Impact of omega-3 fatty acids preconception intake on some fertility parameters and foetuses quality of female rats

Document Type : Full paper (Original article)


1 Department of Biology, Federal College of Education, Eha-Amufu, Nigeria

2 Department of Zoology and Environmental Biology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria

3 Department of Veterinary Physiology and Pharmacology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria


Background: Research has demonstrated that certain nutrients can reverse infertility. Aims: The present study, “Impact of Omega-3 fatty acids preconception intake on some fertility parameters of female rats and foetuses quality” was conducted to further investigate this subject. Methods: Subjects were thirty-four female and twelve male adult Albino rats, weighing 172-181 g. Initially, 12 male rats were assigned to treatment groups 1, 2, 3, and 4, and 24 females were assigned to treatment groups 5, 6, 7, and 8. The treatment protocol was administered orally as follow: groups 1 and 5 (controls), 0.3 ml distilled water (as placebo); groups 2 and 6, 250 mg/kg Omega-3 fatty acids (O3FA); groups 3 and 7, 25 mg/kg cyclophosphamide (CPP, negative control); and groups 4 and 8, 25 mg/kg CPP + 250 mg/kg of O3FA for 28 days. Thereafter, they were cohabitated (1:2 male to female ratio) into mating groups 1 to 7 until mating was confirmed. Ten pregnant rats (5 of which were administered 500 mg/kg O3FA on days 15 and 16 of gestation) were used for abortifacient effect experiment. Results: Number of implantation sites (IM), implantation index (IMI), percentage of pregnant females (PPF), life foetal number, foetal weight, foetal crown-rump length (FCRL), corpora luteal number (CLN) and fertility index (FI) in O3FA-treated female rats and their foetuses significantly increased (P<0.05) compared with negative control. No noticeable abortifacient effect occurred. Conclusion: Preconception intake of O3FA may have impacted female fertility positively.


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