Effects of folic acid on testicular toxicity induced by bisphenol-A in male Wistar rats

Biotech Histochem. 2019 Jan;94(1):26-35. doi: 10.1080/10520295.2018.1493222. Epub 2018 Aug 6.


We investigated the protective effect of the folic acid (FA) against bisphenol-A (BPA) induced toxicity in rat testis. We used four groups of seven adult male Wistar albino rats. The control group was fed corn oil, the BPA group was given BPA, the FA group was given FA and the FA + BPA group was given FA initially followed by BPA 1 h later. The BPA, FA and corn oil were administered by oral gavage for 14 days. At the end of the experiment, testis sections were examined for histological and histomorphometric characteristics. The TUNEL method was used to detect apoptosis and immunohistochemistry was used to examine the distribution of spermatogonial stem cells. Levels of serum testosterone were measured, and sperm viability and morphology were determined. The histological structure of the testis was normal in the control and FA groups. Although the number of TUNEL positive cells/tubule increased, the seminiferous epithelium height (SEH) at stages VII-VIII decreased in the BPA group compared to the control, FA and FA + BPA groups. The number of TUNEL positive cells/tubule decreased and the SEH at stages VII-VIII increased in the FA + BPA group compared to the BPA group. No significant difference in spermatogonial stem cells was found among groups. The level of serum testosterone and percentage of viable sperm was significantly lower, while the head, midpiece and total sperm abnormalities were significantly higher in the BPA treated group compared to control, FA, FA + BPA groups. It appears that the toxic effects of BPA on testis might be minimized by FA treatment.

Keywords: Bisphenol A; folic acid; histomorphometry; rat; testis.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Benzhydryl Compounds / toxicity*
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Estrogens, Non-Steroidal / toxicity
  • Folic Acid / therapeutic use*
  • Hematinics / therapeutic use
  • Male
  • Organ Size / drug effects
  • Phenols / toxicity*
  • Random Allocation
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Spermatozoa / drug effects
  • Testicular Diseases / chemically induced*
  • Testicular Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Testis / drug effects
  • Testis / pathology


  • Benzhydryl Compounds
  • Estrogens, Non-Steroidal
  • Hematinics
  • Phenols
  • Folic Acid
  • bisphenol A