In the current study we demonstrated for the first time that in utero PZ exposure induced permanent reproductive malformations such as retained nipples, hypospadias, cleft phallus, and vaginal pouch in male rat offspring. While the impact of these results on the risk assessment of PZ is uncertain, the determination that this fungicide is a teratogen can result in application of additional risk factors if PZ is deemed to be of special concern for the child. In this regard, reproductive malformations were not noted in the reproductive toxicity and teratology studies cited in PZ risk assessment documents.
In these regulatory studies, there were no indications of any structural anomalies associated with treatment with dosage levels overlapping with those used in the current study. In contrast to the teratology studies that concluded that 85-100 mg PZ /kg-BW per day was without teratogenic effect, we found retained nipples, incomplete PPS, cleft phallus and hypospadias, vaginal pouches, and reduced ventral prostate, epididymal weights at 125 mg/kg-BW per day. Permanent reproductive alterations were also observed at 62.5 mg/kg-BW per day.