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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Decreased urinary 5 alpha-androstane-3 alpha,17 beta-diol glucuronide excretion in patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia.

Urinary testosterone and 3 alpha-androstanediol (3 alpha diol G) glucuronides together with plasma testosterone, 5 alpha-dihydrotestosterone (DHT), and delta 4-androstenedione (delta 4) were measured in 43 normal young men (18-36 yr old), 23 elderly men without clinically evident prostatic pathology (54-89 yr old), 68 elderly men with benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH group; 54-91 yr old), and 26 elderly men with well differentiated cancer of the prostate (K group; 63-97 yr old). Plasma testosterone decreased slightly with age in all 3 elderly groups (from 591 to 438, 479, and 444 ng/100 ml, respectively). Plasma DHT, on the contrary, was significantly (P less than 0.01) higher in the BPH group than in the other three groups (68 vs. 30, 37, and 32 ng/100 ml, respectively). Plasma delta 4 was significantly lower (P less than 0.01) in the elderly K group than in all other groups (59 vs. 109, 83, and 78 ng/100 ml, respectively). Urinary testosterone glucuronide decreased with age in all 3 elderly groups (from 109 to 55, 38, and 44 micrograms/24 h, respectively) as a result of decreased androgen production rates with age. All 3 elderly groups also had decreased urinary 3 alpha diol G, from 194 to 123, 55, and 118 micrograms/24 h, respectively. The group of elderly patients with BPH had the lowest mean urinary 3 alpha diol G excretion together with the highest mean plasma DHT. This low urinary 3 alpha diol G excretion, which reflects a decrease in both androgen production and DHT metabolism, suggests a decrease in 3 alpha-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase activity, which, in turn, could explain the increased DHT availability and tissue retention in most target organs. Moreover, the extent of these modifications in androgen metabolism specific to the BPH condition raises the question of an overall alteration of androgen metabolism in patients with BPH which could be the cause of the disease.[1]


  1. Decreased urinary 5 alpha-androstane-3 alpha,17 beta-diol glucuronide excretion in patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia. Wright, F., Poizat, R., Bongini, M., Bozzolan, F., Doukani, A., Mauvais-Jarvis, P. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab. (1985) [Pubmed]
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