Objective: To investigate the effects of buserelin on the development of follicles, apoptosis index and steroid hormones level.
Methods: Twenty-four 3-month-old female rats were randomly divided into three groups: a low-dose group, a high-dose group and a control group (n = 8). Buserelin and normal saline were injected subcutaneously for 5 days. Thirty days after the first injection, the ovaries were removed for staining. Blood samples were collected and centrifuged. Their serum was used for measuring estradiol and progesterone levels, using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.
Results: The findings revealed a significant decrease in the mean of secondary and Graafian follicles in the high-dose group compared with the control group (p = 0.037, p = 0.034, respectively). The serum estradiol level increased significantly in the high-dose group, compared with the low-dose and control groups (p = 0.027, p = 0.047, respectively). The serum progesterone level decreased, although not significantly. In contrast to the control group, the significant increase of apoptotic cell death was found in primordial, unilaminar and multi-laminar follicles in the high-dose group (p = 0.004, p = 0.049, p = 0.047, respectively).
Conclusion: The findings of this study suggest that short-term administration of high-dose buserelin increases the serum estradiol level and apoptosis in the granulosa cells but has an inhibitory effect on follicular development.