Testosterone Metabolites

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Testosterone gives rise to important downstream metabolites.  While 5α-dihydrotestosterone (5α-DHT) is well known for its role in exacerbating prostate problems, there is another metabolite that is emerging as a key influencer on prostate health.  That metabolite is known as 5α-Androstane-3β, 17β-diol (3β-Adiol).

3β-Adiol is created from 5α-DHT, catalyzed by the enzyme 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3β-HSD).  3β-Adiol does not bind to androgen receptors; rather 3β-Adiol is a potent stimulator of Estrogen Receptor-β (ERβ).  In the prostate, 3β-Adiol’s stimulation of ERβ prevents excess cell proliferation and stimulates apoptosis and re-differentiation.  ERβ stimulation via compounded 3β-Adiol is an emerging therapy in the treatment of aggressive prostate cancer.

3β-Adiol is commonly deficient in men taking 5α-reductase inhibiting drugs for the treatment of BPH or male pattern hair loss.

Who should get tested?

  • Individuals with a family history of prostate cancer or anyone concerned about their risk for prostate problems
  • Individuals taking pharmaceutical 5α-reductase inhibitors such as Proscar or Avodart
  • Individuals taking natural 5α-reductase inhibitors such as Saw Palmetto or higher dose zinc therapy
  • Any man taking supplemental testosterone
Test Code Profile Name Instructions
4417 Testosterone Metabolites Profile Instructions