Animal Reproduction (AR)
Animal Reproduction (AR)

Prolonged use of letrozole causes morphological changes on gonads in Galea spixii

Maria Angelica Machado Arroyo; Paulo Ramos da Silva Santos; Moacir Franco de Oliveira; Antônio Chaves de Assis Neto

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Letrozole is used as a therapeutic agent in reproductive disorders caused by high estrogen levels. Letrozole inhibits cytochrome P450 aromatase and reduces estrogen levels. However, the effects of long-term use on reproductive traits are unknown. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prolonged use of letrozole in the gonads of rodents (Spix's yellow-toothed cavy; Galea spixii). Forty-eight rodents (24 males and 24 females) were randomly divided into the treated and control groups. Letrozole administration started at 15 days of age and continued weekly until 30, 45, 90, and 120 days of age. The body, testis, and ovary weights were analyzed, as well as the morphological progression of spermatogenesis and folliculogenesis. Macroscopically, body weight gain and gonads weight were increased in the letrozole group. Microscopically, the ovaries of treated females showed stratified epithelium and a cellular disorder of the tunica albuginea. In the testes of treated males, the development of seminiferous tubules was delayed and sperm was absent. The collective findings indicate that the prolonged use of letrozole alters secondary sexual characteristics, and causes weight gain, reproductive changes, and male infertility.


aromatase, estrogens, ovary, rodents, steroidogenesis, testis


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