Effects of alcohol on the morphology of the thyroid gland in pregnant wistar rats
Alcohol consumption during pregnancy results to, among other effects, retardation of growth in the offspring. However, information is limited on the effects on the organs of dams exposed to alcohol during pregnancy including the thyroids which is the focus of this study. The experimental animal model, involving Wistar rats, was used to evaluate the effects of alcohol during pregnancy. Thirty (30) female Wistar rats assigned to 2 groups of 15 each were used to investigate the effects of alcohol exposure during pregnancy on the thyroid gland. Group 1 served as control (C) while group 2 was exposed to alcohol during pregnancy. At Days (D)7, D14, and D20 of pregnancy, 5 pregnant rats were randomly selected from the two groups and sacrificed. After the sacrifice, the thyroids were removed and their weights determined. The thyroid tissues were fixed in Bouin’s fluid and prepared for routine histological examination and histomorphometry. The results of the investigation showed significant reduction (p<0.05) in the weights of the thyroids, diameter of follicles, as well as disorganization and desquamation of follicular cells. Our findings suggest that alcohol intake during pregnancy could be injurious to the thyroid glands.
Keywords: Alcohol, Pregnancy, Thyroids, Wistar rats