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Sample records for mouse germ cell

  1. Embryonic germ cell lines and their derivation from mouse primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Labosky, P A; Barlow, D P; Hogan, B L

    1994-01-01

    When primordial germ cells of the mouse are cultured on feeder layers with the addition of the polypeptide signalling molecules leukaemia inhibitory factor, Steel factor and basic fibroblast growth factor they give rise to cells that resemble undifferentiated blastocyst-derived embryonic stem cells. These primordial germ cell-derived embryonic germ cells (EG cells) can be induced to differentiate extensively in culture and also form teratocarcinomas when injected into nude mice. Additionally, they contribute to chimeras when injected into host blastocysts. We have derived multiple EG cell lines from 8.5 days post coitum (dpc) embryos of C57BL/6 inbred mice. Four independent EG cell lines with normal male karyotypes have formed chimeras (up to 70% coat colour chimerism) when injected into BALB/c host blastocysts. Chimeric mice from all four cell lines are fertile, but only those from one line have transmitted coat colour markers through the germline. Studies have also been carried out to determine whether gonadal primordial germ cells can give rise to pluripotent EG cells. Germ cells from gonads of 15.5 dpc C57BL/6 embryos and newborn mice failed to produce EG cell lines. EG cell lines capable of forming teratocarcinomas and coat colour chimeras have been established from primordial germ cells of 12.5 dpc genital ridges. We are currently testing the genomic imprinting status of the insulin-like growth factor type 2 receptor gene (Igf2r) in our different EG cell lines. PMID:7835148

  2. The mouse dead-end gene isoform alpha is necessary for germ cell and embryonic viability.

    PubMed

    Bhattacharya, Chitralekha; Aggarwal, Sita; Zhu, Rui; Kumar, Madhu; Zhao, Ming; Meistrich, Marvin L; Matin, Angabin

    2007-03-30

    Inactivation of the dead-end (Dnd1) gene in the Ter mouse strain results in depletion of primordial germ cells (PGCs) so that mice become sterile. However, on the 129 mouse strain background, loss of Dnd1 also increases testicular germ cell tumor incidence in parallel to PGC depletion. We report that inactivation of Dnd1 also affects embryonic viability in the 129 strain. Mouse Dnd1 encodes two protein isoforms, DND1-isoform alpha (DND1-alpha) and DND1-isoform beta (DND1-beta). Using isoform-specific antibodies, we determined DND1-alpha is expressed in embryos and embryonic gonads whereas DND1-beta expression is restricted to germ cells of the adult testis. Our data implicate DND1-alpha isoform to be necessary for germ cell viability and therefore its loss in Ter mice results in PGC depletion, germ cell tumor development and partial embryonic lethality in the 129 strain. PMID:17291453

  3. Hematopoietic activity in putative mouse primordial germ cell populations.

    PubMed

    Scaldaferri, Maria Lucia; Klinger, Francesca Gioia; Farini, Donatella; Di Carlo, Anna; Carsetti, Rita; Giorda, Ezio; De Felici, Massimo

    2015-05-01

    In the present paper, starting from the observation of heterogeneous expression of the GOF-18ΔPE-GFP Pou5f1 (Oct3/4) transgene in putative mouse PGC populations settled in the aorta-gonad-mesonephros (AGM) region, we identified various OCT3/4 positive populations showing distinct expression of PGC markers (BLIMP-1, AP, TG-1, STELLA) and co-expressing several proteins (CD-34, CD-41, FLK-1) and genes (Brachyury, Hox-B4, Scl/Tal-1 and Gata-2) of hematopoietic precursors. Moreover, we found that Oct3/4-GFP(weak) CD-34(weak/high) cells possess robust hematopoietic colony forming activity (CFU) in vitro. These data indicate that the cell population usually considered PGCs moving toward the gonadal ridges encompasses a subset of cells co-expressing several germ cell and hematopoietic markers and possessing hematopoietic activity. These results are discussed within of the current model of germline segregation. PMID:25684074

  4. Mouse oocytes differentiate through organelle enrichment from sister cyst germ cells.

    PubMed

    Lei, Lei; Spradling, Allan C

    2016-04-01

    Oocytes differentiate in diverse species by receiving organelles and cytoplasm from sister germ cells while joined in germline cysts or syncytia. Mouse primordial germ cells form germline cysts, but the role of cysts in oogenesis is unknown. We find that mouse germ cells receive organelles from neighboring cyst cells and build a Balbiani body to become oocytes, whereas nurselike germ cells die. Organelle movement, Balbiani body formation, and oocyte fate determination are selectively blocked by low levels of microtubule-dependent transport inhibitors. Membrane breakdown within the cyst and an apoptosis-like process are associated with organelle transfer into the oocyte, events reminiscent of nurse cell dumping in Drosophila We propose that cytoplasmic and organelle transport plays an evolutionarily conserved and functionally important role in mammalian oocyte differentiation. PMID:26917595

  5. Metastable primordial germ cell-like state induced from mouse embryonic stem cells by Akt activation

    SciTech Connect

    Yamano, Noriko; Kimura, Tohru; Watanabe-Kushima, Shoko; Shinohara, Takashi; Nakano, Toru

    2010-02-12

    Specification to primordial germ cells (PGCs) is mediated by mesoderm-induction signals during gastrulation. We found that Akt activation during in vitro mesodermal differentiation of embryonic stem cells (ESCs) generated self-renewing spheres with differentiation states between those of ESCs and PGCs. Essential regulators for PGC specification and their downstream germ cell-specific genes were expressed in the spheres, indicating that the sphere cells had commenced differentiation to the germ lineage. However, the spheres did not proceed to spermatogenesis after transplantation into testes. Sphere cell transfer to the original feeder-free ESC cultures resulted in chaotic differentiation. In contrast, when the spheres were cultured on mouse embryonic fibroblasts or in the presence of ERK-cascade and GSK3 inhibitors, reversion to the ESC-like state was observed. These results indicate that Akt signaling promotes a novel metastable and pluripotent state that is intermediate to those of ESCs and PGCs.

  6. The mouse homolog of Drosophila Vasa is required for the development of male germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Tanaka, Satomi S.; Toyooka, Yayoi; Akasu, Ryuko; Katoh-Fukui, Yuko; Nakahara, Yoko; Suzuki, Rika; Yokoyama, Minesuke; Noce, Toshiaki

    2000-01-01

    Restricted expression of a mouse Vasa homolog gene (Mvh) expression is first detected in primordial germ cells (PGCs) after colonization of the genital ridges. Subsequently, Mvh is maintained until postmeiotic germ cells are formed. Here, we demonstrate that male mice homozygous for a targeted mutation of Mvh exhibit a reproductive deficiency. Male homozygotes produce no sperm in the testes, where premeiotic germ cells cease differentiation by the zygotene stage and undergo apoptotic death. In addition, the proliferation of PGCs that colonize homozygous male gonads is significantly hampered, and OCT-3/4 expression appears to be reduced. These results indicate that the loss of Mvh function causes a deficiency in the proliferation and differentiation of mouse male germ cells. PMID:10766740

  7. Survival of glucose phosphate isomerase null somatic cells and germ cells in adult mouse chimaeras.

    PubMed

    Keighren, Margaret A; Flockhart, Jean H; West, John D

    2016-01-01

    The mouse Gpi1 gene encodes the glycolytic enzyme glucose phosphate isomerase. Homozygous Gpi1(-/-) null mouse embryos die but a previous study showed that some homozygous Gpi1(-/-) null cells survived when combined with wild-type cells in fetal chimaeras. One adult female Gpi1(-/-)↔Gpi1(c/c) chimaera with functional Gpi1(-/-) null oocytes was also identified in a preliminary study. The aims were to characterise the survival of Gpi1(-/-) null cells in adult Gpi1(-/-)↔Gpi1(c/c) chimaeras and determine if Gpi1(-/-) null germ cells are functional. Analysis of adult Gpi1(-/-)↔Gpi1(c/c) chimaeras with pigment and a reiterated transgenic lineage marker showed that low numbers of homozygous Gpi1(-/-) null cells could survive in many tissues of adult chimaeras, including oocytes. Breeding experiments confirmed that Gpi1(-/-) null oocytes in one female Gpi1(-/-)↔Gpi1(c/c) chimaera were functional and provided preliminary evidence that one male putative Gpi1(-/-)↔Gpi1(c/c) chimaera produced functional spermatozoa from homozygous Gpi1(-/-) null germ cells. Although the male chimaera was almost certainly Gpi1(-/-)↔Gpi1(c/c), this part of the study is considered preliminary because only blood was typed for GPI. Gpi1(-/-) null germ cells should survive in a chimaeric testis if they are supported by wild-type Sertoli cells. It is also feasible that spermatozoa could bypass a block at GPI, but not blocks at some later steps in glycolysis, by using fructose, rather than glucose, as the substrate for glycolysis. Although chimaera analysis proved inefficient for studying the fate of Gpi1(-/-) null germ cells, it successfully identified functional Gpi1(-/-) null oocytes and revealed that some Gpi1(-/-) null cells could survive in many adult tissues. PMID:27103217

  8. Survival of glucose phosphate isomerase null somatic cells and germ cells in adult mouse chimaeras

    PubMed Central

    Keighren, Margaret A.; Flockhart, Jean H.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The mouse Gpi1 gene encodes the glycolytic enzyme glucose phosphate isomerase. Homozygous Gpi1−/− null mouse embryos die but a previous study showed that some homozygous Gpi1−/− null cells survived when combined with wild-type cells in fetal chimaeras. One adult female Gpi1−/−↔Gpi1c/c chimaera with functional Gpi1−/− null oocytes was also identified in a preliminary study. The aims were to characterise the survival of Gpi1−/− null cells in adult Gpi1−/−↔Gpi1c/c chimaeras and determine if Gpi1−/− null germ cells are functional. Analysis of adult Gpi1−/−↔Gpi1c/c chimaeras with pigment and a reiterated transgenic lineage marker showed that low numbers of homozygous Gpi1−/− null cells could survive in many tissues of adult chimaeras, including oocytes. Breeding experiments confirmed that Gpi1−/− null oocytes in one female Gpi1−/−↔Gpi1c/c chimaera were functional and provided preliminary evidence that one male putative Gpi1−/−↔Gpi1c/c chimaera produced functional spermatozoa from homozygous Gpi1−/− null germ cells. Although the male chimaera was almost certainly Gpi1−/−↔Gpi1c/c, this part of the study is considered preliminary because only blood was typed for GPI. Gpi1−/− null germ cells should survive in a chimaeric testis if they are supported by wild-type Sertoli cells. It is also feasible that spermatozoa could bypass a block at GPI, but not blocks at some later steps in glycolysis, by using fructose, rather than glucose, as the substrate for glycolysis. Although chimaera analysis proved inefficient for studying the fate of Gpi1−/− null germ cells, it successfully identified functional Gpi1−/− null oocytes and revealed that some Gpi1−/− null cells could survive in many adult tissues. PMID:27103217

  9. The ability of mouse nuclear transfer embryonic stem cells to differentiate into primordial germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Mansouri, Vahid; Salehi, Mohammad; Nourozian, Mohsen; Fadaei, Fatemeh; Farahani, Reza Mastery; Piryaei, Abbas; Delbari, Ali

