Effects of testosterone on muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in the rat epididymis
Porto, C. S.
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The effect of testosterone on the expression of muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) subtypes was studied in the rat epididymis, at mRNA and protein level. the rat androgen status was monitored by measuring plasma testosterone level and caput and cauda epididymis wet weight. Ribonuclease protection assay (RPA) and [(3)H]quinuclidinyl benzilate ([(3)H]QNB) binding assay were performed in the caput and cauda epididymis from control (50-day old), castrated, castrated and treated with testosterone and sexually immature (30-day old) rats. the expression of each mAChR transcript subtype differed depending on the epididymal region analyzed and rat testosterone and/or testicular factors status. in control rats, RPA showed the presence of mRNA for M(1), M(2) and M(3) mAChR in the caput and cauda epididymis. the abundance of m2 and m3 transcripts in the cauda was higher than that in the caput epididymis. Low amount of m1 transcript was observed in both regions. Orchidectomy increased m1 mRNA amount in the caput and cauda epididymis when compared to control rats, an effect slightly modified by testosterone replacement. Although orchidectomy down-regulated the level of m2 transcript in both epididymal regions, castration significantly increased m3 mRNA amount in the caput region. These effects on m2 and m3 transcripts were prevented by testosterone replacement to castrated rats. Similar abundance of m3 transcript, however, was detected in the cauda epididymis of all experimental group tested. [ (3)H]QNB binding studies revealed that orchidectomy down-regulated the number of mAChR detected in both epididymal regions, an effect also prevented by testosterone replacement. Thus, testosterone and/or testicular factors may play a role in the regulation of mAChR expression in the rat epididymis. (c) 2005 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
CitationLife Sciences. Oxford: Pergamon-Elsevier B.V., v. 77, n. 6, p. 656-669, 2005.
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