Histomorphometric Alterations Induced in the Testicular Tissues by Variable Sizes of Silver Nanoparticles

J Reprod Med. 2017 May-Jun;62(5-6):317-23.


OBJECTIVE: To investigate the histomorphometric alterations induced in testicular tissues by variable sizes of silver nanoparticles (SNPs). STUDY DESIGN: Male mice (BALB/C) were treated with SNPs (1 mg/kg) using 5 different sizes (10, 20, 40, 60, and 100 nm) for 35 days. Testicular biopsies from all mice under study were examined histomorphologically. RESULTS: SNPs sized 10 and 20 nm had provoked morphometric changes in the testes of the subjected mice together with the following histological alterations: seminiferous tubules, degeneration, spermatocyte cytoplasmic vacuolation, spermatocyte sloughing, and spermatid giant cell formation. Larger SNPs (40, 60, and 100 nm) induced little or no testicular histomorphometric alterations. CONCLUSION: The findings of the present work may indicate that subchronic exposure to SNPs could have a deleterious impact on the testicular tissues and spermatogenic process that could affect fertility and reproduction, with smaller SNPs being more toxic than larger ones.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Male
  • Metal Nanoparticles / chemistry
  • Metal Nanoparticles / toxicity*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Particle Size
  • Seminiferous Tubules / drug effects
  • Seminiferous Tubules / pathology
  • Silver / chemistry
  • Silver / toxicity*
  • Testis* / drug effects
  • Testis* / pathology


  • Silver