The widespread occurrence of peritubular myoid cells in mammalian and other species suggests that they form an integral and functional component of the testis. Peritubular cells contribute to the contractile activity of testicular tubules and maintain mesenchymal-epithelial interactions with Sertoli cells both by cooperation in the deposition of extracellular matrix elements and by secretion of paracrine agonists. One of the most intriguing of these paracrine agonists is known as PModS (Peritubular factor that Modulates Sertoli cell function). The demonstration that, at least under some conditions, PModS production may be stimulated by androgens has led to the hypothesis that PModS may mediate part or all of the effects of androgens on Sertoli cells. The identity of PModS, however, remains elusive. Here we summarize data showing: (1) that production of PModS (-like factors) may not be limited to peritubular cells; (2) that the role of androgens in the control of PModS production remains controversial; (3) that other known mediators including IGF-I, bFGF, cytokines and heregulins mimic some or all of the effects of PModS; (4) that combinations of such growth factors have potent effects. It is concluded that, until PModS has been identified unambiguously, the hypothesis that it acts as an essential andromedin in the testis should be regarded with caution.