The toxicological effects of bisphenol A and octylphenol on the reproductive system of prepubertal male rats

AHBAB M. A. , BARLAS N. , Karabulut G.

TOXICOLOGY AND INDUSTRIAL HEALTH, vol.33, no.2, pp.133-146, 2017 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 33 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Doi Number: 10.1177/0748233715603847
  • Page Numbers: pp.133-146


The aim of the present study was to assess and compare the individual adverse effects of bisphenol A (BPA) and octylphenol (OP) on the reproductive system of prepubertal male rats. Rats were exposed to BPA and OP at doses of 125 and 250 mg/kg/day, by gavage, for 90 days. At the end of the study, the testes, epididymis, prostate gland, and seminal vesicle were removed and examined histopathologically. Also, 3-beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase expressions were analyzed and serum testosterone and luteinizing hormone (LH) levels were measured. Sperm head count of caput epididymis was performed using a hemocytometer. Seminiferous and epididymal round tubules were evaluated for tubule diameter, lumen diameter, and height of tubule epithelium. There were significant increases in relative testes weights in BPA125, OP125, and OP250 groups compared with the control. Atrophic tubules, pyknotic tubules, combined tubules, congestion, vacuolization of Sertoli cell, cell debris in the lumen, tubules without sperm, and degeneration of tubules were noted in the tissue specimens obtained from the treatment groups compared with the control group. Sperm head counts were decreased in all treatment groups except for the low-dose BPA group. Testosterone (T) levels decreased in the BPA and high-dose OP treatment groups. LH levels increased in BPA treatment groups and the low-doseOP treatment group and decreased in the high-dose OP group. Epithelial height of high-dose BPA and OP treatment groups increased compared with the control group. Furthermore tubular height of low-dose BPA and high-dose OP groups increased with respect to control levels. In the OP250 treatment group, thyroxine hormone level was increased compared to other groups. Also, in the OP125 treatment group, triiodothyronine hormone level was increased compared with other groups. The results of this study showed that BPA and OP affect the steroidogenic enzyme expression and T production in Leydig cells. In conclusion, BPA and OP have adverse effects on the male reproductive system of prepubertal rats.