[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Centrin1 (CETN1) is a member of the EF-hand superfamily of calcium-binding proteins that localizes to centrosomes and regulates cytokinesis. Four centrin genes have been reported in mice, of which one, CETN1, is specifically expressed in the mouse testis. Computer-assisted analysis showed that CETN1 was predominantly expressed in the testis. In this study, human CETN1, CETN2, and CETN3 mRNAs from various organs were subjected to reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis. CETN1 was specifically detected only in the testis. Next, we identified polymorphisms of human CETN1 (centrin1) as a candidate gene in human male infertility. To investigate the possible association between CETN1 and male infertility, DNA from 282 infertile male patients and 96 male volunteers proven to be fertile was screened for mutations in CETN1. Ten polymorphisms were found in the open reading frame and the 3' untranslated region of CETN1. These data provide a basis for further large-scale genetic analysis of the association between genetic background and male infertility.
No preview · Article · Jan 2013 · Open Andrology Journal
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Bisphenol A (BPA) is known to be an endocrine disruptor that affects the development of reproductive system. The aim of the present study was to investigate a group of testicular genes dysregulated by prenatal exposure to BPA. Pregnant ICR mice were treated with BPA by subcutaneous administration on days 7 and 14 of pregnancy. Tissue and blood samples were collected from 6-week-old male offspring. Testes were subjected to gene expression analysis using a testis-specific microarray (Testis2), consisting of 2,482 mouse cDNA clones annotated with Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) terms indicative of testicular components and functions. To interpret the microarray data, we used the MeSH terms significantly associated with the altered genes. As a result, MeSH terms related to androgens and Sertoli cells were extracted in BPA-treated groups. Among the genes related to Sertoli cells, downregulation of Msi1h, Ncoa1, Nid1, Hspb2, and Gata6 were detected in the testis of mice treated with BPA (twice administered 50 mg/kg). The MeSH terms associated with this group of genes may provide useful means to interpret the testicular toxicity of BPA. This article concludes that prenatal BPA exposure downregulates expression of genes associated with Sertoli cell function and affects the reproductive function of male offspring. Additionally, a method using MeSH to extract a group of genes was useful for predicting the testicular and reproductive toxicity of prenatal BPA exposure.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2012 · The Journal of Toxicological Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Testicular toxicity of chemical substances has been generally assessed by sperm properties and histology. However, the methods can provide only a few information of the mechanism of the toxicity. The aim of this study is to show a method that can evaluate an overview of testicular toxic mechanisms using a tissue-specific microarray and classification of genes using Medical Subject Headings (MeSH). Male ICR mice (6 weeks old) were treated with doxorubicin hydrochloride (0, 0.1, 0.3 mg/kg/time, three times per week) by subcutaneous injection for 6 weeks (until 11 weeks old). Six weeks after the final administration, tissue and blood samples were obtained. Testes were subjected to gene expression analysis using quantitative RT-PCR and cDNA microarray (testis2). To interpret the microarray data, genes were classified using MeSH related to the functions of testis and sperm. Doxorubicin (both 0.1 and 0.3 mg/kg group) induced a decrease in sperm normal morphology and mortality, daily sperm production, and the number of Sertoli cells in the seminiferous tubules. Quantitative RT-PCR and microarray analysis showed dysregulation of mRNA expression levels of genes related to Sertoli cells, germ cells and spermatogenesis. Analysis of microarray data showed a significant enrichment of a total of ten MeSH categories including Spermatogenesis, Sertoli cells, Germ cells and Male infertility. This article concluded that analysis using testicular specific microarray combined with MeSH showed a more comprehensive overview of testicular toxic mechanisms than existing methods; i.e., examination of sperm properties and the histological examinations.
