Comparative Clinical Pathology

, Volume 28, Issue 2, pp 479–485 | Cite as

The protective effect of coenzyme Q10 and berberine on sperm parameters, with and without varicocelectomy in rats with surgically induced varicoceles

  • Hamed Najaran
  • Hamid Rashtbari
  • Abouzar Mohammadi
  • Fatemeh Soleimanifar
  • Fatemeh Izadpanah
  • Hamed Haddad Kashani
  • Hassan Hassani BafraniEmail author
Original Article


The current study aimed to investigate the protective effects of coenzyme Q10 (Co Q10) and berberine (BB) with and without varicocelectomy on sperm parameters in postoperative varicocele rats. For the current purpose, a total of 60 mature male Wistar rats were randomly divided into control (n = 6 rats), control-sham (n = 6 rats), and experimental (n = 6 rats) groups. The animals in the experimental groups were undergone experimental varicocele, and simple laparotomy was performed in control-sham group. The experimental group was subdivided into the following groups 60 days after varicocele (VCL) induction: non-treated VCL-induced rats (n = 6 rats), VCL-induced rats administered 100 mg (kg per day) BB (n = 6 rats), VCL-induced rats administered Co Q10 75 mg (kg per day) (n = 6 rats), VCL-induced rats administered 100 mg (kg per day) BB + Co Q10 75 mg (kg per day) (n = 6 rats), varicocelectomy rats (n = 6 rats), varicocelectomy rats administered 100 mg (kg per day) BB (n = 6 rats), varicocelectomy rats administered Co Q10 75 mg (kg per day) (n = 6 rats), varicocelectomy rats administered 100 mg (kg per day) BB + Co Q10 75 mg (kg per day) (n = 6 rats). Following 60 days, the animals were euthanized and sperm parameters were evaluated. Non-treated VCL-induced animals indicated a significant (P < 0.05) decrease in sperm parameters and a significant (P < 0.05) increase in sperm DNA damage compared to control and control-sham groups. Insignificant changes were found between control and control-sham groups. Meanwhile, each treatment group showed a remarkable (P < 0.05) increase in sperm parameters as well as a significant (P < 0.05) decrease in sperm DNA damage. Based on current results, BB and Co Q10 alone and/or together could improve sperm parameters and reduce sperm DNA damage in varicocele-induced rats compared to control and control-sham groups. Varicocelectomy alone will improve sperm parameters, but this recovery will be greater when combined with Co Q10 and BB.


Varicocele Berberine Co Q10 Sperm parameters DNA damage Varicocelectomy 



We would like to appreciate Dr. Mazdak Razi, the staffs of Histology laboratory, for their kind technical support. Also, the authors wish to thank Kashan University of Medical Sciences for financial supports.

Authors’ contributions

HN and HHB developed the concept and designed the study. HN was involved in subject recruitment and laboratory analysis. All other three authors were involved in data analysis and helped draft the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.


The research grant was provided by Research Deputy of Kashan University of Medical Sciences.

Compliance with ethical standards

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving animal participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments.

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Consent for publication

Not applicable


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Ltd., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Gametogenesis Research CenterKashan University of Medical SciencesKashanIran
  2. 2.Surgical Technology Department, Nursing and Midwifery CollegeKashan University of Medical SciencesKashanIran
  3. 3.Dietary Supplements and Probiotic Research CenterAlborz University of Medical SciencesKarajIran
  4. 4.Food and Drug Laboratory Research Center and Food and Drug Reference Control Laboratories CenterFood & Drug Administration of Iran, MOH & METehranIran
  5. 5.Anatomical Sciences Research CenterKashan University of Medical SciencesKashanIran

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