Morphometric Evaluation of the Seminiferous Tubules and the Antioxidant Protective Effects of Gallic Acid and Quercetin in the Testis and Liver of Butyl Phthalate Treated Rats

  • Sunny O. AbarikwuEmail author
  • Godwin Simple
  • Chimezie Samuel Onuoha
Original Research Article


The antioxidant protective effects of gallic acid (GAL) and quercetin (QUE) against oxidative stress induced by di-butyl phthalate (DnBP) in the liver and testis of rats were evaluated in this study. Adult albino Wistar rats (180–225 g) were treated with QUE or GAL (50 mg/kg) alone or in combination with DnBP (1 mL/kg) for 15 days. After treatment, tissue samples were taken for determination of glutathione and malondialdehyde levels, and superoxide dismutase and catalase activities. Serial sections of the testis and liver were stained with haematoxylin and eosin for microscopy and seminiferous tubular morphometry. As expected, DnBP induced oxidative stress was evident by increased malondialdehyde level in both organs. Co-treatment with GAL or QUE reversed the malondialdehyde by 45.42, 37.44 and 37.57%, 23.32% and catalase by 52.21, 70.15 and 85%, 38.14% in the testis and liver respectively whereas superoxide dismutase activity and glutathione level were differently modulated parallel to histopathological improvement in both tissues. The seminiferous tubular diameter, epithelial height, epithelial germ cell count and tubular length were significantly decreased by 11.09, 51.91, 40.65 and 11.10% respectively versus control values after DnBP treatments and were attenuated on co-treatment with GAL or QUE. Co-treatment with GAL afforded better protective effects in both tissues but QUE treatment alone appeared more effective than GAL on the investigated morphometric data. It seems likely that GAL or QUE prevented the tissue damage but the antioxidant profiles of the liver and testis are different in response to the oxidative stress.


Morphometry Quercetin Gallic acid Di-n-butyl phthalate Oxidative stress Antioxidant 



We thank Mr Christian Kingsley Nwaugha for the collection of blood samples from the animals used in this study, as well as Messrs Tochukwu Anthony Nnadiukwu and Ohanador Olisa Robinson for their technical assistance in the handling of the equipment used in this study.

Authors’ Contribution

SOA designed the study, supervised experiments, interpreted data and wrote the manuscript; GS performed experiments and participated in the design; CSO supervised experiments and participated in the design.


This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

All authors of this manuscript are aware of this submission and declare no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All applicable institutional and international guidelines for the care, handling and use of animals were followed.


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Copyright information

© Association of Clinical Biochemists of India 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiochemistryUniversity of Port HarcourtChobaNigeria

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