SciCombinator

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Concept: Penis

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Women’s preferences for penis size may affect men’s comfort with their own bodies and may have implications for sexual health. Studies of women’s penis size preferences typically have relied on their abstract ratings or selecting amongst 2D, flaccid images. This study used haptic stimuli to allow assessment of women’s size recall accuracy for the first time, as well as examine their preferences for erect penis sizes in different relationship contexts. Women (N = 75) selected amongst 33, 3D models. Women recalled model size accurately using this method, although they made more errors with respect to penis length than circumference. Women preferred a penis of slightly larger circumference and length for one-time (length = 6.4 inches/16.3 cm, circumference = 5.0 inches/12.7 cm) versus long-term (length = 6.3 inches/16.0 cm, circumference = 4.8 inches/12.2 cm) sexual partners. These first estimates of erect penis size preferences using 3D models suggest women accurately recall size and prefer penises only slightly larger than average.

Concepts: Computer graphics, Erectile dysfunction, Preference, Penis, Erection, Human penis size, Micropenis, Penis enlargement

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ABSTRACT Male circumcision reduces female-to-male HIV transmission. Hypothesized mechanisms for this protective effect include decreased HIV target cell recruitment and activation due to changes in the penis microbiome. We compared the coronal sulcus microbiota of men from a group of uncircumcised controls (n = 77) and from a circumcised intervention group (n = 79) at enrollment and year 1 follow-up in a randomized circumcision trial in Rakai, Uganda. We characterized microbiota using16S rRNA gene-based quantitative PCR (qPCR) and pyrosequencing, log response ratio (LRR), Bayesian classification, nonmetric multidimensional scaling (nMDS), and permutational multivariate analysis of variance (PerMANOVA). At baseline, men in both study arms had comparable coronal sulcus microbiota; however, by year 1, circumcision decreased the total bacterial load and reduced microbiota biodiversity. Specifically, the prevalence and absolute abundance of 12 anaerobic bacterial taxa decreased significantly in the circumcised men. While aerobic bacterial taxa also increased postcircumcision, these gains were minor. The reduction in anaerobes may partly account for the effects of circumcision on reduced HIV acquisition. IMPORTANCE The bacterial changes identified in this study may play an important role in the HIV risk reduction conferred by male circumcision. Decreasing the load of specific anaerobes could reduce HIV target cell recruitment to the foreskin. Understanding the mechanisms that underlie the benefits of male circumcision could help to identify new intervention strategies for decreasing HIV transmission, applicable to populations with high HIV prevalence where male circumcision is culturally less acceptable.

Concepts: HIV, Cellular respiration, Foreskin, Penis, Circumcision, Glans penis, Frenulum of prepuce of penis, Foreskin restoration

174

Low-intensity extracorporeal shock wave therapy (LI-ESWT) is a novel modality that has recently been developed for treating erectile dysfunction (ED). Unlike other current treatment options for ED, all of which are palliative in nature, LI-ESWT is unique in that it aims to restore the erectile mechanism in order to enable natural or spontaneous erections. Results from basic science experiments have provided evidence that LI-ESWT induces cellular microtrauma, which in turn stimulates the release of angiogenic factors and the subsequent neovascularization of the treated tissue. Extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT) has been clinically investigated and applied in several medical fields with various degrees of success. High-intensity shock wave therapy is used for lithotripsy because of its focused mechanical destructive nature, and medium-intensity shock waves have been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties and are used for treating a wide array of orthopedic conditions, such as non-union fractures, tendonitis, and bursitis. In contrast, LI-ESWT has angiogenetic properties and is therefore used in the management of chronic wounds, peripheral neuropathy, and in cardiac neovascularization. As a result of these characteristics we initiated a series of experiments evaluating the effect of LI-ESWT on the cavernosal tissue of patients with vasculogenic ED. The results of our studies, which also included a double-blind randomized control trial, confirm that LI-ESWT generates a significant clinical improvement of erectile function and a significant improvement in penile hemodynamics without any adverse effects. Although further extensive research is needed, LI-ESWT may create a new standard of care for men with vasculogenic ED.

Concepts: Medicine, Randomized controlled trial, Science, Erectile dysfunction, Penis, Shock wave, Erection, Shockwave

171

In recent years, penile traction therapy (PTT) has gained considerable interest as a novel nonsurgical treatment option for men with Peyronie’s disease (PD) and short penises. The current published literature suggests that selected cases of PD may benefit from a conservative approach with PTT, resulting in increased penile length and reduction of penile deformity. It appears to be safe and well tolerated but requires a great deal of patient compliance and determination. This article reviews the current literature pertaining to the use of PTT in men with PD, short penises and in the setting of pre- and postprosthesis corporal fibrosis.

