Bulbourethral Glands

The bulbourethral glands secrete preseminal fluid

The paired bulbourethral glands (Cowper's glands) are pea-sized structures located in the urogenital diaphragm (see Fig. 21.1). The duct of each gland passes through the inferior fascia of the urogenital diaphragm and joins the initial portion of the penile urethra. The glands are compound tubuloalveolar glands that structurally resemble mucus secretory glands (Fig. 21.29). The simple columnar epithelium, which varies considerably in height depending on the functional state of the gland, is under the control of testosterone.

The clear, mucus-like glandular secretion contains considerable amounts of galactose and galactosamine, galac-turonic acid, sialic acid, and methylpentose. Sexual stimulation causes release of the secretion, which constitutes the major portion of the preseminal fluid and probably serves to lubricate the penile urethra.

Muscle Cells
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