Bisphenol A induced oxidative stress and apoptosis in mice testes: Modulation by selenium

Andrologia. 2018 Apr;50(3). doi: 10.1111/and.12834. Epub 2017 Jul 18.


Spermatogenesis, a highly coordinated process, is prone to environmental insults which may lead to impaired spermatogenesis or, at worst, infertility. Bisphenol A (BPA) is a well-known global environmental toxicant and a ubiquitous oestrogenic chemical. This study evaluated the role of selenium (0.5 ppm sodium selenite/kg diet) on spermatogenesis after BPA treatment in different groups of male BALB/c mice: control, selenium, BPA and selenium+BPA. Markers of oxidative stress and apoptosis were evaluated in testis after BPA treatment. Significant decrease in sperm concentration and motility and increased reactive oxygen species(ROS) and LPO levels were seen in BPA group. Histopathological changes revealed extensive vacuolisation, lumen devoid of spermatozoa and decreased germ cell count, confirmed by testicular germ cell count studies. TUNEL assay for apoptosis showed increased number of TUNEL-positive germ cells in BPA group with increased percentage apoptotic index. However, in Se+BPA group, histopathological studies revealed systematic array of all germ cells, preserved basement membrane with relatively less vacuolisation, improved sperm parameters and ROS and LPO levels and decreased number of TUNEL-positive germ cells. These results clearly demonstrate the role of selenium in ameliorating oxidative stress and apoptosis induced upon BPA treatment in mice and can be further used as therapeutic target in male infertility.

Keywords: bisphenol A; oestrogenic; spermatogenesis; testes.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / drug effects*
  • Benzhydryl Compounds / pharmacology*
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Estrogens, Non-Steroidal / pharmacology*
  • Glutathione Peroxidase / metabolism
  • Lipid Peroxidation / drug effects
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Phenols / pharmacology*
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • Sodium Selenite / pharmacology*
  • Sperm Motility / drug effects
  • Spermatogenesis / drug effects
  • Spermatozoa / drug effects
  • Spermatozoa / metabolism
  • Testis / drug effects*
  • Testis / metabolism


  • Benzhydryl Compounds
  • Estrogens, Non-Steroidal
  • Phenols
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Glutathione Peroxidase
  • Sodium Selenite
  • bisphenol A