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105 CHAPTER 27: THE MALE REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEM Chapter Overview Introduction Sexual reproduction is innate to most living things. Besides procreation, the sexual reproduction processes provide a source of new varieties for a species as this chapter explains. Dr. Saladin also illuminates sex determination in humans and then delves into the more quotidian aspects of the male reproductive system such as the anatomy, physiology, and development of the sex organs as well as the control and implementation of intercourse in men. Probably the most important clinical applications in this chapter relate to sexually transmitted diseases. Key Concepts Here are some concepts that students should have a better understanding of after reading this chapter: sexual reproduction as a source of genetic diversity; roles of the two gametes; chromosomal sex determination; the functions of the hormones in sex determination and the early development of sex organs; descent, anatomy, and histology of the gonads; structures and activities of the testis, scrotum, ducts, and accessory glands; morphology of the penis; factors governing the onset and progress of puberty and its consequences to the male’s body; climacteric and other age-related changes in sexual physiology; the processes of meiosis leading to haploid gametes and spermatogenesis and the structure of the spermatozoon; the functions and constituents of semen; sexual intercourse, including regulation of excitement, erection, ejaculation, orgasm, and resolution; and the causes, prevention, and treatments of common sexually transmitted diseases. Topics for Discussion 1. Human papillomavirus (i.e., HPV) has emerged as a significant STD. Among the side effects of some strains are cervical and penile cancers. Students should be encouraged to educate themselves about this disease. Gardasil®, a vaccine effective against several varieties of HPV, is now being given to young teenage females. Why not males too? 2. Impotence, prostatitis, and prostate cancer are topics that have been taboo for men. It is time for men to discuss these problems as frankly as women discuss breast cancer. 3. Aneuploidies of sex chromosomes such as Turner, Klinefelter, etc. are interesting for students and those syndromes are covered in chapter 29. However, the XYY condition is less discussed these days. Most people expect those with an XYY karyotype to be more frequently involved in violent crimes than XY men. For example, the convicted murderer Richard Speck was said to be XYY. Apparently, the extra Y chromosome, being associated with male sex determination, is then also associated with violence in some people’s minds. Mr. Speck (now also deceased), in reality, had a normal karyotype (i.e., XY). Possibly, men should not be expected to be violent if we wish a healthy society.
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This note was uploaded on 02/09/2012 for the course BIO 102 taught by Professor William during the Spring '11 term at Harvard.

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