Impact of the aqueous extract of dandelion, probiotic and their synbiotic on male lamb’s testicular histopathology relative to semen characteristics


This study aimed at investigating effects of dandelion/probiotic on the testis histology and semen characteristics of male lambs. Twelve prepuberal Noemi male lambs (2 ± 0.4-month-old and 20 ± 3.5 kg B.W) were randomly allocated into four groups. Animals in group 1 were controlled, orally given normal saline as the same schedule of treated animals. In group 2 animals were given daily oral 50 ml of an aqueous extract of dandelion leaves. In group 3 animals were given a daily 50 ml of cow’s milk probiotics, and in group 4 animals were given 50 ml of a 1:1 mixture (dandelion extract: probiotic). Animals were treated for 8 consecutive weeks. At puberty, semen ejaculates were collected weekly for further 10 weeks. Thereafter, animals were sacrificed and testicles were obtained, weighed and a histopathological study was performed on the testis. Results revealed that oral administration of the dandelion aqueous extract to prepuberal lambs exhibited disturbances in the histological architecture of the testicular semeniferous tubules. Additionally, dandelion resulted in edematic interstitial tissues with evident vaculations. These deteriorations were reflected in less spermatogenesis (i.e. less sperm concentration and ejaculate volume by 10% and 20%, respectively than controlled group). Also, the percentage of sperm progressive motility was lower (P < 0.05) and dead sperm was higher (P < 0.05) in rams given dandelion than control. Administration of probiotic hasn’t revealed a change in the seminiferous tubules architecture, however, very little vaculation with rare edema was observed. Administration of the synbiotic mixture revealed intermediate histopathological appearances. The highest sperm concentration, testosterone concentration and advanced motility were obtained when probiotic was administered. In conclusion, although dandelion cures some hepatic malfunctions in human, caution must be taken into consideration of the frequent ingestion of dandelion for its harmful effect on male fertility.

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Zeitoun, M. , Farahna, M. , Al-Sobayil, K. and Abdel-Salam, A. (2014) Impact of the aqueous extract of dandelion, probiotic and their synbiotic on male lamb’s testicular histopathology relative to semen characteristics. Open Journal of Animal Sciences, 4, 23-30. doi: 10.4236/ojas.2014.41004.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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