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Évaluation des effets prosexuels des extraits de Bridelia ferruginea chez le rat mâle naïf

Evaluation of pro-sexual effects of Bridelia ferruginea extracts in sexually naive male rat

Résumé

Bridelia ferruginea (BF, Euphorbiaceae) est un arbre dont les écorces du tronc et les feuilles sont utilisées en médecine traditionnelle pour remédier à plusieurs problèmes et en particulier l’impuissance masculine. La présente étude vise à identifier les effets prosexuels (fréquences d’érection, de monte, d’intromission et d’éjaculation) des extraits aqueux (100 mg/kg) et éthanolique (100 mg/kg) des écorces du tronc de BF administrés par voie orale à des rats Wistar adultes mâles (intacts ou castrés) sexuellement inexpérimentés pendant zéro, un et sept jours. Le comportement sexuel des rats normaux recevant une administration unique de l’extrait aqueux de BF (100 mg/kg) a été aussi évalué après prétraitement par le L-omega-nitro-arginine methyl ester (Lω-NAME, 10 mg/kg), l’halopéridol (10 mg/kg) ou l’atropine (10 mg/kg). Les animaux témoins ont reçu per os de l’eau distillée (10 ml/kg) pour le témoin neutre et une injection sous-cutanée de testostérone propionate (20 mg/kg par jour pendant trois jours avant le début du test) pour le témoin positif. Les résultats de l’étude montrent que la durée du traitement a un impact significatif (p < 0,05) sur les fréquences d’érection pénienne, de monte et d’intromission aussi bien chez les rats normaux que chez les animaux castrés. Une tendance à l’augmentation des paramètres de performance sexuelle a été aussi observée. La fréquence d’intromission des rats intacts était plus élevée (p < 0,05–0,01) à J1 et particulièrement chez les rats recevant l’extrait aqueux de BF. Chez les rats castrés, par contre, seuls les animaux traités par la testostérone ont présenté une augmentation statistique (p < 0,01–0,001) des paramètres copulatoires. Les effets prosexuels de l’extrait aqueux de BF étaient abolis par l’atropine et l’halopéridol, tandis qu’une préadministration de Lω-NAME était sans effet sur l’activité copulatoire des animaux. Ces effets stimulants sexuels de BF pourraient être attribués à la présence des flavonoïdes et des stérols, substances bioactives qui agiraient par voie dopaminergique et/ou cholinergique, et soutiennent l’intérêt de l’emploi de BF en médecine traditionnelle comme stimulant sexuel.

Abstract

The stem barks and the leaves from Bridelia ferruginea (BF, Euphorbiaceae), a medicinal plant, are used in traditional medicine for the treatment of several ailments including male impotency. The present study was aimed at investigating the effects of the dried stem bark of BF on the sexual behaviour of normal and castrated sexually inexperienced male Wistar rats. Animals were orally administered with 100 mg/kg of either the aqueous or the ethanol extracts of BF whilst the neutral control group received in the same way 10 ml/kg of distilled water. The positive control group was treated with a subcutaneous injection of testosterone propionate (20 mg/kg/day/3days) prior to the experiment. The sexual behaviour of all rats was monitored on days 0, 1 and 7 by measuring frequencies of penile erection, mount, intromission and ejaculation. In a separate group of normal sexually inexperienced rats, the pro-sexual effects induced by a single dose of the aqueous extract (100 mg/kg) were measured after pre-treatment with either haloperidol (10 mg/kg), atropine (10 mg/kg) or L-omega-nitro-arginine methyl ester (Lω-NAME, 10 mg/kg). Results obtained showed a significant influence of the duration of treatment on the frequencies of penile erection, mount and intromission of both normal and castrated rats. An increase in all sexual performance parameters was observed when compared to respective controls. The intromission frequency of normal animals was significantly increased (P < 0.05–0.01) on day 1 of treatment and the effect was more expressed in rats receiving the aqueous extract. In castrated animals, a statistical increase was noticed on day 7 for rats treated with testosterone. The sexual effects induced by the aqueous extract of BF were completely abolished after pre-treatment of rats with atropine or haloperidol while pre-administration of Lω-NAME did not produce any significant effects. Flavonoids and sterols revealed in the aqueous and ethanolic extracts from the barks of BF may account for the enhancement of sexual activity in naive rats which could be expressed through dopaminergic and/or cholinergic receptor(s). Results of this work also give value to the traditional use of the plant for the improvement of male sexual behaviour.

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Correspondence to P. Watcho.

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Mots clés

  • Bridelia ferruginea
  • Rat sexuellement naïf
  • Comportement sexuel

Keywords

  • Bridelia ferruginea
  • Sexually naive rat
  • Sexual behaviour