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Lecture 17

BIOLOGY 321 Lecture 17: Lecture 17 3-7

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Primate Sexuality Next Exam: SPRING is key word to remember for extra credit!! I. Hormonal Cycle of Females a. Last lecture: established covariation between periovulatory surge of estradiol (E2) and female sexual behaviors b. Caveat: this same peak point there is ALSO a peak in testosterone—could this be the real hormone behind the increased female sexual behavior II. Adrenal Androgens in Female Behavior Waxenberg, Drellich & Sutherland (1959) a. Study subjects: 29 women, 51 years of age (mean0 b. Procedure: simultaneous ovariectomy & adrenalectomy (because of metatastic breast cancer) c. Results: Reported greater loss in libido following adrenal ectomy than from ovariectomy, most women lost sexual desire postoperative decrease in intercourse d. Interpretation: adrenal critical to maintenance of libido e. Problems? i. Removal of adrenals does not imply that androgens are whats causing loss in sexual desire, as androgens are precursors for estrogens ii. Also, loss in sexual desire could be from the fact that they are dying of breast cancer, having surgeries… lots of confounding psychological factors and biological iii. Also no critical control condition (adrenalectomy without ovariectomy III. Adrenal Suppression Study – Lovejoy & Wallen (1990) a. Could test if this is true by inhibiting adrenal androgens with dexamethasone (from previous study) b. Subjects: 8 intact female rhesus in social group, 2 vasectomized males c. Procedure: studied for 2 menstrual cycles; for 1: Dex administered via SC osmotic minipump, during other cycle: pumps contained sterile water d. Design: double-blind cross-over study; one half get Dex first then control condition, other half get control first and then Dex i. Every individual undergoes both treatments, so this eliminates individual differences by every female serving as a control for themselves ii. Eliminates effects from order of administration e. Wanted to ensure dex did not disrupt estrogens so that they could isolate effects from the androgens; no significant difference found i. All females showed normal hormonal ovulation f. Would the dex sufficiently suppress adrenals? i. Rapidly suppressed cortisol (suppressed to 10%), androstenedione, testosterone (suppressed by 50%) g. Observed many different behaviors that signal female initiation and a few male initiated behavior and found no significant difference for ANY of the behaviors—aka they didn’t change when androgens were removed h. Conclusion: adrenal androgens have no effect on F behavior or attractivity, thus ovarian hormones are sufficient to modulate F sexual behavior i. H/e, ovarian hormones produce androgens in women, the adrenals are not the exclusive source of androgens ii. Testosterone can convert either to an estrogen, or can be converted to DHT iii. Explains why testosterone only suppressed for 50%--androgens still present from the ovaries i. This study does not eliminate the possibility that ovarian androgens drive female behavior, so need to modify the study IV. Role of “Ovarian” Androgens in Female Sexual Behavior a. Subjects: 19 adult ovex F, 8 intact adult M; done in the breeding season so ales have sexual interest b. Procedures: i. Females injected daily for 10 days with (treatment groups): 1. vehicle(NoRx): hypothesize no sexual behaviors, - - 2. E(2)B (estradiol benzoate): hypothesis is more sexual behavior, + +
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