Cadmium produces a wide range of biological dysfunctions in human and laboratory animals where it chiefly affects the testes, whereas, Carpolobia lutea has been known to have antioxidant benefits. This study was intended to investigate the effects of Carpolobia lutea root extracts on testicular hormone function in cadmium-challenged male rats. 48 male Wistar rats (170-190 g) were divided into six groups, each containing eight rats. Experimental animals in control (Group 1) were given 0.2ml/kg body weight (BW) of 10% tween 80; Group two were administered 1mg/kg BW of cadmium (i.p); Group 3 were given 1mg/kg BW of cadmium (i.p) + 100mg/kg BW extract; Group four took 1mg/kg BW of cadmium (i.p) + 200mg/kg BW extract while Group five and six got 100mg/kg and 200mg/kg BW extract respectively. The administration of vehicle and extract was conducted orally for six weeks. Testicular activity of 17 beta-hydrosteroid dehydrogenase (17β-HSD) and serum testosterone, luteinizing and follicle stimulating hormone (LH, FSH) levels were evaluated. Findings indicated that cadmium statistically (p<0.05) lowered testicular 17β-HSD activity and serum testosterone, LH and FSH levels when compared with those of the control group animals. However, Carpolobia lutea and its co-administration notably (p<0.05) elevated the activity of testicular 17β-HSD and levels of serum testosterone, LH and FSH. The study suggests that Carpolobia lutea extract plays a protective function in ameliorating testicular damage caused by cadmium in rats. This is probably due to the extract’s potential in the management of testicular dysfunction and fecundity in animals.
Key words: Carpolobia lutea, polygalaceae, cadmium, 17 beta-hydrosteroid dehydrogenase, testicular function.
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