The effects of castration and testosterone (T) replacement on levels of substance P (SP) and luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) were assessed in discrete areas of the male hamster brain. The animals were either castrated, castrated and given a chronically low or high dose of T by Silastic implant, or sham-operated. Brain tissues and trunk blood were collected 3 weeks after surgery. Plasma T levels were maintained within the normal range by the implants but at significantly lower or higher levels than the mean for sham-operated males. Levels of SP and LHRH were quantified in the olfactory bulbs, rostral basal forebrain, anterior hypothalamic and preoptic area, medial basal hypothalamic area, medial basal hypothalamic area and median eminence, and brain stem. In general, castration and T replacement effected opposite changes in levels of SP and LHRH. In the medial basal hypothalamic area and median eminence SP levels were found to be inversely related to the chronic T levels, whereas the LHRH levels were directly correlated. In the anterior hypothalamic and preoptic area, castration reduced levels of SP. Conversely, castration elevated levels of LHRH in this area. This inverse dynamic relationship between changing peptide levels was also observed in the rostral basal forebrain but not in the olfactory bulbs. In most of these forebrain regions, the dose-response curves for the experimental groups could not incorporate the peptide levels in the sham-operated control group. SP levels in the brain stem showed a monotonic inverse relationship to circulating T levels which did include the control group values.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
Variations in serum levels of LH and FSH after administration of synthetic LH-RH, and basal levels of serum testosterone were studied in 9 male patients with myotonic dystrophy. The degree of testicular damage, as determined histologically on biopsy specimens, was also studied. Results were as follows: 1) it was observed that both the basal and stimulated (maximal) levels of serum LH and FSH were significantly higher than levels found in 9 sex- and age-matched normal controls. 2) The basal level of serum testosterone was consistently lower in the patient group. One patient, however, showed a low normal level, which represented a statistically significant reciprocal relation to both LH and FSH levels as expressed on a logarithmic scale. 3) There was a significant trend which indicated that the higher the serum LH, FSH levels, or the lower the basal levels of serum testosterone, the more extensive was the damage to the seminiferous tubules. From these findings it was concluded that hypogonadism in patients with myotonic dystrophy, is characterized by the development of lesions in the seminiferous tubules.