Sperm and Seed Nutrition

Dr. Weeks’ Comment: Laura found this powerful article at Pub Med (the national library and data base for medicine and science) about reversing both aging (“The antioxidant properties of thymoquinone (TQ) may prevent the effects of aging.” ) and low sperm count with the power of thymoquinone aka “TQ” from black cumin seed, the main ingredient in the organic, non-GMO, anti-inflammatory, nutrient-dense seed drink SOUL!

Here are some inspiring peer-reviewed scientific articles.

Pharm Sci. 2018;24(3):180-186.
doi:10.15171/PS.2018.26
Scopus id:85055557480A

Research Article

Effects of Thymoquinone on Sperm Parameters, Apoptosis, Testosterone Level, and Oxidative Stress in a Mouse Model of D-Galactose-Induced Aging

Seyedeh Saleheh Attari1Shabnam Mohammadi2 * , Alireza Ebrahimzadeh3Hossein Hosseinzadeh4Mohammad Soukhtanloo5Aliakbar Rajabzadeh11

Abstract

Background: The aging process is accompanied by low secretion of sex hormones and testicular apoptosis. The antioxidant properties of thymoquinone (TQ) may prevent the effects of aging. Therefore, in the present study, the effects of different doses of TQ were investigated on sperm parameters, testosterone level, apoptosis, and oxidative stress in a mouse model of D-galactose-induced aging. Methods: In this experimental study, 30 adult male mice were randomly divided into 5 groups. The control group did not receive any injections, while the D-galactose group received an intraperitoneal injection of 300 mg/kg of D-galactose for 42 days. The TQ1-TQ3 groups received intraperitoneal injections of 5, 2.5, and 1.25 mg/kg of TQ plus D-galactose, respectively for 14 days (from the 1st to the 14th day of the experiment). The morphometric analysis, testicular apoptosis examination, and sperm analysis were performed, and testosterone level, total antioxidant capacity, and malondialdehyde level were evaluated on day 42 of the experiment. Data were analyzed using SPSS. Results: Administration of TQ in the TQ1 group caused a significant difference in sperm parameters, compared to the D-galactose group (P<0.05). The lowest amount of positive tunnel cells was related to 5 mg/kg of TQ and the highest to 2.5 mg/kg of TQ. There was no significant difference in the parameters of seminal vesicles, epididymis, prostate, and testis between the groups (P>0.05). The malondialdehyde level were decreased in the TQ1-TQ3 groups, compared to the D-galactose group (P<0.001). On the other hand, the total antioxidant capacity was increased significantly in the TQ1 group, compared to the D-galactose group (P<0.001). Conclusion: Administration of 5 mg of TQ for 14 days improved sperm quality and biochemical parameters, while reducing apoptotic cells of the testes in a mouse model of aging.

AND there’s MORE!

Reprod Domest Anim. 2018 Dec;53(6):1424-1433. doi: 10.1111/rda.13275. Epub 2018 Sep 22.

Effects of pre-freeze Nigella sativa oil supplementation on cryosurvival of ovine spermatozoa.

Miah AG1Bathgate R2Hamano KI3Salma U1.

Reprod Domest Anim. 2018 Dec;53(6):1424-1433. doi: 10.1111/rda.13275. Epub 2018 Sep 22.

Abstract

The study was designed with three experiments to evaluate the effects of pre-freeze supplementation of Nigella sativa oil (NSO) and thymoquinone (TQ) on total motility, progressive motility, biokinetic characteristics, acrosomal integrity and DNA integrity of cryopreserved ovine spermatozoa. Semen samples collected from three proven fertile Merino rams were diluted with a Tris-based cryomedia containing different levels of NSO (Experiment I: 0, 10, 100 and 1,000 g/ml), TQ (Experiment II: 0, 1, 10 and 20 g/ml) and their optimum levels (Experiment III: 100 g/ml of NSO, 10 g/ml of TQ and 1 mM of α-tocopherol and cryopreserved as pellet (200µL) and subsequently evaluated at different post-thaw incubation periods (0, 2 and 4 hr). The results revealed that the percentage of total motility, progressive motility and biokinetic characteristics such as average path velocity, curvilinear velocity and straight-line velocity were higher (p < 0.05) in the sperm aliquots cryopreserved with 100 g/ml NSO or 10 g/ml TQ than in the sperm aliquots cryopreserved without supplementation just after thawing and 2 hr of post-thaw incubation. Among the supplements, NSO (100 g/ml) showed higher values of the total motility, progressive motility, biokinetic characteristics specially, average path velocity, curvilinear velocity and straight-line velocity, acrosome integrity and DNA integrity compared with the spermatozoa frozen without supplementation. Therefore, the results suggest that NSO may be added to the cryomedium to improve the cryosurvival of ovine spermatozoa.

Syst Biol Reprod Med. 2015;61(4):194-204. doi: 10.3109/19396368.2015.1044135. Epub 2015 Jun 4.

Effects of thymoquinone on testicular structure and sperm production in male obese rats.

Tüfek NH1Altunkaynak MEAltunkaynak BZKaplan S.

