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In utero exposure to the oestrogen mimic diethylstilbestrol disrupts gonadal development in a viviparous reptile


Parsley, LM and Wapstra, E and Jones, SM, In utero exposure to the oestrogen mimic diethylstilbestrol disrupts gonadal development in a viviparous reptile, Reproduction, Fertility and Development, 27, (7) pp. 1106-1114. ISSN 1031-3613 (2014) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Journal compilation copyright 2015 CSIRO

DOI: doi:10.1071/RD13411


The ubiquitous presence of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in the environment is of major concern. Studies on oviparous reptiles have significantly advanced knowledge in this field; however, 30% of reptilian species are viviparous (live-bearing), a parity mode in which both yolk and a placenta support embryonic development, thus exposure to EDCs may occur via multiple routes. In this first study of endocrine disruption in a viviparous lizard (Niveoscincus metallicus), we aimed to identify effects of the oestrogen mimic diethylstilbestrol (DES) on gonadal development. At the initiation of sexual differentiation, pregnant N. metallicus were treated with a single dose of DES at 100 or 10 g kg1, a vehicle solvent or received no treatment. There was no dose-response effect, but the testes of male neonates born to DES-exposed mothers showed reduced organisation of seminiferous tubules and a lack of germ cells compared with those from control groups. The ovaries of female neonates born to DES-exposed mothers exhibited phenotypic abnormalities of ovarian structure, oocytes and follicles compared with controls. The results indicate that, in viviparous lizards, maternal exposure to oestrogenic EDCs during gestation may have profound consequences for offspring reproductive fitness.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:endocrine disruption, oestrogenic, ovary, placenta, testis, viviparity
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Behavioural ecology
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the environmental sciences
UTAS Author:Parsley, LM (Dr Laura Parsley)
UTAS Author:Wapstra, E (Associate Professor Erik Wapstra)
UTAS Author:Jones, SM (Professor Susan Jones)
ID Code:90978
Year Published:2014
Funding Support:Australian Research Council (FT110100597)
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:Zoology
Deposited On:2014-05-05
Last Modified:2017-11-01

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