    2015-01-01

    Nuclear transfer embryonic stem cells (ntESCs) show stem cell characteristics such as pluripotency but cause no immunological disorders. Although ntESCs are able to differentiate into somatic cells, the ability of ntESCs to differentiate into primordial germ cells (PGCs) has not been examined. In this work, we examined the capacity of mouse ntESCs to differentiate into PGCs in vitro. ntESCs aggregated to form embryoid bodies (EB) in EB culture medium supplemented with bone morphogenetic protein 4(BMP4) as the differentiation factor. The expression level of specific PGC genes was compared at days 4 and 8 using real time PCR. Flow cytometry and immunocytochemical staining were used to detect Mvh as a specific PGC marker. ntESCs expressed particular genes related to different stages of PGC development. Flow cytometry and immunocytochemical staining confirmed the presence of Mvh protein in a small number of cells. There were significant differences between cells that differentiated into PGCs in the group treated with Bmp4 compared to non-treated cells. These findings indicate that ntESCs can differentiate into putative PGCs. Improvement of ntESC differentiation into PGCs may be a reliable means of producing mature germ cells. PMID:26273226

  10. The chemokine SDF1/CXCL12 and its receptor CXCR4 regulate mouse germ cell migration and survival.

    PubMed

    Molyneaux, Kathleen A; Zinszner, Hélène; Kunwar, Prabhat S; Schaible, Kyle; Stebler, Jürg; Sunshine, Mary Jean; O'Brien, William; Raz, Erez; Littman, Dan; Wylie, Chris; Lehmann, Ruth

    2003-09-01

    In mouse embryos, germ cells arise during gastrulation and migrate to the early gonad. First, they emerge from the primitive streak into the region of the endoderm that forms the hindgut. Later in development, a second phase of migration takes place in which they migrate out of the gut to the genital ridges. There, they co-assemble with somatic cells to form the gonad. In vitro studies in the mouse, and genetic studies in other organisms, suggest that at least part of this process is in response to secreted signals from other tissues. Recent genetic evidence in zebrafish has shown that the interaction between stromal cell-derived factor 1 (SDF1) and its G-protein-coupled receptor CXCR4, already known to control many types of normal and pathological cell migrations, is also required for the normal migration of primordial germ cells. We show that in the mouse, germ cell migration and survival requires the SDF1/CXCR4 interaction. First, migrating germ cells express CXCR4, whilst the body wall mesenchyme and genital ridges express the ligand SDF1. Second, the addition of exogenous SDF1 to living embryo cultures causes aberrant germ cell migration from the gut. Third, germ cells in embryos carrying targeted mutations in CXCR4 do not colonize the gonad normally. However, at earlier stages in the hindgut, germ cells are unaffected in CXCR4(-/-) embryos. Germ cell counts at different stages suggest that SDF1/CXCR4 interaction also mediates germ cell survival. These results show that the SDF1/CXCR4 interaction is specifically required for the colonization of the gonads by primordial germ cells, but not for earlier stages in germ cell migration. This demonstrates a high degree of evolutionary conservation of part of the mechanism, but also an area of evolutionary divergence. PMID:12900445

  11. Delayed BMP4 exposure increases germ cell differentiation in mouse embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Talaei-Khozani, Tahereh; Zarei Fard, Nehleh; Bahmanpour, Soghra; Jaberipour, Mansoureh; Hosseini, Ahmah; Esmaeilpour, Tahereh

    2014-01-01

    Fate mapping studies have revealed that bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4) signaling has a key role in segregation of primordial germ cells from proximal epiblast. Adding BMP4 to the culture media of embryonic stem (ES) cells could induce expression of germ cell markers; however, to provide a desired number of germ cells has remained a challenge. In the current study, we intended to establish an in vitro system to obtain reliable germ cells derived from ES cells. Differentiation was induced in ES cells via embryoid body (EB) and monolayer culture system. Cells were cultured with BMP4 from the beginning (++BMP4) or after 48 hours (+BMP4) of culturing for five days. The cultures were assessed for alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity, expression of Oct4, Mvh and c-kit. In EB culture protocol, the expression of Mvh, Oct4 and ALP activity significantly increased in +BMP4 culture condition, but a significant down-regulation in the expression of germ cell markers was shown in ++BMP4 condition compared with the control group. Parallel differentiation experiments using monolayer culture system indicated the number of putative germ cells did not change. In the current study, we compared two differentiation methods (EB and monolayer) to achieve an optimal germ cell production. The EBs with a short exposure time period to BMP4, showing typical characteristics of germ cells. Therefore, our approach provides a strategy for the production of germline cells from ES cells. PMID:24969978

  12. Meiotic germ cells antagonize mesonephric cell migration and testis cord formation in mouse gonads

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Humphrey H.-C.; DiNapoli, Leo; Capel, Blanche

    2014-01-01

    Summary The developmental fate of primordial germ cells in the mammalian gonad depends on their environment. In the XY gonad, Sry induces a cascade of molecular and cellular events leading to the organization of testis cords. Germ cells are sequestered inside testis cords by 12.5 dpc where they arrest in mitosis. If the testis pathway is not initiated, germ cells spontaneously enter meiosis by 13.5 dpc, and the gonad follows the ovarian fate. We have previously shown that some testis-specific events, such as mesonephric cell migration, can be experimentally induced into XX gonads prior to 12.5 dpc. However, after that time, XX gonads are resistant to the induction of cell migration. In current experiments, we provide evidence that this effect is dependent on XX germ cells rather than on XX somatic cells. We show that, although mesonephric cell migration cannot be induced into normal XX gonads at 14.5 dpc, it can be induced into XX gonads depleted of germ cells. We also show that when 14.5 dpc XX somatic cells are recombined with XY somatic cells, testis cord structures form normally; however, when XX germ cells are recombined with XY somatic cells, cord structures are disrupted. Sandwich culture experiments suggest that the inhibitory effect of XX germ cells is mediated through short-range interactions rather than through a long-range diffusible factor. The developmental stage at which XX germ cells show a disruptive effect on the male pathway is the stage at which meiosis is normally initiated, based on the immunodetection of meiotic markers. We suggest that at the stage when germ cells commit to meiosis, they reinforce ovarian fate by antagonizing the testis pathway. PMID:14561636

  13. Histochemical identification of primordial germ cells and differentiation of the gonads in homozygous tetraploid mouse embryos.

    PubMed Central

    Kaufman, M H

    1991-01-01

    This study was undertaken to establish whether primordial germ cells are differentiated by homozygous tetraploid mouse embryos produced by the technique of electrofusion, and to study the morphological features of their gonads. Tetraploid embryos were transferred to the oviducts of pseudopregnant recipients, and these were autopsied either on day 11 or days 15 or 16 of gestation. In the developmentally less advanced group, embryos in which cytogenetic analysis of their extraembryonic membranes confirmed that they had a tetraploid chromosome constitution were analysed histochemically in order to demonstrate the presence of intracellular alkaline phosphatase enzyme activity. This enabled the presence or absence of germ cells to be established. Out of a total of 9 early limb-bud stage embryos studied, all contained primordial germ cells. The latter were mostly located in association with the hindgut, though some germ cells were still present at the base of the allantois. The sex ratio in this group was close to unity. In the 2nd group in which recipients were autopsied on either day 15 or 16 of gestation, a total of 7 healthy tetraploid embryos were recovered. All displayed the characteristic craniofacial features seen in tetraploid embryos. Four of these embryos had a normal postcranial axial morphology, and their crown-rump lengths were only slightly less (81-91%) than those of developmentally matched control diploid embryos. Three of the tetraploid embryos had an abnormal postcranial axis associated with a body wall closure defect involving the anterior abdominal and lower thoracic region. In all 7 of these embryos, gonadal differentiation was consistent with their developmental age. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 PMID:1817135

  14. Meiotic onset is reliant on spatial distribution but independent of germ cell number in the mouse ovary.

    PubMed

    Arora, Ripla; Abby, Emilie; Ross, Adam D J; Cantu, Andrea V; Kissner, Michael D; Castro, Vianca; Ho, Hsin-Yi Henry; Livera, Gabriel; Laird, Diana J

    2016-07-01

    Mouse ovarian germ cells enter meiosis in a wave that propagates from anterior to posterior, but little is known about contribution of germ cells to initiation or propagation of meiosis. In a Ror2 mutant with diminished germ cell number and migration, we find that overall timing of meiotic initiation is delayed at the population level. We use chemotherapeutic depletion to exclude a profoundly reduced number of germ cells as a cause for meiotic delay. We rule out sex reversal or failure to specify somatic support cells as contributors to the meiotic phenotype. Instead, we find that anomalies in the distribution of germ cells as well as gonad shape in mutants contribute to aberrant initiation of meiosis. Our analysis supports a model of meiotic initiation via diffusible signal(s), excludes a role for germ cells in commencing the meiotic wave and furnishes the first phenotypic demonstration of the wave of meiotic entry. Finally, our studies underscore the importance of considering germ cell migration defects while studying meiosis to discern secondary effects resulting from positioning versus primary meiotic entry phenotypes. PMID:27199373

  15. Expression and Localization of Opioid Receptors in Male Germ Cells and the Implication for Mouse Spermatogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Gianzo, Marta; Urizar-Arenaza, Itziar; Casis, Luis; Irazusta, Jon; Subirán, Nerea

    2016-01-01

    The presence of endogenous opioid peptides in different testicular cell types has been extensively characterized and provides evidence for the participation of the opioid system in the regulation of testicular function. However, the exact role of the opioid system during the spermatogenesis has remained controversial since the presence of the mu-, delta- and kappa-opioid receptors in spermatogenic cells was yet to be demonstrated. Through a combination of quantitative real-time PCR, immunofluorescence, immunohistochemistry and flow cytometry approaches, we report for the first time the presence of active mu-, delta- and kappa-opioid receptors in mouse male germ cells. They show an exposition time-dependent response to opioid agonist, hence suggesting their active involvement in spermatogenesis. Our results contribute to understanding the role of the opioid receptors in the spermatogenesis and could help to develop new strategies to employ the opioid system as a biochemical tool for the diagnosis and treatment of male infertility. PMID:27031701

  16. Bisphenol A exposure inhibits germ cell nest breakdown by reducing apoptosis in cultured neonatal mouse ovaries.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Changqing; Wang, Wei; Peretz, Jackye; Flaws, Jodi A

    2015-11-01

    Bisphenol A is a known endocrine disrupting chemical and reproductive toxicant. Previous studies indicate that in utero BPA exposure increases the percentage of germ cells in nests and decreases the percentage of primordial follicles. However, the mechanism by which BPA affects germ cell nest breakdown is unknown. Thus, we hypothesized that BPA inhibits germ cell nest breakdown by interfering with oxidative stress and apoptosis pathways. To test our hypothesis, ovaries from newborn mice were collected and cultured with vehicle (dimethyl sulfoxide, DMSO) or different doses of BPA (0.1, 1, 5, and 10μg/mL). Ovaries then were subjected to histological evaluation of germ cell nests and primordial follicles or to measurements of factors that regulate oxidative stress and apoptosis. Our results indicate that in vitro BPA exposure significantly inhibits germ cell nest breakdown by altering the expression of key ovarian apoptotic genes, but not by interfering with the oxidative stress pathway. PMID:26049153

  17. Growth of Mouse Oocytes to Maturity from Premeiotic Germ Cells In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhi-Peng; Liang, Gui-Jin; Zhang, Xi-Feng; Zhang, Guo-Liang; Chao, Hu-He; Li, Lan; Sun, Xiao-Feng; Min, Ling-Jiang; Pan, Qing-Jie; Shi, Qing-Hua; Sun, Qing-Yuan; De Felici, Massimo; Shen, Wei

