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Reprod Biol. 2004 Jul;4(2):185-93.

Genistein affects testosterone secretion by Leydig cells in roosters (Gallus gallus domesticus).

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Department of Animal Physiology, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Oczapowskiego 1A, 10-718 Olsztyn, Poland.


Genistein is one of non-steroidal phytoestrogens present in soya and soybean products as well as in other legumes. Phytoestrogens possess estrogen-like biological activity and may influence human and animal reproduction. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of genistein on testosterone (T) secretion by isolated Leydig cells in roosters. Genistein (5-50 microM) inhibited (p<0.05) in vitro basal and LH-stimulated T secretion by Leydig cells in a dose dependent manner. No significant effect of lavendustin C (inhibitor of PTK, a non-phytoestrogen) on the T production was observed. In conclusion, genistein, present in commercial poultry feeds, may influence testicular steroidogenesis but its effect on reproductive performance of roosters requires further examinations.

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