The effects of different doses of testosterone (T), the aromatase inhibitors 1,4,6-androstatriene-3,17-dione (ATD) and 4-hydroxy-4-androstene-3,17-dione (4OH), and the combined treatment of T and ATD on luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) at the onset of puberty in juvenile Atlantic salmon males were investigated. T always increased pituitary LH. Also, ATD increased pituitary LH, though to a lesser extent than T. However, ATD combined with T diminished pituitary LH levels compared to T alone, indicating an aromatase-dependent positive feedback of T on LH in immature males. 4OH, which was less effective than ATD as an aromatase inhibitor, increased LH content. ATD treatment resulted in increased pituitary FSH levels, similar to those of mature controls. Positive effects of ATD on plasma FSH were found, indicating the presence of an aromatase-dependent negative feedback. The 4OH effects on FSH levels were inconsistent. T exerted both positive and negative effects on pituitary FSH and testes growth, depending on dose and season, with the positive effects being more pronounced with the low doses and the negative effects with the high doses. The treatment of T combined with ATD did not affect the positive effect of T alone on pituitary and plasma FSH, indicating the presence of an aromatase-independent positive feedback on FSH. There was a positive correlation between FSH and gonadosomatic index, especially during summer when gonadal development occurs.
2009. Vol. 153, no 4, 408-16 p.