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The increasing prevalence of infertility cases is becoming a major public health problem in developing countries due to changes in diet and lifestyle. Dragon fruit (Hylocereus co-staricensis-[HC]) plays an important role as a fertility agent due to its antioxidant and anti-proliferative properties. The main aim of the present study was to identify the effects of ethanol extract of HC on sperm quality and histology of the testes. A total of twenty 10-week-old male ICR mice were divided equally into four different groups. Ethanol extract of HC (diluted to 0.2 mL with distilled water) was gavaged for 25 days at a dose of 250 mg/kg , 500 mg/kg and 1000 mg/kg body weight to the animals of group II (n=5), III (n=5) and IV (n=5), respectively. The animals of group I (control, n=5) had distilled water (0.2 ml). Re-sults were analyzed using one way ANOVA test and the data were significant at p<0.05. Oral administration of HC extract showed an increased sperm count, sperm viability, and its production rate. The HC extract at a dose of 500 mg/kg was found to be most effective to increase sperm count whereas HC of 1000 mg/kg effectively increased sperm viability and its production rate. Histological examination of the testis showed high density of sperm in seminiferous tubules. From our present experimental findings we are tempted to suggest that the ethanol extract of HC could be a potential male fertility agent.
Hylocereus costaricensis (Dragon fruit), sperm count, sperm viability