Purpose: Androgens and estrogens influence voiding. In this study their tar
get sites in the lower urinary tract of the male rat were identified.
Materials and Methods: Cryosections of the bladder body, bladder neck, pros
tatic urethra, mid proximal urethra and prostatic autonomic ganglia of adul
t male rats were immunostained with specific estrogen receptor tr, estrogen
receptor beta (ER beta) or androgen receptor (AR) antibodies. The sections
were then examined under conventional, fluorescence or confocal fluorescen
Results: Go-expression of AR and ER beta in the urothelium, bladder smooth
muscle cells, proximal urethra striated muscle cells and neurons in the aut
onomic ganglia of the prostatic plexus suggests that estrogen and androgen
have direct effects in the lower urinary tract.
Conclusions: The local interaction of AR and ER beta in the hormonal contro
l of voiding is an intriguing possibility.