Introduction: Fruit extract of Tribulus terrestris (TT) bears aphrodisiac and antioxidative properties. Antimicrobial drug, metronidazole (MTZ) impairs the spermatogenic activity and fertility in males.
Objective: Validation of the use of fruit extract of TT as a supplement against MTZ-induced fertility impairment in males.
Methods: Adult Swiss strain male mice were administered with 500mg/kgBW/day of MTZ for 28 days. Low (100mg/kgBW/day) and high (200mg/kgBW/day) doses of TT were administered simultaneously with MTZ (500mg/kgBW/day) for same duration. All males were cohabited with virgin proestrus females. Vaginal plug formation was observed to calculate the libido index. Cohabited females were sacrificed on fifteenth day of gestation to dissect out the ovaries and uteri. Fertility index, quantal pregnancy, pre-implantation and post-implantation losses were calculated.
Results: MTZ-treated males showed unaltered mating ability, however, the females impregnated by such males exhibited marked alterations in the fertility index, quantal pregnancy and pre- and post-implantation losses. Supplementation with low dose of TT failed to restore such reproductive toxicities exhibited by administration of MTZ. However, the altered reproductive toxicities were reinstated to control values following supplementation with high dose of TT.
Conclusion: The fruit extract of TT may emerge as an effective herbal remedy, correcting the drug-induced fertility impairments in males.
Keywords: Female mice; Tribulus terrestris; fertility; male mice; metronidazole.