Morphological and morphometric adaptations of testes in broilers induced by glucocorticoid
Glucocorticoids (GCs) cause excess fat accumulation, which leads to fertility dysfunction in broilers. The study investigated alterations in the morphology and morphometry of the testes of broilers in response to GC and dexamethasone (DEX). Male day-old chicks were randomly divided into a control group and three experimental groups (E1, E2, and E3). The control group was fed a commercial broiler ration. The experimental groups were fed a commercial broiler ration containing GC (i.e. DEX 3, 5, and 7 mg/kg, respectively). The testes were collected and stained with haematoxylin and eosin to count the number of testicular seminiferous tubules. An increase in the seminiferous tubule count was initially seen, which declined as both the age of the broilers and the dose of DEX increased. Morphometric measurements, i.e., the testicular capsule thickness, seminiferous tubule diameter, and seminiferous epithelium height, were performed. The initial thickening of the testicular capsule was evident. There was a depletion of the interstitial (Leydig) cell population in the experimental groups with the age and increased with the dose advancement. The diameter of the seminiferous tubules and testicular capsule thickness remained upregulated in the treatment groups with the increased dose of DEX. The initial height of the seminiferous epithelium increased in the experimental groups of broilers. The study suggests that DEX greatly alters the morphological architecture of broiler testes; as a result, it could be said that DEX has the effect on the infertility of the broiler by affecting the morphology as well as the functionality of the testes.
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