Concepts: Andrology, Literature, Erectile dysfunction, Penis, Peyronie's disease, Art, Micropenis, Penis enlargement

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OBJECTIVE: To investigate the efficacy of DA-8031, a novel compound for the treatment of premature ejaculation (PE), we performed in vivo pharmacological studies using 2 preclinical animal models, electrical stimulation of sensory branch of pudendal nerve (SBPdn) and para-chloroamphetamine (PCA)-induced ejaculation model. METHODS: First of all, in electrical stimulation of an SBPdn model, an SBPdn in the pelvic canal of the spinal cord transected from rats was identified. Then an electromyogram (EMG) of the bulbospongiosus (BS) muscle was recorded during electrical stimulation of SBPdn after single intravenous (IV) dosing of DA-8031 and its reference drug, dapoxetine. In the second model, both seminal vesicle pressure (SVP) and the EMG profile of the BS muscle were recorded in PCA-induced ejaculation animals after treated with the same dosing regimen. RESULTS: Area under the curve (AUC) of the BS muscle by EMG wave exhibited a significant reduction in the DA-8031 and dapoxetine 3 mg/kg treated groups, and maximum amplitudes were also significantly decreased in DA-8031 1, 3 mg/kg and dapoxetine 3 mg/kg dose level in the SBPdN stimulation model. Consistent with these findings, in a PCA-induced ejaculation model, SVP increase was significantly inhibited from DA-8031 0.3 mg/kg dose level, and AUC of BS muscle EMG significantly decreased in the DA-8031 1, 3 mg/kg groups. CONCLUSION: The present study implied that DA-8031 contributed to an effective co-coordinated inhibition of the expulsion phase of ejaculation by modulating BS muscle activity and the emission phase through blocking SVP rise. From these findings, DA-8031 is further expected to have clinical efficacy in human studies.

Concepts: Semen, Electromyography, Orgasm, Ejaculation, Penis, Premature ejaculation, Pudendal nerve, Bulbospongiosus muscle

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To provide an overview of current approaches to penile reconstructive surgery in Peyronie disease (PD), and to discuss the challenges in restoring normal penile size and function.

Concepts: Andrology, Erectile dysfunction, Reconstructive surgery, Penis, Peyronie's disease, Human penis size, Micropenis, Penis enlargement

135

Hyper-elongated structures and their penetration are widespread among insects, for example, intromittent organs, ovipositors, and piercing-sucking mouthparts. The penetration of thin structures with high aspect ratio without buckling and rupturing is mechanically very challenging. However, this problem is economically solved in nature, and the solutions might be helpful for, for example, in the development of harmless catheters. We focus on the penetration process of a hyper-elongated structure of a cassidine beetle intromittent organ, termed a flagellum. We applied a three-point bending test for the flagellum to measure its bending stiffness along the entire flagellum. We demonstrated the bending stiffness gradient, in which the basal half is relatively stiff and the apical half is softer, whose good performance during copulation had been previously numerically demonstrated. The stiffness gradient is the result of the flagellum shape, which is cylindrical and tapered toward the tip. Moreover, the curved tip comprises a harder outer curve and a softer inner curve. Considering the findings of preceding studies, the flagellum works in the following way: (i) the bending stiffness gradient supports the flagellum, easily fitting to a shape of a highly coiled spermathecal duct, (ii) the stiffness property of the very tip may make the tip tougher, and (iii) the curled tip and homogeneously cylindrical shape of the organ help the very tip to fit the shape of the spermathecal duct of the female. Our study shows that the apparently simple flagellum penetration is achieved with numerous elaborate mechanical adaptations.

Concepts: Structure, 2000s music groups, Elasticity, Aspect ratio, Penis, Elastic modulus, Intromittent organ

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Sex-specific elaborations are common in animals and have attracted the attention of many biologists, including Darwin [1]. It is accepted that sexual selection promotes the evolution of sex-specific elaborations. Due to the faster replenishment rate of gametes, males generally have higher potential reproductive and optimal mating rates than females. Therefore, sexual selection acts strongly on males [2], leading to the rapid evolution and diversification of male genitalia [3]. Male genitalia are sometimes used as devices for coercive holding of females as a result of sexual conflict over mating [4, 5]. In contrast, female genitalia are usually simple. Here we report the reversal of intromittent organs in the insect genus Neotrogla (Psocodea: Prionoglarididae) from Brazilian caves. Females have a highly elaborate, penis-like structure, the gynosome, while males lack an intromittent organ. The gynosome has species-specific elaborations, such as numerous spines that fit species-specific pouches in the simple male genital chamber. During prolonged copulation (∼40-70 hr), a large and potentially nutritious ejaculate is transferred from the male via the gynosome. The correlated genital evolution in Neotrogla is probably driven by reversed sexual selection with females competing for seminal gifts. Nothing similar is known among sex-role reversed animals.

Concepts: Sexual intercourse, Male, Reproduction, Female, Sex, Reproductive system, Gamete, Penis

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Compelling evidence from many animal taxa indicates that male genitalia are often under postcopulatory sexual selection for characteristics that increase a male’s relative fertilization success. There could, however, also be direct precopulatory female mate choice based on male genital traits. Before clothing, the nonretractable human penis would have been conspicuous to potential mates. This observation has generated suggestions that human penis size partly evolved because of female choice. Here we show, based upon female assessment of digitally projected life-size, computer-generated images, that penis size interacts with body shape and height to determine male sexual attractiveness. Positive linear selection was detected for penis size, but the marginal increase in attractiveness eventually declined with greater penis size (i.e., quadratic selection). Penis size had a stronger effect on attractiveness in taller men than in shorter men. There was a similar increase in the positive effect of penis size on attractiveness with a more masculine body shape (i.e., greater shoulder-to-hip ratio). Surprisingly, larger penis size and greater height had almost equivalent positive effects on male attractiveness. Our results support the hypothesis that female mate choice could have driven the evolution of larger penises in humans. More broadly, our results show that precopulatory sexual selection can play a role in the evolution of genital traits.

Concepts: Sexual selection, Penis, Charles Darwin, Physical attractiveness, Sex organ, Human penis size, Secondary sex characteristic, Baculum

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