Ellagic acid and rosmarinic acid attenuate doxorubicin-induced testicular injury in rats

J Biochem Mol Toxicol. 2017 Sep;31(9). doi: 10.1002/jbt.21937. Epub 2017 Jun 6.


The anticancer drug doxorubicin causes testicular toxicity as an undesirable effect. The present study was undertaken to investigate the possible protection of ellagic acid and rosmarinic acid during doxorubicin administration. For this purpose eight groups of male Sprague-Dawley rats were used (n = 10), one group received vehicle served as control, and other groups received 5 mg/kg doxorubicin twice a week for 2 weeks for a cumulative dose of 20 mg/kg, ellagic acid (10 mg/kg/day, 14 consecutive days p.o.), rosmarinic acid (75 mg/kg/day, 14 consecutive days p.o.), ellagic acid and rosmarinic acid. The latter three regimens were given to control and doxorubicin-received rats. Doxorubicin decreased testicular relative weight, sperm count, motility, serum testosterone, testicular glycogen, and sialic acid with increased incidence of histopathological changes, oxidative stress, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, as well as cholinesterase activity. Conversely, ellagic and rosmarinic acid treatment ameliorated such damage, thus showing the possibility to use as an adjuvant during doxorubicin treatment.

Keywords: doxorubicin; ellagic acid; rosmarinic acid; sperm; testicular injury.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cinnamates / pharmacology*
  • Depsides / pharmacology*
  • Doxorubicin / adverse effects*
  • Doxorubicin / pharmacology
  • Ellagic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Sperm Count
  • Sperm Motility / drug effects
  • Testis* / injuries
  • Testis* / metabolism
  • Testis* / pathology


  • Cinnamates
  • Depsides
  • Ellagic Acid
  • Doxorubicin
  • rosmarinic acid