxidation and a significant decrease in the activities of antioxidant enzymes were observed in the testis of mice exposed to arsenic. In addition, significant increase in the testicular arsenic levels was observed during arsenic intoxication. No significant changes in the oxidation status and selected reproductive variables were observed in the N-acetylcysteine alone treated mice. Whereas, intra-peritoneal injection of NAC to arsenic exposed mice showed a significant increase in the weights of reproductive organs, reduction in arsenic-induced oxidative stress in the tissues and improvement in steroidogenesis over arsenic-exposed mice indicating the beneficial role of N-acetylcysteine to counteract arsenic-induced oxidative stress and to restore the suppressed reproduction in male mice. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.
This article was published in J Trace Elem Med Biol
and referenced in Journal of Nutrition & Food Sciences