The field of herbal contraceptives is getting popularized due to being cheap, easily available, natural with higher safety
margins and lesser or no side-effects, and also for protection of privacy. Therefore, the search for an orally active, safe, and
effective herbal contraceptive has become a matter of great interest in recent years. The present study was carried out to
evaluate the antifertility potential of Ficus bengalensis (Linn.) in male albino mice after oral administration of 50% ethanolic
leaf extract at 200 and 500 mg/kg body weight for 35 days. Testes in extract-treated mice showed degenerative histological
alterations in seminiferous tubules, which more severe in those treated with Ficus bengalensis leaf extract at 500 mg/kg body
weight than in those treated at 200 mg/kg body weight for 35 days. Further, sperm parameters were also adversely affected
in extract-treated mice in a dose-dependent manner compared to controls. Treatment with 50% ethanolic leaf extract of Ficus
bengalensis had no impact on libido, though, fertility of males treated at 500 mg/kg body weight for 35 days reduced
significantly due to decreased number of live implants in impregnated females by pre-implantation loss. No significant
alterations were observed in body weight, normal histoarchitecture of liver, kidney, adrenal gland and spleen, and in serum
levels of alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase and creatinine in extract-treated mice compared to controls.
The results of the present investigation suggest that treatment with Ficus bengalensis causes suppression of spermatogenesis,
sperm functions and fertility in male albino mice in a dose-dependent manner without any apparent toxic effects.
Key words: Ficus bengalensis; Testis; Spermatogenesis; Sperm motility; Libido