Effect of different doses of nandrolone decanoate on lipid peroxidation, DNA fragmentation, sperm abnormality and histopathology of testes of male Wister rats

Exp Toxicol Pathol. 2015 Jan;67(1):1-11. doi: 10.1016/j.etp.2014.09.003. Epub 2014 Oct 18.


The present study aims of to investigate the effects of low and high doses of nandrolone decanoate (ND) on histopathology and apoptosis of the spermatogenic cells as well as lipid peroxidation, antioxidant enzyme activities, sperm abnormality and DNA fragmentation. Eighteen animals were divided into three groups each group contain six animals. The rats were divided into three groups as following: Group 1 was administered saline (control). Group 2, received nandrolone decanoate (3 mg/kg/weekly) (low dose) with intramuscular injection. Group 3, received intramuscular injection dose of nandrolone decanoate (10 mg/kg/weekly) (high dose). After 8 weeks, caspase-3 assay was used to determine the apoptotic cells. The sperm parameters, lipid peroxidation, antioxidant enzyme activities and testosterone concentration were also investigated in the experimental groups of both low and high dose compared to the control groups. Treated group with high dose showed degenerated germinal epithelial cells sloughed in the lumina of seminiferous tubules, where almost seminiferous tubules were devoid of spermatids and spermatozoa compared to control and group treated with low dose. Also, a significant increase of lipid peroxidation levels and heat shock proteins was observed in two groups administrated with two different doses of ND while, antioxidant enzyme activities, and testosterone concentration was significantly decreased in two treated group when compared with control. Administration of ND at high and low doses leads to deteriorated sperm parameters, DNA fragmentation and testicular apoptosis. In conclusion, the administration ND at high doses more effective on lipid peroxidation, antioxidant enzyme activities, sperm abnormality, histopathology, apoptotic and DNA changes compared to low dose group and to control group.

Keywords: DNA fragmentation; Lipid peroxidation; Nandrolone decanoate; Sperm abnormality; Testicular histopathology and apoptosis.

MeSH terms

  • Anabolic Agents / toxicity*
  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / drug effects
  • DNA Fragmentation / drug effects*
  • Lipid Peroxidation / drug effects*
  • Male
  • Nandrolone / analogs & derivatives*
  • Nandrolone / toxicity
  • Nandrolone Decanoate
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Spermatozoa / drug effects*
  • Testis / drug effects


  • Anabolic Agents
  • Nandrolone
  • Nandrolone Decanoate