Definition - What does Leydig Cell mean?
Leydig cells produce the hormone testosterone, which is vital for sperm production. They are found inside male testicles, next to the seminiferous tubules, where sperm are produced. Damage to Leydig cells can result in male infertility.
Leydig cells are also called interstitial cells of Leydig.
FertilitySmarts explains Leydig Cell
Leydig cells are a part of the endocrine system, signaling cellular functions using hormones, or chemical messengers. The pituitary gland in the brain secretes a hormone called luteinizing hormone (LH), which binds to Leydig cells and causes them to produce testosterone. Testosterone is necessary in large amounts to begin and maintain the production of sperm in the nearby seminiferous tubules. Infertility can be a result of low testosterone production in the Leydig cells, resulting in low sperm production.
A very small percentage of testicular tumors are Leydig cell tumors, which are usually benign. These can cause infertility by interfering with testosterone production, although the infertility is normally reversed once the tumor has been removed.