Cross-talk between down-regulation of steroidogenic genes expression and oxidative and apoptotic biomarkers in testes induced by administration of tramadol and boldenone and their combination in male albino rats

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Narcotics, Ergogenics, and Poisons, Medical Research and Clinical Studies Institute, National Research Centre, Cairo, Egypt

2 Department of Pharmacology, Medical Research and Clinical Studies Institute, National Research Centre, Cairo, Egypt

3 Department of Histology, Faculty of Medicine, Suez Canal University, Ismailia, Egypt


Objective(s): The testis is the male reproductive gland or gonad having two vital functions: to produce both sperm and androgens, primarily testosterone. The study aimed to investigate the effect of tramadol and boldenone injected alone or in combination for 2 months in rats on testicular function.
Materials and Methods: Group 1, normal control; Group 2, tramadol HCl (TRAM) (20 mg/kg bwt.) (IP); Group 3, boldenone undecylenate (BOLD) (5 mg/kg bwt) (i.m); Group 4, combination of TRAM (20 mg/kg bwt.) and BOLD (5 mg/kg); respectively for 2 months. 
Results: TRAM and BOLD alone and in combination showed deteriorated testicular functions, lowered serum steroid levels (FSH, LH, and testosterone), elevation in oxidative biomarkers (MDA & NO) and reduction in GSH and SOD, down-regulation of StaR and HSD17B3 as well as histopathological testicular assessment using H&E staining revealing massive degenerative changes in the seminiferous epithelium and vacuolar changes of most of the spermatogenic stages in both TRAM and BOLD groups. PAS stain showed an intensive reaction in the interstitial tissue between the tubules in the TRAM group. Masson trichrome stain showed abundant collagen fiber deposits in the tunica albuginea with congested BV in the TRAM group. 
Conclusion: The study illuminated the hazard of administration of these drugs for a long period as well as the prominent deleterious effects reported on concurrent use of both drugs.


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