Background: 7-alpha-methyl-19-nortestosterone (MENT) is being considered for androgen replacement in testosterone deficient men and as a male contraceptive. Because androgenic effects on the prostate are a major concern, we have evaluated MENT in a transgenic model of prostate cancer.
Methods: LPB-Tag mice were castrated and infused with testosterone (T; 5 or 30 microg/day) or MENT (5 or 30 microg/day) for 4 weeks. Prostate, seminal vesicle, and levator ani muscle (LAM) weights were compared.
Results: At an equivalent dose, MENT maintained or stimulated the mean weights of these organs more than T. However, the dorsolateral prostate/LAM ratio of weights did not favor MENT, but DNA/mg tissue and Ki 67 immunostaining suggested that MENT may increase DNA less than T.
Conclusions: MENT is more potent than T in maintaining or stimulating prostate, seminal vesicle, and LAM. Using doses that resulted in comparable stimulation of the levator ani muscle, MENT had similar effect on prostate weight, but increased DNA/mg prostate less than T in this transgenic mouse model of prostate cancer.
(c) 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.