Effect of testosterone on serum immunoactive inhibin concentrations in intact and hypophysectomized male rats

Y. T. Sun, D. M. Robertson, G. Gonzales, G. P. Risbridger, D. M. De Kretser

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Intact and hypophysectomized rats were treated with graded doses of testosterone via subcutaneous Silastic implants over a 13-week period. Serum inhibin concentrations fell 50% (P < 0.001) after 2 weeks of hypophysectomy, remaining suppressed at this level for 13 weeks. The administration of testosterone to hypophysectomized rats (serum testosterone values 2-12 ng/ml; control values 5.5 ng/ml) was without effect on serum inhibin values. In contrast, administration of testosterone to intact animals for 7 weeks resulted in an initial fall (P < 0.05) in inhibin levels to 50-70% of controls then increasing to reach control levels at higher doses. Serum FSH concentrations were similarly biphasic with increasing dose of testosterone and values for these two hormones were significantly correlated (r = 0.44, P < 0.01). Segments of seminiferous tubules in culture from rats after various times of hypophysectomy showed a partly suppressed secretion of inhibin. The administration of testosterone did not modify inhibin production although inhibin production was sensitive to FSH. It is concluded that (1) serum inhibin concentrations are partly suppressed after hypophysectomy and testosterone has no effect on serum inhibin values; and (2) the suppression of serum inhibin in intact rats treated with increasing doses of testosterone is attributable to the concomitant fall in serum FSH concentrations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)795-801
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Reproduction and Fertility
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1989

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