Journal of Food and Nutrition Research
ISSN (Print): 2333-1119 ISSN (Online): 2333-1240 Website: Editor-in-chief: Prabhat Kumar Mandal
Open Access
Journal Browser
Journal of Food and Nutrition Research. 2019, 7(5), 377-385
DOI: 10.12691/jfnr-7-5-7
Open AccessArticle

Is There a Role for Spirulina Platensis against Reprotoxicity and Oxidative Stress Induced by Gamma Irradiation in Rats?

Aliaa Ezz El Arab1, Osama Ahmed Abbas1, and Eman Ismail Abdel-Gawad1

1Radioisotopes Department, Egyptian Atomic Energy Authority, Giza, Egypt

Pub. Date: May 01, 2019

Cite this paper:
Aliaa Ezz El Arab, Osama Ahmed Abbas and Eman Ismail Abdel-Gawad. Is There a Role for Spirulina Platensis against Reprotoxicity and Oxidative Stress Induced by Gamma Irradiation in Rats?. Journal of Food and Nutrition Research. 2019; 7(5):377-385. doi: 10.12691/jfnr-7-5-7


Ionizing radiation is one of the environmental factors that may contribute to reproductive dysfunction by a mechanism involving oxidative stress. The present investigation was undertaken to study the possible effect of Spirulina platensis (300 mg/kg body weight) daily for 60 days post whole body gamma irradiation of rats at a dose level of 6 Gy. The samples were collected at two times intervals, two weeks and two months. In serum, the concentrations of nitric oxide (NO), as well as, levels of testosterone, follicular stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) were evaluated. In tissue, DNA fragmentation was estimated by using comet assay technique, in addition to superoxide dismutase (SOD) and reduced glutathione (GSH). The biochemical results revealed that the fragmentation of DNA increased in irradiated groups at both time intervals (after 2 weeks & 2 months) as compared to control. The disruption in the hormonal levels of testosterone, FSH and LH was demonstrated in the serum of the irradiated and/or Spirulina rats. On the other hand, the administration of Spirulina after irradiation decreased the elevation of serum NO induced by irradiation and improved the significant reduction of antioxidant enzymes level near to control. Moreover, histopathological observations showed great deleterious changes in the structure of testis tissue as a result of irradiation exposure, while the administration of Spirulina restored the structure of testis cell and no changes appeared. These results suggesting that Spirulina contains bioactive metabolites have detrimental effect on steroidogenesis and beneficial role in improving the antioxidant status.

ionizing radiation reproductive hormones superoxide dismutase reduced glutathione DNA fragmentation

