open access

Vol 59, No 2 (2008)
Original papers
Published online: 2008-05-08
Submitted: 2013-02-15
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The effects of cryptorchidism on the regulation of steroidogenesis and gap junctional communication in equine testes

Anna Hejmej, Barbara Bilińska
Endokrynologia Polska 2008;59(2):112-118.

open access

Vol 59, No 2 (2008)
Original papers
Published online: 2008-05-08
Submitted: 2013-02-15

Abstract


Introduction: Evidence collected over the years has demonstrated that cryptorchidism is associated with a defect in spermatogenesis and, as a consequence, with either reduced fertility or infertility. However, the effect of cryptorchidism on Leydig cell function is less clear. The aim of our study therefore was to investigate the regulation of steroid hormone biosynthesis and, additionally, intercellular communication in the cryptorchid equine testes.
Material and methods: Testes of mature bilaterally cryptorchid horse and healthy stallions were used for this study. The expression of luteinising hormone receptor (LHR), 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3β-HSD), aromatase and connexin43 (Cx43) was detected by means of immunohistochemistry. Testosterone and oestradiol levels were measured in testicular homogenates using appropriate radioimmunoassays.
Results: In the testes of both normal and cryptorchid stallions, immunostaining for LHR, 3β-HSD and aromatase was confined to the Leydig cells. In the cryptorchid horse, the intensity of the staining for LHR and 3β-HSD was weaker, whereas the staining for aromatase was clearly stronger than that of the normal stallion. Radioimmunological analysis revealed disturbance of the androgen-oestrogen balance in the cryptorchid testes. Additionally, in both the seminiferous tubules and interstitial tissue of the cryptorchid a clear reduction of the Cx43 signal was observed.
Conclusions: Decreased expression of LHR and 3β-HSD and increased expression of aromatase in the cryptorchid testes suggest that hormonal imbalance was caused both by reduced testosterone synthesis and by increased androgen aromatisation. Impaired expression of Cx43 in the seminiferous tubules as well as in the interstitial tissue of the cryptorchid horse indicates that cryptorchidism affects intercellular communication in the testes. (Pol J Endocrinol 2008; 59 (2): 112-118)

Abstract


Introduction: Evidence collected over the years has demonstrated that cryptorchidism is associated with a defect in spermatogenesis and, as a consequence, with either reduced fertility or infertility. However, the effect of cryptorchidism on Leydig cell function is less clear. The aim of our study therefore was to investigate the regulation of steroid hormone biosynthesis and, additionally, intercellular communication in the cryptorchid equine testes.
Material and methods: Testes of mature bilaterally cryptorchid horse and healthy stallions were used for this study. The expression of luteinising hormone receptor (LHR), 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3β-HSD), aromatase and connexin43 (Cx43) was detected by means of immunohistochemistry. Testosterone and oestradiol levels were measured in testicular homogenates using appropriate radioimmunoassays.
Results: In the testes of both normal and cryptorchid stallions, immunostaining for LHR, 3β-HSD and aromatase was confined to the Leydig cells. In the cryptorchid horse, the intensity of the staining for LHR and 3β-HSD was weaker, whereas the staining for aromatase was clearly stronger than that of the normal stallion. Radioimmunological analysis revealed disturbance of the androgen-oestrogen balance in the cryptorchid testes. Additionally, in both the seminiferous tubules and interstitial tissue of the cryptorchid a clear reduction of the Cx43 signal was observed.
Conclusions: Decreased expression of LHR and 3β-HSD and increased expression of aromatase in the cryptorchid testes suggest that hormonal imbalance was caused both by reduced testosterone synthesis and by increased androgen aromatisation. Impaired expression of Cx43 in the seminiferous tubules as well as in the interstitial tissue of the cryptorchid horse indicates that cryptorchidism affects intercellular communication in the testes. (Pol J Endocrinol 2008; 59 (2): 112-118)
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Keywords

cryptorchidism; stallion; steroidogenesis; connexin43; immunohistochemistry

About this article
Title

The effects of cryptorchidism on the regulation of steroidogenesis and gap junctional communication in equine testes

Journal

Endokrynologia Polska

Issue

Vol 59, No 2 (2008)

Pages

112-118

Published online

2008-05-08

Bibliographic record

Endokrynologia Polska 2008;59(2):112-118.

Keywords

cryptorchidism
stallion
steroidogenesis
connexin43
immunohistochemistry

Authors

Anna Hejmej
Barbara Bilińska

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