Obesity is a condition of chronic tissue inflammation and oxidative stress that poses as a risk factor for male infertility. Moringa oleifera oil extract is known to have cholesterol-lowering properties and a potential to treat obesity, while lycopene is a potent antioxidant. We hypothesize that Moringa or lycopene may improve male fertility markers in an animal model of diet-induced obesity. Male Albino rats (n = 60) were randomized to receive regular chow (RC) or high-fat diet (HFD) for 12 weeks (n = 30 each). Animals in each arm were further randomized to receive gavage treatment with corn oil (vehicle), lycopene (10 mg/kg), or Moringa (400 mg/kg) for four weeks starting on week 9 (n = 10 each). Animals were sacrificed at 12 weeks, and blood was collected to assess lipid profile, serum testosterone, and gonadotropin levels. The testes and epididymides were removed for sperm analysis, oxidative stress and inflammatory markers, and histopathological assessment. In comparison to their RC littermates, animals on HFD showed an increase in body weights, serum lipids, testosterone and gonadotrophin levels, testicular oxidative stress and inflammatory markers, as well as sperm abnormalities and disrupted testicular histology. Moringa or lycopene reduced body weight, improved oxidative stress, and male fertility markers in HFD-fed animals with lycopene exhibiting better anti-antioxidant and anti-lipidemic effects. Lycopene is superior to Moringa in improving male fertility parameters, possibly by attenuating oxidative stress.
- Oxidative stress
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)