Testosterone regulates erectile function and Vcsa1 expression in the corpora of rats

Rowena G. Chua, Giulia Calenda, Xinhua Zhang, Joseph Siragusa, Yuehong Tong, Moses Tar, Memduh Aydin, Michael E. DiSanto, Arnold Melman, Kelvin P. Davies

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Vcsa1 plays an important role in the erectile physiology of the rat. We conducted experiments to determine if erectile function, testosterone levels and Vcsa1 expression were correlated. In orchiectomized rats, total testosterone in blood fell from an average of 4 ng/ml to <0.04 ng/ml. Erectile function was significantly lower compared to controls and Vcsa1 expression was significantly (>6-fold) decreased. Injection of orchiectomized animals with testosterone (2 mg in 100 ml sesame oil every 4 days for 2 weeks) restored average levels of testosterone to 2 ng/ml, increased erectile function and significantly increased Vcsa1 expression. In isolated corporal cells there was testosterone dependent Vcsa1 expression. However, intracorporal injection of orchiectomized animals with a plasmid expressing Vcsa1 or its gene product Sialorphin (previously demonstrated to improve erectile function in old animals) gave no significant improvement in erectile function. Also, the ability of Sialorphin to reduce tension in corporal smooth muscle strips isolated from orchiectomized animals was impaired compared to controls.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-73
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular and Cellular Endocrinology
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - May 6 2009


  • Corpora
  • Erectile function
  • Submandibular gland
  • Testosterone
  • Vcsa1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Endocrinology


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