The effect of carob (Ceratonia siliqua) bean extract on male New Zealand White rabbit semen

A. Ata, O. Yildiz-Gulay, S. Güngör, A. Balic, M.S. Gulay


The carob tree (Ceratonia siliqua) grows naturally in the Mediterranean region. The empiric use of carob cures for their aphrodisiac properties is very common in Turkey. Thus, the experiment was conducted to determine the effects of carob bean extracts on some reproductive parameters in male New Zealand White rabbits. During the adaptation period (stage 1), 6-8 mo old rabbits were trained in semen collection for 30 d. At the beginning of the treatment period (stage 2), rabbits were assigned randomly to 2 groups of 8 animals each. For a period of 49 d (1 spermatogenesis duration), one group was treated with a daily oral dose (10 mL) of carob extract and the other group received the corresponding volume of tap water. Semen was collected weekly. Semen samples taken at week 1 and 7 were analysed separately. At the beginning of stage 2, no differences were observed in the volume and pH of the ejaculate, sperm concentration, percentage of motility, percentage of live spermatozoa, percentage of sperm plasma membrane integrity, plasma concentration of testosterone, and seminal plasma protein levels between the control and carob extract treated animals. Similarly, at the end of stage 2, there were no differences in the volume and pH of the ejaculate, motility percentage, the percentage of live spermatozoa, percentage of sperm plasma membrane integrity, and the seminal plasma protein levels between the control and the carob extract treated animals. However, sperm concentration (P<0.05), plasma concentration of testosterone (P<0.05), and percentage of change in spermatozoa concentration (P<0.02) between groups were affected at the end of stage 2. The data suggested that the use of carob cures prepared by boiling carob fruit could have beneficial influences on sperm concentration in rabbits.


carob; rabbit; sperm parameters; reproduction; testosterone

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doi: 10.1007/s43032-020-00322-3


 Universitat Politècnica de València


Official journal of the World Rabbit Science Association (WRSA)


e-ISSN: 1989-8886     ISSN: 1257-5011