Fluoride-induced male reproductive failure is a major environmental and human health concern, but interventions are still lacking. Melatonin (MLT) has potential functions in regulating testicular damage and interleukin-17 (IL-17) production. This study aims to explore whether MLT can mitigate fluoride-induced male reproductive toxicity through IL-17A, and screen the potential targets. So the wild type and IL-17A knockout mice were employed and treated with sodium fluoride (100 mg/L) by drinking water and MLT (10 mg/kg.BW, intraperitoneal injection per two days starting from week 16) for 18 weeks. Bone F- concentrations, grade of dental damage, sperm quality, spermatogenic cells counts, histological morphology of testis and epididymis, and the mRNA expression of spermatogenesis and maturation, classical pyroptosis related and immune factor genes were detected respectively. The results revealed that MLT supplementations alleviated fluoride-induced impairment of spermatogenesis and maturation process, protecting the morphology of testis and epididymis through IL-17A pathway, and Tesk1 and Pten were identified as candidate targets from 29 regulation genes. Taken together, this study demonstrated a new physiological role for MLT in the protection against fluoride-induced reproductive injury and possible regulation mechanisms, which providing a useful therapeutic strategy for male reproductive function failure caused by fluoride or other environmental pollutants.
*Original full-text article online at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0278691523002697