Urinary complications resulting from benign prostatic hyperplasia and bladder outlet obstruction continue to be a serious health problem. Novel animal model systems and imaging approaches are needed to understand the mechanisms of disease initiation, and to develop novel therapies for benign prostatic hyperplasia. Long-term administration of both estradiol and testosterone in mice can result in prostatic enlargement and recapitulate several clinical components of lower urinary tract symptoms. Herein, we use longitudinal magnetic resonance imaging and histological analyses to quantify changes in prostatic volume, urethral volume, and genitourinary vascularization over time in response to estradiol-induced prostatic enlargement. Our data demonstrate significant prostatic enlargement by 12 weeks after treatment, with no detectable immune infiltration by macrophages or T- or B-cell populations. Importantly, the percentage of cell death, as measured by terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick-end labeling, was significantly decreased in the prostatic epithelium of treated animals as compared to controls. We found no significant change in prostate cell proliferation in treated mice when compared to controls. These studies highlight the utility of magnetic resonance imaging to quantify changes in prostatic and urethral volumes over time. In conjunction with histological analyses, this approach has the high potential to enable mechanistic studies of initiation and progression of clinically relevant lower urinary tract symptoms. In addition, this model is tractable for investigation and testing of therapeutic interventions to ameliorate or potentially reverse prostatic enlargement.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine