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Biological Research

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RECABARREN, SERGIO E et al. Prenatal testosterone treatment alters LH and testosterone responsiveness to GnRH agonist in male sheep. Biol. Res. [online]. 2007, vol.40, n.3, pp.329-338. ISSN 0716-9760.

Although evidence is accumulating that prenatal testosterone (T) compromises reproductive function in the female, the effects of excess T in utero on the postnatal development of male reproductive function has not been studied. The aim of this study was to assess the influence of prenatal T excess on age-related changes in pituitary and gonadal responsiveness to GnRH in the male sheep. We used the GnRH agonist, leuprolide (10 µg/kg), as a pharmacologic challenge at 5, 10, 20 and 30 weeks of age. These time points correspond to early and late juvenile periods and the prepubertal and postpubertal periods of sexual development, respectively. LH and T were measured in blood samples collected before and after GnRH agonist administration. The area under the response curve (AUC) of LH increased progressively in both controls and prenatal T-treated males from 5 to 20 weeks of age (P<0.01). The LH responses in prenatal T-treated males were lower at 20 and 30 weeks of age compared to controls (P<0.05). AUC-T increased progressively in control males from 5 through 30 weeks of age and prenatal T-treated males from 5 to 20 weeks of age. The T response in prenatal T-treated males was higher at 20 weeks compared to controls of same age but similar to controls and prenatal T-treated males at 30 weeks of age (P <0.05). Our findings suggest that prenatal T treatment advances the developmental trajectory of gonadal responsiveness to GnRH in male offspring

Keywords : fetal programming; IUGR; Pituitary sensitivity.

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