Pyriproxyfen induces intracellular calcium overload and alters antioxidant defenses in Danio rerio testis that may influence ongoing spermatogenesis Journal Articles uri icon

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  • We investigated the in vitro effects of pyriproxyfen on ionic balance in the testis of the zebrafish by measuring 45Ca2+ influx. In vivo pyriproxyfen treatment was carried out to study oxidative stress, and conduct morphological analysis of the testis and liver. Whole testes were incubated in vitro with/without pyriproxyfen (10-12, 10-9 or 10-6 M; 30 min) and 45Ca2+ influx determined. To study pyriproxyfen's mechanism of action, inhibitors/activators of ionic channels or pumps/exchangers, protein kinase inhibitors or a calcium chelator were added 15 min before the addition of 45Ca2+ and pyriproxyfen. We evaluated the in vivo effects of 7 day exposure to waterborne pyriproxyfen (10-9 M) on reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation, lipid peroxidation, and reduced glutathione content (GSH), glutathione S-transferase (GST), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and γ-glutamyltransferase (GGT) activity. Morphological analyses of the testis and liver were carried out after in vivo exposure of D. rerio to pyriproxyfen. Pyriproxyfen increased 45Ca2+ influx by opening the voltage-dependent T-type channels (T-type VDCC), inhibiting sarco/endoplasmic reticulum 45Ca2+-ATPase (SERCA) and the NCX exchanger (forward mode) and by mobilizing calcium from stores. The involvement of potassium channels and protein kinase C (PKC) was also demonstrated in pyriproxyfen-induced intracellular calcium elevation. In vivo pyriproxyfen treatment of D. rerio increased lipid peroxidation, decreased GSH content and increased GST activity in testes, in addition to increasing the number and size of spermatogonia cysts and inducing hepatocyte basophilia and dilation of blood vessels in the liver. The toxicity of pyriproxyfen is mediated by calcium overload, increased lipid peroxidation, and a diminished antioxidant capacity in the testis, due to GSH depletion, and altered spermatogenesis. The development of high basophilia in the liver suggests that pyriproxyfen may have estrogenic activity, possibly acting as an endocrine-disruptor. These findings indicate that these alterations may contribute to pyriproxyfen toxicity and spermatogenesis disruption.


  • Staldoni de Oliveira, Vanessa
  • Gomes Castro, Allisson Jhonatan
  • Marins, Katiuska
  • Bittencourt Mendes, Ana Karla
  • Araújo Leite, Gabriel Adan
  • Zamoner, Ariane
  • Van Der Kraak, Glen
  • Mena Barreto Silva, Fátima Regina

publication date

  • February 2021