The effects of testosterone in humans and other vertebrates occur by way of two main mechanisms: by activation of the androgen receptor (directly or as DHT), and by conversion to estradiol and activation of certain estrogen receptors. Free testosterone (T) is transported into the cytoplasm of target tissue cells, where it can bind to the androgen receptor, or can be reduced to 5α-dihydrotestosterone (DHT) by the cytoplasmic enzyme 5α-reductase. DHT binds to the same androgen receptor even more strongly than T, so that its androgenic potency is about times that of T. The T-receptor or DHT-receptor complex undergoes a structural change that allows it to move into the cell nucleus and bind directly to specific nucleotide sequences of the chromosomal DNA. The areas of binding are called hormone response elements (HREs), and influence transcriptional activity of certain genes, producing the androgen effects.
Primary hypogonadism (congenital or acquired): Testicular failure due to diseases and conditions in the body such as cryptorchidism, bilateral torsion, orchitis, vanishing testis syndrome, orchiectomy, Klinefelter Syndrome, chemotherapy, or toxic damage from alcohol or heavy metals; these men usually have low serum testosterone levels and gonadotropins (FSH, LH) above normal range Hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (congenital or acquired): Gonadotropin or luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) deficiency or pituitary-hypothalamic injury from tumors, trauma, or radiation; these men have low testosterone serum concentrations but have gonadotropins in the normal or low range.
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