Scientia Africana

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Remedial role of vitamin C against cypermethrin induced reproductive toxicty in female albino rats

V.C. Obinna, G.O. Agu


The frequent application of pyrethroids as pesticides in agriculture and in homes has led to concerns of their effects on man and animals. The paucity of information on the effects of pyrethroids on female reproduction prompted this study using cypermethrin as an example. The aim of this study was to assess the acute and sub-acute reproductive toxicity of cypermethrin and the protective role of vitamin C in pregnant albino rats. Thirty-six pregnant animals (Day 0 = day of mating, average body-weight = 190g) were randomly divided into 6 groups. Group 1 (Control) received olive oil+distil water, Group 2 (50 mg cypermethrin) every 2 days and Group 3 (50 mg/kg cypermethrin) every 2 days +(20mg/kg vitamin C )five days a week until Day 20. Group 4 received olive oil+distilwater, Group 5 (150 mg/kg cypermethrin) and Group 6, 150 mg/kg cypermethrin+20 mg vitamin C, on Day 15 only. Blood samples were collected on Days 6, 12, and 18 (Groups 1-3) and Day 17 (Group 4-6) for progesterone and estrogen enzyme immunoabsorbent assay. Maternal (Groups 1-6) and fetal (Groups 1-3) liver samples were collected at the end of the experiment for histological analysis. Cypermethrin did not significantly affect (p< 0.05) the level of progesterone and estrogen (Groups 1-6). Maternal and fetal liver from cypermethrin- but not cypermethrin+vitamin C-treated females showed cyto-vacuolation and swelling. Cypermethrin but not cypermethrin+vitamin C-treatment reduced neonatal birth-weights and induced embryonic resorption and still-births compared with controls. It was concluded that cypermethrin has a dose-dependent toxic effects on pregnant female albino rats that can be ameliorated with vitamin C.

AJOL African Journals Online