Syst Biol Reprod Med. 2015;61(4):194-204. doi: 10.3109/19396368.2015.1044135. Epub 2015 Jun 4.

Abstract

Thymoquinone (TQ) is a phytochemical compound found in the plant Nigella sativa. It has antioxidant and anti-cancer effects. This study investigated the effects of TQ on obesity and testicular structure of high-fat-diet (HFD) fed rats. Obese control (OC) and obese thymoquinone (OT) groups were fed a special diet containing 40% of total calories from fat. Non-obese control (NC) and non-thymoquinone(NT) groups were fed a standard diet for nine weeks. Then, intraperitoneal TQ injections were carried out to the OT and NT groups for six weeks and testes were removed. Catalase and myeloperoxidase activity were determined in rat testis tissue. Stereological, histopathological, and immunohistochemical changes were evaluated in the testes of the rats. In stereological studies, mean volumes of testis and seminiferous tubules, the number of spermatogenic cells and also Leydig cells in the OC group were reduced, but these values significantly increased in the OT group. Apoptotic cells were observed in the OC group in comparison to the OT group. The number of healthy sperms were reduced in the OC group, whereas the majority showed anomalies in the head, neck, and tail. The number of healthy sperm was increased and the anomalies significantly reduced by using TQ in both the NT, and especially the OT group. TQ like antioxidants may improve fertility by means of increasing the healthy sperm number and preventing sperm anomalies.

Toxicol Ind Health. 2016 Jun;32(6):1114-21. doi: 10.1177/0748233714548474. Epub 2014 Sep 12.

Thymoquinone supplementation ameliorates lead-induced testis function impairment in adult rats.

Mabrouk A1Ben Cheikh H2.

Author information

Toxicol Ind Health. 2016 Jun;32(6):1114-21. doi: 10.1177/0748233714548474. Epub 2014 Sep 12.

This study was realized to investigate the possible beneficial effect of thymoquinone (TQ), the major active component of volatile oil of Nigella sativa seeds, against lead (Pb)-induced inhibition of rat testicular functions. Adult rats were randomized into four groups: a control group receiving no treatment; a Pb group exposed to 2000 parts per million (ppm) of Pb acetate in drinking water; a Pb-TQ group co-treated with Pb (as in Pb group) plus TQ (5 mg/kg body weight (b.w.)/day, per orally (p.o.)); and a TQ group receiving TQ (5 mg/kg b.w./day, p.o.). All treatments were for 5 weeks. No significant differences were observed for the body weight gain or for relative testes weight among the four groups of animals. Testicular Pb content significantly increased in metal-intoxicated rats compared with that in control rats. TQ supplementation had no effect on this testicular Pb accumulation. Interestingly, when coadministrated with Pb, TQ significantly improved the low plasma testosterone level and the decreased epididymal sperm count caused by Pb. In conclusion, the results suggest, for the first time, that TQ protects against Pb-induced impairment of testicular steroidogenic and spermatogenic functions. This study will open new perspectives for the clinical use of TQ in Pb intoxication.

Toxicol Ind Health. 2016 Jun;32(6):1114-21. doi: 10.1177/0748233714548474. Epub 2014 Sep 12.

Protective effects of thymoquinone and l-cysteine on cadmium-induced reproductive toxicity in rats.

Sayed MM1Hassanein KMA2Senosy W3.

Toxicol Ind Health. 2016 Jun;32(6):1114-21. doi: 10.1177/0748233714548474. Epub 2014 Sep 12.

Abstract

This study was conducted to investigate the possible protective role of thymoquinone (TQ) and l-cysteine on the reproductive toxicity of male rats induced by cadmium chloride (CdCl2). Forty rats were divided into four even groups. The first group served as untreated control. The second, third and fourth groups received CdCl2, CdCl2 and TQ, and CdCl2 and l-cysteine, respectively for 56 days. Cd exposure caused spermatological damage (decrease sperm count and motility and increased the rates of spermabnormalities), decrease serum testosterone level and increased oxidative stress. Histological alterations were also observed in the form of vascular and cellular changes in CdCl2 treated rats. The vascular changes were congestion of the blood vessels with interstitial edema in the testes, epididymis, seminal vesicle and prostate. The cellular changes were in the form of degenerative changes with presence of multinucleated giant cells in the lumen of seminiferous tubules, vacuolation and sloughing of the lining epithelium of the epididymis, seminal vesiculitis and prostatitis. Co-administration of TQ and l-cysteine with CdCl2 increased glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and testosterone and reduced lipid peroxidation (LPO) activity. In conclusion, our results showed that TQ and l-cysteine can ameliorate the deleterious effects of CdCl2 probably by activating testicular endocrine and antioxidant systems.


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Dr. Weeks’ Comment: Laura found this powerful article at Pub Med (the national library and data base for medicine and science) about reversing both aging (“The antioxidant properties of thymoquinone (TQ) may prevent the effects of aging.” ) and low sperm count with the power of thymoquinone aka “TQ” from black cumin seed, the main…
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