Adverse effects of pesticide/metabolites on boar spermatozoa

Wijesooriya Mudhiyanselage Nadeema Dissanayake1, Jung Min Heo2, Young-Joo Yi1,*

1Department of Agricultural Education, College of Education, Sunchon National University, Suncheon 57922, Korea
2Department of Animal Science and Biotechnology, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Chungnam National University, Daejeon 34134, Korea

*Corresponding author:


The metabolites of agrichemicals, such as organophosphorus pesticides, are known to be more hazardous than their parent pesticides. 3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinol (TCP) is a major degradation product of chlorpyrifos, one of the organophosphate insecticides widely used in agriculture. In vivo or in vitro exposure to chlorpyrifos has been known to interfere with male reproductive functions, leading to reduced fertility in mammals. Therefore, this study was performed to examine the changes in the fertilization competence of boar spermatozoa exposed to TCP. Sperm samples were subjected to varying concentrations of TCP (10, 50, 100, 200 µM) and different periods of incubation. Sperm motility, motion kinematics, viability, acrosome integrity, intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, and gene expression levels (ODf2, ZPBP2, AKAP3 and AKAP4) were evaluated after exposure of the sperm to TCP. A significant dose-dependent reduction in motility was observed in sperm samples incubated with TCP compared to the controls after both incubation periods. Sperm viability was significantly decreased in samples incubated with 50, 100, and 200 µM TCP in both incubation periods. A significantly lower percentage of normal acrosomes and gene expression levels were observed in sperm samples exposed to 50, 100, and 200 µM TCP after both incubation periods, compared to the controls. There was a significant increase in the ROS production in spermatozoa incubated with 100 – 200 µM TCP after both incubation periods. Consequently, the direct exposure of boar spermatozoa to TCP interferes with sperm functions and leads to decreased fertilization. In order to identify and address the various causes of reproductive decline, the impact of chemical metabolites needs to be discussed in depth.


boar, fertility capacity, pesticide metabolite, spermatozoa, viability

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