Lithium carbonate inducing disorders in three parameters of rat sperm


1 Department of Biology, Islamic Azad University, Tehran Science and Research University, Isfahan, Iran

2 Department of Anatomical Sciences and Molecular Biology, School of Medicine, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

3 Department of Biology, Islamic Azad University, Falavarjan University, Isfahan, Iran


Background: Lithium has a significant impact in reducing the symptoms of bipolar mania but in long periods of use with therapeutic doses can cause several disorders in various organs including the reproductive system. In this study, the effect of lithium on the sperm concentration and motility and forms of abnormal cells has been examined.
Materials and Methods: Male Wistar rats under the 48-day treatment with lithium carbonate at doses of 10, 20, and 30 mg/kg bw/day were kept in standard conditions. At the end of this period, sperm cells isolated from the cauda epididymis were counted, motility was estimated, and stained with smear papanicolaou stain.
Results: In lithium-treated groups, the rate of spermatogenesis and sperm quality were reduced and was seen in a dose-dependent manner.
Discussion: Lithium alters intracellular signaling pathways such as inositol phosphate metabolic cycle and cyclic adenosine mono phosphate (cAMP) system and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) synthesis. It also interferes in the division of sex cells to produce mature sperm and showed changes in the sperm cell membrane, function, and structure.


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