    2012-01-01

    In the present study, we established an in vitro culture system suitable for generating fertilizable oocytes from premeiotic mouse female germ cells. These results were achieved after first establishing an in vitro culture system allowing immature oocytes from 12–14 day- old mice to reach meiotic maturation through culture onto preantral granulosa cell (PAGC) monolayers in the presence of Activin A (ActA). To generate mature oocytes from premeiotic germ cells, pieces of ovaries from 12.5 days post coitum (dpc) embryos were cultured in medium supplemented with ActA for 28 days and the oocytes formed within the explants were isolated and cocultured onto PAGC monolayers in the presence of ActA for 6–7 days. The oocytes were then subjected to a final meiotic maturation assay to evaluate their capability to undergo germinal vesicle break down (GVBD) and reach the metaphase II (MII) stage. We found that during the first 28 days of culture, a significant number of oocytes within the ovarian explants reached nearly full growth and formed preantral follicle-like structures with the surrounding somatic cells. GSH level and Cx37 expression in the oocytes within the explants were indicative of proper developmental conditions. Moreover, the imprinting of Igf2r and Peg3 genes in these oocytes was correctly established. Further culture onto PAGCs in the presence of ActA allowed about 16% of the oocytes to undergo GVBD, among which 17% reached the MII stage during the final 16–18 hr maturation culture. These MII oocytes showed normal spindle and chromosome assembly and a correct ERK1/2 activity. About 35% of the in vitro matured oocytes were fertilized and 53.44% of them were able to reach the 2-cell stage. Finally, around 7% of the 2-cell embryos developed to the morula/blastocyst stage. PMID:22848595

  18. SKAP, an outer kinetochore protein, is required for mouse germ cell development

    PubMed Central

    Grey, Corinne; Espeut, Julien; Ametsitsi, Rachel; Kumar, Rajeev; Luksza, Malgorzata; Brun, Christine; Verlhac, Marie-Hélene; Suja, José Angél; de Massy, Bernard

    2016-01-01

    In sexually reproducing organisms, accurate gametogenesis is crucial for the transmission of genetic material from one generation to the next. This requires the faithful segregation of chromosomes during mitotic and meiotic divisions. One of the main players in this process is the kinetochore, a large multi-protein complex that forms at the interface of centromeres and microtubules. Here, we analyzed the expression profile and function of small kinetochore-associated protein (SKAP) in the mouse. We found that two distinct SKAP isoforms are specifically expressed in the germline: a smaller isoform, which is detected in spermatogonia and spermatocytes and localized in the outer mitotic and meiotic kinetochores from metaphase to telophase, and a larger isoform, which is expressed in the cytoplasm of elongating spermatids. We generated SKAP-deficient mice and found that testis size and sperm production were severely reduced in mutant males. This phenotype was partially caused by defects during spermatogonia proliferation before entry into meiosis. We conclude that mouse SKAP, while being dispensable for somatic cell divisions, has an important role in the successful outcome of male gametogenesis. In germ cells, analogous to what has been suggested in studies using immortalized cells, SKAP most likely stabilizes the interaction between kinetochores and microtubules, where it might be needed as an extra safeguard to ensure the correct segregation of mitotic and meiotic chromosomes. PMID:26667018

  19. Large, Male Germ Cell-Specific Hypomethylated DNA Domains With Unique Genomic and Epigenomic Features on the Mouse X Chromosome

    PubMed Central

    Ikeda, Rieko; Shiura, Hirosuke; Numata, Koji; Sugimoto, Michihiko; Kondo, Masayo; Mise, Nathan; Suzuki, Masako; Greally, John M.; Abe, Kuniya

    2013-01-01

    To understand the epigenetic regulation required for germ cell-specific gene expression in the mouse, we analysed DNA methylation profiles of developing germ cells using a microarray-based assay adapted for a small number of cells. The analysis revealed differentially methylated sites between cell types tested. Here, we focused on a group of genomic sequences hypomethylated specifically in germline cells as candidate regions involved in the epigenetic regulation of germline gene expression. These hypomethylated sequences tend to be clustered, forming large (10 kb to ∼9 Mb) genomic domains, particularly on the X chromosome of male germ cells. Most of these regions, designated here as large hypomethylated domains (LoDs), correspond to segmentally duplicated regions that contain gene families showing germ cell- or testis-specific expression, including cancer testis antigen genes. We found an inverse correlation between DNA methylation level and expression of genes in these domains. Most LoDs appear to be enriched with H3 lysine 9 dimethylation, usually regarded as a repressive histone modification, although some LoD genes can be expressed in male germ cells. It thus appears that such a unique epigenomic state associated with the LoDs may constitute a basis for the specific expression of genes contained in these genomic domains. PMID:23861320

  20. PAR6, A Potential Marker for the Germ Cells Selected to Form Primordial Follicles in Mouse Ovary

    PubMed Central

    Wen, Jing; Zhang, Hua; Li, Ge; Mao, Guanping; Chen, Xiufen; Wang, Jianwei; Guo, Meng; Mu, Xinyi; Ouyang, Hong; Zhang, Meijia; Xia, Guoliang

    2009-01-01

    Partitioning-defective proteins (PAR) are detected to express mainly in the cytoplast, and play an important role in cell polarity. However, we showed here that PAR6, one kind of PAR protein, was localized in the nuclei of mouse oocytes that formed primordial follicles during the perinatal period, suggesting a new role of PAR protein. It is the first time we found that, in mouse fetal ovaries, PAR6 appeared in somatic cell cytoplasm and fell weak when somatic cells invaded germ cell cysts at 17.5 days post coitus (dpc). Meanwhile, the expression of PAR6 was observed in cysts, and became strong in the nuclei of some germ cells at 19.5 dpc and all primordial follicular oocytes at 3 day post parturition (dpp), and then obviously declined when the primordial follicles entered the folliculogenic growth phase. During the primordial follicle pool foundation, the number of PAR6 positive germ cells remained steady and was consistent with that of formed follicles at 3 dpp. There were no TUNEL (apoptosis examination) positive germ cells stained with PAR6 at any time studied. The number of follicles significantly declined when 15.5 dpc ovaries were treated with the anti-PAR6 antibody and PAR6 RNA interference. Carbenoxolone (CBX, a known blocker of gap junctions) inhibited the expression of PAR6 in germ cells and the formation of follicles. Our results suggest that PAR6 could be used as a potential marker of germ cells for the primordial follicle formation, and the expression of PAR6 by a gap junction-dependent process may contribute to the formation of primordial follicles and the maintenance of oocytes at the diplotene stage. PMID:19809506

  1. Selective de-repression of germ cell-specific genes in mouse embryonic fibroblasts in a permissive epigenetic environment

    PubMed Central

    Sekinaka, Tamotsu; Hayashi, Yohei; Noce, Toshiaki; Niwa, Hitoshi; Matsui, Yasuhisa

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic modifications play crucial roles on establishment of tissue-specific transcription profiles and cellular characteristics. Direct conversions of fibroblasts into differentiated tissue cells by over-expression of critical transcription factors have been reported, but the epigenetic mechanisms underlying these conversions are still not fully understood. In addition, conversion of somatic cells into germ cells has not yet been achieved. To understand epigenetic mechanisms that underlie germ cell characteristics, we attempted to use defined epigenetic factors to directly convert mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) into germ cells. Here, we successfully induced germ cell-specific genes by inhibiting repressive epigenetic modifications via RNAi or small-molecule compounds. Under these conditions, some tissue-specific genes and stimulus-inducible genes were also induced. Meanwhile, the treatments did not result in genome-wide transcriptional activation. These results suggested that a permissive epigenetic environment resulted in selective de-repression of stimulus- and differentiation-inducible genes including germ cell-specific genes in MEFs. PMID:27608931

  2. Selective de-repression of germ cell-specific genes in mouse embryonic fibroblasts in a permissive epigenetic environment.

    PubMed

    Sekinaka, Tamotsu; Hayashi, Yohei; Noce, Toshiaki; Niwa, Hitoshi; Matsui, Yasuhisa

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic modifications play crucial roles on establishment of tissue-specific transcription profiles and cellular characteristics. Direct conversions of fibroblasts into differentiated tissue cells by over-expression of critical transcription factors have been reported, but the epigenetic mechanisms underlying these conversions are still not fully understood. In addition, conversion of somatic cells into germ cells has not yet been achieved. To understand epigenetic mechanisms that underlie germ cell characteristics, we attempted to use defined epigenetic factors to directly convert mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) into germ cells. Here, we successfully induced germ cell-specific genes by inhibiting repressive epigenetic modifications via RNAi or small-molecule compounds. Under these conditions, some tissue-specific genes and stimulus-inducible genes were also induced. Meanwhile, the treatments did not result in genome-wide transcriptional activation. These results suggested that a permissive epigenetic environment resulted in selective de-repression of stimulus- and differentiation-inducible genes including germ cell-specific genes in MEFs. PMID:27608931

  3. Pluripotent stem cells derived from mouse primordial germ cells by small molecule compounds.

    PubMed

    Kimura, Tohru; Kaga, Yoshiaki; Sekita, Yoichi; Fujikawa, Keita; Nakatani, Tsunetoshi; Odamoto, Mika; Funaki, Soichiro; Ikawa, Masahito; Abe, Kuniya; Nakano, Toru

    2015-01-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) can give rise to pluripotent stem cells known as embryonic germ cells (EGCs) when cultured with basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), stem cell factor (SCF), and leukemia inhibitory factor. Somatic cells can give rise to induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) by introduction of the reprogramming transcription factors Oct4, Sox2, and Klf4. The effects of Sox2 and Klf4 on somatic cell reprogramming can be reproduced using the small molecule compounds, transforming growth factor-β receptor (TGFβR) inhibitor and Kempaullone, respectively. Here we examined the effects of TGFβR inhibitor and Kempaullone on EGC derivation from PGCs. Treatment of PGCs with TGFβR inhibitor and/or Kempaullone generated pluripotent stem cells under standard embryonic stem cell (ESC) culture conditions without bFGF and SCF, which we termed induced EGCs (iEGCs). The derivation efficiency of iEGCs was dependent on the differentiation stage and sex. DNA methylation levels of imprinted genes in iEGCs were reduced, with the exception of the H19 gene. The promoters of genes involved in germline development were generally hypomethylated in PGCs, but three germline genes showed comparable DNA methylation levels among iEGs, ESCs, and iPSCs. These results show that PGCs can be reprogrammed into pluripotent state using small molecule compounds, and that DNA methylation of these germline genes is not maintained in iEGCs. PMID:25186651

  4. DIFFERENTIAL SENSITIVITY OF MALE GERM CELLS TO MAINSTREAM AND SIDESTREAM TOBACCO SMOKE IN THE MOUSE

    SciTech Connect

    Polyzos, Aris; Schmid, Thomas Ernst; Pina-Guzman, Belem; Quintanilla-Vega, Betzabet; Marchetti, Francesco

    2009-03-13

    Cigarette smoking in men has been associated with increased chromosomal abnormalities in sperm and with increased risks for spontaneous abortions, birth defects and neonatal death. Little is known, however, about the reproductive consequences of paternal exposure to second-hand smoke. We used a mouse model to investigate the effects of paternal exposure to sidestream (SS) smoke, the main constituent of second-hand smoke, on the genetic integrity and function of sperm, and to determine whether male germ cells were equally sensitive to mainstream (MS) and SS smoke. A series of sperm DNA quality and reproductive endpoints were investigated after exposing male mice for two weeks to MS or SS smoke. Our results indicated that: (i) only SS smoke significantly affected sperm motility; (ii) only MS smoke induced DNA strand breaks in sperm; (iii) both MS and SS smoke increased sperm chromatin structure abnormalities; and (iv) MS smoke affected both fertilization and the rate of early embryonic development, while SS smoke affected fertilization only. These results show that MS and SS smoke have differential effects on the genetic integrity and function of sperm and provide further evidence that male exposure to second-hand smoke, as well as direct cigarette smoke, may diminish a couple's chance for a successful pregnancy and the birth of a healthy baby.

  5. Germ cell differentiation in cryopreserved, immature, Indian spotted mouse deer (Moschiola indica) testes xenografted onto mice.

