Indexed on: 08 Jul '08Published on: 08 Jul '08Published in: Micron
The endocrine portion of mammal testicle is represented by Leydig cells which, together with connective cells, leukocytes, blood and lymphatic vessels, form the intertubular space. The arrangement and proportion of these components vary in the different species of mammals and form mechanisms that keep the testosterone level--the main product of the Leydig cell--two to three times higher in the interstitial fluid than in the testicular blood vessels and 40-250 times higher in these than in the peripheral blood. Marked differences are observed among animal species regarding the abundance of Leydig cells, loose connective tissue, development degree and location of the lymphatic vessels and their topographical relationship with seminiferous tubules. In the jaguar about 13% of the testicular parenchyma is occupied by Leydig cells, 8.3% by connective tissue and 0.3% by lymphatic vessels. Although included in standard II, as described in the literature, concerning the arrangement of the intertubular space, the jaguar has grouped lymphatic vessels in the intertubular space instead of isolated ones. In the jaguar the average volume of the Leydig cell was 2386 microm3 and its average nuclear diameter was 7.7 microm. A great quantity of 2.3 microm diameter lipidic drops was observed in the Leydig cell cytoplasm of the jaguar. The Leydig cells in the jaguar occupy an average 0.0036% of the body weight and the average number per gram of testicle was within the range for most mammals: between 20 and 40 million.