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Cell and Tissue Research

, Volume 375, Issue 2, pp 543–558 | Cite as

The possible protective role of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnONPs) on testicular and epididymal structure and sperm parameters in nicotine-treated adult rats (a histological and biochemical study)

  • Dalia A. MohamedEmail author
  • Shaimaa A. Abdelrahman
Regular Article
  • 97 Downloads

Abstract

Exposure to nicotine in smoking contributes to most unexplained male infertility but the mechanisms remain to be fully elucidated. Zinc (Zn) is an essential trace element in normal growth, development and reproduction. Zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnONPs) are well-known antioxidants. Therefore, this work was designed to investigate the potential ability of ZnONPs to protect testis and epididymis in nicotine-treated rats. Forty adult male Wistar albino rats were divided into control group and two experimental groups (treated and supplemented rats). In the treated group, rats received nicotine at a dose of 1 mg/kg/day orally for 30 days. Rats in the supplemented group received ZnONPs (10 mg/kg/day) with nicotine (1 mg/kg/day), orally for the same period. Testicular and epididymal sections were stained with H&E to assess the histological changes. Negrosin-eosin staining of epididymal sperms was performed to assess their viability and morphological changes. Serum testosterone, FSH and LH levels were assessed. Also, oxidative stress parameters and semiquantitative real-time PCR for steroidogenic enzymes were measured. Morphometric studies of both organs were statistically analyzed. Mild to severe testicular and epididymal structural changes together with sperm morphological abnormalities were detected in nicotine-treated rats. Biochemical results also showed a decrease in all measured parameters except for an increased malondialdehyde (MDA) level that meant deterioration of their reproductive function. On the other hand, ZnONP supplementation in the last group showed an obvious improvement in all investigated parameters.

Keywords

Zinc oxide nanoparticles Nicotine Testis Epididymis Rats 

Abbreviations

Zn

Zinc

ZnONPs

Zinc oxide nanoparticles

WHO

World Health Organization

StAR

Steroidogenic acute regulatory protein

RT- PCR

Semiquantitative reverse transcriptase-PCR

FSH

Follicle-stimulating hormone

LH

Luteinizing hormone

ELISA

Enzyme-linked immune sorbent assay

CV

Coefficient of variation

PBS

Phosphate-buffered saline

EDTA

Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid

TBARS

Thiobarbituric acid reactive substances

MDA

Malondialdehyde

SOD

Superoxide dismutase

GSH

Glutathione

rpm

Round per minute

TSA

Total sperm abnormalities

OMM

Outer mitochondrial membrane

STs

Seminiferous tubules

NBT

Nitroblue tetrazolium to measure neutrophil oxidative burst

SH

Thiol

GSH-Px

Glutathione peroxidase

BW

Body weight

Notes

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Histology and Cell Biology, Faculty of MedicineZagazig UniversityZagazigEgypt

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