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EC number: 237-486-0 | CAS number: 13814-96-5
Male Sprague-Dawley rats were administered lead-free or 0.3% lead-containing water for 14, 30, or 60 days and sperm parameters were measured. Lead disrupted the ability of sperm harvested from lead-exposed animals to penetrate or fertilize eggs harvested from non-exposed females in vitro. Lead also decreased epididymal sperm count. Lead did not affect the weight of the right cauda epididymi and it did not induce any ultrastructural changes in spermatazoa or any DNA histogram abnormalities in testicular cells. The authors stated that these observations suggest that the impaired ability of lead-exposed sperm to penetrate and fertilize eggs in vitro may be attributed to the difference in circulating hormone levels rather than to a direct toxic action of lead on spermatozoa.
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