Author(s): Yu WH, McGinnis MY
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Abstract This study compared AR proteins in four cranial nerve motor nuclei among male and female rats that were intact, gonadectomized, or gonadectomized and given TP by immunohistochemistry. AR-immunoreactive (ir) neurons were found, in descending order of abundance, in the nucleus ambiguus, hypoglossal nucleus, and the facial and trigeminal motor nuclei of both males and females of intact and gonadectomized plus TP rats. Virtually every neuron of the nucleus ambiguus was AR-ir. In contrast, AR-ir neurons were either restricted to a specific area of the hypoglossal nucleus, or randomly distributed in the facial and trigeminal motor nuclei. The predominant AR-ir site shifted from cell nuclei to the cytoplasm, depending upon the presence or absence of ligand. Sex differences in the amount and staining intensity of AR-ir neurons were discernable in all four motor nuclei of intact rats, and these differences were maintained in gonadectomized plus TP rats, with the exception of the nucleus ambiguus. The immunostaining results were complemented by results from AR binding studies. Cytosolic AR binding values for the hypoglossal and facial motor nuclei of females were only approximately 50\% of those of males despite the absence of a sex difference in neuron number. These results indicate that intrinsic sex differences in AR levels and androgenic regulation of AR exist in cranial nerve motor nuclei, and that there are differences in the abundance and distribution pattern of AR responsive neurons in cranial nerve motor nuclei. These results are consistent with the idea that sex differences in AR could account for sex differences observed in nerve regeneration and neuron loss following cranial nerve injury. Copyright 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
This article was published in J Neurobiol
and referenced in Journal of Steroids & Hormonal Science