Antioxidant action of alpha lipoic acid on the testis and epididymis of diabetic rats: morphological, sperm and immunohistochemical evaluation

Vol. 45 (x): 2019 May 5.[Ahead of print]

doi: 10.1590/S1677-5538.IBJU.2018.0774


Lanna Beatriz Neves Silva Corrêa 1, Carlos Alberto Soares da Costa 2, José Antônio Silva Ribas 3, Gilson Teles Boaventura 2, Mauricio Alves Chagas 1
1 Departamento de Morfologia, Laboratório de Biomorfologia Celular e Extracelular, Universidade Federal Fluminense – UFF, Niterói, RJ, Brasil; 2 Departamento de Nutrição e Dietética, Nutrição Experimental, Universidade Federal Fluminense – UFF, Niterói, RJ, Brasil; 3 Departamento de Fisiologia e Farmacologia, Universidade Federal Fluminense – UFF, Niterói, RJ, Brasil


Introduction: Chronic hyperglycemia is caused by diabetes mellitus-committed genital morphophysiology, and oxidative stress is one of the main factors involved in this process. Alpha lipoic acid (ALA) can prevent metabolic and morphological changes in diabetic individuals.

Objectives: In present study, we evaluated the effects of regular ALA consumption on the spermatogenesis and histoarchitecture in the male genital system of diabetic rats.

Materials and Methods: Thirty-two Wistar rats were divided into groups: Control (CG); Diabetic Control (DCG), receiving commercial diet: ALA Group (ALAG) and Diabetic ALA Group (DALAG), fed diets with added ALA (300 mg/Kg bw). The diabetic groups received a single injection of streptozotocin (60 mg/kg). After sixty days of the diet, the animals were euthanized, and semen, testis and epididymis samples were collected. A histomorphometric analysis was performed to determine the epithelial height, tubular and luminal diameter, tubular and luminal area of seminiferous tubules and each epididymal region. Sertoli cells were evidenced using the antivimentin antibody and were quantifi ed. The results were statistically analyzed by the ANOVA test.

Results: At the end of the experiment, the DALAG glycemia was significantly lower than DCG. The histomorphometric parameters of the seminiferous and epididymal tubules did not show improvement in the DALAG. However, there was an improvement in the DALAG in terms of the concentration, motility and percentage of spermatic pathologies, as well as in the number of Sertoli cells (p<0.001).

Conclusions: The results demonstrated that supplementation with the ALA antioxidant retards testicular lesions and preserve the process of spermatogenesis in diabetes.

Keywords: Testis; Epididymis; Morphological and Microscopic Findings; Spermatozoa

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