Androgen modulation of hippocampal synaptic plasticity

N. J. MacLusky, T. Hajszan, J. Prange-Kiel, C. Leranth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

156 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This review briefly summarizes recent developments in our understanding of the role of androgens in maintaining normal hippocampal structure. Studies in rats and vervet monkeys have demonstrated that removal of the testes reduces the density of synaptic contacts on dendritic spines of cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) pyramidal neurons. This effect is rapidly reversed by treatment with either testosterone or the non-aromatizable androgen dihydrotestosterone, suggesting that maintenance of normal synaptic density is androgen-dependent, via a mechanism that does not require intermediate estrogen biosynthesis. Similar effects of these androgens are observed in ovariectomized female rats, except that in the female the actions of testosterone include a substantial contribution from estrogen formation. The ability to stimulate hippocampal spine synapse density is not directly related to systemic androgenic potency: thus, weak androgens such as dehydroepiandrosterone exert effects that are comparable to those of dihydrotestosterone; while partial agonist responses are observed after injection of the synthetic antiandrogen, flutamide. These data provide a morphological counterpart to observations that androgens enhance cognitive function and mood state, suggesting that these effects may result at least in part from hippocampal neurotrophic responses. The unusual specificity of these responses raises the possibility that effects of androgens on the brain may be mediated via different mechanisms than the masculinizing actions of these steroids in non-neural androgen target organs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)957-965
Number of pages9
JournalNeuroscience
Volume138
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2006

Fingerprint

Neuronal Plasticity
Androgens
Dihydrotestosterone
Testosterone
Estrogens
Flutamide
Cercopithecus aethiops
Androgen Antagonists
Dendritic Spines
Aptitude
Dehydroepiandrosterone
Pyramidal Cells
Synapses
Cognition
Testis
Hippocampus
Spine
Steroids
Maintenance
Injections

Keywords

  • CA1 hippocampal area
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone
  • Dihydrotestosterone
  • Flutamide
  • Spine synapse density

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this

Androgen modulation of hippocampal synaptic plasticity. / MacLusky, N. J.; Hajszan, T.; Prange-Kiel, J.; Leranth, C.

In: Neuroscience, Vol. 138, No. 3, 2006, p. 957-965.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

MacLusky, N. J. ; Hajszan, T. ; Prange-Kiel, J. ; Leranth, C. / Androgen modulation of hippocampal synaptic plasticity. In: Neuroscience. 2006 ; Vol. 138, No. 3. pp. 957-965.
@article{b0525966b85747ef9eaee7986dff2835,
title = "Androgen modulation of hippocampal synaptic plasticity",
abstract = "This review briefly summarizes recent developments in our understanding of the role of androgens in maintaining normal hippocampal structure. Studies in rats and vervet monkeys have demonstrated that removal of the testes reduces the density of synaptic contacts on dendritic spines of cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) pyramidal neurons. This effect is rapidly reversed by treatment with either testosterone or the non-aromatizable androgen dihydrotestosterone, suggesting that maintenance of normal synaptic density is androgen-dependent, via a mechanism that does not require intermediate estrogen biosynthesis. Similar effects of these androgens are observed in ovariectomized female rats, except that in the female the actions of testosterone include a substantial contribution from estrogen formation. The ability to stimulate hippocampal spine synapse density is not directly related to systemic androgenic potency: thus, weak androgens such as dehydroepiandrosterone exert effects that are comparable to those of dihydrotestosterone; while partial agonist responses are observed after injection of the synthetic antiandrogen, flutamide. These data provide a morphological counterpart to observations that androgens enhance cognitive function and mood state, suggesting that these effects may result at least in part from hippocampal neurotrophic responses. The unusual specificity of these responses raises the possibility that effects of androgens on the brain may be mediated via different mechanisms than the masculinizing actions of these steroids in non-neural androgen target organs.",
keywords = "CA1 hippocampal area, Dehydroepiandrosterone, Dihydrotestosterone, Flutamide, Spine synapse density",
author = "MacLusky, {N. J.} and T. Hajszan and J. Prange-Kiel and C. Leranth",
year = "2006",
doi = "10.1016/j.neuroscience.2005.12.054",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "138",
pages = "957--965",
journal = "Neuroscience",
issn = "0306-4522",
publisher = "Elsevier Limited",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Androgen modulation of hippocampal synaptic plasticity

AU - MacLusky, N. J.

AU - Hajszan, T.

AU - Prange-Kiel, J.

AU - Leranth, C.

PY - 2006

Y1 - 2006

N2 - This review briefly summarizes recent developments in our understanding of the role of androgens in maintaining normal hippocampal structure. Studies in rats and vervet monkeys have demonstrated that removal of the testes reduces the density of synaptic contacts on dendritic spines of cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) pyramidal neurons. This effect is rapidly reversed by treatment with either testosterone or the non-aromatizable androgen dihydrotestosterone, suggesting that maintenance of normal synaptic density is androgen-dependent, via a mechanism that does not require intermediate estrogen biosynthesis. Similar effects of these androgens are observed in ovariectomized female rats, except that in the female the actions of testosterone include a substantial contribution from estrogen formation. The ability to stimulate hippocampal spine synapse density is not directly related to systemic androgenic potency: thus, weak androgens such as dehydroepiandrosterone exert effects that are comparable to those of dihydrotestosterone; while partial agonist responses are observed after injection of the synthetic antiandrogen, flutamide. These data provide a morphological counterpart to observations that androgens enhance cognitive function and mood state, suggesting that these effects may result at least in part from hippocampal neurotrophic responses. The unusual specificity of these responses raises the possibility that effects of androgens on the brain may be mediated via different mechanisms than the masculinizing actions of these steroids in non-neural androgen target organs.

AB - This review briefly summarizes recent developments in our understanding of the role of androgens in maintaining normal hippocampal structure. Studies in rats and vervet monkeys have demonstrated that removal of the testes reduces the density of synaptic contacts on dendritic spines of cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) pyramidal neurons. This effect is rapidly reversed by treatment with either testosterone or the non-aromatizable androgen dihydrotestosterone, suggesting that maintenance of normal synaptic density is androgen-dependent, via a mechanism that does not require intermediate estrogen biosynthesis. Similar effects of these androgens are observed in ovariectomized female rats, except that in the female the actions of testosterone include a substantial contribution from estrogen formation. The ability to stimulate hippocampal spine synapse density is not directly related to systemic androgenic potency: thus, weak androgens such as dehydroepiandrosterone exert effects that are comparable to those of dihydrotestosterone; while partial agonist responses are observed after injection of the synthetic antiandrogen, flutamide. These data provide a morphological counterpart to observations that androgens enhance cognitive function and mood state, suggesting that these effects may result at least in part from hippocampal neurotrophic responses. The unusual specificity of these responses raises the possibility that effects of androgens on the brain may be mediated via different mechanisms than the masculinizing actions of these steroids in non-neural androgen target organs.

KW - CA1 hippocampal area

KW - Dehydroepiandrosterone

KW - Dihydrotestosterone

KW - Flutamide

KW - Spine synapse density

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=33644553823&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=33644553823&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2005.12.054

DO - 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2005.12.054

M3 - Article

C2 - 16488544

AN - SCOPUS:33644553823

VL - 138

SP - 957

EP - 965

JO - Neuroscience

JF - Neuroscience

SN - 0306-4522

IS - 3

ER -