Objective: To investigate whether the therapeutic effect of Ginkgo biloba extract (GBE) in a rat model can improve erectile dysfunction after bilateral cavernous nerve injury.
Methods: Forty-three male Sprague-Dawley rats underwent cavernous nerve crush injury and were randomized into 4 groups, including: vehicle only, high-dose GBE, medium-dose GBE, and low-dose GBE. Eight animals underwent sham operation. Four weeks later, erectile function was assessed by cavernous nerve electrostimulation, and penile tissue was collected for histologic analysis.
Results: Significant recovery of erectile function was observed in the high-dose GBE group in a dose-dependent manner as compared with the vehicle-only group (P <.001). The high-dose GBE group had a significant increase in neurofilament-1 expression (P <.001), preservation of neural nitric oxide synthase nerve fibers of the dorsal penile nerve (P <.05), and increased smooth muscle cell content (P <.001) compared with the vehicle-only group. In addition, high-dose GBE markedly augments the smooth muscle-to-collagen ratio (P <.05) and reduces the apoptotic index.
Conclusion: Administration of GBE increases neuron survival and preserves the neural nitric oxide synthase nerve fiber and contents of the corpus cavernosum after bilateral cavernous nerve injury. These implications indicate the beneficial effects of GBE use in the repair of the cavernous nerve and recovery of erectile function after radical prostatectomy.
Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.