Comparative evaluation of a 5-day Hershberger assay utilizing mature male rats and a pubertal male assay for detection of flutamide's antiandrogenic activity. (17/384)

A 5-day Hershberger assay utilizing mature male rats and a pubertal male assay were evaluated for the ability to detect antiandrogenic compounds such as flutamide, an androgen receptor antagonist. Six days after the operation, implantation with two silicon capsules containing testosterone (T) (30 mg/capsule) in castrated rats provided the ventral prostate and seminal vesicle weights as well as serum T and luteinizing hormone (LH) levels equivalent to those of the controls (non-castrated, non-implanted rats). Castrated rats implanted with two T-capsules (6 rats/dose) were treated by gavage for 5 days with vehicle (0.5% carboxymethylcellulose) or flutamide (0.15, 0.6, 2.5, or 10 mg/kg/day). Flutamide produced significant decreases in weights of the seminal vesicles and the levator ani plus bulbocavernosus muscles (> or =0.6 mg/kg/day) and ventral prostate (> or =2.5 mg/kg/day), and an increase in serum LH levels (> or =2.5 mg/kg/day), but no changes in serum T levels. When age-matched intact male rats were treated with 10-mg/kg/day flutamide, a significant increase in serum T levels was observed concomitant with a tendency of increased LH. The organ weights were also decreased; however, the changes were less than those in the castrated, T-implanted rats. Immature intact male rats (10 rats/dose) were treated for 20 days with flutamide (0, 0.15, 0.6, 2.5, or 10 mg/kg/day). Flutamide produced significant decreases in weights of the seminal vesicles, ventral prostate, and levator ani plus bulbocavernosus muscles at 2.5 and 10 mg/kg/day. Serum LH levels, but not T levels, were increased at 10 mg/kg/day. Statistical significance of some of these changes was not observed in the 6 animals/dose examined. Our findings support that the Hershberger assay, in the current conditions, is the most sensitive among the assays examined and a useful short-term screening method for the detection of antiandrogenic compounds.  (+info)

Down-regulation of transforming growth factor beta receptors by androgen in ovarian cancer cells. (18/384)

Steroid hormones have been implicated in the etiology and/or progression of epithelial ovarian cancer. As ovarian surface epithelial cells are growth inhibited by transforming growth factor beta (TGF-beta), we tested whether steroid hormones could regulate the expression of TGF-beta1 or its receptors in ovarian cancer cells, as assessed by quantitative reverse transcription-PCR. Treatment of ovarian cancer HEY cells with 500 nM 5alpha-dihydrotestosterone (DHT), but not estradiol-17beta or progesterone, for 60 h down-regulated the expression of mRNA for TGF-beta receptors I and II (TbetaR-I and TbetaR-II), betaglycan, and endoglin but had no effect on TGF-beta1 mRNA levels. Androgen receptor (AR) mRNA expression in HEY cells was compared to other ovarian cancer cell lines. OVCAR-3 cells expressed AR mRNA levels similar to that of androgen-responsive LNCaP prostate cancer cells, whereas SKOV-3 and HEY cells expressed only 3 and 0.01%, respectively. Western blot analysis and saturation binding assays confirmed the expression of AR protein in these three cell lines, but at the limit of detection in SKOV-3 and HEY cells. Treatment of SKOV-3 and HEY cells for 24 h with 1-50 nM DHT resulted in a dose-dependent down-regulation of TbetaR-II mRNA. The AR antagonist hydroxyflutamide did not reverse the effect of DHT on SKOV-3 cells but by itself down-regulated TbetaR-II mRNA. This apparent androgen-mimetic action of hydroxyflutamide and the ability of SKOV-3 and HEY cells to respond to DHT may be due to their expression of AR-associating protein 70, an AR co-activator reported to amplify AR transactivation and to result in agonist activity of AR antagonists. DHT was able to reverse TGF-beta1 growth-inhibitory action in SKOV-3 cells and in a primary culture of ovarian cancer cells derived from ascites. Thus, androgens may promote ovarian cancer progression in part by decreasing TGF-beta receptor levels, thereby allowing ovarian cancer cells to escape TGF-beta1 growth inhibition.  (+info)

Morphologic and biochemical changes in male rat lung after surgical and pharmacological castration. (19/384)

