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      Prenatal stress reduces fertility of male offspring in mice, without affecting their adult testosterone levels.

      Hormones and Behavior

      Animals, Arousal, physiology, Copulation, Ejaculation, Female, Male, Mice, Pregnancy, Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects, Reaction Time, Sexual Behavior, Animal, Stress, Psychological, complications, Testosterone, blood

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          Abstract

          The male offspring of mice stressed by crowding during the final third of pregnancy showed reductions in sexual behavior and fertility. When paired with receptive females, their latencies to mount and to achieve intromission and ejaculation were greater than controls, and 30% of them failed to ejaculate in the 100-min test. When housed continuously for 4 days with females, 31% of them failed to impregnate their partners, compared with 4% of controls. The sexual receptivity of the untreated females paired with prenatally stressed males was not affected. Resting testosterone levels of prenatally stressed males did not differ from those of controls, and the pattern of rise and fall of testosterone during a 60-min interaction with a female showed only minor differences. The results suggest a central, rather than peripheral, mediation of the behavioral effects of prenatal stress.

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          2793076

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