The effect of green tea extract on the sperm parameters and histological changes of testis in rats exposed to para-nonylphenol


Background: Para-nonylphenol (p-NP), an environmental contaminant, can generate free radicals that disturbs the reproductive properties. Green tea extract (GTE) is an antioxidant which may prevent the adverse effects of free radicals.

Objective: The aim was to investigate the effect of GTE on sperm parameters and testis tissue in p-NP-treated rats.

Materials and Methods: 24 adult male Wistar rats (215 ± 20 gr) were randomly divided into four groups (n = 6/each) – including control, p-NP (200 mg/kg/day), GTE (200 mg/kg/day), and p-NP + GTE – and orally treated for 56 days. The right testes and left caudal epididymis were used to evaluate selected parameters. In addition, the concentration of serum malondialdehyde was calculated.

Results: A significant decrease in the sperm number, motility, viability and morphology (p < 0.001) was observed in the rats treated with p-NP compared to the control ones. The diameter of seminiferous tubules (p < 0.001), thickness of germinal epithelium (p = 0.018), total volume of testis (p = 0.009), volume of seminiferous tubules (p < 0.001), and testis weight (p = 0.017) decreased in the p-NP group in contrast with the other groups. Moreover, a significant increase of the malondialdehyde concentration was seen in the p-NP group when compared with the controls (p = 0.043). The majority of adverse effects of p-NP could be recovered following the administration of GTE.

Conclusion: It seems GTE can be used as a potent antioxidant in the case of p-NP toxication.

Key words: Green tea extract, Para-nonylphenol, Sperm, Testis, Rat.

[1] Shaha C, Tripathi R, Mishra DP. Male germ cell apoptosis: regulation and biology. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci 2010; 365: 1501–1515.

[2] Abnosi MH, Soleimani Mehranjani M, Shariatzadeh MA, Dehdehi L. Para-nonylphenol impairs osteogenic differentiation of rat bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells by influencing the osteoblasts mineralization. Iran J Basic Med Sci 2012; 15: 1131–1139.

[3] Kyselova V, Peknicova J, Buckiova D, Boubelik M. Effects of p-nonylphenol and resveratrol on body and organ weight and in vivo fertility of outbred CD-1 mice. Reprod Biol Endocrinol 2003; 1: 30–40.

[4] Mehranjani MS, Noorafshan A, Momeni HR, Abnosi MH, Mahmoodi M, Anvari M, et al. Stereological study of the effects of vitamin E on testis structure in rats treated with para-nonylphenol. Asian J Androl 2009; 11: 508–516.

[5] Duan P, Hu C, Butler HJ, Quan C, Chen W, Huang W, et al. Effects of 4-nonylphenol on spermatogenesis and induction of testicular apoptosis through oxidative stressrelated pathways. Reprod Toxicol 2016; 62: 27–38.

[6] Abshenas J, Babaei H, Zare MH, Allahbakhshi A, Sharififar F. The effects of green tea (Camellia sinensis) extract on mouse semen quality after scrotal heat stress. Veterinary Research Forum 2011; 2: 242–247.

[7] Zheng G, Sayama K, Okubo T, Juneja LR, Oguni I. Antiobesity effects of three major components of green tea, catechins, caffeine and theanine, in mice. In Vivo 2004; 18: 55–62.

[8] Clement Y. Can green tea do that? A literature review of the clinical evidence. Prev Med 2009; 49: 83–87.

[9] Sato K, Sueoka K, Tanigaki R, Tajima H, Nakabayashi A, Yoshimura Y, et al. Green tea extracts attenuate doxorubicin-induced spermatogenic disorders in conjunction with higher telomerase activity in mice. J Assist Reprod Genet 2010; 27: 501–508.

[10] Freitas FEL, Mori FC, Cerri ES, Lucas SRR, Miraglia SM. Alterations of spermatogenesis in etoposide-treated rats: a stereological study. Interciencia 2002; 27: 227–235.

[11] Aly HA, Domenech O, Banjar ZM. Effect of nonylphenol on male reproduction: analysis of rat epididymal biochemical markers and antioxidant defense enzymes. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol 2012; 261: 134–141.

