Cell Surface Actions of Steroids: A Complementary Mechanism for Regulation of Spermatogenesis?

  • Focko F. G. Rommerts
Part of the Schering Foundation Workshop book series (SCHERING FOUND, volume 4)


The question about the concentration of androgen required for maintenance of spermatogenesis has not yet been solved (Rommerts 1988a). Under normal physiological conditions androgen concentrations in the testis are more than 20-fold higher than in peripheral organs. However, results of various studies show that spermatogenesis can also proceed at approximately 20% of the normal testicular an-drogen level although the production of spermatozoa is diminished (Sun et al. 1989). In this situation, these reduced local androgen concentrations are still several fold higher than the normal peripheral concentrations. Irrespective of the exact minimal level of testosterone required for maintenance of spermatogenesis (with or without the support of FSH), it is difficult to understand easily why androgen-sensitive cells in the testis are triggered in a manner differing from that of other androgen target cells (Sun et al. 1989). Of special relevance to this question is the current opinion that androgen action in various target cells is mediated by only one receptor (Brinkmann et al. 1992).


Androgen Receptor Sertoli Cell GABAA Receptor Germinal Cell Testicular Cell 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1992

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  • Focko F. G. Rommerts

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