Teratogenic Effect of Chlorpyrifos and Glyphosate on Pregnant Rats: Biochemical and Morphological Evaluations

Main Article Content

Jyoti Upadhyay
Mahendra Rana
Nidhi Tiwari
Mohd Nazam Ansari


The impact of pesticides on the environment and human health is a serious matter of concern. The present study focusses on the teratogenic effect of pesticide chlorpyrifos (CPF) and glyphosate (GLY) on the pregnant rats and their offspring during gestation and lactation period. The female rats were exposed to these pesticides (CPF and GLY) throughout their pregnancy at a dose of 10 mg/kg. The biochemical markers and lipid profile of pesticides exposed pregnant rats were analyzed. The maternal and reproductive outcome was also assessed followed by rat pups morphometric analysis. A significant alteration in the blood glucose level, triglycerides, total cholesterol, SGOT, and SGPT levels were observed in pesticide exposed groups. The body weight, crown-rump length, eye length, eye width, hind limb, and forelimb size of rat neonates were significantly found to be lower in the pesticide exposed group when compared with the control animals. Morphological abnormalities like microcephaly, microtia, micromelia, dysmorphogenesis, distorted axis abdominal, and brain hemorrhages were observed in pesticide exposed rat neonates. Skeletal observations of the CPF exposed group show disruptive malformations, wavy ribs, and curved spinal cord. Intraventricular and spinal cord hemorrhages were observed in 21 days old rat pups in GLY treated group. Findings of the present study indicate that exposure to pesticides during the gestation period causes the morphological abnormalities in rat fetuses by altering the mechanisms involved in growth and development. Thus, on the basis of observed results, we concluded the teratogenic effects of CPF and GLY in rats.

Teratogenicity, pesticide, chlorpyrifos, glyphosate, morphological abnormality.

Article Details

How to Cite
Upadhyay, J., Rana, M., Tiwari, N., & Ansari, M. N. (2020). Teratogenic Effect of Chlorpyrifos and Glyphosate on Pregnant Rats: Biochemical and Morphological Evaluations. Journal of Pharmaceutical Research International, 32(23), 133-145. https://doi.org/10.9734/jpri/2020/v32i2330800
Original Research Article


Nurulain SM, Shafiullah M. Teratogenicity and embryotoxicity of organophosphorus compounds in animal models-a short review. Mil Med Sci Lett. 2012;81(1):16-26. DOI. 10.31482/mmsl.2012.003

Aktar MW, Sengupta D, Chowdhury A. Impact of pesticides use in agriculture: their benefits and hazards. Interdiscip. Toxicol. 2009;2(1):1–12. DOI: 10.2478/v10102-009-0001-7

Ren A, Qiu X, Jin L, Ma J, Li Z, Zhang L, et al. Association of selected persistent organic pollutants in the placenta with the risk of neural tube defects. Proc Natl Acad Sci. 2011;108(31):12770-5. DOI. 10.1073/pnas.1105209108

Lacasaña M, Vázquez-Grameix H, Borja-Aburto VH, Blanco-Muñoz J, Romieu I, Aguilar-Garduño C, et al. Maternal and paternal occupational exposure to agricultural work and the risk of anencephaly. Occup Environ Med. 2006;63(10):649-56. DOI: 10.1136/oem.2005.023333

Rull RP, Ritz B, Shaw GM. Neural tube defects and maternal residential proximity to agricultural pesticide applications. Am J Epidemiol. 2006;163(8):743-53. DOI: 10.1093/aje/kwj101

Abd El-Nasser MA, Abdel-mohsen MA, Shaaban AA, Ahmed DY. Teratogenic and genotoxic effects of perfluoroalkyl acids on embryonic and neonate mice. Ass Univ Bull Environ Res. 2009;12(2): 39-52. Available:http://www.aun.edu.eg/arabic/society/aubfer/res4_oct_2009.pdf

Hancock S, Ehrich M, Hinckley J, Pung T, Jortner BS. The effect of stress on the acute neurotoxicity of the organophosphate insecticide chlorpyrifos. Toxicol Applied Pharmacol. 2007;219(2-3):136-41. DOI: 10.1016/j.taap.2006.11.014

Richard S, Moslemi S, Sipahutar H, Seralini G. Differential effects of glyphosate and roundup on human placental cells and aromatase. Environ Health Perspect. 2005;113(6):716. DOI: 10.1289/ehp.7728

OECD, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Prenatal development toxicity study guideline for the testing of chemical proposal for updating Guideline 414. Washington: OECD Publication and Information Center; 2001. Available:https://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/iccvam/suppdocs/feddocs/oecd/oecd_gl414.pdf

IPCS, International Program on Chemical Safety, The WHO recommended classification of pesticides by hazard. Guidelines to Classification; 2009. Available:www.inchem.org/documents/pds/pdsother/class.pdf

