Transgenerational Effects of Cadmium Toxicity on Gonadal Steroid Levels and Reproductive Outcome of Wistar Rats

by M. U. Eteng(1), F. C. Onwuka(1), I. B. Umoh(1) and A. O. Abolaji(2)


This work was carried out to investigate the transgenerational effects of cadmium toxicity on wistar rats in terms of reproductive outcome. Cadmium was administered subcutaneously to albino wistar rats of both sexes (n=10 for each group) in a single acute dose of 3mg cd/kg body weight. The other male and female groups (n=10 respectively) served as control. The animals were then mated viz: control females vs control males, cadmium treated males versus cadmium treated females, cadmium treated males versus control females, control males versus cadmium treated females, cadmium treated males versus cadmium treated females. Parameters or indices of reproductive outcome assessed were; litter size, morphology and organ weight. The gonadal steroid hormone levels (testosterone (ng/ml) and progesterone (ng/ml)) were also evaluated in offspring after attaining sexual maturity. The same parameters were assessed in control group which were not administered with cadmium. The result revealed a transgenerational effect of cadmium toxicity on the wistar rats reproductive capability as manifested by low sex organ weight, reduced litter size and reduced sex hormone levels of the offspring of the cadmium treated albino wistar rats.
Key words: Cadmium, Transgenerational study, Reproductive outcome


1 – Department of Biochemistry, College of Medical Sciences, University of Calabar, PMB 1115 Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria.
2 – Department of Biological Sciences, College of Science and Technology, Covenant University, PMB 1023, Canaanland, Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria.

Prof Mbeh Eteng

Mbeh Eteng is a Professor of Biochemistry in the Faculty of University of Calabar. He holds a Ph.D from the University of Calabar (2000). He was Dean of Faculty of Basic Medical Science (2012-2016) and Chairman Committee of Deans (2014-2015). Member Governing Board UCTH, Calabar (2018 -till date). Fellow, Institute of Co-operate Administration. His current area of research is on malaria/prostrate hyperplaxia and medicinal plants research and use in management. He has successfully supervised 25 Ph.Ds.
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