    PubMed

    Pothana, Lavanya; Makala, Himesh; Devi, Lalitha; Varma, Vivek Phani; Goel, Sandeep

    2015-03-01

    Death of immature animals is one of the reasons for the loss of genetic diversity of rare and endangered species. Because sperm cannot be collected from immature males, cryobanking of testicular tissue combined with testis xenografting is a potential option for conservation. The objective of this study was to evaluate the establishment of spermatogenesis in cryopreserved immature testicular tissues from Indian spotted mouse deer (Moschiola indica) after ectopic xenografting onto immunodeficient nude mice. Results showed that testis tissues that were frozen in cryomedia containing either 10% DMSO with 80% fetal bovine serum (D10S80) or 20% DMSO with 20% fetal bovine serum (D20S20) had significantly more (P < 0.01) terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeled positive interstitial cells when compared with fresh testis tissues (46.3 ± 3.4 and 51.9 ± 4.0 vs. 22.8 ± 2.0). Xenografted testicular tissues showed degenerated seminiferous tubules 24 weeks after grafting in testes that had been cryopreserved in D20S20; alternatively, pachytene spermatocytes were the most advanced germ cells in testes that were cryopreserved in D10S80. Proliferating cell nuclear antigen staining confirmed the proliferative status of spermatocytes, and the increases in tubular and lumen diameters indicated testicular maturation in xenografts. However, persistent anti-Müllerian hormone staining in Sertoli cells of xenografts revealed incomplete testicular maturation. This study reports that cryopreserved testis tissue that had been xenografted from endangered animals onto mice resulted in the establishment of spermatogenesis with initiation of meiosis. These findings are encouraging for cryobanking of testicular tissues from immature endangered animals to conserve their germplasm. PMID:25467768

  6. In Vitro and In Vivo Germ Line Potential of Stem Cells Derived from Newborn Mouse Skin

    PubMed Central

    Dyce, Paul W.; Liu, Jinghe; Tayade, Chandrakant; Kidder, Gerald M.; Betts, Dean H.; Li, Julang

    2011-01-01

    We previously reported that fetal porcine skin-derived stem cells were capable of differentiation into oocyte-like cells (OLCs). Here we report that newborn mice skin-derived stem cells are also capable of differentiating into early OLCs. Using stem cells from mice that are transgenic for Oct4 germline distal enhancer-GFP, germ cells resulting from their differentiation are expected to be GFP+. After differentiation, some GFP+ OLCs reached 40–45 µM and expressed oocyte markers. Flow cytometric analysis revealed that ∼0.3% of the freshly isolated skin cells were GFP+. The GFP-positive cells increased to ∼7% after differentiation, suggesting that the GFP+ cells could be of in vivo origin, but are more likely induced upon being cultured in vitro. To study the in vivo germ cell potential of skin-derived cells, they were aggregated with newborn ovarian cells, and transplanted under the kidney capsule of ovariectomized mice. GFP+ oocytes were identified within a subpopulation of follicles in the resulting growth. Our finding that early oocytes can be differentiated from mice skin-derived cells in defined medium may offer a new in vitro model to study germ cell formation and oogenesis. PMID:21629667

  7. Development of mouse and rat oocytes in chimeric reaggregated ovaries after interspecific exchange of somatic and germ cell components.

    PubMed

    Eppig, J J; Wigglesworth, K

    2000-10-01

    The germ cell and somatic cell compartments of newborn rat and mouse ovaries, which contain only primordial stage follicles, were completely exchanged and reaggregated to produce xenogeneic chimeric ovaries. The reaggregated ovaries were grafted beneath the renal capsules of ovariectomized SCID mice to develop for periods up to 21 days. Xenogeneic follicles developed with essentially normal morphological characteristics. Both rat and mouse oocytes with species-specific characteristics grew within follicles that were composed of somatic cells exclusively of the alternative species. Rat oocytes grown in mouse follicles became competent to resume meiosis, and progressed to metaphase II when they were removed from follicles and cultured. In addition, mouse oocytes grown in rat follicles underwent fertilization and preimplantation development in vitro, and developed to term after embryos were transferred to pseudopregnant mouse foster mothers. Therefore, despite an estimated 11 million years of divergent evolution, oocytes and somatic cells of rat and mouse ovaries can be exchanged and can produce functional oocytes. It is concluded that factors involved in oocyte-somatic cell interactions necessary to support oocyte development and appropriate differentiation of the oocyte-associated granulosa cells are conserved between rats and mice. Moreover, although granulosa cells play important roles in oocyte development, the development of species-specific characteristics of oocytes occurs without apparent modification by a xenogeneic follicular environment. PMID:10993822

  8. In utero bisphenol A exposure disrupts germ cell nest breakdown and reduces fertility with age in the mouse

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Wei Hafner, Katlyn S. Flaws, Jodi A.

    2014-04-15

    Bisphenol A (BPA) is a known reproductive toxicant in rodents. However, the effects of in utero BPA exposure on early ovarian development and the consequences of such exposure on female reproduction in later reproductive life are unclear. Thus, we determined the effects of in utero BPA exposure during a critical developmental window on germ cell nest breakdown, a process required for establishment of the finite primordial follicle pool, and on female reproduction. Pregnant FVB mice (F0) were orally dosed daily with tocopherol-striped corn oil (vehicle), diethylstilbestrol (DES; 0.05 μg/kg, positive control), or BPA (0.5, 20, and 50 μg/kg) from gestational day 11 until birth. Ovarian morphology and gene expression profiles then were examined in F1 female offspring on postnatal day (PND) 4 and estrous cyclicity was examined daily after weaning for 30 days. F1 females were also subjected to breeding studies with untreated males at three to nine months. The results indicate that BPA inhibits germ cell nest breakdown via altering expression of selected apoptotic factors. BPA also significantly advances the age of first estrus, shortens the time that the females remain in estrus, and increases the time that the females remain in metestrus and diestrus compared to controls. Further, F1 females exposed to low doses of BPA exhibit various fertility problems and have a significantly higher percentage of dead pups compared to controls. These results indicate that in utero exposure to low doses of BPA during a critical ovarian developmental window interferes with early ovarian development and reduces fertility with age. - Highlights: • In utero BPA exposure inhibits germ cell nest breakdown in female mouse offspring. • In utero BPA exposure alters expression of apoptosis regulators in the ovaries of mouse offspring. • In utero BPA exposure advances first estrus age and alters cyclicity in mouse offspring. • In utero BPA exposure causes various fertility problems in

  9. Identification and Characterization of Xlr5c as a Novel Nuclear Localization Protein in Mouse Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zhuang, Xin-Jie; Tang, Wen-hao; Liu, Chang-yu; Zhu, Jin-liang; Feng, Xue; Yan, Jie; Lian, Ying; Liu, Ping; Qiao, Jie

    2015-01-01

    Background Spermatogenesis is the complex process by which diploid stem cells generate haploid germ cells in gamete production. Members of the Xlr (X-chromosome linked, lymphocyte regulated) superfamily play essential roles in spermatogenesis. The expression, localization and role in spermatogenesis of one such member, Xlr5c, has not been reported previously. Methodology/Principal Findings Xlr5c mRNA and protein levels in murine testes and other tissues were investigated using RT-PCR and Western blotting. Xlr5c was abundantly transcribed in mouse testes, particularly during the early stages of spermatogenesis and throughout prophase I in the nuclei of spermatocytes. Xlr5c was specifically localized at synaptonemal complexes(SCs) region in preleptotene and pachytene spermatocytes, as was the homologous Xlr protein Sycp3. Conclusions/Significance These results suggest that Xlr5c was abundantly transcribed in germ cells, localized at SCs region, where it may play a potential role during the early stages of spermatogenesis. Identification and characterization of this novel testis protein may offer a new perspective for understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in germ cell differentiation. PMID:26075718

  10. Complete in vitro generation of fertile oocytes from mouse primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Morohaku, Kanako; Tanimoto, Ren; Sasaki, Keisuke; Kawahara-Miki, Ryouka; Kono, Tomohiro; Hayashi, Katsuhiko; Hirao, Yuji; Obata, Yayoi

    2016-08-01

    Reconstituting gametogenesis in vitro is a key goal for reproductive biology and regenerative medicine. Successful in vitro reconstitution of primordial germ cells and spermatogenesis has recently had a significant effect in the field. However, recapitulation of oogenesis in vitro remains unachieved. Here we demonstrate the first reconstitution, to our knowledge, of the entire process of mammalian oogenesis in vitro from primordial germ cells, using an estrogen-receptor antagonist that promotes normal follicle formation, which in turn is crucial for supporting oocyte growth. The fundamental events in oogenesis (i.e., meiosis, oocyte growth, and genomic imprinting) were reproduced in the culture system. The most rigorous evidence of the recapitulation of oogenesis was the birth of fertile offspring, with a maximum of seven pups obtained from a cultured gonad. Moreover, cryopreserved gonads yielded functional oocytes and offspring in this culture system. Thus, our in vitro system will enable both innovative approaches for a deeper understanding of oogenesis and a new avenue to create and preserve female germ cells. PMID:27457928

  11. Complete in vitro generation of fertile oocytes from mouse primordial germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Morohaku, Kanako; Tanimoto, Ren; Sasaki, Keisuke; Kawahara-Miki, Ryouka; Kono, Tomohiro; Hayashi, Katsuhiko; Hirao, Yuji; Obata, Yayoi

    2016-01-01

    Reconstituting gametogenesis in vitro is a key goal for reproductive biology and regenerative medicine. Successful in vitro reconstitution of primordial germ cells and spermatogenesis has recently had a significant effect in the field. However, recapitulation of oogenesis in vitro remains unachieved. Here we demonstrate the first reconstitution, to our knowledge, of the entire process of mammalian oogenesis in vitro from primordial germ cells, using an estrogen-receptor antagonist that promotes normal follicle formation, which in turn is crucial for supporting oocyte growth. The fundamental events in oogenesis (i.e., meiosis, oocyte growth, and genomic imprinting) were reproduced in the culture system. The most rigorous evidence of the recapitulation of oogenesis was the birth of fertile offspring, with a maximum of seven pups obtained from a cultured gonad. Moreover, cryopreserved gonads yielded functional oocytes and offspring in this culture system. Thus, our in vitro system will enable both innovative approaches for a deeper understanding of oogenesis and a new avenue to create and preserve female germ cells. PMID:27457928

  12. Single cell analysis facilitates staging of Blimp1-dependent primordial germ cells derived from mouse embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Vincent, John J; Li, Ziwei; Lee, Serena A; Liu, Xian; Etter, Marisabel O; Diaz-Perez, Silvia V; Taylor, Sara K; Gkountela, Sofia; Lindgren, Anne G; Clark, Amander T

    2011-01-01

    The cell intrinsic programming that regulates mammalian primordial germ cell (PGC) development in the pre-gonadal stage is challenging to investigate. To overcome this we created a transgene-free method for generating PGCs in vitro (iPGCs) from mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs). Using labeling for SSEA1 and cKit, two cell surface molecules used previously to isolate presumptive iPGCs, we show that not all SSEA1+/cKit+ double positive cells exhibit a PGC identity. Instead, we determined that selecting for cKit(bright) cells within the SSEA1+ fraction significantly enriches for the putative iPGC population. Single cell analysis comparing SSEA1+/cKit(bright) iPGCs to ESCs and embryonic PGCs demonstrates that 97% of single iPGCs co-express PGC signature genes Blimp1, Stella, Dnd1, Prdm14 and Dazl at similar levels to e9.5-10.5 PGCs, whereas 90% of single mouse ESC do not co-express PGC signature genes. For the 10% of ESCs that co-express PGC signature genes, the levels are significantly lower than iPGCs. Microarray analysis shows that iPGCs are transcriptionally distinct from ESCs and repress gene ontology groups associated with mesoderm and heart development. At the level of chromatin, iPGCs contain 5-methyl cytosine bases in their DNA at imprinted and non-imprinted loci, and are enriched in histone H3 lysine 27 trimethylation, yet do not have detectable levels of Mvh protein, consistent with a Blimp1-positive pre-gonadal PGC identity. In order to determine whether iPGC formation is dependent upon Blimp1, we generated Blimp1 null ESCs and found that loss of Blimp1 significantly depletes SSEA1/cKit(bright) iPGCs. Taken together, the generation of Blimp1-positive iPGCs from ESCs constitutes a robust model for examining cell-intrinsic regulation of PGCs during the Blimp1-positive stage of development. PMID:22194959

