Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

p. 378-384

Age-related changes in the concentration of elastic fibers in different regions of the rabbit penis

Abidu-Figueiredo, MarceloCosta, Waldemar SilvaChagas, Maurício AlvesSampaio, Francisco José BarcellosCardoso, Luiz Eduardo de Macedo

PURPOSE: To investigate whether elastic fiber content in the corpus cavernosum (CC), corpus spongiosum (CS) and tunica albuginea (TA) of the rabbit penis undergoes modifications with age. METHODS: Rabbits were sacrificed, in groups of ten animals each, at 30, 120, 240, and 730 days of age. Histological sections were obtained from the penile middle shaft and were stained with Weigert's resorsin fuchsin. The content of elastic fibers was determined using stereological methods, and was expressed as volume fraction. RESULTS: At 730 days of age, elastic fiber content was increased by 54% (p<0.004), 78% (p<0.004), and 87% (p<0.004) in the TA, CC, and CS, respectively, compared with animals aged 30 days. After 30 days of age, the concentration gradually and significantly increased until 240 days of age. In 730-day old animals, the concentration, compared with the previous age group, was unchanged in the CC and decreased by 20% (p<0.004) in the TA. CONCLUSIONS: Elastic fiber contents in the rabbit penis correlate with properties of penile tissues. Although after one month of age there is a gradual increase in these concentrations, in two-year old animals this trend is interrupted, which suggests that this could be an early alteration due to senescence.(AU)

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