Endocrine disruptors, such as environmental compounds with endocrine-altering properties, may cause hypospadias and cryptorchidism in several species, including humans. Anogenital distance is sexually dimorphic in many mammals, with males having longer anogenital distance on average than females. Animal models of proposed endocrine disruptors have associated prenatal exposure with hypospadias, cryptorchidism, and reduced anogenital distance. Human studies have correlated shorter anogenital distance to in utero exposure to putative endocrine disruptors. We review preliminary data suggesting that anogenital distance is reduced in boys with hypospadia and cryptorchidism. Hence, human hypospadias and cryptorchidism may be associated with reduced anogenital distance as a result of endocrine disruption.
View details for PubMedID 18419998