Monday, March 10, 2014
The Case of Moulay Ismael - Fact or Fancy? [How many children can a man have? The upper limit is probably around 900.]
Oberzaucher E, Grammer K. The Case of Moulay Ismael - Fact or Fancy? PLoS ONE 2014;9(2):e85292. http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0085292
Textbooks on evolutionary psychology and biology cite the case of the Sharifian Emperor of Morocco, Moulay Ismael the Bloodthirsty (1672–1727) who was supposed to have sired 888 children. This example for male reproduction has been challenged and led to a still unresolved discussion.
The scientific debate is shaped by assumptions about reproductive constraints which cannot be tested directly—and the figures used are sometimes arbitrary. Therefore we developed a computer simulation which tests how many copulations per day were necessary to reach the reported reproductive outcome.
We based our calculations on a report dating 1704, thus computing whether it was possible to have 600 sons in a reproductive timespan of 32 years. The algorithm is based on three different models of conception and different social and biological constraints.
In the first model we used a random mating pool with unrestricted access to females.
In the second model we used a restricted harem pool.
The results indicate that Moulay Ismael could have achieved this high reproductive success.
A comparison of the three conception models highlights the necessity to consider female sexual habits when assessing fertility across the cycle. We also show that the harem size needed is far smaller than the reported numbers.
Lapid O, Klinkenbijl JH, Oomen MW, van Wingerden JJ. Gynaecomastia surgery in The Netherlands: What, why, who, where. J Plast Reconstr Aesthet Surg. http://dare.uva.nl/document/512812
Gynaecomastia, breast enlargement in men, is common in all age groups. It is operated on by plastic surgeons, general surgeons and paediatric surgeons. It is therefore possible that there is a difference in the populations treated, the indications for surgery and the management used by the different practitioners.
We performed a survey in order to assess the approach to treatment of gynaecomastia by the different disciplines. An electronic survey questionnaire was sent to members of the Dutch societies of surgery, paediatric surgery and plastic surgery. We received 105 responses from plastic surgeons, 95 from general surgeons and 15 from paediatric surgeons, representing respective response rates of 38.7%, 23.8% and 42.8%.
Plastic surgeons operated on gynaecomastia most frequently. The diagnostic criteria and workup were similar for all disciplines, although general surgeons used more imaging.
There was a difference in the side operated on. General surgeons and paediatric surgeons operated mainly on unilateral cases (74% and 52%), while plastic surgeons operated mainly on bilateral cases (85%).
Pharmaceutical treatment with Tamoxifen was reported only by general surgeons (13%).
All disciplines used mainly the periareolar incision. Plastic surgeons reported more often the use of other surgical approaches as well as adjunctive liposuction and they did not always submit tissue for pathological examination. Perioperative antibiotics, drains and pressure garments were not always used. All disciplines agreed that the most common complication was bleeding, followed by seroma, infection, insufficient results, inverted nipple and nipple necrosis.
This survey highlights some differences in the practice of gynaecomastia surgery. The findings appear to point to the fact that the indications are different, being more aesthetic in the case of plastic surgeons. The results of this survey are important in establishing the standard of care and may be helpful for setting guidelines.
Krysiak R, Okopien B. The effect of aggressive rosuvastatin treatment on steroid hormone production in men with coronary artery disease. Basic Clin Pharmacol Toxicol 2014;114(4):330-5. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/bcpt.12169/abstract
Most steroid hormones are produced from cholesterol contained in low-density lipoproteins, which is uptaken by the gonads and adrenal cortex, and used as a substrate for steroidogenesis. Theoretically, in states associated with very low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels, cholesterol conversion to steroid hormones may be impaired. The study included 15 men with coronary artery disease, in whom initial statin treatment had been unsuccessful and therefore was replaced with rosuvastatin (20-40 mg daily).
Although in 11 patients, rosuvastatin decreased plasma LDL cholesterol levels to below 70 mg/dL, the drug only moderately reduced testosterone levels and increased gonadotropin levels, as well as insignificantly increased plasma ACTH levels. Aggressive rosuvastatin treatment did not affect plasma cortisol and dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate levels, and urine free cortisol. Our results suggest that intensive rosuvastatin treatment is associated with only small changes in adrenal and testicular steroidogenesis.
Sunday, March 9, 2014
Saturday, March 8, 2014
Wibowo E, Wassersug RJ. The effect of estrogen on the sexual interest of castrated males: Implications to prostate cancer patients on androgen-deprivation therapy. Crit Rev Oncol Hematol 2013;87(3):224-38. http://www.croh-online.com/article/S1040-8428(13)00032-2/abstract
Androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) for prostate cancer (PCa) treatment causes sexual dysfunction. We review here the effects of estrogen on the sexual performance of androgen-deprived males.
The major findings are:
1. Estrogen receptors are present in brain centers that are important for sexual behavior; as well as in male reproductive organs, in a pattern suggesting that estrogen may have some role in orgasmic function and genital skin sensitivity.
2. Estrogen restores sexual interest above castrate levels in many vertebrates including reptiles, birds and mammals; but multiple factors contribute to the magnitude of this effect.
3. Data from castrated men, aromatase-deficient men, male-to-female transsexuals, and men on antiandrogens all suggest that estrogen can maintain some libido in androgen-deprived men.
We discuss the general benefits of estrogen therapy to quality of life of men on ADT, the potential risks of this treatment, and possible treatment regimes for estrogen therapy in males. Unless contraindicated, we propose that PCa patients on ADT would benefit from supplemental parenteral estrogen.