Morphologic and histochemical study of blood capillaries in boar testes: effects of abdominal cryptorchidism.Teratology 2001; 63(1):42-51T
Few data exist about the features of testicular microvasculature under normal and pathologic conditions.
The morphology and lectin affinity of testicular capillaries were examined in healthy boars and in unilateral and bilateral abdominal cryptorchid boars.
The capillaries of scrotal testes contained a) the endothelial layer formed by two cells, b) the basal lamina constituted by collagen fibers and glycoconjugates with fucosyl, galactosyl, glucosyl, and neuraminic acid residues, and c) the pericyte layer formed by a single cell. These components participated in substrate exchange between blood and testicular tissue. The abdominal testes showed increased numbers of capillaries, which could exhibit a mature appearance, but also angiogenic or degenerative patterns. Angiogenesis was manifested in interstitial capillaries and was characterized by a) proliferation of endothelial cells, b) decreased thickness and decreased content of collagen fibers and glycoconjugates in the basal lamina, and c) lack of pericytes. Degenerative capillaries lay in association with seminiferous tubules and showed a) pyknotic endothelial cells; b) thickening, collagenization, and altered glycoconjugate content in the basal lamina; and c) increased development of pericytes. The angiogenesis of interstitial capillaries resulted in high vascular permeability, and the degeneration of intertubular capillaries led to defective substrate exchange between blood and seminiferous tubules.
Unilateral abdominal cryptorchidism did not alter the morphology and function of capillaries in the scrotal testis. Unilateral and bilateral abdominal cryptorchidism resulted in increased numbers and abnormal morphology and function of capillaries in abdominal testes. The proliferation of interstitial capillaries correlated with the immaturity of Leydig cells, and the degeneration of intertubular capillaries correlated with the thickening of the lamina propria.