Full-text · Article · Oct 2011 · The Journal of Toxicological Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Polyamines are known to play important roles in the proliferation and differentiation of many types of cells. Although considerable amounts of polyamines are synthesized and stored in the testes, their roles remain unknown. Ornithine decarboxylase antizymes (OAZs) control the intracellular concentration of polyamines in a feedback manner. OAZ1 and OAZ2 are expressed ubiquitously, whereas OAZ-t/OAZ3 is expressed specifically in germline cells during spermiogenesis. OAZ-t reportedly binds to ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) and inactivates ODC activity. In a prior study, polyamines were capable of inducing a frameshift at the frameshift sequence of OAZ-t mRNA, resulting in the translation of OAZ-t. To investigate the physiological role of OAZ-t, we generated OAZ-t-disrupted mutant mice. Homozygous OAZ-t mutant males were infertile, although the polyamine concentrations of epididymides and testes were normal in these mice, and females were fertile. Sperm were successfully recovered from the epididymides of the mutant mice, but the heads and tails of the sperm cells were easily separated in culture medium during incubation. Results indicated that OAZ-t is essential for the formation of a rigid junction between the head and tail during spermatogenesis. The detached tails and heads were alive, and most of the headless tails showed straight forward movement. Although the tailless sperm failed to acrosome-react, the heads were capable of fertilizing eggs via intracytoplasmic sperm injection. OAZ-t likely plays a key role in haploid germ cell differentiation via the local concentration of polyamines.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To examine the expression profiles of the proteins translated from Acpin1 mRNA in germ cells.
Northern and western blotting of various tissues and immunohistochemical analysis of germ cells were carried out in a mouse model.
ACPIN1 protein was transcribed from the longer, 3' open reading frame (ORF) of Acpin1. An alternative-splicing variant, Acpin1vs, contained only the smaller, 5' ORF of the full-length Acpin1 gene. Its gene product, SAGSIN1, was expressed specifically in salivary glands. Retrotransposed regions of Acpin1 homology were also detected in various chromosomes, and intronless paralogous genes on the X chromosome were expressed in the testis and other tissues. The genomic structure of Acpin1 is highly conserved in mammals.
The two ORFs on the Acpin1 mRNA are independently translated in differentiated cells. Analysis of gene Acpin1 might clarify the molecular mechanism of spermatogenesis.
Full-text · Article · Aug 2009 · International Journal of Urology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To investigate the possible association between variations in the PRDM9 (MEISETZ) gene and impaired spermatogenesis in humans, we screened for mutations in the human PRDM9 gene using DNA from 217 sterile male patients and 162 proven fertile male volunteers. Two single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), 17353G>T (Gly433Val) and 18109C>G (Thr685Arg), were identified, as well as an intronic SNP, 15549G>T. These SNPs were identified in the heterozygous state in separate patients who demonstrated azoospermia. Neither variant was identified in fertile subjects. Our results suggest that mutations in PRDM9 may cause idiopathic infertility in human males.
Full-text · Article · Jul 2009 · Journal of Andrology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We have reported that xeroderma pigmentosum group A (Xpa) gene-knockout mice [Xpa (-/-) mice] are deficient in nucleotide excision repair (NER) and highly sensitive to UV-induced skin carcinogenesis. Although xeroderma pigmentosum group A patients show growth retardation, immature sexual development, and neurological abnormalities as well as a high incidence of UV-induced skin tumors, Xpa (-/-) mice were physiologically and behaviorally normal. In the present study, we kept Xpa (-/-) mice for 2 years under specific pathogen-free (SPF) conditions and found that the testis diminished in an age-dependent manner, and degenerating seminiferous tubules and no spermatozoa were detected in the 24-month-old Xpa (-/-) mice. In addition, a higher incidence of spontaneous tumorigenesis was observed in the 24-month-old Xpa (-/-) mice compared to Xpa (+/+) controls. Xpa (-/-) mice provide a useful model for investigating the aging and internal tumor formation in XPA patients.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Meichroacidin (MCA) is a highly hydrophilic protein that contains the membrane occupation and recognition nexus motif. MCA is expressed during the stages of spermatogenesis from pachytene spermatocytes to mature sperm development and is localized in the male meiotic metaphase chromosome and sperm flagellum. MCA sequences are highly conserved in Ciona intestinalis, Cyprinus carpio, and mammals. To investigate the physiological role of MCA, we generated MCA-disrupted mutant mice; homozygous MCA mutant males were infertile, but females were not. Sperm was rarely observed in the caput epididymidis of MCA mutant males. However, little to no difference was seen in testis mass between wild-type and mutant mice. During sperm morphogenesis, elongated spermatids had retarded flagellum formation and might increase phagocytosis by Sertoli cells. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that MCA interacts with proteins located on the outer dense fibers of the flagellum. The testicular sperm of MCA mutant mice was capable of fertilizing eggs successfully via intracytoplasmic sperm injection and generated healthy progeny. Our results suggest that MCA is essential for sperm flagellum formation and the production of functional sperm.