[12] Mandarim-de-Lacerda CA. Stereological tools in biomedical research. An Acad Bras Cienc 2003; 75: 469–486.

[13] Latendresse JR, Warbrittion AR, Jonassen H, Creasy DM. Fixation of testes and eyes using a modified Davidson’s fluid: comparison with Bouin’s fluid and conventional Davidson’s fluid. Toxicol Pathol 2002; 30: 524–533.

[14] World Health Organization. laboratory manual for the examination and processing of human semen. 5th Ed. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press; 2010.

[15] Momeni HR, ESkandari N. Effect of vitamin E on sperm parameters and DNA integrity in sodium arsenite-treated rats. Iran J Reprod Med 2012; 10: 249–256.

[16] Sadeghzadeh F, Mehranjani MS, Mahmoodi M. Vitamin C ameliorates the adverse effects of dexamethasone on sperm motility, testosterone level, and spermatogenesis indexes in mice. Hum Exp Toxicol 2019; 38: 409–418.

[17] Jalili C, Khani F, Salahshoor MR, Roshankhah S. Protective effect of curcumin against nicotine-induced damage on reproductive parameters in male mice. Int J Morphol 2014; 32: 844–849.

[18] Momeni HR, Mehranjani MS, Abnosi MH, Mahmoodi M. Effects of vitamin E on sperm parameters and reproductive hormones in developing rats treated with paranonylphenol. Iran J Reprod Med 2009; 7: 111–116.

[19] Bansal AK, Bilaspuri GS. Impacts of oxidative stress and antioxidants on semen Functions. Vet Med Int 2010; 2011: 1–7.

[20] Gong Y, Han XD. Effect of nonylphenol on steroidogenesis of rat Leydig cells. J Environ Sci Health B 2006; 41: 705– 715.

[21] Chitra KC, Mathur PP. Vitamin E prevents nonylphenolinduced oxidative stress in testis of rats. Indian J Exp Biol 2004; 42: 220–223.

[22] Gong Y, Han XD. Nonylphenol-induced oxidative stress and cytotoxicity in testicular Sertoli cells. Reprod Toxicol 2006; 22: 623–630.

[23] Kourouma A, Duan P, Keita H, Osamuyimen A, Qi S, Quan C, et al. In vitro assessment of ROS on motility of epididymal sperm of male rat exposed to intraperitoneal administration of nonylphenol. Asian Pac J Reprod 2015; 4: 169–178.

[24] Omirinde JO, Ozegbe PC, Oyeyemi MO. Comparative evaluation of the sperm characteristics and morphology of adult Wistar rats fed either low or normal protein-energy diets and orally dosed with aqueous Cuscuta australis extracts. Niger J Physiol Sci 2014; 29: 55–61.

[25] Uguz C, Varisli O, Agca C, Agca Y. Effects of nonylphenol on motility and subcellular elements of epididymal rat sperm. Reprod Toxicol 2009; 28: 542–549.

[26] Aydogan M, Korkmaz A, Barlas N, Kolankaya D. Prooxidant effect of vitamin C coadministration with bisphenol A, nonylphenol, and octylphenol on the reproductive tract of male rats. Drug Chem Toxicol 2010; 33: 193–203.

[27] Kourouma A, Keita H, Duan P, Quan C, Bilivogui KK, Qi S, et al. Effects of 4-nonylphenol on oxidant/antioxidant balance system inducing hepatic steatosis in male rat. Toxicol Rep 2015; 2: 1423–1433.

[28] O’donnell L, Robertson KM, Jones ME, Simpson ER. Estrogen and spermatogenesis. Endocr Rev 2001; 22: 289–318.

[29] Awoniyi DO, Aboua YG, Marnewick JL, du Plesis SS, Brooks NL. Protective effects of rooibos (Aspalathus linearis), green tea (Camellia sinensis) and commercial supplements on testicular tissue of oxidative stress-induced rats. Afr J Biotechnol 2011; 10: 17317–17322.

[30] Skrzydlewska E, Ostrowska J, Farbiszewski R, Michalak K. Protective effect of green tea against lipid peroxidation in the rat liver, blood serum and the brain. Phytomedicine 2002; 9: 232–238.