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Contraception. 2002 May;65(5):379-84.

Effects of leaf extract of Stephania hernandifolia on testicular gametogenesis and androgenesis in albino rats: a dose-dependent response study.

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  • 1Reproductive Endocrinology and Family Welfare Unit, Department of Human Physiology with Community Health, Vidyasagar University, Midnapore, 721 102, West Bengal, India.


The present study was undertaken to evaluate the dose-dependent effects of a leaf extract of Stephania hernandifolia on testicular activities in albino rats. Whether this leaf extract has any toxic effect on metabolic organs or on the liver or kidney was studied. Adult male Wistar rats, maintained under standard laboratory conditions, were forcefully fed with the aqueous extract of these leaves at the dose of 2 g or 4 g of leaves/mL distilled water/100 g body weight/day for 28 days. All the animals, along with vehicle-treated controls, were killed on the Day 29 of the experiment. Treatment with this leaf extract at both doses resulted in significant reduction in relative weight in the testis, the seminal vesicles, the prostate, and the epididymis without any significant change in the liver and kidney weight in comparison to control. Activities of testicular steroidogenic key enzymes and plasma testosterone level were decreased significantly, along with a significant reduction in the number of germ cells at stage VII of the spermatogenic cycle and in the seminiferous tubular diameter in both treated groups in comparison to control. Activities of glutamate oxaloacetate transaminase, glutamate pyruvate transaminase, acid phosphatase, and alkaline phosphatase were not altered significantly in the liver and kidney in both treated groups compared with controls. We concluded that treatment with an aqueous extract of leaves resulted in diminution in the activities of testicular androgenic key enzymes and plasma level of testosterone along with inhibition of spermatogenesis without any induction of hepatic and renal toxicity.

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