The Reproductive Decline in Male Rats
The aging male rat exhibits a gradual decline in reproductive function, but fertility is usually maintained throughout the normal lifespan (Meites et al., 1980; Steger et al., 1981). Only when the endocrine system is challenged by experimental manipulations or when the various components of the reproductive axis are closely examined, do age-related defects become apparent. This review will attempt to point out the “normal” aging events affecting the reproductive processes in the male rat, as well as the more common pathological findings seen in certain rat strains. Changes in hypothalamic neurotransmitter function and gonadotropin-releasing factor levels in relationship to male endocrine function have already been discussed in the chapter by Simpkins and will not be covered in this review.
KeywordsTestosterone Level Seminal Vesicle Leydig Cell Serum Testosterone Level Ventral Prostate
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