Pumpkin seed oil and phytosterol-F can block testosterone/prazosin-induced prostate growth in rats

Urol Int. 2006;77(3):269-74. doi: 10.1159/000094821.


Introduction: This study was undertaken to investigate the effects of pumpkin seed oil alone or combined with Phytosterol-F on testosterone/prazosin-induced (T-P) prostate growth in rats.

Materials and methods: Forty adult Wistar rats were divided into five groups, including: one control group, rats treated with vehicle only, one group treated with T-P, and two groups of T-P-treated rats, one receiving orally pumpkin seed oil alone and one group receiving orally pumpkin seed oil combined with Phytosterol-F. Two weeks later, the prostatic weight-to-body weight ratio was determined after sacrifice. The total protein concentration was measured by using a protein assay. Some ventral prostatic tissues were histologically examined after hematoxylin-eosin staining.

Results: Histological sections of the ventral prostate showed that the architecture of the prostate glands became hyperplastic in the T-P rats, but not in the control or vehicle-treated animals. As compared with the control or vehicle group, T-P rats had a significantly higher prostatic weight-to-body weight ratio for the ventral prostate (p=0.05 and p=0.007, respectively), but not for the dorsolateral prostate (p=0.53 and p=0.73, respectively). The T-P rats had significantly higher protein levels within both lobes (ventral lobe, p=0.02 and p<0.0001, respectively; dorsolateral lobe, p=0.06 and p=0.005, respectively). As compared with the T-P-alone rats, the TP rats treated with pumpkin seed oil alone or pumpkin seed oil combined with Phytosterol-F had a significantly lower weight ratio for the ventral prostate (p=0.01 and p=0.004, respectively) and significantly lower protein levels within both lobes (p=0.03 and p=0.003, respectively; p=0.007 and p=0.002, respectively). In addition, Phytosterol-F had some additive effect on the total protein synthesis within the ventral prostate (p=0.02).

Conclusion: Pumpkin seed oil alone or combined with Phytosterol-F can block the T-P-induced increases in prostatic weight-to-body weight ratio and protein synthesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Weight
  • Cucurbita*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Male
  • Phytosterols / therapeutic use*
  • Phytotherapy / methods*
  • Plant Oils / therapeutic use*
  • Plant Preparations / therapeutic use*
  • Prazosin / toxicity
  • Prostate / drug effects
  • Prostate / growth & development*
  • Prostatic Hyperplasia / chemically induced
  • Prostatic Hyperplasia / pathology
  • Prostatic Hyperplasia / prevention & control*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Seeds
  • Testosterone / toxicity
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Phytosterols
  • Plant Oils
  • Plant Preparations
  • Testosterone
  • Prazosin