In the mouse, lh depletes cholesterol esters while prolactin promotes their accumulation in the testes (Bartke, 1969, 1971). In prepuberal mice, the concentration of total cholesterol in the testes has been reported to decrease (Simmons, 1969) and to increase with age (Ichihara, 1969). After weaning, the concentration of total cholesterol has been reported to remain approximately the same until the age of 90 days (Simmons, 1969) or to increase more than two-fold between the ages of 42 and 49 days (Ichihara, 1969). No information is available on the amounts of free and esterified cholesterol in the testes of immature mice. The concentration of esterified and free cholesterol in the testes of mice between the ages of 5 and 120 days has, therefore, been studied.
Random-bred mice derived from crossing YS/ChWf, YS/ChWf-dw and Dw/Wf strains were mated after 2 months of age and, thereafter, kept in pairs. The litters were weaned at the age of 21 to 23 days. Animals were killed by cervical dislocation and the concentration of free and esterified cholesterol was measured as previously described (Bartke, 1969). In mice less than 3 weeks old, the testes from two to eight animals were used for each determination. For statistical calculations and presentation, the results were pooled into nine groups. Within each group, there were no differences in the concentration of
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