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, 165 (2), 371-3

A Brief History of Testosterone

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A Brief History of Testosterone

E R Freeman et al. J Urol.

Abstract

Purpose: We explore the history of testosterone in the context of medical and scientific developments.

Materials and methods: A review of the scientific and historical literature was conducted.

Results: The origins and effects of testosterone have been recognized throughout the history of humankind. Hunter performed testicular transplantation experiments in 1767 while studying tissue transplantation techniques, and almost a century later Berthold linked the physiological and behavioral changes of castration to a substance secreted by the testes. Brown-Séquard gave birth to the field of organotherapy in 1889 when he announced that his auto-injection of testicular extracts resulted in rejuvenated physical and mental abilities. Steinach and Niehans expanded upon Brown-Séquard's work with rejuvenation treatments involving vasoligation, tissue grafts and cellular injections. In 1935 David et al isolated the critical ingredient in organotherapeutic treatments, testosterone.

Conclusions: The effects of the powerful hormone testosterone continue to inspire research and controversy 65 years later.

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