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Metab Brain Dis. 2015 Aug;30(4):853-76. doi: 10.1007/s11011-015-9655-3. Epub 2015 Feb 24.

Testosterone deficiency, insulin-resistant obesity and cognitive function.

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Neurophysiology Unit, Cardiac Electrophysiology Research and Training Center, Faculty of Medicine, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai, Thailand.


Testosterone is an androgenic steroid hormone, which plays an important role in the regulation of male reproduction and behaviors, as well as in the maintenance of insulin sensitivity. Several studies showed that testosterone exerted beneficial effects in brain function, including preventing neuronal cell death, balancing brain oxidative stress and antioxidant activity, improving synaptic plasticity and involving cognitive formation. Although previous studies showed that testosterone deficiency is positively correlated with cognitive impairment and insulin-resistant obesity, several studies demonstrated contradictory findings. Thus, this review comprehensively summarizes the current evidence from in vitro, in vivo and clinical studies of the relationship between testosterone deficiency and insulin-resistant obesity as well as the correlation between either insulin-resistant obesity or testosterone deficiency and cognitive impairment. Controversial reports and the mechanistic insights regarding the roles of testosterone in insulin-resistant obesity and cognitive function are also presented and discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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