Creative CommonsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit


[1]  Machu, L., Misurcova, L., Ambrozova, J.V., Orsavova J., Mlcek, J., Sochor, J. and Jurikova, T, “Phenolic content and antioxidant capacity in algal food products”, Molecules, 20.1118-1133. 2015.
[2]  Hassan, A.M.H, “Application study for producing eco-friendly diet for fish from the blue green algae Spirulina platensis,” PHD, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt. 2016.
[3]  Bashandy, S.A.E., El Awdan, S.A., Ebaid, H. and Alhazza, I.M, “Antioxidant Potential of Spirulina platensis Mitigates Oxidative Stress and Reprotoxicity Induced by Sodium Arsenite in Male Rats”, Oxid Med Cell Longev, (2016). 1-8. 2016.
[4]  Dillon, J.C., Phuc, A.P. and Dubacq, J.P, “Nutritional value of the alga Spirulina”, World Rev Nutr Diet, 77. 32-46. 1995.
[5]  El-Desoky, G.E., Bashandy, S.A., Alhazza, I.M., Al-Othman, Z.A., Aboul-Soud, M.A. and Yusuf, K, “Improvement of Mercuric Chloride-Induced Testis Injuries and Sperm Quality Deteriorations by Spirulina platensis in Rats”, PLoS ONE, 8. e59177. 2013.
[6]  Ibrahim, A.E. and Abdel-Daim, M.M, “Modulating Effects of Spirulina platensis against Tilmicosin-Induced Cardiotoxicity in Mice”, Cell J, 17.137-144. 2015.
[7]  Strömberg, I., Gemma, C., Vila, J. and Bickford, P.C, “Blueberry- and spirulina-enriched diets enhance striatal dopamine recovery and induce a rapid, transient microglia activation after injury of the rat nigrostriatal dopamine system”, Exp Neurol, 196. 298-307. 2005.
[8]  Bhat, V.B. and Madyastha, K.M, “Scavenging of peroxynitrite by phycocyanin and phycocyanobilin from Spirulina platensis: protection against oxidative damage to DNA”, Biochem Bioph Res Co, 285. 262-266. 2001.
[9]  Abdel-Daim, M., El-Bialy, B., Rahman, H.G., Radi, A.M., Hefny, H.A. and Hassan, A.M, “Antagonistic effects of Spirulina platensis against sub-acute deltamethrin toxicity in mice: Biochemical and histopathological studies”, Biomed Pharmacother, 77.79-85. 2016.
[10]  Hall, E.J. and Giaccia, A.J, “In: Radiobiology for the Radiologist. 6th ed, Physics and chemistry of radiation absorption”, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; Philadelphia, PA, USA, 2006. 9.
[11]  Lehnert, S, “Biomolecular Action of Ionizing Radiation, Series in medical physics and biomedical engineering”, Taylor and Francis Group, LLC, N.Y USA. 2007. 279.
[12]  Fatih Fidan A, Enginar H, Cigerci H, Korcan E, Ozdemir A. The radioprotective potential of Spinacia oleraceae and Aesculuc hippocastanum against ionizing radiation with their antioxidative and antioxidative properties. J Anim Vet Adv 2008; 7: 1528-1536.
[13]  Makhlouf, R. and Makhlouf, I, “Evaluation of the effect of Spirulina against Gamma irradiation induced oxidative stress and tissue injury in rats”, Int J Appl Sci Eng Res,1. 152-164. 2012.
[14]  Hei, T.K., Zhou, H., Chai, Y., Ponnaiya, B. and Ivanov, V.N, “Radiation induced non targeted response: mechanism and potential clinical implication”, Curr Mol Pharmacol, 4. 96-105. 2011.
[15]  Sanchez-Parez, Y., Carrasco-Legleu, C., Garcia-Cuella, C., Parez-Carreon, J., Hernandez-Garcia, S., Salcido-Neyoy, M., Aleman-Lazarini, L. and Villa-Trevino, S, “Oxidative stress in carcinogenesis. Correlation between lipid peroxidation and induction of preneoplastic lesion in rat hepatocarcinogenesis”, Cancer Lett, 217. 25-32. 2005.
[16]  Sandeep, D. and Nair, C.K, “Protection from lethal and sub-lethal whole body exposures of mice to γ-radiation by Acorus calamus L.: Studies on tissue antioxidant status and cellular DNA damage” Exp Toxicol Pathol, 64.57-64. 2012.
[17]  Jagetia, G.C., Rajanikan, G.K., Shaival. K., Rao, M. and Baliga, S, “Alteration the glutathione, glutathione peroxidase, superoxide dismutase and lipid peroxidation by ascorbic acid in the skin of mice exposed to fractionated γ- radiation”, Clinica Chimica Acta, 332.111-121. 2003.
[18]  Zhang, K., Lu, J., Guo, Y., Sun, B., Zhao, F., Cao, Y. and Ren, D, Effects of different drying processes on the quality of Spiruluna platensis, International agricultural Engineering Journal, 22. 63-71. 2013.
[19]  Singh, N.P., McCoy, M.T., Tice, R.R. and Schneider, E.L, “A simple technique for quantitation of low levels of DNA damage in individual cells”, Exp. Cell Res, 175.184-191. 1988.
[20]  Aebi, H, “Catalase in Vitro”, Meth Enzymol, 105.121-126. 1984.
[21]  Janknegt, P.J., Rijstenbil, J.W., van de Pol, W.H., Geches, T.S. and Buma, A.G, “A comparison of quantitative and qualitative superoxide dismutase assays for application to low temperature microalgae”, J Photochem Photobiol B, 87. 218-226. 2007.
