Ameliorating potentials of N-acetyl-l-cysteine against methoxychlor instigated modulation in structural characteristics of granulosa cells of caprine antral follicles

Bhardwaj, Jitender Kumar; Saraf, Priyanka


Follicular granulosa cells (GCs) form an important association with follicle’s survival and health that determines ovulation. Apoptosis induction in GCs leads to follicular atresia and infertility problems. The present study aims at assessing the ultrastructural toxicity of methoxychlor (MXC), an organochlorine insecticide and reproductive toxin, on structural aspects of GCs owing to its potential for inducing apoptosis and the ameliorating potential of N-acetyl-L-cysteine (NAC) in this toxicity. The ultrastructural morphology revealed MXC induced degenerative changes in GCs like loss of cellular junction complexes and membrane integrity; nuclear abnormalities like occurrence of condensed and marginated chromatin, crescent shaped or blebbed nucleus; presence of disrupted mitochondria with disrupted cristae, vacuolization, empty spaces, large number of homogenous lipid droplets and extensive network of rough endoplasmic reticulum and several cytoplasmic processes at various doses of MXC with maximum degeneration observed at 100 µg/mL. NAC supplementation reduced the observed apoptotic characteristics of GCs with most significant changes at 5 and 10 mM concentration. Thus, it is evident that MXC acts as an apoptotic inducer in GCs that influences the quality of antral follicles in mammals; however, NAC, with its anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory properties, turns out to be a potential therapeutic and anti-apoptotic agent against MXC toxicity.


Apoptosis; Granulosa Cells; Methoxychlor; N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine; Ultrastructure

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