Comparison of the impact of lauric acid and coconut oil on sperm quality and testicular function in streptozotocin-induced diabetic male Wistar rats

M. V. Olubiyi, R. A. Magaji, M. G. Magaji, M. U. Kawu, M. Y. Fatihu, E. A. Alex


Sperm quality is impaired in diabetic conditions. Coconut oil (CO) possesses anti-diabetic properties and ameliorative effects on testicular dysfunction. Lauric acid (LA) being the most abundant constituent of CO is hypothesized to be responsible for its physiologic actions. This study investigated some testicular and sperm parameters in diabetic male wistar rats treated with lauric acid and coconut oil. Thirty animals were divided into six groups of five each. Group I: Control; Group II: Diabetic untreated; Group III: Diabetic treated with LA (90 mg/Kg). Group IV: Diabetic treated with LA (180 mg/Kg); Group V: Diabetic treated with LA (360 mg/Kg). Group VI: Diabetic treated with CO (1.42 ml/Kg). Compared to Group I, there was a significant decline (p < 0.05) in gonadosomatic index, serum testosterone level, sperm quality and testicular structure in Group II. Compared to Group II; the gonadosomatic index, sperm quality were significantly higher (p < 0.05) in Group VI. Compared to Group II; Group V and Group III had significantly higher (p < 0.05) percentages of normal and progressively motile sperm cells respectively. Testicular histoarchitecture was improved in Groups 5 and 6. Sperm quality was largely improved by coconut oil but not by lauric acid. This contradicts the assumption that lauric acid may be largely credited for this physiologic action of coconut oil.

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