Environmental toxicology and pharmacology

Effect of dibutyl phthalate on expression of connexin 43 and testosterone production of leydig cells in adult rats.

PMID 27676332


To investigate the adverse effect of dibutyl phthalate (DBP) on Leydig cells and its mechanism related to gap junction, Leydig cells isolated from adult rats were treated with 0.1% dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO), 50mg/L DBP, 50mg/L DBP+10μM prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and 40μM flutamide respectively. Radioimmunoassay, semi-quantitative RT-PCR, immunofluorescence and Western blot were applied to determine the expression of testosterone and Connexin 43 (Cx43) in Leydig cells. The expression of testosterone and Cx43 were both decreased in DBP group (P<0.05). While Cx43 was up-regulated after administered to PGE2, there was no significant change in testosterone. However, testosterone was down-regulated with a significant decrease of Cx43 in flutamide group. The results indicated that the inhibitory effect of DBP on testosterone production was not through the down-regulation of Cx43. On the contrary, the change of testosterone can influence the expression of Cx43 in Leydig cells.