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Authors Le B, Chen H, Zirkin B, Burnett A
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Journal Andrology Volume: 2 Issue: 4 Pages: 484-90
Publish Date 2014 Jul
PubMed ID 24817562

Over the past several decades, our understanding of the regulatory mechanisms of testosterone production has increased significantly. Concurrently, the medical treatment of hypogonadism, particularly in the ageing male has increased. This review article consolidates some of our insights into the regulatory mechanisms of endogenous testosterone production and examines promising new targets that may allow endogenous production of testosterone to be re-established in males with primary hypogonadism. We examined the published scientific literature regarding regulatory mechanisms of testosterone biosynthesis with a focus on Leydig cell physiology and small-molecule regulation that resulted in increased testosterone production. We identified several pathways that have been manipulated pharmacologically to increase Leydig cell testosterone production, including phosphodiesterases, the cholesterol translocator protein, the electron transport chain of mitochondria, cyclooxygenases and osteocalcin. Manipulation of these pathways with small molecules has helped further our understanding of the regulatory pathways of testosterone biosynthesis. Herein, we identified five future targets that might promote increased endogenous testosterone production through the Leydig cell instead of relying on exogenous testosterone administration. Copyright © 2018 The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System