Abstract Title:

Berberine ameliorates experimental varicocele-induced damages at testis and sperm levels; evidences for oxidative stress and inflammation.

Abstract Source:

Andrologia. 2018 Oct 17:e13179. Epub 2018 Oct 17. PMID: 30334274

Abstract Author(s):

Hassan Hassani-Bafrani, Hamed Najaran, Mazdak Razi, Hamid Rashtbari

Article Affiliation:

Hassan Hassani-Bafrani


The present study was performed to show the ameliorative effect of berberine (BBR), as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent, against experimental varicocele (VCL)-induced molecular and histological damages. For this purpose, 50 mature Wistar rats were divided into control, control-sham, VCL-sole, 50 mg/kg and 100 mg/kg BBR-treated VCL-induced groups. The tissue levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6), tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), nitric oxide (NO), total antioxidant capacity (TAC), malondialdehyde (MDA), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and gluthatione peroxidase (GSH-px) as well as the mRNA levelsof testicular CuZn SOD, MnSOD, EC-SOD and GSH-px were evaluated. The serum concentration of testosterone and germ cells mRNA damage were analysed. Finally, the sperm viability, motility, DNA integrity and chromatin condensation were analysed. Observations revealed that, the BBR significantly downregulated VCL-increased IL-6, TNF-α and NO levels, upregulated the CuZn SOD, MnSOD, EC-SOD and GSH-px mRNA level, decreased testicular MDA content, enhanced serum testosterone level and ameliorated testicular TAC, SOD and GSH-px levels. The animals in BBR-treated groups exhibited diminished mRNA damage versus non-treated VCL-induced group. The BBR has significantly (p < 0.05) improved sperm parameters. In conclusion, the BBR by promoting testicular antioxidant potential and by downregulating inflammatory reactions fairly promotes spermatogenesis and upregulates the sperm quality.

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