The Hamster pp 73-98 | Cite as

Male Hamster Reproductive Endocrinology

  • Andrzej Bartke


Male reproductive functions are regulated by hormones secreted by the pituitary and by the testis. The anterior pituitary controls testicular growth and function primarily by secreting two glycoprotein hormones: luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). Luteinizing hormone binds to Leydig cells in the testicular interstitium and stimulates several processes related to steroid production. This results in increased secretion of androgenic steroids, primarily testosterone, by the testis. Follicle-stimulating hormone binds to Sertoli cells in the seminiferous tubules of the testis and stimulates their secretory activity, which is essential for the normal progression of multiplication and differentiation of germ cells, leading to the production of spermatozoa. In rodents, pituitary control of the testis also involves prolactin (PRL), a protein hormone that binds to Leydig cells and regulates the number of LH receptors. The principal androgenic steroid produced by the mammalian testis is testosterone. Testosterone plays a pivotal role in the regulation of male reproductive physiology since it controls virtually all aspects of reproductive and sexual functions, including spermatogenesis, maturation of spermatozoa in the epididymis, growth of male accessory reproductive glands and their ability to produce seminal plasma, as well as territorial, aggressive, and copulatory behavior.


Luteinizing Hormone Leydig Cell Golden Hamster Short Photoperiod Testicular Function 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrzej Bartke
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Obstetrics and GynecologyThe University of Texas Health Science Center at San AntonioSan AntonioUSA

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