Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2023 Sep 14. doi: 10.1007/s11356-023-29752-7. Online ahead of print.
In this study, it was aimed to investigate the effects of melamine exposure since the weaning period on ovarian tissue and ovarian reserve. Melamine is illegally added to milk and formula to provide high false protein positivity. Female rats (the weaning period = 21 days old, n = 18) were divided into 3 groups. 0.1 mL saline was applied to the control group by gavage for 21 days. Fifty mg/kg and seventy-five mg/kg melamine was dissolved in 0.1 mL of saline and applied by gavage for 21 days, respectively. At the end of the experiment, plasma anti-Mullerian hormone (AMH) was measured, follicle count and ovarian diameter measurement were performed in the right ovaries, and flow cytometric analysis for apoptosis was performed in the left ovaries. While a statistically significant decrease was not observed in the number of the follicle and ovarian diameter between the control and melamine-treated groups (p > 0.05), a significant decrease in the corpus luteum and a significant increase in the number of atretic follicles were observed (p < 0.05). Apoptosis (Annexin V) increased in both melamine groups and AMH plasma level decreased significantly in the 75 mg/kg group (p < 0.05). Melamine exposure from the weaning (early postnatal) period may cause a decrease in ovarian reserve in parallel with a dose increase.