Effects of Spirulina on Cyclophosphamide-Induced Ovarian Toxicity in Rats: Biochemical and Histomorphometric Evaluation of the Ovary
OBJECTIVE To investigate the possible pathways for ovarian injury after administration of cyclophosphamide in rats. METHODS Adult SD rats received a single injection of saline vehicle or chemotherapeutic agent cyclophosphamide, and 8 weeks later, the ovaries were removed, fixed and serially sectioned for pathological examination and ovarian follicle counting. The expression of stem cell factor (SCF) protein was evaluated by immunohistochemistry and immunoreactive score, and SCF mRNA expression determined by RT-PCR in rat ovaries. RESULTS Cyclophosphamide had a detrimental effect on ovarian stromal function and lead to primordial follicle loss. Immunoreactive SCF antigens were expressed on the oocytes in the primordial and primary follicles of rat ovaries, and also in the granulosa cells of the secondary follicles and early antral follicles. There was a higher granulosa SCF, lower oocyte SCF and higher SCF mRNA level in the ovaries of the rats exposed to cyclophosphamide as compared with those in control rat ovaries (P <0.05). CONCLUSION Altered SCF expression in the ovaries of rats exposed to cyclophosphamide can be helpful for understanding the mechanisms for chemotherapeutic drug-induced ovarian damage.