Protective effects of aqueous extract of Citrullus lanatus fruit on reproductive functions and antioxidant activities in arsenic-treated male wistar rats
Arsenic trioxide (As2O3), a known male reproductive toxicant induces it effects majorly through oxidative stress. Citrullus lanatus fruit is widely consumed for its high medicinal values and antioxidant capacities. This study investigated the effects of aqueous extract of Citrullus lanatus fruit (AECL) on reproductive functions and antioxidant activities in arsenic-treated male Wistar rats. Thirty male Wistar rats (150-190 g) were grouped into six and treated as follows; Control, 3 mg/kg As2O3, 100 mg/kg AECL, 200 mg/kg AECL, As2O3+100 mg/kg AECL and As2O3+200 mg/kg AECL. All administration was done orally for thirty days. Caudal sperm, serum hormone levels and testicular antioxidant activities were evaluated. Decreases (p<0.05) in sperm concentration, morphology, viability, and motility were observed in As2O3 group, however, AECL co-administered with As2O3 significantly reversed these effects. Follicle stimulating hormone decreased (p<0.05) in As2O3 group compared with control while significant increase was observed in groups co-treated with AECL and As2O3 relative to As2O3 group. There was an increase (p<0.05) in malondialdehyde level in As2O3 group compared with control while a decrease (p<0.05) was observed in groups co-treated with AECL and As2O3 compared with the As2O3 group. Superoxide dismutase activities decreased (p<0.05) in As2O3 group compared with control but increased (p<0.05) in 200 mg/kg AECL+As2O3 group relative to As2O3 group. Immature spermatids were observed in the seminiferous tubules of As2O3 group, while AECL improved the histology when compared with As2O3 group. The results of this study suggest that aqueous extract of Citrullus lanatus provides protection for sperm cells against arsenic-induced oxidative stress.
Keywords: Eidolon helvum, dental formula, dental abnormalities, attrition