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Biotech Histochem. 2017;92(8):552-559. doi: 10.1080/10520295.2017.1350748. Epub 2017 Nov 21.

Protective effects of agomelatine on testicular damage caused by bortezomib.

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a Department of Histology and Embryology , Faculty of Medicine.
b Biochemistry, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine , Ataturk University , Erzurum , Turkey.


Bortezomib is a chemotherapeutic agent used to treat several cancers; however, it exhibits severe side effects in testicular tissue. We investigated the use of agomelatine to prevent testicular tissue damage caused by bortezomib. We used 36 male Sprague-Dawley rats divided randomly into six equal groups: group 1, no treatment control; group 2, agomelatine treatment only; group 3, bortezomib treatment only for 48 h; group 4, bortezomib + agomelatine treatment for 48 h; group 5, bortezomib treatment only for 72 h; and group 6, bortezomib + agomelatine treatment for 72 h. After treatments, the rats were sacrificed and testicular tissue was harvested. Lipid oxidation (LPO) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) levels in the tissues were determined using biochemical methods. Tissue samples also were examined using histopathological and immunohistochemical techniques. The LPO level was increased, while the SOD level was decreased in the bortezomib treated groups. We found that agomelatine treatment normalized LPO and SOD activities in the bortezomib treated groups. In the spermatogonia and Sertoli cells, the staining density of nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells (NF-kB) and caspase 3 were decreased in the bortezomib + agomelatine groups at both 48 and 72 h compared to bortezomib only treated groups. We observed maturation arrest, basal membrane thickening, increase in inflammatory cells and connective tissue, and edema between germ cells in the bortezomib only treated groups. By contrast, normal basal membrane, less edema and more normal maturation were observed in the bortezomib + agomelatine groups at 48 and 72 h. We found that agomelatine reduced the damaging effects of bortezomib. The use of agomelatine to prevent bortezomib induced testicular tissue damage in human patients should be investigated further.


agomelatine; bortezomib; oxidative stress; rat; testis

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