  13. Testicular germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Looijenga, Leendert H J

    2014-02-01

    Human germ cell tumors are of interest because of their epidemiology, clinical behavior and pathobiology. Histologically, they are subdivided into various elements, with similarities to embryogenesis. Recent insights resulted in a division of five types of human germ cell tumors. In the context of male germ cells, three are relevant; Type I: teratomas and yolk sac tumors of neonates and infants; Type II: seminomas and nonseminomas of (predominantly) adolescents and adults; and Type III: spermatocytic seminomas of the elderly. Recent studies led to significant increases in understanding of the parameters involved in the earliest pathogenetic steps of human germ cells tumors, in particularly the seminomas and nonseminomas (Type II). In case of a disturbed gonadal physiology, either due to the germ cell itself, or the micro-environment, embryonic germ cells during a specific window of sensitization can be blocked in their maturation, resulting in carcinoma in situ or gonadoblastoma, the precursors of seminomas and nonseminomas. The level of testicularization of the gonad determines the histological composition of the precursor. These insights will allow better definition of individuals at risk to develop a germ cell malignancy, with putative preventive measurements, and allow better selection of scientific approaches to elucidate the pathogenesis. PMID:24683949

  14. Dazl Functions in Maintenance of Pluripotency and Genetic and Epigenetic Programs of Differentiation in Mouse Primordial Germ Cells In Vivo and In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Haston, Kelly M.; Tung, Joyce Y.; Reijo Pera, Renee A.

    2009-01-01

    Background Mammalian germ cells progress through a unique developmental program that encompasses proliferation and migration of the nascent primordial germ cell (PGC) population, reprogramming of nuclear DNA to reset imprinted gene expression, and differentiation of mature gametes. Little is known of the genes that regulate quantitative and qualitative aspects of early mammalian germ cell development both in vivo, and during differentiation of germ cells from mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) in vitro. Methodology and Principal Findings We used a transgenic mouse system that enabled isolation of small numbers of Oct4ΔPE:GFP-positive germ cells in vivo, and following differentiation from mESCs in vitro, to uncover quantitate and qualitative phenotypes associated with the disruption of a single translational regulator, Dazl. We demonstrate that disruption of Dazl results in a post-migratory, pre-meiotic reduction in PGC number accompanied by aberrant expression of pluripotency genes and failure to erase and re-establish genomic imprints in isolated male and female PGCs, as well as subsequent defect in progression through meiosis. Moreover, the phenotypes observed in vivo were mirrored by those in vitro, with inability of isolated mutant PGCs to establish pluripotent EG (embryonic germ) cell lines and few residual Oct-4-expressing cells remaining after somatic differentiation of mESCs carrying a Dazl null mutation. Finally, we observed that even within undifferentiated mESCs, a nascent germ cell subpopulation exists that was effectively eliminated with ablation of Dazl. Conclusions and Significance This report establishes the translational regulator Dazl as a component of pluripotency, genetic, and epigenetic programs at multiple time points of germ cell development in vivo and in vitro, and validates use of the ESC system to model and explore germ cell biology. PMID:19468308

  15. Differentiation of human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells into germ-like cells in mouse seminiferous tubules

    PubMed Central

    CHEN, HUI; TANG, QIU-LING; WU, XIAO-YING; XIE, LI-CHUN; LIN, LI-MIN; HO, GU-YU; MA, LIAN

    2015-01-01

    Our previous study demonstrated that human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (HUMSCs) were capable of differentiation into germ cells in vitro. To assess this potential in vivo, HUMSCs were microinjected into the lumen of seminiferous tubules of immunocompetent mice, which were treated with busulfan to destroy endogenous spermatogenesis. Bromodeoxyuridine labeling studies demonstrated that HUMSCs survived in the tubule for at least 120 days, exhibited a round cell shape typical of proliferating or differentiating germ cells, migrated to the basement of the tubule, where proliferating spermatogonia reside and returned to the luminal compartment, where differentiating spermatids and spermatozoa reside. The migration pattern resembled that of germ cell development in vivo. Immunohistochemical and colocalization studies revealed that transplanted HUMSCs expressed the germ cell markers octamer-binding transcription factor 4, α6 integrin, C-kit and VASA, confirming the germ cell differentiation. In addition, it was observed that tubules transplanted with HUMSCs exhibited marked improvement in the histological features damaged by the chemotherapeutic busulfan, as judged by morphology and quantitative histology. Taken together, these data demonstrated the capacity of HUMSCs to form germ cells in the testes and to repair testicular tissue. These findings suggest a potential utility of HUMSCs to treat the infertility and testicular insufficiency caused by cancer therapeutics. PMID:25815600

  16. HENMT1 and piRNA Stability Are Required for Adult Male Germ Cell Transposon Repression and to Define the Spermatogenic Program in the Mouse.

    PubMed

    Lim, Shu Ly; Qu, Zhi Peng; Kortschak, R Daniel; Lawrence, David M; Geoghegan, Joel; Hempfling, Anna-Lena; Bergmann, Martin; Goodnow, Christopher C; Ormandy, Christopher J; Wong, Lee; Mann, Jeff; Scott, Hamish S; Jamsai, Duangporn; Adelson, David L; O'Bryan, Moira K

    2015-10-01

    piRNAs are critical for transposable element (TE) repression and germ cell survival during the early phases of spermatogenesis, however, their role in adult germ cells and the relative importance of piRNA methylation is poorly defined in mammals. Using a mouse model of HEN methyltransferase 1 (HENMT1) loss-of-function, RNA-Seq and a range of RNA assays we show that HENMT1 is required for the 2' O-methylation of mammalian piRNAs. HENMT1 loss leads to piRNA instability, reduced piRNA bulk and length, and ultimately male sterility characterized by a germ cell arrest at the elongating germ cell phase of spermatogenesis. HENMT1 loss-of-function, and the concomitant loss of piRNAs, resulted in TE de-repression in adult meiotic and haploid germ cells, and the precocious, and selective, expression of many haploid-transcripts in meiotic cells. Precocious expression was associated with a more active chromatin state in meiotic cells, elevated levels of DNA damage and a catastrophic deregulation of the haploid germ cell gene expression. Collectively these results define a critical role for HENMT1 and piRNAs in the maintenance of TE repression in adult germ cells and setting the spermatogenic program. PMID:26496356

  17. HENMT1 and piRNA Stability Are Required for Adult Male Germ Cell Transposon Repression and to Define the Spermatogenic Program in the Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Shu Ly; Geoghegan, Joel; Hempfling, Anna-Lena; Bergmann, Martin; Goodnow, Christopher C.; Ormandy, Christopher J.; Wong, Lee; Mann, Jeff; Scott, Hamish S.; Jamsai, Duangporn; Adelson, David L.

    2015-01-01

    piRNAs are critical for transposable element (TE) repression and germ cell survival during the early phases of spermatogenesis, however, their role in adult germ cells and the relative importance of piRNA methylation is poorly defined in mammals. Using a mouse model of HEN methyltransferase 1 (HENMT1) loss-of-function, RNA-Seq and a range of RNA assays we show that HENMT1 is required for the 2’ O-methylation of mammalian piRNAs. HENMT1 loss leads to piRNA instability, reduced piRNA bulk and length, and ultimately male sterility characterized by a germ cell arrest at the elongating germ cell phase of spermatogenesis. HENMT1 loss-of-function, and the concomitant loss of piRNAs, resulted in TE de-repression in adult meiotic and haploid germ cells, and the precocious, and selective, expression of many haploid-transcripts in meiotic cells. Precocious expression was associated with a more active chromatin state in meiotic cells, elevated levels of DNA damage and a catastrophic deregulation of the haploid germ cell gene expression. Collectively these results define a critical role for HENMT1 and piRNAs in the maintenance of TE repression in adult germ cells and setting the spermatogenic program. PMID:26496356

  18. Mouse Tafazzin Is Required for Male Germ Cell Meiosis and Spermatogenesis.

    PubMed

    Cadalbert, Laurence C; Ghaffar, Farah Naz; Stevenson, David; Bryson, Sheila; Vaz, Frédéric M; Gottlieb, Eyal; Strathdee, Douglas

    2015-01-01

    Barth syndrome is an X-linked mitochondrial disease, symptoms of which include neutropenia and cardiac myopathy. These symptoms are the most significant clinical consequences of a disease, which is increasingly recognised to have a variable presentation. Mutation in the Taz gene in Xq28 is thought to be responsible for the condition, by altering mitochondrial lipid content and mitochondrial function. Male chimeras carrying a targeted mutation of Taz on their X-chromosome were infertile. Testes from the Taz knockout chimeras were smaller than their control counterparts and this was associated with a disruption of the progression of spermatocytes through meiosis to spermiogenesis. Taz knockout ES cells also showed a defect when differentiated to germ cells in vitro. Mutant spermatocytes failed to progress past the pachytene stage of meiosis and had higher levels of DNA double strand damage and increased levels of endogenous retrotransposon activity. Altogether these data revealed a novel role for Taz in helping to maintain genome integrity in meiosis and facilitating germ cell differentiation. We have unravelled a novel function for the Taz protein, which should contribute to an understanding of how a disruption of the Taz gene results in the complex symptoms underlying Barth Syndrome. PMID:26114544

  19. Mouse Tafazzin Is Required for Male Germ Cell Meiosis and Spermatogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Cadalbert, Laurence C.; Ghaffar, Farah Naz; Stevenson, David; Bryson, Sheila; Vaz, Frédéric M.; Gottlieb, Eyal; Strathdee, Douglas

    2015-01-01

    Barth syndrome is an X-linked mitochondrial disease, symptoms of which include neutropenia and cardiac myopathy. These symptoms are the most significant clinical consequences of a disease, which is increasingly recognised to have a variable presentation. Mutation in the Taz gene in Xq28 is thought to be responsible for the condition, by altering mitochondrial lipid content and mitochondrial function. Male chimeras carrying a targeted mutation of Taz on their X-chromosome were infertile. Testes from the Taz knockout chimeras were smaller than their control counterparts and this was associated with a disruption of the progression of spermatocytes through meiosis to spermiogenesis. Taz knockout ES cells also showed a defect when differentiated to germ cells in vitro. Mutant spermatocytes failed to progress past the pachytene stage of meiosis and had higher levels of DNA double strand damage and increased levels of endogenous retrotransposon activity. Altogether these data revealed a novel role for Taz in helping to maintain genome integrity in meiosis and facilitating germ cell differentiation. We have unravelled a novel function for the Taz protein, which should contribute to an understanding of how a disruption of the Taz gene results in the complex symptoms underlying Barth Syndrome. PMID:26114544

  20. Male- and female-derived somatic and germ cell-specific toxicity of silver nanoparticles in mouse.

    PubMed

    Han, Jae Woong; Jeong, Jae-Kyo; Gurunathan, Sangiliyandi; Choi, Yun-Jung; Das, Joydeep; Kwon, Deug-Nam; Cho, Ssang-Goo; Park, Chankyu; Seo, Han Geuk; Park, Jin-Ki; Kim, Jin-Hoi

