Objective: Furan (C4H4O) is a heat-induced food contaminant that is utilized as an industrial chemical agent. Lycopene is a natural substance that is produced by plants and tomatoes. We aimed to evaluate the toxicity of furan on testes and the protective effect of lycopene in diabetic rats.
Material and methods: Male Wistar albino rats were divided into five groups: Group 1 (control group) received 1 mL/kg corn oil. Group 2 (diabetic control group) received 55 mg/kg STZ and 1 mL/kg corn oil. Group 3 (diabetic lycopene group) received 55 mg/kg STZ and 4 mg/kg lycopene. Group 4 (diabetic furan group) received 55 mg/kg STZ and 40 mg/kg furan. Group 5 (diabetic furan + lycopene group) received 55 mg/kg STZ, 40 mg/kg furan, and 4 mg/kg lycopene. After 28 days, the testes were extirpated in all groups. In the testicular tissue samples, the level of malondialdehyde (MDA) and the activities of catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), superoxide dismutase (SOD), and reducted glutathione (GST) were studied. Serum follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), and testosterone levels were measured. Histopathologic examination was performed by light microscope.
Results: The MDA level and the activities of CAT, GPx, SOD, and GST were found to be higher in the furan group than in the control and diabetic control groups (p<0.05). The MDA level and the activities of CAT, GPx, SOD, and GST were significantly lower in the furan + lycopene group than in the furan group (p<0.05).
Conclusion: The low blood testosterone level in the rats who received furan suggested the presence of endocrinological defects and cellular degenerative changes. Lycopene may be effective to reverse furan toxicity in diabetic rat testes.
Keywords: Furan; diabetes mellitus; lycopene; rat; testis; toxicity.