Akhtar N, Srivastava MK, Raizada RB. Transplacental disposition and teratogenic effects of chlorpyrifos in rats. J Toxicol Sci. 2006;31(5):521–7. DOI: 10.2131/jts.31.521

FAO, Agriculture Organization, World Health Organization, Pesticide Residues in Food-2005: Residues. Food & Agriculture Org.; 2006. Available:http://www.fao.org/fileadmin/templates/agphome/documents/Pests_Pesticides/JMPR/JMPRrepor2006.pdf

Sharma V, Berkelhamer S, Lakshminrusimha S. Persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn. Matern Health Neonatol Perinatol. 2015;1:14. DOI: 10.1186/s40748-015-0015-4

Rosenn BM, Miodovnik M. Glycemic control in the diabetic pregnancy: Is tighter always better?. J Maternal‐Fetal Med. 2000;9(1):29-34. DOI: 10.1002/(SICI)1520-6661(200001/02)9:1<29::AID-MFM7>3.0.CO;2-Z

Ter Braak EWMT, Evers IM, Erkelens DW, Visser GHA. Maternal hypoglycemia during pregnancy in type 1 diabetes: maternal and fetal consequences. Diabetes Metab Res Rev. 2002;18(2):96-105. DOI: 10.1002/dmrr.271

Evers I, De Valk H, Mol B, ter Braak E, Visser G. Macrosomia despite good glycaemic control in Type I diabetic pregnancy; results of a nationwide study in The Netherlands. Diabetologia. 2002;45(11):1484-9. DOI: 10.1007/s00125-002-0958-7

Kaushik V, Saini V. Hyperlipidemia: Its management and induction. Int J Pharm Sci Res. 2014;5(8):3152-6. Available:http://dx.doi.org/10.13040/IJPSR.0975-8232.5(8).3152-56

Bartels Ä, O'Donoghue K. Cholesterol in pregnancy: A review of knowns and unknowns. Obstet Med. 2011;4(4):147-51. DOI: 10.1258/om.2011.110003

Emond JA, Karagas MR, Baker ER, Gilbert-Diamond D. Better Diet Quality during Pregnancy Is Associated with a Reduced Likelihood of an Infant Born Small for Gestational Age: An Analysis of the Prospective New Hampshire Birth Cohort Study. J Nutr. 2018;148(1):22–30. DOI: 10.1093/jn/nxx005

Lepercq J, Challier JC, Guerre-Millo M, Cauzac M, Vidal H, Hauguel-de Mouzon S. Prenatal leptin production: evidence that fetal adipose tissue produces leptin. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2001;86(6):2409-13. DOI: 10.1210/jcem.86.6.7529

Hughes G, Bischof P, Wilson G, Smith R, Klopper A. Tests of fetal wellbeing in the third trimester of pregnancy. BJOG: Int J Obstet Gynaecol. 1980;87(8):650-6. DOI: 10.1111/j.1471-0528.1980.tb04596.x

Bacq Y, Zarka O, Brechot J, Mariotte N, Vol S, Tichet J, et al. Liver function tests in normal pregnancy: a prospective study of 103 pregnant women and 103 matched controls. Hepatol. 1996;23(5):1030-4. DOI: 10.1002/hep.510230514

Mei-Dan E, Wiznitzer A, Sergienko R, Hallak M, Sheiner E. Prediction of preeclampsia: liver function tests during the first 20 gestational weeks. J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2013;26(3):250-3. DOI: 10.3109/14767058.2012.733771

Mao C, Lv J, Li H, Chen Y, Wu J, Wu Z. Development of fetal nicotine and muscarinic receptors in utero. Brazilian J Med Biol Res. 2007;40(5):735-41. DOI: 10.1590/S0100-879X2006005000094

Boon WC, Simpson ER. Neuroendocrine Inherited or Induced Aromatase Enzyme Deficits. In: Handbook of Neuroendocrinology. 2012;723-37. DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-12-375097-6.10033-2

Haddad NG, Eugster EA. Precocious Puberty. Endocrinology: Adult and Pediatric 7th Edition. 2016;2130-41. DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-323-18907-1.00121-9

Berkane N, Liere P, Oudinet JP, Hertig A, Lefèvre G, Pluchino N, et al. From pregnancy to preeclampsia: A key role for estrogens. Endocrine Rev. 2017;38(2):123-44. DOI: 10.1210/er.2016-1065

Xiong X, Mayes D, Demianczuk N, Olson DM, Davidge ST, Newburn-Cook C, et al. Impact of pregnancy-induced hypertension on fetal growth. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1999;180(1):207-13. DOI: 10.1016/s0002-9378(99)70176-6