The morphology of the rat lung was studied by light microscopy in different situations: after surgical and pharmacological castration and after administration of testosterone to the castrated rat to determine if the androgen is required to maintain the normal morphology of the lung. We also determined the effect of flutamide on the phospholipid composition of both the surfactant and microsomes of the lung. Rats were separated into five groups: I - control non-castrated rats, II - castrated rats sacrificed 21 days after castration, III - castrated rats that received testosterone daily from day 2 to day 21 after castration, IV - castrated rats that received testosterone from day 15 to day 21 after castration, and V - control rats injected with flutamide for 7 days. The amount of different phospholipids in the surfactant and microsomes of the lung was measured in group I and V rats. At the light microscopy level, the surgical and pharmacological castration provoked alterations in the morphology of the lung, similar to that observed in human lung emphysema. The compositions of surfactant and microsomes of the lung were similar to those previously reported by us for the surgically castrated rats. These results indicate that androgens are necessary for the normal morphology as well as for some metabolic aspects of the lung.  (+info)

Acute impairment of relaxation by low levels of testosterone in porcine coronary arteries. (20/384)

OBJECTIVES: While there are many suggested reasons for the marked gender bias in cardiovascular events, much of the available data indicate that circulating estrogens are cardioprotective. The possibility that endogenous androgens may be detrimental to the cardiovascular system has received relatively less attention. We investigated the short-term modulatory effects of various concentrations of testosterone on vascular function in isolated porcine coronary artery rings. RESULTS: The higher concentrations (> 1 microM) of testosterone relaxed U46619-contracted coronary artery rings in an endothelium-independent manner. This direct effect was insensitive to the testosterone receptor antagonists, flutamide and cyproterone acetate. Short-term exposure (20 min) to low levels of testosterone (1-100 nM), which were ineffective on their own on vascular function, significantly diminished relaxation to bradykinin and calcium ionophore A23187 but not those produced by levcromakalim and sodium nitroprusside. The inhibitory effect observed with 1 nM testosterone was only partially reversed by flutamide and cyproterone acetate and unaltered in the presence of actinomycin D and cycloheximide. CONCLUSIONS: These results demonstrate that acute treatment with testosterone, at concentrations that have no effect on their own, reduces vasorelaxation. Furthermore, they suggest that this modulatory action may be in part independent of the classical testosterone receptor since it was not completely sensitive to the anti-androgens and was not inhibited by the transcriptional and translational inhibitors. These findings support the postulation that testosterone may have unfavorable influences on vascular function.  (+info)

Differential effects of 17beta-estradiol and testosterone on the contractile responses of porcine coronary arteries. (21/384)

1. We investigated the effects of short-term exposure to physiological levels of 17beta-estradiol and testosterone on vasocontractile responses in porcine coronary artery rings. 2. Concentration-response curves to endothelin-1, 5-hydroxytryptamine, the thromboxane analogue U46619 and KCl were constructed in endothelium-intact and endothelium-disrupted artery rings. 3. Thirty minutes exposure to 17beta-estradiol (1 and 30 nM) significantly attenuated vasoconstriction to endothelin-1, 5-hydroxytryptamine and U46619. Conversely, the same concentrations of testosterone significantly potentiated responses elicited by these contractile agents. These inhibitory effects of 17beta-estradiol and enhancing actions of testosterone on contractions were endothelium-independent. KCl-mediated contractions were unaffected by the presence of either sex hormones. 4. The oestrogen receptor antagonists, tamoxifen (10 microM) and ICI 182,780 (10 microM), were unable to reverse the inhibitory influence 1 nM 17beta-estradiol had on the agonist-mediated contractile responses. Similarly, the androgen receptor antagonists, flutamide (10 microM) and cyproterone acetate (10 microM), failed to affect the potentiating activities of 1 nM testosterone. The alteration in vasoconstrictive responses observed following acute exposure to either 1 nM 17beta-estradiol and 1 nM testosterone were apparent even in the presence of the protein synthesis inhibitor cycloheximide (10 microM) and the transcription inhibitor actinomycin D (10 microM). 6. In conclusion, we report a unique type of sex hormone action on the coronary vasculature. These events occur at low nanomolar concentrations of 17beta-estradiol and testosterone, are insensitive to conventional sex hormone receptor antagonists, are not blocked by de novo protein synthesis inhibitors and have rapid time-courses that are uncharacteristic of classical genomic activities.  (+info)