No preview · Article · Aug 2008 · Journal of Biological Chemistry
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Both retinoic acid (RA) and sodium butyrate (NaB) induce differentiation in embryonal carcinoma F9 cells. Phenotypic changes caused by RA are irreversible, whereas those of NaB are rapid and reversible. In this study, we investigated the effects of combinations of these two agents on F9 cell differentiation and showed that RA had no effect on the cells induced to differentiate with NaB and vice versa. Thus, F9 cells are induced to differentiate along two distinct pathways which are mutually exclusive.
Preview · Article · Jul 2008 · Development Growth and Regeneration
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The manchette, which is the structure that appears around the nuclei of elongated spermatids, is assumed to be involved in nuclear shaping during spermiogenesis and the transport of various proteins between the nucleus and sperm tail. In this report, we describe the molecular cloning and characterization of a mouse spermatid-specific manchette-related protein 1 (Smrp1) from a spermatid-specific subtracted mouse testis cDNA library. The isolated Smrp1 cDNA clones could be divided into three variants based on sequence analysis. Computer-assisted analysis showed that these variants were splice variants from a single locus of the mouse genome. The three putative proteins consisted of 296, 260, and 175 amino acids, respectively. Although 155 amino acids of the N terminus were common to the three proteins, they were distinguished by their C-terminal regions. Western blot analyses using specific antisera showed that SMRP1 expression was specific to the testes and that only the 261-amino-acid form was translated into protein. Immunohistochemistry revealed that SMRP1 was localized to the cytoplasm of step 9-12 elongated spermatids. The protein appeared in a cap formation that covered the caudal sides of the elongated nuclei. This localization pattern coincided with that of the manchette. SMRP1 may play an important role as a functional protein that co-operates with manchette proteins.
No preview · Article · Jun 2008 · Molecular Reproduction and Development
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) regulated by ets transcription factors facilitate carcinoma cell invasion. An ets family member, ESE-1, is expressed specifically in epithelial tissues, but its association with MMPs is obscure. In this study, we investigated whether ESE-1 regulates invasion of oral squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) via transcriptional activity of MMP-9.
HSC-3 and KB were used as human oral SCC lines. The expression of ESE-1 and MMP-9 was detected by in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. Invasion assay, gelatin zymography and Northern blotting were used to detect the invasion activity, the gelatinolytic activity and the expression of MMP-9 in the ESE-1 transfectants. Luciferase assays and mutation analysis were used for the transcriptional analysis of MMP-9 promoter region by ESE-1.
ESE-1 was expressed in the intermediate layer but not in the invasive area, in which MMP-9 was expressed, in the oral SCC tissues. ESE-1 suppressed invasion activity and 92 kDa gelatinolytic activity in HSC-3 as a result of transfection. ESE-1 regulates MMP-9 expression in a negative manner and the ets binding site on the MMP-9 promoter contributed to suppression by ESE-1.
These findings indicate that ESE-1 negatively regulates the invasion of oral SCC via transcriptional suppression of MMP-9.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The comprehensive changes in testicular gene expression before and after haploid germ cell differentiation were examined using microarray analysis. Approximately 14,000 expressed sequence tag (EST) clones of Mouse FANTOM Array ver.1 were hybridized with probes generated from mRNA of adult and juvenile (17 days postpartum) testes before the onset of spermiogenesis. Of 1315 genes that exhibited reproducible changes in expression (p < 0.05), 46% exhibited an increase of twofold or more in adults compared to juveniles, and 22% a decrease of twofold or more. The analysis not only confirmed the reported haploid-specific expression of several known genes, but also provided new information on the differential expression of various other genes, including upregulated genes such as Allc and Skd3 and downregulated genes such as hbb b1, before or after the onset of spermiogenesis. Based on the fundamental difference in expression profiles, and molecular functions of the encoded products, the genes were classified into several groups: postmeiotically upregulated genes encoding various enzymes, structural and regulatory proteins, and chaperones, and downregulated genes encoding haemoglobins and oxidation/reduction-related proteins or the machinery associated with protein synthesis, such as ribosomal proteins.
No preview · Article · Nov 2007 · International Journal of Andrology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Mice homozygousforthe jsd (juvenilespermatogonial depletion) allele are sterile because they become azoospermic. The onset of such azoospermia was investigated by histologic analysis of sections of testes from jsd/jsd mice.
