Lee Smith

Lee Smith
The University of Edinburgh | UoE · MRC Centre for Reproductive Health

BSc Hons; PhD

About

225
Publications
23,334
Reads
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5,281
Citations
Citations since 2016
107 Research Items
3631 Citations
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500600
Additional affiliations
June 2006 - present
The University of Edinburgh
September 1999 - May 2006
Mrc Harwell

Publications

Publications (225)
Article
Full-text available
Glucocorticoids are steroids involved in key physiological processes such as development, metabolism, inflammatory and stress responses and are mostly used exogenously as medications to treat various inflammation-based conditions. They act via the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) expressed in most cells. Exogenous glucocorticoids can negatively impact...
Article
Full-text available
Decidualization is the hormone-dependent process of endometrial remodeling that is essential for fertility and reproductive health. It is characterized by dynamic changes in the endometrial stromal compartment including differentiation of fibroblasts, immune cell trafficking and vascular remodeling. Deficits in decidualization are implicated in dis...
Article
Spermatozoa are comprised of many unique proteins not expressed elsewhere. Sperm-specific proteins are first expressed at puberty, after the development of immune tolerance to self-antigens, and have been assumed to remain confined inside the seminiferous tubules, protected from immune cell recognition by various mechanisms of testicular immune pri...
Preprint
Full-text available
Decidualisation is the hormone-dependent process of endometrial remodelling that is essential for fertility and reproductive health. It is characterised by dynamic changes in the endometrial stromal compartment including differentiation of fibroblasts, immune cell trafficking and vascular remodelling. Deficits in decidualisation are implicated in d...
Article
Testicular Leydig cells (LCs) are the principal source of circulating testosterone in males. LC steroidogenesis maintains sexual function, fertility and general health, and is influenced by various paracrine factors. The leukemia inhibitory factor receptor (LIFR) is expressed in the testis and activated by different ligands, including leukemia inhi...
Article
Sertoli cells are the orchestrators of spermatogenesis; they support fetal germ cell commitment to the male pathway and are essential for germ cell development, from maintenance of the spermatogonial stem cell niche and spermatogonial populations, through meiosis and spermiogeneis and to the final release of mature spermatids during spermiation. Ho...
Article
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Leydig cells (LC) are the main testicular androgen-producing cells. In eutherian mammals, two types of LCs emerge successively during testicular development, fetal Leydig cells (FLCs) and adult Leydig cells (ALCs). Both display significant differences in androgen production and regulation. Using bulk RNA sequencing, we compared the transcriptomes o...
Article
Background : Circulating prolactin concentration in rodents and humans is sexually dimorphic. Estrogens are a well‐characterised stimulator of prolactin release. Circulating prolactin fluctuates throughout the menstrual/estrous cycle of females in response to estrogen levels, but remains continually low in males. We have previously identified andro...
Preprint
Full-text available
Leydig cells (LC) are the main testicular androgen-producing cells. In eutherian mammals, two types of LCs emerge successively during testicular development, fetal Leydig cells (FLCs) and adult Leydig cells (ALCs). Both display significant differences in androgen production and regulation. Using bulk RNA sequencing, we compared the transcriptomes o...
Article
Full-text available
Adrenal androgens are fundamental mediators of ovarian folliculogenesis, embryonic implantation, and breast development. Although adrenal androgen function in target tissues are well characterized, there is little research covering the role of androgen-signaling within the adrenal itself. Adrenal glands express AR which is essential for the regress...
Article
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Focal dysgenesis is a consistent feature of testicular dysgenesis syndrome (TDS) in humans. Rodent studies show that perturbation of androgens (e.g. following phthalate exposure) during a fetal masculinisation programming window (MPW) predisposes to a TDS phenotype. This study aimed to determine whether dissociation and reconstitution of rat fetal...
Article
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Background Despite the increasing popularity of deliverable transgenics, a robust and fully validated method for targeting Leydig cells, capable of delivering long‐term transgene expression, is yet to be defined. Objectives We compared three viral vector systems in terms of their cell targeting specificity, longevity of gene expression and impact...
Article
Full-text available
Simple Summary: Substantial strides have been made in treating childhood cancers; however, as a result of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, young males experience long-term side effects, including impaired fertility. Whilst prepubertal testicular tissue can be cryopreserved prior to gonadotoxic treatments, it remains to be determined how to generate m...
Article
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The anterior and intermediate lobes of the pituitary are composed of endocrine cells, vasculature and supporting cells, such as folliculostellate cells. Folliculostellate cells form a network with several postulated roles in the pituitary, including production of paracrine signalling molecules and cytokines, coordination of endocrine cell hormone r...
Preprint
Circulating prolactin concentration in rodents and humans is sexually dimorphic. Estrogens are a well-characterised stimulator of prolactin release. Circulating prolactin fluctuates throughout the menstrual/estrous cycle of females in response to estrogen levels, but remains continually low in males. We have previously identified androgens as an in...
Preprint
Testicular microcalcifications consist of hydroxyapatite and their demonstration by ultrasound has been associated with increased risk of testicular germ cell cancer (TGCT). Here, we show that fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF23), a bone-specific regulator of phosphate homeostasis, is expressed in testicular germ cell neoplasia in situ (GCNIS), embr...
Article
Full-text available
Male development, fertility, and lifelong health are all androgen-dependent. Approximately 95% of circulating testosterone is synthesized by the testis and the final step in this canonical pathway is controlled by the activity of the hydroxysteroid-dehydrogenase-17-beta-3 (HSD17B3). To determine the role of HSD17B3 in testosterone production and an...
Article
The future fertility of prepubertal boys with cancer may be irreversibly compromised by chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy. Successful spermatogenesis has not been achieved following the xenotransplantation of prepubertal human testis tissue, which is likely due to the failure of somatic cell maturation and function. We used a validated xenograft mod...
Article
Full-text available
Exogenous androgen replacement is used to treat symptoms associated with low testosterone in males. However, adverse cardiovascular risk and negative fertility impacts impel development of alternative approaches to restore/maintain Leydig cell (LC) androgen production. Stem Leydig cell (SLC) transplantation shows promise in this regard however, pra...
Article
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Androgens are known to be an essential regulator of male health. Androgen receptor (AR) is widely expressed throughout the adrenal cortex, yet the wider role for androgen signalling in the adrenal remains underexplored. To investigate AR-dependent and AR-independent androgen signalling in the adrenal, we used a novel mouse model with a specific abl...
Article
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Objectives: The current study aims to identify markers that would reflect the number of Leydig cells present in the testis, to help determine whether labour-intensive methods such as stereology are necessary. We used our well-characterised Sertoli cell ablation model in which we have empirically established the size of the Leydig cell population,...
Article
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Background The interstitium of the mouse testis contains Leydig cells and a small number of steroidogenic cells with adrenal characteristics which may be derived from the fetal adrenal during development or may be a normal subset of the developing fetal Leydig cells. Currently it is not known what regulates development and/or proliferation of this...
Article
Since Enrico Sertoli's first depiction of Sertoli cells in the 19th century, the role of Sertoli cells as a hub for both testis biology and as a potential therapeutic tool, continues to grow. The function of Sertoli cells in the orchestration of testis differentiation and their role in nurturing germ cells in adult life has been well characterised...
Article
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The hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis regulates responses to internal and external stressors. Many patients diagnosed with conditions such as depression or anxiety also have hyperactivity of the HPA axis. Hyper-stimulation of the HPA axis results in sustained elevated levels of glucocorticoids which impair neuronal function and can ultimate...
Article
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Objective: Steroid hormones are responsible for the control of a wide range of physiological processes such as development, growth, reproduction, metabolism, and aging. Because of the variety of enzymes, substrates and products that take part in steroidogenesis and the compartmentalisation of its constituent reactions, it is a complex process to v...
Article
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Study question: Does loss of DMRT1 in human fetal testis alter testicular development and result in testicular dysgenesis? Summary answer: DMRT1 repression in human fetal testis alters the expression of key testicular and ovarian determining genes, and leads to focal testicular dysgenesis. What is known already: Testicular dysgenesis syndrome...
Article
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We have produced Csf1r-deficient rats by homologous recombination in embryonic stem cells. Consistent with the role of Csf1r in macrophage differentiation, there was a loss of peripheral blood monocytes, microglia in the brain, epidermal Langerhans cells, splenic marginal zone macrophages, bone-associated macrophages and osteoclasts, and peritoneal...
Article
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Testicular Leydig cells (LCs) are the primary source of circulating androgen in men. As men age, circulating androgen levels decline. However, whether reduced LC steroidogenesis results from specific effects of aging within LCs or reflects degenerative alterations to the wider supporting microenvironment is unclear; inability to separate intrinsic...
Article
Full-text available
Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF), a pleiotropic cytokine belonging to the interleukin-6 family, is most often noted for its role in maintaining the balance between stem cell proliferation and differentiation. In rodents, LIF is expressed in both the fetal and adult testis; with the peritubular myoid (PTM) cells thought to be the main site of produc...
Article
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A major endeavor of systems biology is the construction of graphical and computational models of biological pathways as a means to better understand their structure and function. Here, we present a protocol for a biologist-friendly graphical modeling scheme that facilitates the construction of detailed network diagrams, summarizing the components o...
Chapter
Testis development and function is regulated by intricate cell-cell cross talk. Characterization of the mechanisms underpinning this has been derived through a wide variety of approaches including pharmacological manipulation, transgenics, and cell-specific ablation of populations. The removal of all or a proportion of a specific cell type has been...
Article
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The gonad is a unique biological system for studying cell-fate decisions. However, major questions remain regarding the identity of somatic progenitor cells and the transcriptional events driving cell differentiation. Using time-series single-cell RNA sequencing on XY mouse gonads during sex determination, we identified a single population of somat...
Article
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The insulin family of growth factors (insulin, IGF1, and IGF2) are critical in sex determination, adrenal differentiation, and testicular function. Notably, the IGF system has been reported to mediate the proliferation of steroidogenic cells. However, the precise role and contribution of the membrane receptors mediating those effects, namely, insul...
Article
Male infertility and hypogonadism are clinically prevalent conditions with a high socioeconomic burden and are both linked to an increased risk in cardiovascular-metabolic diseases and earlier mortality. Therefore, there is an urgent need to better understand the causes and develop new treatments for these conditions that affect millions of men. Th...
Chapter
Spermatogenesis, the process essential for male fertility, relies on the continuous supply of differentiating germ cells from a pool of spermatogonial stem cells. Spermatogenesis is dependent upon hormonal stimuli that result in a complex pattern of intratesticular signalling pathways. The two main hormones responsible for its control are pituitary...
Article
Full-text available
Testicular adrenal rest tumours (TARTs) are benign adrenal-like testicular tumours that frequently occur in male patients with congenital adrenal hyperplasia. Recently, GATA transcription factors have been linked to the development of TARTs in mice. The aim of our study was to determine GATA expression in human TARTs and other steroidogenic tissues...