Three separate experiments were made to determine the effect of repeated injections of nicotine upon reproduction of white rats. The experiments ran for 6, 10, and 12 months, respectively. Nicotine in subconvulsive doses (1 to 2 mg. per kilogram, in 10–3 to 2 x 10–3 concentration in physiological saline) was injected subcutaneously, twice daily. Controls received equal volumes of physiological saline. A total of 232 (116 pairs) control parent rats, 200 (100 pairs) nicotine poisoned parent rats, 2066 young rats from control parents, and 1350 young rats from poisoned parents served as a basis for statistical calculations.
Chronic nicotine poisoning was associated with an increase in the number of non-fertile pairs, and a decrease in the number of litters and of young born.
Progeny of chronically poisoned parents were less fertile than those of nonpoisoned parents, but the fertility of the former was not further decreased by further exposure to nicotine.