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J Ginseng Res. 2011 Sep;35(3):294-300. doi: 10.5142/jgr.2011.35.3.294.

Effects of red ginseng extract on zearalenone induced spermatogenesis impairment in rat.

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College of Veterinary Medicine, Chungnam National University, Daejeon 305-764, Korea.


Zearalenone (ZEA) is a phenolic resorcylic acid lactone compound produced by several species of Fusarium. ZEA has toxic effects in the testes of domestic and laboratory animals. Korean red ginseng (KRG), the steamed root of Panax ginseng Meyer, has multiple pharmacological effects such as vasorelaxation, anti-thrombosis, anti-hypertension, etc. In this study, we investigated the effects of KRG extract on testicular toxicity induced by ZEA. Rats were treated with 300 mg/kg oral doses of KRG for 4 weeks every other day. The rats were then treated with a single dose of 5 mg/kg ZEA delivered intraperitoneally, whereas control rats received only doses of the vehicle. As a result, germ cell apoptosis induced by ZEA was decreased by KRG pre-treatment. In addition, Fas and Fas-L expression was reduced in rats that received KRG pre-treatment compared to ones treated with ZEA alone. In conclusion, impaired spermatogenesis resulting from ZEA treatment was prevented by KRG through Fas-Fas L modulating.


Apoptosis; Korean red ginseng; Panax ginseng; Spermatogenesis; Zearalenone

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