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Androgenic mediated effects of dried Orchis anatolica plant root bulbs on male rats' reproductive system


Treatment effects of dried Orchis anatolica root bulbs on male Sprague–Dawley rats' reproductive system, fertility, and biochemical markers were investigated. Two treatment groups of rats (ten each) were used in this experiment. One group received low daily doses of 500 mg and the other received high dose of 1,000 mg/kg of O. anatolica root bulbs powder orally for 60 days that were compared with a control group. Results indicate a dose-dependent increase in testicular, seminal vesicle, and epididymis weights (low dose P < 0.05 and high dose P < 0.01). Germinal cell line count response to treatment was noted and manifested by significant elevation in spermatogonia, primary and secondary spermatocytes (P < 0.05 and P < 0.01), and spermatid (P < 0.01) especially when the high dose was used. Interstitial cell line count including fibroblast, immature, and mature Leydig cells were also elevated in response to elevated treatment dose (P < 0.01). Elevation in the percentage of sperm motility (P < 0.01), density (million/ml) (P < 0.01) with an increase in Leydig cell nuclear diameter, and seminiferous tubes diameter in both treated groups were noted. Blood biochemical markers such as blood serum glucose and cholesterol were reduced whereas significant elevation were detected in both testosterone and follicle-stimulating hormone titers (P < 0.01) in all treated rat groups. When controlled female rats were allowed mating with treated male rats (two females to one male), the number of intra-uterine implantations and viable fetuses were enhanced in impregnated females. In conclusion, treatment with O. anatolica induces positive androgenic mediated significant effects on male rat reproductive system morphology, functions, and blood biochemical markers. Concomitantly, an elevation in female impregnation is induced when allowed mating with treated male rats.

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This work was done in collaboration with the Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST) together with the Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, Jarash University. This research was partially funded and supervised by the committee from the Deanship of Research office at Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST). Approval of the animal care committee was mandatory and was obtained from the Deanship of Research at JUST in order to conduct this research in its premises within the animal care unit.

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Correspondence to Nabil A. Khouri.

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Khouri, N.A., Daradka, H.M. & Alkofahi, A.S. Androgenic mediated effects of dried Orchis anatolica plant root bulbs on male rats' reproductive system. Comp Clin Pathol 23, 735–743 (2014).

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  • O. anatolica
  • Male rat
  • Spermatogenesis
  • Fertility
  • Testosterone
  • Female impregnation