PSYC 2850 - Human Sexuality - Class 4

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February 9, 2011
Mens Bodies
Gametic Sex
Sperm consists of: a head (nucleus - contains DNA, and acrosome - binding and
breaking down the outer portion of the egg cell), a mid-piece (portion of the sperm
cell that produces energy for the sperm cell to travel), a tail
Spermatogenesis: generation of sperm
Sperm are infinite
Gonadal Sex
Testes produce sperm and are adaptively designed to do so
External portion of the abdominal cavity to optimize temperature and sperm
Dartos - muscle connected to scrotum that contracts to regulate temperature
Spermatic cord - connector to abdominal cavity
Testes size - based on androgens during prenatal development
Typically left testicle hang lower and right testicle is larger
Smaller right testicle better at cognitive tasks
Occurs in the seminiferous tubules
Sertoli cells produce sperm inside seminiferous tubules
Leydig cells (interstitial in seminiferous tubules) produce testosterone which
initiates spermatogenesis
Sperm cells mature and are stored in the rete testis(exists between seminal
vesicles and epididymis) and the epididymis(back side of each testicle) can be up
to 4 million mature sperm in the tail of the epididymis
Testes produce sex steroid hormones
Testosterone (masculines the body), elevate libido
Produced most frequently by the testes
Maintaining bone density, long bone growth
Important in concentrating sperm
Blood clots
Gonadotropins influence spermatogenesis
Low T = Increase GnRH = Increase FSH and LH
Increase FSH = Increase spermatogenesis by sertoli cells
Increase LH = Increase T production by Leydig cells
High levels T = decrease GnRH
Testes size varies cross-culturally
Relative to the individuals body size
Nigeria 52.62 grams
Hong Kong 17.7 grams
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