    2016-04-01

    Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are widely used as an antibiotic agent in textiles, wound dressings, medical devices, and appliances such as refrigerators and washing machines. The increasing use of AgNPs has raised concerns about their potential risks to human health. Therefore, this study was aimed to determine the impact of AgNPs in germ cell specific complications in mice. The administration of AgNPs results in toxicity in mice; however, a more detailed understanding of the effects of AgNPs on germ cells remains poorly understood. Here, we demonstrate the effects of AgNPs (20 nm in diameter) in a mouse Sertoli and granulosa cells in vitro, and in male and female mice in vivo. Soluble silver ion (Ag(+))-treated cells were used as a positive control. We found that excessive AgNP-treated cells exhibited cytotoxicity, the formation of autophagosomes and autolysosomes in Sertoli cells. Furthermore, an increase in mitochondrial-mediated apoptosis by cytochrome c release from mitochondria due to translocation of Bax to mitochondria was observed. In in vivo studies, the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines, including tumor necrosis factor α, interferon-γ, -6, -1β, and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 were significantly increased (p < 0.05). Histopathological analysis of AgNP-treated mice shows that a significant loss of male and female germ cells. Taken together, these data suggest that AgNPs with an average size of 20 nm have negative impact on the reproduction. PMID:26470004

  1. Correlation between induction of meiotic delay and aneuploidy in male mouse germ cells

    SciTech Connect

    Adler, I.D.; Gassner, P.; Schriever-Schwemmer, G.; Min, Zhou Ru

    1993-12-31

    No aneuploidy assays are prescribed in any international guidelines for chemical safety testing up to now. The CEC-sponsored Aneuploidy Project has the aim to validate test methods for aneuploidy induction which could be used as screening tests. Furthermore, one of the major goals is to develop an understanding of mechanisms by which aneuploidy is induced. The present paper describes the investigation of meiotic delay and aneuploidy induction with the drug diazepam (DZ), the environmentally important mutagen acrylamide (AA) and the spindle poison colchicine (COL), which is used as a positive control. The time course of events was investigated. It is concluded that the assessment of meiotic delay can be used to preselect chemicals which require evaluation of aneuploidy induction during MMI in male germ cells.

  2. Effect of mode of administration of methyl methanesulfonate and triethylenemelamine on induction of unscheduled DNA synthesis in mouse germ cells

    SciTech Connect

    Sheu, C.W.; Sega, G.A.; Owens, J.G.

    1987-01-01

    The effect of route of administration on induction of unscheduled DNA synthesis (UDS) in mouse germ cells in vivo was studied using two germ cell mutagens, methyl methanesulfonate (MMS) and triethylenemelamine (TEM). The chemicals were administered to male mice (C3Hf x 101)F/sub 1/ by IP injection or gavage using acute or 5-day subacute regimens. After completion of dosing, methyl-(/sup 3/H)thymidine ((/sup 3/H)TdR) was injected into the testes, and spermatozoa were collected 16 days later. The sperm heads were isolated, and UDS was determined by the amount of (/sup 3/H)TdR incorporated. Acute administration of MMS (2-100 mg/kg) induced a strong, dose-related UDS response. The response was slightly higher with IP injection than with gavage. Acute administration of TEM (0.05-4.0 mg/kg) by IP injection or gavage induced weak and variable responses. The study showed that gavage, as well as IP injection, can be used for the administration of test chemicals and that the subacute 5-day regimen induced a higher UDS response than the acute regimen. Furthermore, the testicular route may enhance the detection of weak UDS inducers.

  3. Extragonadal Germ Cell Cancer (EGC)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Testicular Cancer Resource Center Extragonadal Germ Cell Cancer (EGC) 95% of all testicular tumors are germ cell ... seen in young adults. Patients with mediastinal nonseminomatous EGC are typically classed as poor risk patients because ...

  4. Tumor loci and their interactions on mouse chromosome 19 that contribute to testicular germ cell tumors

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Complex genetic factors underlie testicular germ cell tumor (TGCT) development. One experimental approach to dissect the genetics of TGCT predisposition is to use chromosome substitution strains, such as the 129.MOLF-Chr 19 (M19). M19 carries chromosome (Chr) 19 from the MOLF whereas all other chromosomes are from the 129 strain. 71% of M19 males develop TGCTs in contrast to 5% in 129 strain. To identify and map tumor loci from M19 we generated congenic strains harboring MOLF chromosome 19 segments on 129 strain background and monitored their TGCT incidence. Results We found 3 congenic strains that each harbored tumor promoting loci that had high (14%-32%) whereas 2 other congenics had low (4%) TGCT incidences. To determine how multiple loci influence TGCT development, we created double and triple congenic strains. We found additive interactions were predominant when 2 loci were combined in double congenic strains. Surprisingly, we found an example where 2 loci, both which do not contribute significantly to TGCT, when combined in a double congenic strain resulted in greater than expected TGCT incidence (positive interaction). In an opposite example, when 2 loci with high TGCT incidences were combined, males of the double congenic showed lower than expected TGCT incidence (negative interaction). For the triple congenic strain, depending on the analysis, the overall TGCT incidence could be additive or could also be due to a positive interaction of one region with others. Additionally, we identified loci that promote bilateral tumors or testicular abnormalities. Conclusions The congenic strains each with their characteristic TGCT incidences, laterality of tumors and incidence of testicular abnormalities, are useful for identification of TGCT susceptibility modifier genes that map to Chr 19 and also for studies on the genetic and environmental causes of TGCT development. TGCTs are a consequence of aberrant germ cell and testis development. By defining

  5. RNA Granules in Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Voronina, Ekaterina; Seydoux, Geraldine; Sassone-Corsi, Paolo; Nagamori, Ippei

    2011-01-01

    Germ granules” are cytoplasmic, nonmembrane-bound organelles unique to germline. Germ granules share components with the P bodies and stress granules of somatic cells, but also contain proteins and RNAs uniquely required for germ cell development. In this review, we focus on recent advances in our understanding of germ granule assembly, dynamics, and function. One hypothesis is that germ granules operate as hubs for the posttranscriptional control of gene expression, a function at the core of the germ cell differentiation program. PMID:21768607

  6. Testicular germ cell tumours.

    PubMed

    Rajpert-De Meyts, Ewa; McGlynn, Katherine A; Okamoto, Keisei; Jewett, Michael A S; Bokemeyer, Carsten

    2016-04-23

    Testicular germ cell tumours are at the crossroads of developmental and neoplastic processes. Their cause has not been fully elucidated but differences in incidences suggest that a combination of genetic and environment factors are involved, with environmental factors predominating early in life. Substantial progress has been made in understanding genetic susceptibility in the past 5 years on the basis of the results of large genome-wide association studies. Testicular germ cell tumours are highly sensitive to radiotherapy and chemotherapy and hence have among the best outcomes of all tumours. Because the tumours occur mainly in young men, preservation of reproductive function, quality of life after treatment, and late effects are crucial concerns. In this Seminar, we provide an overview of advances in the understanding of the epidemiology, genetics, and biology of testicular germ cell tumours. We also summarise the consensus on how to treat testicular germ cell tumours and focus on a few controversies and improvements in the understanding of late effects of treatment and quality of life for survivors. PMID:26651223

  7. Primordial germ cell migration in the chick and mouse embryo: the role of the chemokine SDF-1/CXCL12.

    PubMed

    Stebler, Jürg; Spieler, Derek; Slanchev, Krasimir; Molyneaux, Kathleen A; Richter, Ulrike; Cojocaru, Vlad; Tarabykin, Victor; Wylie, Chris; Kessel, Michael; Raz, Erez

    2004-08-15

    As in many other animals, the primordial germ cells (PGCs) in avian and reptile embryos are specified in positions distinct from the positions where they differentiate into sperm and egg. Unlike in other organism however, in these embryos, the PGCs use the vascular system as a vehicle to transport them to the region of the gonad where they exit the blood vessels and reach their target. To determine the molecular mechanisms governing PGC migration in these species, we have investigated the role of the chemokine stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1/CXCL12) in guiding the cells towards their target in the chick embryo. We show that sdf-1 mRNA is expressed in locations where PGCs are found and towards which they migrate at the time they leave the blood vessels. Ectopically expressed chicken SDF-1alpha led to accumulation of PGCs at those positions. This analysis, as well as analysis of gene expression and PGC behavior in the mouse embryo, suggest that in both organisms, SDF-1 functions during the second phase of PGC migration, and not at earlier phases. These findings suggest that SDF-1 is required for the PGCs to execute the final migration steps as they transmigrate through the blood vessel endothelium of the chick or the gut epithelium of the mouse. PMID:15282153

  8. Expression of low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 4 (Lrp4) gene in the mouse germ cells.

    PubMed

    Yamaguchi, Yasuka L; Tanaka, Satomi S; Kasa, Miyuki; Yasuda, Kunio; Tam, Patrick P L; Matsui, Yasuhisa

    2006-08-01

    The low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 4 gene (Lrp4) was identified by subtractive screening of cDNAs of the migratory primordial germ cells (PGCs) of E8.5-9.5 embryo and E3.5 blastocysts. Lrp4 is expressed in PGCs in the hindgut and the dorsal mesentery of E9.5 embryos, and in germ cells in the genital ridges of male and female E10.5-13.5 embryos. Lrp4 is also expressed in spermatogonia of the neonatal and adult testes and in the immature oocytes and follicular cells of the adult ovary. The absence of Lrp4 expression in the blastocyst, embryonic stem cells and embryonic germ cells suggests the Lrp4 is a molecular marker that distinguishes the germ cells from embryo-derived pluripotent stem cells. PMID:16434236

  9. STAGE-SPECIFIC DAMAGE TO SYNAPTONEMAL COMPLEXES AND METAPHASE CHROMOSOME INDUCED BY X RAYS IN MALE MOUSE GERM CELLS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Synaptonemal complexes (SCs) reveal mutagen-induced effects in germ cell meiotic chromosomes. his study was aimed at characterizing relationships between SC and metaphase I chromosome damage following radiation exposure at various stages of spermatogenesis. Male mice were irradia...

  10. In situ localization of male germ cell-associated kinase (mak) mRNA in adult mouse testis: specific expression in germ cells at stages around meiotic cell division.

    PubMed

    Koji, T; Jinno, A; Matsushime, H; Shibuya, M; Nakane, P K

    1992-12-01

    Biochemical analysis of the male germ cell-associated kinase (mak) gene, which was isolated recently by using weak cross-hybridization with the v-ros tyrosine kinase gene, revealed that the gene was highly expressed in mammalian testicular germ cells, but not in ovarian cells. In order to identify the cells which express the mak gene in more detail, we localized mak mRNA in frozen sections of mouse testis by non-radioactive in situ hybridization. In this study, we utilized thymine-thymine (T-T) dimerized mak cDNA as a haptenic, non-radioactive probe, and the signal was detected enzyme-immunohistochemically by using an anti-T-T antibody. As a result, mak mRNA was localized intensely in late pachytene (stage X) and diplotene (stage XI) spermatocytes, and faintly in dividing spermatocytes (stage XII) and early round spermatids (stage I-II), suggesting that the gene may play an important role in the phase around meiotic cell division, but not throughout the entire meiosis. PMID:1473268

  11. Tools for the genetic analysis of germ cells.

    PubMed

    Hammond, Shirley S; Matin, Angabin

    2009-09-01

    Germ cells are essential for the propagation of individual species. Studies on germ cell development in mice highlight important biological paradigms. Beginning with their first appearance around embryonic day 7 (E7), germ cells undergo specific cellular changes at different stages of their embryonic and adult development. Germ cells migrate through the hind-regions of the embryo to eventually home into the developing gonads. Further differentiation and development of germ cells differ in males and females. The processes involved in germ cell development and their eventual differentiation into sperm and oocytes have been under extensive investigation in recent years. Studies on germ cells have shed light on the cellular and molecular processes involved in their specification, migration, proliferation, death, and differentiation. These studies have also revealed much about maintenance of stem cell populations and fertility. Here we review the genetic tools that are at present available to study germ cells in the mouse. PMID:19548313

  12. Sex determination in mammalian germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Spiller, Cassy M; Bowles, Josephine

    2015-01-01

    Germ cells are the precursors of the sperm and oocytes and hence are critical for survival of the species. In mammals, they are specified during fetal life, migrate to the developing gonads and then undergo a critical period during which they are instructed, by the soma, to adopt the appropriate sexual fate. In a fetal ovary, germ cells enter meiosis and commit to oogenesis, whereas in a fetal testis, they avoid entry into meiosis and instead undergo mitotic arrest and mature toward spermatogenesis. Here, we discuss what we know so far about the regulation of sex-specific differentiation of germ cells, considering extrinsic molecular cues produced by somatic cells, as well as critical intrinsic changes within the germ cells. This review focuses almost exclusively on our understanding of these events in the mouse model. PMID:25791730

  13. Mouse autosomal homolog of DAZ, a candidate male sterility gene in humans, is expressed in male germ cells before and after puberty

    SciTech Connect

    Reijo, R.; Seligman, J.; Jaffe, T.

    1996-07-15

    Deletion of the Azoospermia Factor (AZF) region of the human Y chromosome results in spermatogenic failure. While the identity of the critical missing gene has yet to be established, a strong candidate is the putative RNA-binding protein DAZ (Deleted in Azoospermia). Here we describe the mouse homolog of DAZ. Unlike human DAZ, which is Y-linked, in mouse the Dazh (DAZ homolog) gene maps to chromosome 17. Nonetheless, the predicted amino acid sequences of the gene products are quite similar, especially in their RNP/RRM (putative RNA-binding) domains, and both genes are transcribed predominantly in testes; the mouse gene is transcribed at a lower level in ovaries. Dazh transcripts were not detected in testes of mice that lack germ cells. In testes of wildtype mice, Dazh transcription is detectable 1 day after birth (when the only germ cells are prospermatogonia), increases steadily as spermatogonial stem cells appear, plateaus as the first wave of spermatogenic cells enters meiosis (10 days after birth), and is sustained at this level thereafter. This unique pattern of expression suggests the Dazh participates in differentiation, proliferation, or maintenance of germ cell founder populations before, during, and after the pubertal onset of spermatogenesis. Such functions could readily account for the diverse spermatogenic defects observed in human males with AZF deletion. 29 refs., 4 figs.

  14. Dissecting Germ Cell Metabolism through Network Modeling

    PubMed Central

    Whitmore, Leanne S.; Ye, Ping

    2015-01-01

    Metabolic pathways are increasingly postulated to be vital in programming cell fate, including stemness, differentiation, proliferation, and apoptosis. The commitment to meiosis is a critical fate decision for mammalian germ cells, and requires a metabolic derivative of vitamin A, retinoic acid (RA). Recent evidence showed that a pulse of RA is generated in the testis of male mice thereby triggering meiotic commitment. However, enzymes and reactions that regulate this RA pulse have yet to be identified. We developed a mouse germ cell-specific metabolic network with a curated vitamin A pathway. Using this network, we implemented flux balance analysis throughout the initial wave of spermatogenesis to elucidate important reactions and enzymes for the generation and degradation of RA. Our results indicate that primary RA sources in the germ cell include RA import from the extracellular region, release of RA from binding proteins, and metabolism of retinal to RA. Further, in silico knockouts of genes and reactions in the vitamin A pathway predict that deletion of Lipe, hormone-sensitive lipase, disrupts the RA pulse thereby causing spermatogenic defects. Examination of other metabolic pathways reveals that the citric acid cycle is the most active pathway. In addition, we discover that fatty acid synthesis/oxidation are the primary energy sources in the germ cell. In summary, this study predicts enzymes, reactions, and pathways important for germ cell commitment to meiosis. These findings enhance our understanding of the metabolic control of germ cell differentiation and will help guide future experiments to improve reproductive health. PMID:26367011

  15. Dissecting Germ Cell Metabolism through Network Modeling.

    PubMed

    Whitmore, Leanne S; Ye, Ping

    2015-01-01

    Metabolic pathways are increasingly postulated to be vital in programming cell fate, including stemness, differentiation, proliferation, and apoptosis. The commitment to meiosis is a critical fate decision for mammalian germ cells, and requires a metabolic derivative of vitamin A, retinoic acid (RA). Recent evidence showed that a pulse of RA is generated in the testis of male mice thereby triggering meiotic commitment. However, enzymes and reactions that regulate this RA pulse have yet to be identified. We developed a mouse germ cell-specific metabolic network with a curated vitamin A pathway. Using this network, we implemented flux balance analysis throughout the initial wave of spermatogenesis to elucidate important reactions and enzymes for the generation and degradation of RA. Our results indicate that primary RA sources in the germ cell include RA import from the extracellular region, release of RA from binding proteins, and metabolism of retinal to RA. Further, in silico knockouts of genes and reactions in the vitamin A pathway predict that deletion of Lipe, hormone-sensitive lipase, disrupts the RA pulse thereby causing spermatogenic defects. Examination of other metabolic pathways reveals that the citric acid cycle is the most active pathway. In addition, we discover that fatty acid synthesis/oxidation are the primary energy sources in the germ cell. In summary, this study predicts enzymes, reactions, and pathways important for germ cell commitment to meiosis. These findings enhance our understanding of the metabolic control of germ cell differentiation and will help guide future experiments to improve reproductive health. PMID:26367011

  16. Use of DEAD-box polypeptide-4 (Ddx4) gene promoter-driven fluorescent reporter mice to identify mitotically active germ cells in post-natal mouse ovaries.

    PubMed

    Park, Eun-Sil; Tilly, Jonathan L

    2015-01-01

    Several laboratories have independently isolated mitotically active germ cells, termed female germline stem cells or oogonial stem cells (OSCs), from adult mouse ovaries. However, a recent study using Ddx4-Cre;Rosa26 reporter mice concluded that such germ cells do not exist. Given the disparity in conclusions drawn in this study compared with others, we felt it was important to re-assess the utility of Ddx4-Cre;Rosa26 reporter mice for identification of OSCs in adult mouse ovaries. Transgenic Ddx4-Cre mice were crossed with Rosa26(tdTm/tdTm) mice to drive restricted tomato red (tdTm) gene expression in cells in which the Ddx4 gene promoter has been activated. Crude dispersion of ovaries from recombined offspring generated cell fractions containing tdTm-positive immature oocytes, which are incapable of proliferation and thus probably represent the uncharacterized reporter-positive ovarian cells identified in the paper Zhang et al. (2012) as being mitotically inactive. Dispersed ovaries further subjected to fluorescence-activated cell sorting yielded a large population of non-germline tdTm-positive cells, indicative of promoter 'leakiness' in the Ddx4-Cre mouse line. Nonetheless, a small percentage of these tdTm-positive cells exhibited externalized (extracellular, ec) expression of Ddx4 protein (ecDdx4-positive), expressed markers of primitive germ cells but not of oocytes, and actively proliferated in culture, all of which are characteristic features of OSCs. Thus, crude dispersion of ovaries collected from Ddx4 gene promoter-driven reporter mice is not, by itself, a reliable approach to identify OSCs, whereas the same ovarian dispersates further subjected to cell sorting strategies yield purified OSCs that can be expanded in culture. PMID:25147160

  17. [Mediastinal germ cell tumors].

    PubMed

    Bremmer, F; Ströbel, P

    2016-09-01

    The mediastinum is among the most frequent anatomic region in which germ cell tumors (GCT) arise, second only to the gonads. Mediastinal GCT (mGCT) account for 16 % of all mediastinal neoplasms. Although the morphology and (according to all available data) the molecular genetics of mediastinal and gonadal GCT are identical, a number of unique aspects exist. There is a highly relevant bi-modal age distribution. In pre-pubertal children of both sexes, mGCT consist exclusively of teratomas and yolk sac tumors. The prognosis is generally favorable with modern treatment. In post-pubertal adults, virtually all patients with malignant mGCT are males; the prognosis is more guarded and depends (among other factors) on the histological GCT components and is similar to GCT in other organs. So-called somatic type malignancies (i. e. clonally related, non-germ cell neoplasias arising in a GCT) are much more frequent in mGCT than in other organs, and the association between mediastinal yolk sac tumors and hematological malignancies, such as myelodysplasias and leukemias, is unique to mediastinal tumors. The prognosis of GCT with somatic type malignancies is generally dismal. PMID:27491549

  18. Germ line development: lessons learned from pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Arroyo, Ana M; Medrano, Jose V; Remohí, José; Simón, Carlos

    2014-10-01

    Current knowledge about mammalian germ line development is mainly based on the mouse model and little is known about how this fundamental process occurs in humans. This review summarizes our current knowledge of genetic and epigenetic germ line development in mammals, mainly focusing on primordial germ cell (PGC) specification events, comparing the differences between mouse and human models. We also emphasize the knowledge derived from the most successful strategies used to generate germ cell-like cells in vitro in both models and major obstacles to obtaining bona fide in vitro-derived gametes are considered. PMID:25461452

  19. Two distinct forms of the 64,000 Mr protein of the cleavage stimulation factor are expressed in mouse male germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Wallace, A. Michelle; Dass, Brinda; Ravnik, Stuart E.; Tonk, Vijay; Jenkins, Nancy A.; Gilbert, Debra J.; Copeland, Neal G.; MacDonald, Clinton C.

    1999-01-01

    Polyadenylation in male germ cells differs from that in somatic cells. Many germ cell mRNAs do not contain the canonical AAUAAA in their 3′ ends but are efficiently polyadenylated. To determine whether the 64,000 Mr protein of the cleavage stimulation factor (CstF-64) is altered in male germ cells, we examined its expression in mouse testis. In addition to the 64,000 Mr form, we found a related ≈70,000 Mr protein that is abundant in testis, at low levels in brain, and undetectable in all other tissues examined. Expression of the ≈70,000 Mr CstF-64 was limited to meiotic spermatocytes and postmeiotic spermatids in testis. In contrast, the 64,000 Mr form was absent from spermatocytes, suggesting that the testis-specific CstF-64 might control expression of meiosis-specific genes. To determine why the 64,000 Mr CstF-64 is not expressed in spermatocytes, we mapped its chromosomal location to the X chromosome in both mouse and human. CstF-64 may, therefore, be absent in spermatocytes because the X chromosome is inactivated during male meiosis. By extension, the testis-specific CstF-64 may be expressed from an autosomal homolog of the X chromosomal gene. PMID:10359786

  20. Regulation of expression of mouse interferon-induced transmembrane protein like gene-3, Ifitm3 (mil-1, fragilis), in germ cells.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Satomi S; Nagamatsu, Go; Tokitake, Yuko; Kasa, Miyuki; Tam, Patrick P L; Matsui, Yasuhisa

