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Endosulfan induced cell death in Sertoli-germ cells of male Wistar rat follows intrinsic mode of cell death

Rastogi, Divya, Narayan, R., Saxena, D.K., Chowdhuri, D. Kar
Chemosphere 2014 v.94 pp. 104-115
DNA, Sertoli cells, autophagy, caspase-9, cytotoxicity, endosulfan, exposure duration, exposure pathways, males, mitochondrial membrane, oxidative stress, pests, rats, reactive oxygen species, spermatozoa, staining, stem cells
Health of germ cells may affect production of quality gametes either due to endogenous or exogenous factors. Pesticides are among the exogenous factors that can enter the organisms through various routes of exposure and also can affect the reproductive system of an organism. Endosulfan is an organochlorine cyclodiene pesticide used widely for controlling agricultural pests. It has been shown to induce reproductive dysfunctions such as sperm abnormalities, reduced intracellular spermatid count in exposed organisms. Germ cells being the progenitor cells for male gametes and Sertoli cells as their nourishing cells, we examined whether endosulfan induces cell death in Sertoli-germ cells of male rats. Sertoli-germ cells, isolated from 28d old male Wistar rats, were exposed to endosulfan (2.0, 20.0 and 40.0μgmL−1) for 24–72h. Cytotoxicity, endosulfan concentration, reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation, oxidative stress parameters were measured in these cells in the absence or presence of endosulfan for the above mentioned exposure periods and subsequently, cell death endpoints were measured. We detected endosulfan in the exposed cells and demonstrated increased cell death in exposed Sertoli-germ cells as evidenced by a significant increase in annexin-V staining, depolarization of mitochondrial membrane, caspase-9 and -3 activities and BAD and PARP cleavage activities and DNA ladder formation along with non-significant increase in autophagic cell death. The study suggests that endosulfan can cause cell death in exposed Sertoli-germ cells due to higher oxidative damage with the activation of intrinsic cell death pathway which may eventually affect the production of quality gametes.