It is known that agrochemicals alter male reproductive functions. Previous studies from our lab have demonstrated the relationship between male fertility dysfunction and oxidative-nitrative stress. In this work, morphological and functional spermatozoa parameters were studied in a rat model sub-chronically (5 weeks) intoxicated with low doses (i.p. 1/250 LD50) of a mixture of dimethoate (D), glyphosate (G) and zineb (Z). The cytological assays showed alterations in spermatozoa morphology and in plasma membrane integrity. Modifications in the fatty acid composition were also shown. RIA analyses demonstrated androgenic hormone imbalance in plasma and testes. The acrosome reaction was also altered. Free thiols (positively correlated with DNA denaturation) and fructose levels were elevated in seminal vesicles from treated rats. Taking into account the low doses of pesticides that provoke these alterations, it was assumed that the environmental pollution may play a key role as a causative factor for fertility abnormalities.
Key words: Dimethoate, zineb, glyphosate, rat, spermatozoa, fertility/sperm abnormalities.
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