Effect of chronic administration of 7α-methyl-19-nortestosterone on serum testosterone, number of spermatozoa and fertility in adult male bonnet monkeys (Macaca radiata)
Ramachandra,S.G.; Ramesh,V.; Krishnamurthy,H.N.; Kumar,Narender; Sundaram,Kalyan; Hardy,Matthew P.; Rao,A.Jagannadha
Reproduction 124(2): 301-309
Publication date: 2002
Hormonal approaches to male contraception that are based on the suppression of LH secretion require androgen replacement treatment to maintain sexual behaviour and secondary sexual characteristics. Androgen supplementation not only involves large and frequent doses of testosterone esters but also results in undesirable effects on the prostate gland. In an attempt to avoid such problems, a synthetic androgen, 7alpha-methyl-19-nortestosterone (MENT), which is much more potent than testosterone, has been developed. In the present study, MENT was administered at different doses (25, 50, 100, 300 and 1000 microg day(-1)) either alone or in combination with oestradiol via Silastic implants for a specified period to adult male bonnet monkeys (Macaca radiata). Blood and semen samples were collected at specific intervals and analysed for serum testosterone and seminal parameters, respectively. The results of the present study clearly indicate that administration of MENT at all doses tested results in suppression of the nocturnal surge of testosterone (by day 3), as well as a decrease in the number of spermatozoa (by day 45). Co-administration of oestradiol resulted in a reduction in the dose of MENT required to suppress the nocturnal surge. None of the male bonnet monkeys treated with MENT were able to impregnate females, clearly demonstrating the efficacy of MENT in blocking fertility in male bonnet monkeys.