The testes removed from C57BL/6-jsd/jsd mice aged 3 to 10 weeks were examined microscopically.
At 3 weeks of age, spermatocytes were seen in most of the seminiferous tubules of jsd/jsd mice. However, the number of tubules that contained spermatids was significantly smaller than that counted in the wild-type mice. Since degenerative figures were not abundant in the jsd/jsd testes, the decreased number of spermatids found in the tubules suggested a longer duration of development from spermatocyte to spermatid in jsd/jsd mice. The abnormality extended to the development of type B spermatogonia, and a decrease in their number became apparent after 6 weeks of age in most of the jsd/jsd tubules. However, as early as 3 weeks of age, a few seminiferous tubules in jsd/jsd mice already contained only Sertoli cells and type A spermatogonia.
It is assumed that the decrease in type B spermatogonia occurred at various ages and locations. The defect of spermatogenesis in jsd/jsd mice was attributable to aberrations in multiple steps of spermatogenesis.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2007 · International Journal of Urology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Haspin is a unique protein kinase expressed predominantly in haploid male germ cells. The genomic structure of haspin (Gsg2) has revealed it to be intronless, and the entire transcription unit is in an intron of the integrin alphaE (Itgae) gene. Transcription occurs from a bidirectional promoter that also generates an alternatively spliced integrin alphaE-derived mRNA (Aed). In mice, the testis-specific alternative splicing of Aed is expressed bidirectionally downstream from the Gsg2 transcription initiation site, and a segment consisting of 26 bp transcribes both genomic DNA strands between Gsg2 and the Aed transcription initiation sites. To investigate the mechanisms for this unique gene regulation, we cloned and characterized the Gsg2 promoter region. The 193-bp genomic fragment from the 5' end of the Gsg2 and Aed genes, fused with EGFP and DsRed genes, drove the expression of both proteins in haploid germ cells of transgenic mice. This promoter element contained only a GC-rich sequence, and not the previously reported DNA sequences known to bind various transcription factors--with the exception of E2F1, TCFAP2A1 (AP2), and SP1. Here, we show that the 193-bp DNA sequence is sufficient for the specific, bidirectional, and synchronous expression in germ cells in the testis. We also demonstrate the existence of germ cell nuclear factors specifically bound to the promoter sequence. This activity may be regulated by binding to the promoter sequence with germ cell-specific nuclear complex(es) without regulation via DNA methylation.
Preview · Article · Apr 2007 · Biology of Reproduction
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Somatic cell differentiation is required throughout the life of a multicellular organism to maintain homeostasis. In contrast, germ cells have only one specific function; to preserve the species by conveying the parental genes to the next generation. Recent studies of the development and molecular biology of the male germ cell have identified many genes, or isoforms, that are specifically expressed in the male germ cell. In the present review, we consider the unique features of male germ cell differentiation. (Reprod Med Biol 2007; 6: 1–9)
No preview · Article · Feb 2007 · Reproductive Medicine and Biology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We carried out single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) and mutation analyses of haploid germ cell-specific genes. An analysis of 13 genes associated with male infertility in approximately 300 infertile male patients and approximately 300 male volunteers with proven fertility revealed two mutations that might produce male infertility, and three SNP/mutations associated with male infertility in 13 germ cell-specific genes. These findings strongly support the hypothesis that dysfunction of germ cell-specific genes causes idiopathic human male infertility.
No preview · Article · Feb 2007 · Society of Reproduction and Fertility supplement
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We have characterized a new, membrane-associated acyl-CoA synthetase (ACS), termed bubblegum-related protein (BGR), which upon functional analysis demonstrated ACS activity capable of activating long- and very long-chain fatty acids. By multiple tissue RNA array and Northern blot analyses, human BGR mRNA was exclusively detected in testes. Murine Bgr mRNA was specifically expressed in pubertal and adult testes and was further demonstrated to be enriched in germ cells and Sertoli cells while present at a lower level in Leydig cells both by in situ hybridization and cell type fractionation. The complex 5'-end of the BGR mRNA appears to underlie translational control leading to differential utilization of alternative translation start sites. Thus, the BGR gene expands the bubblegum ACS family with a testes-specific, developmentally regulated member that may play a role in spermatogenesis.
No preview · Article · Aug 2006 · Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics