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Reprod Toxicol. 2011 May;31(4):424-30. doi: 10.1016/j.reprotox.2010.12.005. Epub 2010 Dec 21.

Antagonistic effects of gestational dietary exposure to low-dose vinclozolin and genistein on rat fetal germ cell development.

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  • 1Laboratory of Gonad Differentiation and Radiobiology, Stem Cells and Radiation Service, Institute of Cellular and Molecular Radiation Biology, Life Sciences Division, Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique, BP 6, 92265 Fontenay-aux-Roses, France


Continuous, low-dose exposure to a phytoestrogen (1 mg/kg/day genistein) and/or to an antiandrogenic food contaminant (1 mg/kg/day vinclozolin) has been recently reported to affect male reproductive tract and fertility [1] in adults. We investigated whether alterations of the testis are already present at the end of in utero exposure using the same rat model and doses following exposure from conception to delivery. After vinclozolin exposure, we observed in the neonate a slight but significant alteration of steroidogenesis and gametogenesis with a reduction of testosterone secretion and of the number of gonocytes. In contrast, genistein exposure had no effect. While the vinclozolin-genistein mixture acts in a synergistic manner to induce the most significant alterations in the adult, interestingly, genistein antagonized the deleterious effect of vinclozolin on germ cells in the neonate. This difference emphasizes the importance of studying the effects of endocrine disruptors during various developmental stages to understand their effects.

Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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