Phytoestrogens are chemicals produced by plants that act like estrogens and have the ability to bind to the mammalian estrogen receptor system. The purpose of this study is to evaluate a new phytoestrogen analog called 4-acetoxy Resveratrol. Resveratrol is a phytoestrogen that has been found in the skin of grapes. Resveratrol has been shown to be able to bind to the estrogen receptors and has a similar molecular structure as estradiol. Resveratrol has been shown to have many positive health benefits such as improving cardiovascular health, serving as a neuroprotective agent, acting as an anti-inflammatory agent, working as an anti-cancer agent, increasing sperm output, acting as an anti-aging agent, and reducing incidence of prostatic adenocarcinoma. The challenge with using Resveratrol as an oral therapy is that it is quickly metabolized by the liver so for this study we used injections. The injections were 5mg/ Kg, 20 mg/Kg, and 90 mg/Kg of 4-acetoxy Resveratrol. We used intact 160 day old male Long-Evans rats and intact 90 day old female Long-Evans rats. The rats were given injections once a day for 21 days based on their treatment group. The animals were weighed daily and then tested in the Porsolt swim test at day 160 and 90 respectively. At the end of 21 days the rats were sacrificed and white adipose tissue, blood, brains, testis, and prostates were collected. Administration of 4-acetoxy Resveratrol decreased weight gain but not white adipose tissue in the male rats but has no effect in the females. In the male rat administration of 4-acetoxy resveratrol the high group also decreased testosterone, 5α-DHT , and prostate 5α-reductase activity. The high dose of 4-acetoxy Resveratrol also caused a change in prostate histology and decreased prostate weight. 4-acetoxy Resveratrol had no effect on testis weight and only showed a slight increase in depressive-like behaviors. In the females, 4-acetoxy resveratrol had no effect on white adipose tissue deposition, estrous cycle, hypothalamus aromatase activity, or depressive-like behaviors.



College and Department

Life Sciences; Physiology and Developmental Biology



Date Submitted


Document Type





Resveratrol, behavior, reproductive health, rats