Inhibin is an important factor in the regulation of FSH secretion in the adult male hamster. (22/384)

We investigated the importance of inhibin and testosterone in the regulation of gonadotropin secretion in adult male golden hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus). After castration, plasma concentrations of inhibin and testosterone were reduced to undetectable, whereas plasma follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) were increased. After hemicastration, plasma FSH and LH increased moderately and plasma inhibin decreased to one-half its initial level. Plasma testosterone levels in hemicastrated animals decreased 3 h after hemicastration but returned to those in sham-operated animals at 6 h. Plasma LH in the castrated hamster declined comparably to intact animals with testosterone treatment; plasma FSH also decreased but still remained at levels higher than those in intact animals. After treatment with inhibin in long-term-castrated animals, plasma FSH decreased, whereas plasma LH was not altered. Intact males treated with flutamide, an anti-androgen, showed a significant increase in plasma LH but not in FSH. On the other hand, treatment with anti-inhibin serum induced a significant elevation in plasma FSH, but not in LH. Using immunohistochemistry, we showed that the inhibin alpha-subunit was localized to both Sertoli and Leydig cells. The present study in adult male hamsters indicates that FSH secretion is regulated mainly by inhibin, presumably from Sertoli and Leydig cells, and that LH secretion is controlled primarily by androgens produced from the Leydig cells. This situation is more similar to that of primates than of rats.  (+info)

A pilot study of intermittent androgen ablation in advanced prostate cancer in Japanese men. (23/384)

BACKGROUND: Permanent androgen ablation has been the mainstay of treatment for advanced prostate cancer. However, the favorable outcome seen in recent pilot studies of intermittent androgen ablation raises the possibility of overtreatment. METHODS: This study included 35 Japanese men with advanced prostate cancer. Initial androgen ablation continued for 2 months after PSA levels decreased to <4.0 ng/ml, then was withdrawn. Androgen ablation was reinstituted 2 months after PSA reached levels >10 ng/ml, when indicated clinically or on patient request. Cycling continued until androgen independence was reached. RESULTS: Mean follow-up was 21.0 months, representing an average of 2.5 cycles. Nine patients developed androgen independence at an average of 16.0 months following androgen ablation; three of these have died. Six of the nine patients with early biochemical progression had elevated alkaline phosphatase levels at entry; five of these exhibited a flare in alkaline phosphatase activity after initiation of androgen ablation. Mean bone mineral density (BMD) in the lumbar spines of 17 patients was 81.5 mg/cm3 at 23 months following therapy. The BMD of 10 of these patients was normal for their age. Four patients suffered bone fractures, none pathological. CONCLUSIONS: Intermittent androgen ablation may be an option for patients with advanced prostate cancer and may be especially beneficial for those with initially low BMD levels. Patients with elevated alkaline phosphatase levels at entry or a flare in its activity may not be ideal candidates. Whether prolonging time to androgen independence will provide benefit remains to be investigated in a randomized, prospective study.  (+info)

Specific recognition of androgens by their nuclear receptor. A structure-function study. (24/384)

Androgens, like progestins, are 3-ketosteroids with structural differences restricted to the 17beta substituent in the steroid D-ring. To better understand the specific recognition of ligands by the human androgen receptor (hAR), a homology model of the ligand-binding domain (LBD) was constructed based on the progesterone receptor LBD crystal structure. Several mutants of residues potentially involved in the specific recognition of ligands in the hAR were constructed and tested for their ability to bind agonists. Their transactivation capacity in response to agonist (R1881) and antagonists (cyproterone acetate, hydroxyflutamide, and ICI 176344) was also measured. Substitution of His(874) by alanine, only marginally impairs the ligand-binding and transactivation capacity of the hAR receptor. In contrast, mutations of Thr(877) and, to a greater extent, Asn(705) perturb ligand recognition, alter transactivation efficiency, and broaden receptor specificity. Interestingly, the N705A mutant acquires progesterone receptor (PR) properties for agonist ligands but, unlike wild type AR and PR, loses the capacity to repress transactivation with nonsteroidal antagonists. Models of the hAR.LBD complexes with several ligands are presented, which suggests new directions for drug design.  (+info)