Ješeta Michal, Chmelíková Eva, Crha Igor, Sedmíková Markéta, Žáková Jana and Ventruba Pavel
Endocrine disruptors (EDs) are chemical substances that affect physiological processes in the organism via hormonal regulation. The EDs are present in the environment and objects of everyday use. They are often detected in food, particularly released from packaging of canned food, but also from plastic water bottles, and they are also found in cosmetics and fertilizers. They are commonly detected in children's toys, banknotes, receipts and many more objects. Permanent and long-term utilization of EDs has harmful effects on human reproductive health mainly by interference with sex hormone synthesis and mechanism of action. The endocrine disruptors show many negative effects on male reproductive system. Any change during synthesis or activity of sex hormones can cause abnormal reproduction, including developmental anomalies of the sexual system, disruption of testicular development or deterioration of sperm quality. Mainly the impact on the development of testicles in prenatal and early postnatal period can be crucial for reproductive health in males. This review provides an overview of the EDs and their possible impact on reproductive health in males with focus on sperm quality and development of testicles.
Chmelíková Eva, Sedmíková Markéta, Ješeta Michal and Němeček David
Over recent decades, different types of industrially manufactured chemicals have become widespread environmental contaminants with potential to interfere with the synthesis, secretion, transport, binding or elimination of natural hormones in the body. These chemical substances were named endocrine disruptors (EDs). The main route of exposure to EDs is the ingestion of contaminated food and water. EDs are very dangerous, because they have long half-life, stay present in the environment for years and may concentrate at great distances from the site where were produced. The group of EDs is heterogeneous and contains industrial lubricants, solvents, plastics, plasticizers, pesticides, fungicides, drugs, but also natural chemicals. The mechanisms of EDs action are difficult to predict, many substances act by interfering with the estrogen receptors (ER), androgen receptor (AR), thyroid receptors (TRs) and aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), but they can also influence hormone synthesis or can have effect on epigenetic mechanisms. Further research is necessary to improve knowledge about EDs and their metabolites, and to identify endocrine-disruptive potential of chemicals, those replacing current EDs before they are widely distributed.