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Aim: Reports that some phytochemicals interfere with reproductive functions, in both humans and animals necessitated this study which is aimed at determining the effects of fruit extract of Tetrapleuratetrapteraon oestrous cycle and ovarian functions in females.
Methods: Adult female wistar rats weighing 160-180 g with regular 4-5 days oestrus cycle were selected into 4 groups of 6 animals each. Group 1 (control) administered 1ml distilled water; groups II, III and IV were daily treated with the extract at doses 75 mg/kg, 150mg/kg and 300 mg/kg body weight respectively, orally for 21 days. Microscopic evaluation of vaginal smear was done daily to determine the various stages of the estrous cycle, their duration, as well as the estrous cycle length. After 24 hours of last administration, each rat was weighed, sacrificed, and right ovary was homogenised and the homogenate used for analyses of total protein content, superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity, and malondialdehyde (MDA) concentration, according to standard protocols.
Results: There was significant (P < 0.05) increase in duration of diestrus phase and estrous cycle length in all the extract-treated groups, compared to control animals. Also, there was relative reductions in the duration for proestrus (p<0.05), estrus (p<0.05) and metestrus (p<0) phases of the cycle, with a relative increase in duration for diestrus phase (p<0.05) in animals treated with 150 mg/kg and 300 mg/kg body weight respectively. In addition, a significant (P < 0.05) increase was observed in ovarian Protein, and Superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme activity; as well as significant (P < 0.05) reduction in malondialdehyde (MDA) level and in weight gain in the test animals, compared to the control.
Conclusion:Tetrapleuratetrapterafruit extract disrupts ovarian utilisation of proteins in the ovaries, thereby impairing oestrous cyclicity, and body weight. These could result to infertility.
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