Alterations in circulating ovarian steroids in hexachlorobenzene-exposed monkeys
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Hexachlorobenzene (HCB) is a global pollutant that has been identified in human serum and ovarian follicular fluid, and its effect on ovarian function has not been adequately defined. Thus, the effects of HCB on ovarian steroidogenesis and menstrual cycle characteristics were investigated in cynomolgus monkeys (n = 16) orally dosed by gelatin capsule (0.0, 0.1, 1.0, and 10.0 mg HCB/kg b.wt./d) for 90 d (approximately three menstrual cycles). Analysis of change in menstrual cycle length for each animal revealed a dose-dependent increase (P = 0.02) in cycle length. Ovulatory levels of estradiol (E2) were significantly reduced (P = 0.02) in the highest treatment group. During ovulation induction, the area under the E2 concentration curve (AUC) was significantly (P = 0.03) suppressed in the highest treatment group. Our data demonstrate that HCB treatment, under the conditions of the present study, alters both ovarian function and menstrual cycle characteristics with a no observable adverse effect level of 1.0 mg/kg.
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