Ribavirin-induced sperm shape abnormalities in Wistar rat

K. Narayana, Urban J A D'Souza, K. P. Seetharama Rao

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156 Citations (Scopus)


Ribavirin (1-β-D-ribofuranosyl-1,2,4, triazole-3 carboxamide) is a broad-spectrum antiviral drug. This study was aimed to investigate the mutagenicity of ribavirin on germ cells by employing sperm morphology assay. Male Wistar rats were treated with water, cyclophosphamide (CP) 40mg/kg, and ribavirin 20, 100 and 200mg/kg (i.p.) for 5 consecutive days at intervals of 24h. Following the last exposure, at 14, 28, 35, 42 and 70 days, the epididymal sperm smears were obtained and stained according to the standard procedure. One thousand sperms per animal were classified into normal and different abnormal types. Both CP and ribavirin-induced anomalies of head and tail of sperm except at 70 days. In CP groups, maximum incidence was observed at 28, 35 and 42 days. Ribavirin 20mg/kg induced maximum incidence at 14 and 42 days, 100mg/kg at 28 and 42 days and 200mg/kg at 28-42 days. These results show that ribavirin is mutagenic to rat germ cells in a transient fashion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-196
Number of pages4
JournalMutation Research - Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 15-01-2001
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
  • Genetics


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