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Effects of Ethanol on Intracorporeal Structures of the Rat

Abstract

Objective: Previous studies demonstrated that acute in vitro exposure of corpus cavernosal tissue to ethanol decreased its response to field stimulation and pharmacological stimulation. In the present study we investigated the effects of chronic ethanol consumption on the ultrastructure of cavernosal smooth muscle cells, elastic fibres and collagen content. Material and methods: Fourteen adult wistar rats were divided into a control group (n = 7, fed a standard diet and tap water) and an alcoholic group (n = 7, fed a standard diet and 5% (v/v) ethanol in drinking water and by increasing the ethanol concentration for every week, at the end of 6th week 30% (v/v) ethanol concentration was attained. Same dose was given until 12th week. At the end of 12th week blood samples were obtained and the ethanol concentrations were determined. The cavernosal tissues were obtained and immunohistochemical examinations were performed. Results: Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that chronic ethanol exposure markedly decreased the content of smooth muscle cells, elastic fibres and collagen type 4. Conclusion: Our findings suggest that in this animal model chronic ethanol exposure decreases the percentage of staining for smooth muscle actin, elastin, and collagen type 4 which are the key structures fundamental for erection.

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Correspondence to Çetin Yeşilli.

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Yeşilli, Ç., Mungan, G., Seçkiner, I. et al. Effects of Ethanol on Intracorporeal Structures of the Rat. Int Urol Nephrol 38, 129–132 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11255-005-3150-4

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Keywords

  • Cavernosal structure
  • Collagen type 4
  • Elastin
  • Ethanol
  • Impotence
  • Smooth muscle actin