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Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 1965. 19 p. (WHO Technical Report Series No. 304)This WHO technical report focuses on the 1) psychosomatic factors in human reproduction; 2) hypothalamo-hypophyseal system; 3) mechanism of sexual rhythm; 4) nervous influences on the hypothalamus; 5) hormonal influences on the hypothalamus; 6) neuroendocrine aspects of sexual behavior; and 7) effects of drugs on reproduction. After summarizing current research status on the above-mentioned topics, the following research needs are suggested: 1) assays of individual human endogenous gonadotropins, suitable for clinical application; 2) autoradiography, fluorescent-antibody, spectrophometric interference and histochemical and biochemical techniques for studying cells that supply axons to the primary capillary plexus of the hypophyseal portal system and for studying effects of different hormonal status on hypothalmic structure and function; 3) computer techniques for evaluating electrophysiological data; 4) improved lesioning techniques; 5) comparative studies of reproductive activity patterns, exteroceptive factors, neuroendocrine factors in sexual and related social behavior, and long-term or delayed effects of drugs administered during gestation on subsequent sexual development; 6) studies of synaptic connections of hypothalamic neurones; 7) studies of endogenous gonadal and gonadotropin production in prepuberal animals; 8) functional significance of regional distribution of hypophyseal portal system; 9) mechanisms involved in selective uptake of labeled hormones; 10) hypothalamic lesions in species with spontaneous ovulation and active luteal function; 11) direct effect of gonadal hormones on single hypothalamic neurones studied with combination of microinjection and unit recording devices; 12) studies of the possibility of a direct feedback of gonadotropic hormones on the hypothalamus; 13) studies of the receptor mechanisms involved in neuroendocrine reflexes; 14) wider exploration of brain structures, with regard to feedback action of gonadal hormones; 15) studies of pineal function; 16) further investigation of a possible role of the peripheral autonomic pathways in reproductive processes; and 17) research on the application of tissue culture techniques for studying problems of the origin and metabolic effects of neurohormonal mediators and the biochemcial and morphological changes induced by sex hormones.
CONTRACEPTIVE TECHNOLOGY UPDATE. 1989 Oct; 10(10):142-3.250 men are participating in a clinical trial of a reversible male testosterone contraceptive at the University of Washington in Seattle and at 9 other centers in Europe, Asia, and Australia. Clinicians inject the WHO-developed testosterone enanthate (200 mg) into these men once a week. The testosterone contraceptive instructs the pituitary gland to deactivate 2 hormones which normally maintain the testes' function resulting in a temporary stop of spermatogenesis just like the female oral contraceptive instructs the pituitary gland to suppress ovulation. Tests of 5 ejaculates in preliminary trials have indicated that 50-60% of the men experience azoospermia. Investigators are concerned with the possibility that ejaculates during normal intercourse may contain enough sperm to impregnate the partner. An investigator at the University of Washington believes this clinical trial of 250 men will determine whether this is indeed the case. The concern about contraceptive failure is the main problem with contraceptive testosterone. The minor side effects include weight gain which may be due to increased muscle mass and some sodium retention, acne, and possible reduction of libido but that has not yet occurred in the 250 men in the clinical trial. This contraceptive testosterone does not remain active for long periods of time if administered orally. Researchers are now developing a newer form of the contraceptive which will increase the intervals between administrations from 1 week to 3 months. An investigator from Seattle guesses that this male contraceptive will not be available for marketing in the US until at least 1994.