Novel technique for monitoring micturition and sexual function in male rats using telemetry.


We developed a novel technique to simultaneously monitor micturitions and erections in rats by using pressure monitoring within the corpus spongiosum of the penis (CSP). We present data validating this technique and report pressure waveform characteristics of micturition and erectile events during four different behavioral contexts in 10 awake, freely-moving male rats. Telemetric pressure transducers were implanted in the bulb of the CSP. CSP pressure was monitored while the animals were simultaneously recorded on video for determination of presence and volume (n = 7) of micturitions and while the animals underwent behavioral tests for determination of erections. Observed micturitions and CSP pressure waveforms characteristic of micturitions occurred simultaneously (r = 0.98) at a frequency of 32 +/- 4 micturitions per 24 h and with a volume of 0.95 +/- 0.12 ml/urination. Micturition duration recorded by CSP pressure and volume determined by urine weight were highly correlated (r = 0.82). We found that 100% of visually confirmed erectile events occurred simultaneously with CSP pressure waveforms characteristic of erections during ex copula reflex erection tests. During noncontact erection and mating tests more erections were identified by telemetry than by observation alone. Erections during mating tests had a different appearance than those seen in other contexts; they were shorter in duration (P < 0.05) and typically were characterized by a single suprasystolic CSP pressure peak, highlighting the context-specificity of erections. Quality of recordings remained stable in three of four rats we followed for 8 wk. We demonstrate that telemetric recording of CSP pressure provides a quantitative and qualitative assessment of penile erections and micturition in freely behaving rats.

9 Figures and Tables

Cite this paper

@article{Nout2007NovelTF, title={Novel technique for monitoring micturition and sexual function in male rats using telemetry.}, author={Yvette S. Nout and J C Bresnahan and Esther Culp and Claudia Tovar and Michael S Beattie and Markus H Schmidt}, journal={American journal of physiology. Regulatory, integrative and comparative physiology}, year={2007}, volume={292 3}, pages={R1359-67} }