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Original Article

Beneficial effects of Achillea millefolium aqueos extract against cyclophosphamide-induced reproductive toxicity

Ali Shalizar Jalali, Shapour Hasanzadeh, Hassan Malekinejad.

Objective: Cyclophosphamide (CP) is extensively used as an antineoplastic agent for the treatment of various cancers, as well as an immunosuppressive agent. However, despite its wide spectrum of clinical uses, CP is known to cause several adverse effects including reproductive toxicity. Achillea millefolium, a widely distributed medicinal plant, is highly regarded for its medicinal activities, including antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The present study was conducted to assess whether Achillea millefolium inflorescences aqueous extract could serve as a protective agent against reproductive toxicity during CP treatment in a rat model.
Methods: Male Wistar rats were categorized into four groups. Two groups of rats were administered CP at a dose of 5 mg/kg-BW/day for 28 days by oral gavages. One of these groups received Achillea millefolium aqueous extract at a dose of 1.2 g/kg-BW/day orally four hours after cyclophosphamide administration. A vehicle treated control group and an A.millefolium control group were also included.
Results: The CP-treated group showed significant decreases in the body and reproductive organs weights as well as sperm count and motility with an increase in dead and abnormal sperms. Moreover, significant decrease in serum levels of testosterone and increased serum concentrations of FSH, LH, LDH, CPK and SGOT were observed in CP-treated rats. Notably, A.millefolium aqueous extract co-administration caused a partial recovery in above-mentioned parameters.
Conclusion: These findings indicate that A.millefolium may be partially protective against CP-induced reproductive toxicity.

Key words: Achillea millefolium; Cyclophosphamide; Reproductive toxicity

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