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

Local suppressive effect of clonidine on penile erection in the dog.

Dogs, 8.5 to 10 kg. in weight, were anesthetized with sodium pentobarbital (35 mg./kg.), intraperitoneally. Penile erection as indicated by an increase in the intracorporal pressure (ICP-increase) was produced by electrical stimulation of the right cavernous nerves. Drugs were administered into the internal pudendal artery (IPA) and femoral vein. A low dose (0.2 to 0.4 microgram/kg.) of clonidine, an alpha 2 adrenoceptor agonist, which could not affect either ICP or systemic arterial pressure (SAP) through an intravenous route, did suppress the ICP-increase markedly via direct injection into the IPA which supplies the penile blood flow. By intra-IPA injection, yohimbine (2.5 micrograms/kg.), an alpha 2 adrenoceptor antagonist, remarkably restored the ICP to the erection state. By intravenous injection, clonidine at a dose of 1.6 to 3.2 micrograms/kg. also profoundly reduced the ICP-increase, but only negligibly lowered the SAP. The IPA blood flow (IPAF) decreased coincidentally when the ICP-increase was effectively reduced by either intravenous or intra-IPA injection of clonidine. These findings suggest clonidine could act locally in the penile structure to suppress penile erection, possibly resulting from a penile vasoconstriction involving alpha 2 adrenoceptor. Whether this vasoconstriction is caused by a direct alpha 2 stimulating effect on the vascular smooth muscle or by an alpha 2 presynaptic inhibition of the vasodilator nerve (cavernous nerve) endings has been discussed.[1]


  1. Local suppressive effect of clonidine on penile erection in the dog. Lin, S.N., Yu, P.C., Yang, M.C., Chang, L.S., Chiang, B.N., Kuo, J.S. J. Urol. (1988) [Pubmed]
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