Morphological and morphometrical study of cyclophosphamide-induced changes in the ovary and uterus in the Syrian mice

Document Type: Full paper (Original article)


Department of Basic Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Urmia, Urmia, Iran


The objective of this research was to evaluate the cause of fertility reduction after chemotherapy.
Cyclophosphamide is a common chemotherapy and immunosuppressive agent used for the treatment of a
wide range of neoplastic and some auto-immune diseases. In the present study, morphometrical changes in
the ovary and uterus of 12 5–6-week-old female Syrian mice after intraperitoneal injection of 75 mg
cyclophosphamide/kg BW were assessed. Control animals (n = 8) were injected with sterile distilled water
using similar method. The results of this study revealed that cyclophosphamide eliminated almost more than
50% of the primordial follicles (PMF) reserve. The mean ± SE number of PMF in the control group was 1210
± 135 compared to 464 ± 55 in the test group. The mean number of secondary, tertiary follicles and corpora
lutea also showed significant (Pshowed that the mean ± SE diameter of the ovary in the control group was 1703 ± 78 μm as compared to
900.9 ± 86 μm in the test group (Pwith a mean ± SE of 745.7 ± 13 μm in the control and 393.1 ± 23 μm in the test group. The mean ± SE
thickness of endometrium in the control group was 392.1 ± 16 μm, whereas in the test group it was 194 ± 10
μm (Pdestruction of PMF as well as other growing follicles; accordingly, the reproductive potential was negatively
affected. The method used in this study can be most likely used as a sensitive and inexpensive tool to predict
the damage to fertility caused by new chemotherapy protocols. In conclusion, chemotherapy brings about a)
reduction in ovarian follicular populations, especially PMF, b) it causes reduction in diameter and size of
ovary and c) decreases thickness of uterine wall, especially endometrium.