Metachromasia has been shown to be a stromal marker for human benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). So far, it is not known whether comparable changes can be demonstrated in experimentally induced BPH in the dog or in a subhuman primate species. In the present study, the phenomenon of metachromasia could be demonstrated in the prostate of cynomolgus monkeys, too. The reactions was quantitatively intensified by the treatment with androstenedione - an aromatizable androgen which caused hyperplastic and hypertrophic changes - especially a stimulation of the smooth muscle - in the strome of the prostate. Simultaneous treatment with the aromatase inhibitor 1-methyl-ADD prevented both the phenomenon of metachromasia and the stimulation of the stroma. In conclusion, it is not only possible to induce hyperplastic/hypertrophic changes in the prostate of a subhuman species by means of an aromatizable androgen but, in addition, this effect is accompanied by a phenomenon which is thought to be typical for human BPH suggesting the suitability of this type of experiment for the study of the factors involved in the pathogenessi of BPH.
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