The effects of anabolic-androgenic steroids on DNA damage in bodybuilders' blood lymphocytes

The effects of anabolic-androgenic steroids on DNA damage in bodybuilders' blood lymphocytes / Abbasali Abbasnezhad, Miad Mahdavi, Mojtaba Kianmehr, Mohamad Ghorbani, Mahmoud Reza Motaghy, Mohammad Sohrabi, Jafar Hajavi

  • Biomarkers 26 (2021) 8 (December); p. 685-690
  • PMID: 34472401
  • DOI: 10.1080/1354750X.2021.1976837


Background: Nowadays bodybuilders use anabolic steroids frequently. Abuse of these substances can cause significant side effects; therefore, we aim to investigate the effect of anabolic steroids on DNA damage in bodybuilders' blood lymphocytes.

Methods and materials: This case-control study was performed on 36 male bodybuilders in Gonabad. The case group included bodybuilders with a history of taking anabolic-androgenic steroids (n = 18), and the control group composed of bodybuilders who did not use anabolic-androgenic steroids (n = 18). Intravenous blood samples were obtained and then the lymphocytes, cells and electrophoresis of blood were extracted. Afterward, the coloured slides and DNA damage were measured using a fluorescent microscope and CometScore software. The DNA damage was compared using t-tests .

Results: Results showed that there was no significant difference between age, marital status, BMI, systolic and diastolic blood pressure in the case and control group. However, parameters related to the DNA damage including tail length, percent tail DNA, and tail moment were significantly higher in the case group.

Conclusion: The use of anabolic-androgenic steroids increases DNA damage in the bodybuilders' blood lymphocytes.


Research / Study
16 September 2021
Abbasnezhad, Abbasali
Ghorbani, Mohamad
Hajavi, Jafar
Kianmehr, Mojtaba
Mahdavi, Miad
Motaghy, Mahmoud Reza
Sohrabi, Mohammad
Iran, Islamic Republic of
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Gonabad University of Medical Sciences
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S1. Anabolic Agents
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Health effects
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1 December 2021
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7 December 2021
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