To understand the roles of estrogen, ERa and ERp in the development of prostate glands, the gene knockout strategy has been used. The adult male aERKO mouse prostate shows normal development and histology, specifically in the ventral prostate (VP)42'43 and anterior prostate (AP).44 With aging, the weights of aERKO seminal vehicle (SV) and AP increased,45 although they remain histologically indistinguishable from that of WT littermates.42,44
The initial description of targeted disruption of the gene encoding ERp reported some evidence of epithelial hyperplasia in pERKO prostates.46 Weihua et al.26 further reported that pERKO mice had multiple hyperplastic foci in the peripheral and central zones of the VP at five months; by one year of age, eight of ten pERKO VPs had multiple hyperplastic lesions, and most epithelial cells stained positively for the proliferation antigen Ki-67. However, other studies of the prostate phenotype in ERp-deficient mice,42,43,47 failed to corroborate the initial report of Krege et al.,46 and no hyperplasia was seen in prostate lobes of pERKO line at 12-20 months.42,43,47 The reason for discrepant results from mice with the same apparent genotype is unclear, yet other factors might affect the mice, such as diet or infection. In general, there is no significant histological changes in prostates of aERKO mice, and with controversial observation in prostate of pERKO Mice.
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