White tea intake prevents prediabetes-induced metabolic dysfunctions in testis and epididymis preserving sperm quality.
J Nutr Biochem. 2016 Nov ;37:83-93. Epub 2016 Aug 26. PMID: 27637002
Tânia R Dias
Prediabetes has been associated with alterations in male reproductive tract, especially in testis and epididymis. Moreover, in vitro studies described a promising action of tea (Camellia sinensis L.) against metabolic dysfunctions. Herein, we hypothesized that white tea (WTEA) ingestion by prediabetic animals could ameliorate the metabolic alterations induced by the disease in testicular and epididymal tissues, preserving sperm quality. WTEA infusion was prepared and its phytochemical profile was evaluated by (1)H-NMR. A streptozotocin-induced prediabetic rat model was developed and three experimental groups were defined: control, prediabetic (PreDM) and prediabetic drinking WTEA (PreDM+WTEA). Metabolic profiles of testis and epididymis were evaluated by determining the metabolites content ((1)H-NMR), protein levels (western blot) and enzymatic activities of key metabolic intervenient. The quality of spermatozoa from cauda epididymis was also assessed. Prediabetes increased glucose transporter 3 protein levels and decreased lactate dehydrogenase activity in testis, resulting in a lower lactate content. WTEA ingestion led to a metabolic adaptation to restore testicular lactate content. Concerning epididymis, prediabetes decreased the protein levels of several metabolic intervenient, resulting in decreased lactate and alanine content. WTEA consumption restored most of the evidenced alterations, however, not lactate content. WTEA also improved epididymal sperm motility and restored sperm viability. Prediabetes strongly affected testicular and epididymal metabolic status and most of these alterations were restored by WTEA consumption, resulting in the improvement of sperm quality. Our results suggest that WTEA consumption can be a cost-effective strategy to improve prediabetes-induced reproductive dysfunction.