Protective effects of <i>Lycium barbarum</i> polysaccharide on male sexual dysfunction and fertility impairments by activating hypothalamic pituitary gonadal axis in streptozotocin-induced type-1 diabetic male mice
Diabetes-associated male sexual dysfunction and fertility impairments are both common clinical complications with limited therapeutic options; hence it seriously affects the quality of life of the patients, in particular, the patients of reproductive age. <i>Lycium barbarum </i> polysaccharide (LBP) has long being believed to maintain and to promote reproductive functions in the traditional medical practice in China. The current study was to investigate if LBP may contribute to recovery of male sexual dysfunction and fertility impairments in diabetic individuals. The effects of LBP on sexual behaviors and histological changes of testis were studied in the type-1 diabetes male mice induced by intra-peritoneal (i.p.) injection of streptozotocin (STZ). After oral administration of LBP (10, 20 or 40 mg/kg), sildenafil citrate (SC, 5 mg/kg) or saline for 62 consecutive days, the typical abnormal changes in the sperm parameters, in relative weight of reproductive organs and in morphology of testis were observed in diabetic mice. LBP treatment of the diabetic mice considerably reversed those changes and Johnsen's testicular score, serum testosterone (T), follicular stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) level were also increased to different degrees. Moreover, our data have also shown that a marked improvement in sexual behavior and fertility level after administration of LBP (40 mg/kg) compared to the diabetic group. These results suggested that LBP can exert functional recovery of male sexual dysfunction and fertility damages induced by diabetes in male mice, which is likely to be mediated through regulating the hypothalamus- pituitary-gonadal axis endocrine activity.
- Endocrine Journal
Endocrine Journal 64(9), 907-922, 2017