[22]  Lowry, O.H, “Rosenbrough NJ, Farr AL, & Randall RJ, Protein measurement with folin phenol reagent”, Biol Chem, 193. 265-275. 1951.
[23]  Banchroft, J.D, “Stevens A. foreword by Turner DR, Theory and practice of histological techniques”, (6th ed. New York, Churchil Livingstone, USA), 121. 2008.
[24]  O'Neill, P. and Wardman, P, “Radiation chemistry comes before radiation biology”, Int J Radiat Biol, 85.9-25. 2009.
[25]  Matsuo, T., Kashiwaki, Y. and Itoo, S, “Membrane damage caused by exposure to t-butyl hydroperoxide”, Phytochemistry, 28.1003-1006. 1989.
[26]  Boeck, M.De., Touil, N., Visscher, G.De,, Vande, P.A. and Kirsch-Volders, M, “Validation and implementation of an internal standard in comet assay analysis”, Mutat Res, 469. 181-197. 2000.
[27]  Abdel-Gawad, E.I. and Awwad, S.A, “Biocompatibility of Intravenous Nano Hydroxyapatite in Male Rats”, Nat Sci, 8.60-68. 2010.
[28]  Ding, G.R. and Guo, G.Z, “Advances in research of radioprotectant”, J Radiat Res Radiat Process, 25.321-324. 2007.
[29]  Yang, J., Wu, G., Feng, Y., Lv, Q., Lin, S. and Hu, J, “Effects of taurine on male reproduction in rats of different ages”, J Biomed Sci, 17(1)/S9.1-8. 2010.
[30]  Nur-Hidayah, H., Nurul-Hidayah, K., Rasyidah, Ti., Kaswandi, Ma. and Noah, Rm, “Antioxidant Activities Of Allium Sativum Towards Formalin-Induced Oxidative Stress”, In Rat Liver. Regen Res, 3.71-77. 2014.
[31]  Ismail, M., Hossain, M.F., Tanu, A.R. and Shekhar, H.U, “Effect of Spirulina Intervention on Oxidative Stress, Antioxidant Status, and Lipid Profile in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Patients”, Biomed Res Int, (2015) Article ID 486120. 2015.
[32]  Hong, C.Y., Park, J.H., Ahn, R.S., Im, S.Y., Choi, H., Soh, J., Mellon, S.H. and Lee, K, “Molecular Mechanism of Suppression of Testicular Steroidogenesis by Proinflammatory Cytokine Tumor Necrosis Factor Alpha”, Mol Cell Biol, 24.2593-2604. 2004.
[33]  Osman, N.N, “Antioxidant Effects of Ferula Hermonis and Bee Honey on γ-Radiation-Induced Oxidative Testicular Damage in Rats”, J Rad Res Appl.Sci, 4.1201-1219. 2011.
[34]  Ku, C.S., Pham, T.X., Park, Y., Kim, B., Shin, M., Kang, I. and Lee, J, “Edible blue-green algae reduce the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines by inhibiting NF-κB pathway in macrophages and splenocytes”, Biochim Biophys Acta, 1830.2981-2988. 2013.
[35]  Hoseini, S.M., Khosravi-Darani, K. and Mozafari, M.R, “Nutritional and medical applications of Spirulina microalgae”, Mini Rev Med Chem, 13.1231-1237. 2013.
[36]  Tang, G. and Suter, P.M, “Vitamin A, nutrition, and health values of Algae: Spirulina, Chlorella, and Dunaliella”, J Pharm Nutr Sci, 1.111-118. 2011.
[37]  Mueller, L. and Boehm, V, “Antioxidant activity of β-carotene compounds in different in vitro assays”, Molecules, 16.1055-1069. 2011.
[38]  Balaji, H, “Spirulina-small but a spectacular species”, Int J Drug Dev & Res, 5.76-82. 2013.
[39]  Deng, R. and Chow, T.J, “Hypolipidemic, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory activities of microalgae Spirulina”, Cardiovasc Ther, 28. e33-e47. 2010.
[40]  Garg, M.C., Chaudhary, D.P. and Bansal, D.D, “Effect of vitamin E supplementation on diabetes induced oxidative stress in experimental diabetes in rats”, Indian J Exp Biol, 43. 177-180. 2005.
[41]  Fathy, S.M. and Essa, A.M, “Influence of Spirulina platensis exudates on the endocrine and nervous systems of a mammalian model”, Asian Pac J Trop Biomed, 5.451-457. 2015.
[42]  Ding, X.S., Li, X.Y., Duan, H.Y., Chung, I.K. and Lee, J.A, “Toxic effects of Microcystis cell extracts on the reproductive system of male mice”, Toxicon, 48.973-979. 2006.
[43]  Damkova, V., Sedlackov, J., Bandouchova, H., Peckova, L., Vitula, F., Hilscherova, K., Paskova, V., Kohoutek, J., Pohanka, M. and Pikula, J, “Effects of cyanobacterial biomass on avian reproduction: a Japanese quail model”, Neuroendocrinol Lett, 30.205-210. 2009.
[44]  Essa, A.M. and Fathy, S.M, “Sex hormonal disruption by cyanobacterial bioactive compounds” J Appl Microbiol, 116. 700-709. 2014.
[45]  Noaman, N.H., Fattah, A., Khaleafa, M. and Zaky, S.H, “Factors affecting antimicrobial activity of Synechococcus leopoliensis”, Microbiol Res, 159.395-402. 2004.
[46]  Ramadan, M.F., Asker, M.M.S. and Ibrahim, Z.K, “Functional bioactive compounds and biological activities of Spirulina platensis lipids”, Czech J Food Sci, 26.211-222. 2008.
[47]  Tabb, M.M. and Blumberg, B, “New modes of action for endocrine- disrupting chemicals”, Mol Endocrinol, 20. 475-482. 2006.
[48]  De Coster, S. and van Larebeke, N, “Endocrine disrupting chemicals: associated disorders and mechanisms of action”, J Environ Public Health, (2012)52. 2012.