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J Androl. 2011 Jan-Feb;32(1):49-54. doi: 10.2164/jandrol.109.008623. Epub 2010 Aug 26.

Expression of luteinizing hormone receptors in the mouse penis.

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Department of Anatomy, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia.


The role of luteinizing hormone (LH) in the regulation of normal reproductive functions in males and females is quite well established. Besides the expression of LH receptors in the target cells in gonads, it has been found in several extragonadal organs. There is no information about the expression of LH receptors in the penis up to now. The aim of the present study is to investigate the expression of the LH receptor in the mouse penis to see if LH effects are possible in the penis. BALB/c mice were used as donors of normal penis and testis tissue. Immunocytochemistry, Western blotting, and quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reactions (RT-PCRs) were used for the detection of the LH receptor. Positive immunoreaction for LH receptors was present in the nuclei of urethral epithelium and endothelial cells of cavernous spaces in the corpus cavernosum and corpus spongiosum penis. Western blotting experiments demonstrated the presence of LH antigen at M(r) = 97.4 and 78 kd. Quantitative RT-PCRs confirmed the expression of LH receptor in the penis. Our results show that LH receptor is expressed in the body of the mouse penis; thus, it may directly regulate functions of penile tissue.

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