Novel Male Mice Show Gradual Decline in the Capacity to Disrupt Early Pregnancy and in Urinary Excretion of Testosterone and 17β-Estradiol During the Weeks Immediately Following Castration
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Novel male mice can disrupt intrauterine implantation of fertilized ova in inseminated females. Evidence indicates mediation by androgen-dependent excretions. This study was designed to examine the time course of males' ability to disrupt pregnancy following castration and relate this to their urinary excretion of testosterone and 17 beta-estradiol. During days 1-5 of pregnancy, previously inseminated females were housed underneath castrated novel males at various intervals after the surgery. Castrated males generally continued to disrupt pregnancy during the initial weeks after surgery. Progressively, the probability of retention of pregnancy increased as a linear function of time since castration. There was an apparent asymptote, where the majority of females remained pregnant, beginning at about 6 weeks following surgery. Males' excretion of testosterone and 17 beta-estradiol in urine, measured via ELISA procedures, diminished gradually during the weeks after castration.
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