The liver cells of intact male rats given ethyl-α-p-chlorophenoxyisobutyrate (CPIB) characteristically show a marked increase in microbodies and in catalase activity, while those of intact female rats do not. In castrated males given estradiol benzoate and CPIB the increase in catalase activity and microbody proliferation is abolished, while in castrated females given testosterone propionate and CPIB the livers show a marked increase in microbodies and in catalase activity. No sex difference in microbody and catalase response is apparent in fetal and neonatal rats. Both sexes show a sharp rise in catalase activity on the day of birth, with a rapid decline at 5 days after birth. Thyroidectomy abolishes the hypolipidemic effect of CPIB in rats, but microbody proliferation and increase in catalase activity persists in thyroidectomized male rats, indicating that microbody proliferation can be independent of hypolipidemia. Adrenalectomy does not alter appreciably the microbody-catalase response to CPIB. These experiments demonstrate that (1) in adult rats, hepatic microbody proliferation is dependent to a significant degree upon male sex hormone but is largely independent of thyroid or adrenal gland hormones; (2) hepatic microbody proliferation is independent of the hypolipidemic effect of CPIB; (3) displacement of thyroxine from serum protein may not be sufficient cause for stimulation of microbody formation.

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