P-4: Effect of Chronic Stress on Stereological Properties of Seminiferous Tubules in Adult Male Rats
Male fertility and reproduction can affect by stress. The means by which stress influences reproduction is not clearly understood. The aim of the present study was to examine, using stereological methods, the role of glucocorticoids during chronic restraint stress on spermatogenesis.
Materials and methods
Twenty four male adult Sprague- Dawley rats were allocated to four equal groups; stress, RU486, stress/RU486, and control groups. In stress group, the rats were restrained, 1 h/day, for 12 days. In RU486 group, the rats were injected RU486 at a dose of 2.5 mg/kg for 12 days. In stress/RU486 group, the rats were injected RU486 1 h before the stress for 12 days. The testes of the all groups were removed and in 10 circular transverse sections of tubules stained with hematoxylin-eosin, stereological parameters were measured including cellular (germinal epithelium) diameter and area of the seminiferous tubules, total diameter and cross sectional area, number of seminiferous tubules per unit area, and numerical density of the tubules of the seminiferous tubules.The testes were also rated for its spermatogenic potential on a modified spermatogenic scale of 0 to 6. Data were analyzed by one-way ANOVA and LSD post hoc test (P<0.05).
Restraint stress significantly reduced lumen diameter, thickness of germinal epithelium and numerical density of seminiferous tubules. This reduction was reversed by subcutaneously injection of the anti-glucocorticoid, RU486 prior to stress session.
During chronic stress, increases in glucocorticoids in male rats act via glucocorticoid receptors on testicular tissue to suppress spermatogenesis.