In the brain of several animal species testosterone is converted into a series of 5-alpha-reduced metabolites, and especially into 17-beta-hydroxy-5-alpha-androstan-3-one (DHT), by the action of the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase. The formation of DHT has never been evaluated in the white matter structures of the brain, which are composed mainly of myelinated axons. The experiments here described were performed in order to study, in the rat and the mouse, the DHT forming activity of several white matter structures, in comparison with that of the cerebral cortex and of the hypothalamus. Two sampling techniques were used in the rat: microdissection under a stereo-microscope from frozen brain sections of fragments of corpus callosum, optic chiasm and cerebral cortex; fresh tissue macrodissection of subcortical white matter, cerebral cortex and hypothalamus. Only macrodissection was used in the mice. The data show that, independently from the sampling technique used, there are considerable quantitative differences in the distribution pattern of the 5-alpha-reductase activity within different brain structures. Both in the rat and in the mouse, the enzyme appears to be present in higher concentrations in the white matter structures, than in the cerebral cortex and in the hypothalamus. The present results clearly show that the subcortical white matter and the corpus callosum are at least three times as potent as the cerebral cortex in converting testosterone into DHT. An even higher 5-alpha-reductase activity has been found in the optic chiasm. Further work is needed in order to understand the possible physiological role of DHT formation in the white matter structures.

Differential distribution of the 5-alpha-reductase in the central nervous system of the rat and the mouse: are the white matter structures of the brain target tissue for testosterone action? / F. Celotti, R. C. Melcangi, P. Negri-Cesi, M. Ballabio, L. Martini. - In: JOURNAL OF STEROID BIOCHEMISTRY. - ISSN 0022-4731. - 26:1(1987 Jan), pp. 125-129.

Differential distribution of the 5-alpha-reductase in the central nervous system of the rat and the mouse: are the white matter structures of the brain target tissue for testosterone action?

F. Celotti
Primo
;
R. C. Melcangi
Secondo
;
P. Negri-Cesi;M. Ballabio
Penultimo
;
L. Martini
Ultimo
1987

Abstract

In the brain of several animal species testosterone is converted into a series of 5-alpha-reduced metabolites, and especially into 17-beta-hydroxy-5-alpha-androstan-3-one (DHT), by the action of the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase. The formation of DHT has never been evaluated in the white matter structures of the brain, which are composed mainly of myelinated axons. The experiments here described were performed in order to study, in the rat and the mouse, the DHT forming activity of several white matter structures, in comparison with that of the cerebral cortex and of the hypothalamus. Two sampling techniques were used in the rat: microdissection under a stereo-microscope from frozen brain sections of fragments of corpus callosum, optic chiasm and cerebral cortex; fresh tissue macrodissection of subcortical white matter, cerebral cortex and hypothalamus. Only macrodissection was used in the mice. The data show that, independently from the sampling technique used, there are considerable quantitative differences in the distribution pattern of the 5-alpha-reductase activity within different brain structures. Both in the rat and in the mouse, the enzyme appears to be present in higher concentrations in the white matter structures, than in the cerebral cortex and in the hypothalamus. The present results clearly show that the subcortical white matter and the corpus callosum are at least three times as potent as the cerebral cortex in converting testosterone into DHT. An even higher 5-alpha-reductase activity has been found in the optic chiasm. Further work is needed in order to understand the possible physiological role of DHT formation in the white matter structures.
Nerve Fibers, Myelinated; Animals; Cholestenone 5 alpha-Reductase; Hypothalamus; Optic Chiasm; Brain; Corpus Callosum; Mice; Cerebral Cortex; Rats; Dihydrotestosterone; Oxidoreductases; Male
Settore MED/13 - Endocrinologia
Settore MED/04 - Patologia Generale
Settore BIO/09 - Fisiologia
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/183300
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