Indexed on: 16 Nov '10Published on: 16 Nov '10Published in: Reproductive Toxicology
Diisononyl phthalate (DINP) is a plasticizer abundantly used in consumer products as a substitute for other plasticizers prohibited in certain products due to reproductive toxicity. As anti-androgenic effects of DINP are suspected, DINP effects on reproduction and sexually dimorphic behavior were studied. Pregnant Wistar rats were gavaged from gestation day 7 to postnatal day (PND) 17 with vehicle, 300, 600, 750 or 900 mg DINP/kg bw/day. In fetal testes histopathological effects typical of phthalates were observed. In male offspring, DINP caused increased nipple retention, reduced anogenital distance, reduced sperm motility and increased sperm count. DINP affected spatial learning as female offspring performed better than controls and similarly to control males in the Morris Water Maze, indicating masculinization of behavior in DINP exposed females. These results show that DINP causes anti-androgenic effects on reproductive development, though less potent than DEHP, DBP and BBP, and further safety evaluation of DINP appears warranted.