    2004-08-01

    Mouse interferon-induced transmembrane protein (IFITM) gene, Ifitm3 (previously known as mil-1 and fragilis), is expressed in primordial germ cells (PGCs), in their precursors, and in germ cells of the fetal gonads (Saitou et al. [2002] Nature 418:293-300; Tanaka and Matsui [2002] Mech Dev 119S:S261-S267). By examining the expression of green fluorescent protein transgene under the control of DNA sequences flanking exon 1, we have identified domains that direct Ifitm3 transcription in PGCs and their precursors in gastrula stage and 13.5 days post coitum embryos. Germ cell-specific expression is achieved by the activity of a consensus element unique to the Ifitm genes, which may act to suppress Ifitm3 expression in somatic tissues. The lack of any influence of the interferon-stimulable response elements on transgene expression in the germ-line suggests that interferon-mediated response is not critical for activating Ifitm3. PMID:15254899

  1. Two-step oligoclonal development of male germ cells.

    PubMed

    Ueno, Hiroo; Turnbull, Brit B; Weissman, Irving L

    2009-01-01

    During mouse development, primordial germ cells (PGCs) that give rise to the entire germ line are first identified within the proximal epiblast. However, long-term tracing of the fate of the cells has not been done wherein all cells in and around the germ-cell lineage are identified. Also, quantitative estimates of the number of founder PGCs using different models have come up with various numbers. Here, we use tetrachimeric mice to show that the progenitor numbers for the entire germ line in adult testis, and for the initiating embryonic PGCs, are both 4 cells. Although they proliferate to form polyclonal germ-cell populations in fetal and neonatal testes, germ cells that actually contribute to adult spermatogenesis originate from a small number of secondary founder cells that originate in the fetal period. The rest of the "deciduous" germ cells are lost, most likely by apoptosis, before the reproductive period. The second "actual" founder germ cells generally form small numbers of large monoclonal areas in testes by the reproductive period. Our results also demonstrate that there is no contribution of somatic cells to the male germ cell pool during development or in adulthood. These results suggest a model of 2-step oligoclonal development of male germ cells in mice, the second step distinguishing the heritable germ line from cells selected not to participate in forming the next generation. PMID:19098099

  2. Sex Specification and Heterogeneity of Primordial Germ Cells in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Sakashita, Akihiko; Kawabata, Yukiko; Jincho, Yuko; Tajima, Shiun; Kumamoto, Soichiro; Kobayashi, Hisato; Matsui, Yasuhisa; Kono, Tomohiro

    2015-01-01

    In mice, primordial germ cells migrate into the genital ridges by embryonic day 13.5 (E13.5), where they are then subjected to a sex-specific fate with female and male primordial germ cells undergoing mitotic arrest and meiosis, respectively. However, the sex-specific basis of primordial germ cell differentiation is poorly understood. The aim of this study was to investigate the sex-specific features of mouse primordial germ cells. We performed RNA-sequencing (seq) of E13.5 female and male mouse primordial germ cells using next-generation sequencing. We identified 651 and 428 differentially expressed transcripts (>2-fold, P < 0.05) in female and male primordial germ cells, respectively. Of these, many transcription factors were identified. Gene ontology and network analysis revealed differing functions of the identified female- and male-specific genes that were associated with primordial germ cell acquisition of sex-specific properties required for differentiation into germ cells. Furthermore, DNA methylation and ChIP-seq analysis of histone modifications showed that hypomethylated gene promoter regions were bound with H3K4me3 and H3K27me3. Our global transcriptome data showed that in mice, primordial germ cells are decisively assigned to a sex-specific differentiation program by E13.5, which is necessary for the development of vital germ cells. PMID:26700643

  3. Cytotoxic effects of benzene on mouse germ cells determined by flow cytometry

    SciTech Connect

    Spano, M.; Pacchierotti, F.; Ucelli, R.; Amendola, R.; Bartoleschi, C. )

    1989-01-01

    Flow cytometric (FCM) DNA content measurements were performed on testicular monocellular suspensions obtained from mice exposed per os to 0, 1, 2, 4, 6, and 7 ml/kg body weight of benzene in order to investigate its cytotoxic action on gem cells. The effects of benzene were measured 7, 14, 21, 28, and 70 d after treatment. Benzene had no effect on testis weight, but FCM analysis showed the relative percentages of some cell subpopulations (tetraploid and haploid cells) to be different from the control pattern, indicating the occurrence of some cytotoxic damage to differentiating spermatogonia. These data demonstrate that spermatogenesis is sensitive to benzene single exposures as evidenced by an altered cell ratio of testicular cell types.

  4. The SMAGE gene family is expressed in post-meiotic spermatids during mouse germ cell differentiation

    SciTech Connect

    Chomez, P.; Williams, R.; Vennstroem, B.

    1996-06-01

    The human melanoma cell line MZ2-MEL expresses several tumor antigens defined in vitro by autologous cytolytic T lymphocytes. One of these antigens, MZ2-E, has been identified as a nonapeptide encoded by the MAGE1 gene and presented at the tumor cell surface by the HLA-Al molecule. Gene MAGE1 belongs to a family of closely related genes. The MAGE genes are clustered within two distinct regions on chromosome X. MAGE1 to -12 are located in the q terminal region of the chromosome (Xq26-qter), while an additional member (MAGE-Xp) has been identified in the Xp21.3 locus. The MAGE gene family is silent in healthy adult tissues, with two important exceptions: testis, where all members but MAGE7 are expressed, and placenta, where transcripts for MAGE3 and -4 have been detected. In contrast, MAGE1, -2, -3, -4, -6, and -12 are frequently expressed at high levels in a significant proportion of tumors of various histological types, including melanomas, colon carcinomas, leukemias, lung cancers, sarcomas, and breast cancers. In addition to the peptide corresponding to antigen MZ2-E, an additional peptide derived from MAGE1 and a peptide derived from MAGE3 have recently been identified as tumor antigens recognized by autologous cytolytic T cells. The MAGE proteins are therefore considered to be attractive targets for cancer immunotherapy. However, it remains to be demonstrated that such a therapy will not affect tissues, like testis, where the corresponding genes are expressed. 15 refs., 3 figs.

  5. Efficient Generation of Hepatic Cells from Multipotent Adult Mouse Germ-Line Stem Cells Using an OP9 Co-Culture System

    PubMed Central

    Streckfuss-Bömeke, Katrin; Jende, Jörg; Cheng, I-Fen; Hasenfuss, Gerd

    2014-01-01

    Abstract On the basis of their self-renewal capacity and their ability to differentiate into derivatives of all three germ layers, germ line–derived multipotent adult stem cells (maGSCs) from mouse testis might serve as one of preferable sources for pluripotent stem cells in regenerative medicine. In our study, we aimed for an efficient hepatic differentiation protocol that is applicable for both maGSCs and embryonic stem cells (ESCs). We attempted to accomplish this goal by using a new established co-culture system with OP9 stroma cells for direct differentiation of maGSCs and ESCs into hepatic cells. We found that the hepatic differentiation of maGSCs was induced by the OP9 co-culture system in comparison to the gelatin culture. Furthermore, we showed that the combination of OP9 co-culture with activin A resulted in the increased expression of endodermal and early hepatic markers Gata4, Sox17, Foxa2, Hnf4, Afp, and Ttr compared to differentiated cells on gelatin or on OP9 alone. Moreover, the hepatic progenitors were capable of differentiating further into mature hepatic cells, demonstrated by the expression of liver-specific markers Aat, Alb, Tdo2, Krt18, Krt8, Krt19, Cps1, Sek, Cyp7a1, Otc, and Pah. A high percentage of maGSC-derived hepatic progenitors (51% AFP- and 61% DLK1-positive) and mature hepatic-like cells (26% ALB-positive) were achieved using this OP9 co-culture system. These generated hepatic cells successfully demonstrated in vitro functions associated with mature hepatocytes, including albumin and urea secretion, glycogen storage, and uptake of low-density lipoprotein. The established co-culture system for maGSCs into functional hepatic cells might serve as a suitable model to delineate the differentiation process for the generation of high numbers of mature hepatocytes in humans without genetic manipulations and make germ line–derived stem cells a potential autologous and alternative cell source for hepatic transplants in metabolic liver

  6. Induction of Germ Cell-like Cells from Porcine Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hanning; Xiang, Jinzhu; Zhang, Wei; Li, Junhong; Wei, Qingqing; Zhong, Liang; Ouyang, Hongsheng; Han, Jianyong

    2016-01-01

    The ability to generate germ cells from pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) is valuable for human regenerative medicine and animal breeding. Germ cell-like cells (GCLCs) have been differentiated from mouse and human PSCs, but not from porcine PSCs, which are considered an ideal model for stem cell applications. Here, we developed a defined culture system for the induction of primordial germ cell-like cells (PGCLCs) from porcine induced PSCs (piPSCs). The identity of the PGCLCs was characterized by observing cell morphology, detecting germ cell marker gene expression and evaluating epigenetic properties. PGCLCs could further differentiate into spermatogonial stem cell-like cells (SSCLCs) in vitro. Importantly, meiosis occurred during SSCLC induction. Xenotransplantation of GCLCs into seminiferous tubules of infertile immunodeficient mice resulted in immunohistochemically identifiable germ cells in vivo. Overall, our study provides a feasible strategy for directing piPSCs to the germ cell fate and lays a foundation for exploring germ cell development mechanisms. PMID:27264660

  7. Induction of Germ Cell-like Cells from Porcine Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hanning; Xiang, Jinzhu; Zhang, Wei; Li, Junhong; Wei, Qingqing; Zhong, Liang; Ouyang, Hongsheng; Han, Jianyong

    2016-01-01

    The ability to generate germ cells from pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) is valuable for human regenerative medicine and animal breeding. Germ cell-like cells (GCLCs) have been differentiated from mouse and human PSCs, but not from porcine PSCs, which are considered an ideal model for stem cell applications. Here, we developed a defined culture system for the induction of primordial germ cell-like cells (PGCLCs) from porcine induced PSCs (piPSCs). The identity of the PGCLCs was characterized by observing cell morphology, detecting germ cell marker gene expression and evaluating epigenetic properties. PGCLCs could further differentiate into spermatogonial stem cell-like cells (SSCLCs) in vitro. Importantly, meiosis occurred during SSCLC induction. Xenotransplantation of GCLCs into seminiferous tubules of infertile immunodeficient mice resulted in immunohistochemically identifiable germ cells in vivo. Overall, our study provides a feasible strategy for directing piPSCs to the germ cell fate and lays a foundation for exploring germ cell development mechanisms. PMID:27264660

  8. Genomic Landscape of Developing Male Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Tin-Lap; Pang, Alan Lap-Yin; Rennert, Owen M.; Chan, Wai-Yee

    2010-01-01

    Spermatogenesis is a highly orchestrated developmental process by which spermatogonia develop into mature spermatozoa. This process involves many testis- or male germ cell-specific gene products whose expressions are strictly regulated. In the past decade the advent of high-throughput gene expression analytical techniques has made functional genomic studies of this process, particularly in model animals such as mice and rats, feasible and practical. These studies have just begun to reveal the complexity of the genomic landscape of the developing male germ cells. Over 50% of the mouse and rat genome are expressed during testicular development. Among transcripts present in germ cells, 40% – 60% are uncharacterized. A number of genes, and consequently their associated biological pathways, are differentially expressed at different stages of spermatogenesis. Developing male germ cells present a rich repertoire of genetic processes. Tissue-specific as well as spermatogenesis stage-specific alternative splicing of genes exemplifies the complexity of genome expression. In addition to this layer of control, discoveries of abundant presence of antisense transcripts, expressed psuedogenes, non-coding RNAs (ncRNA) including long ncRNAs, microRNAs (miRNAs) and Piwi-interacting RNAs (piRNAs), and retrogenes all point to the presence of multiple layers of expression and functional regulation in male germ cells. It is anticipated that application of systems biology approaches will further our understanding of the regulatory mechanism of spermatogenesis.† PMID:19306351

  9. Disperse Red 1 (textile dye) induces cytotoxic and genotoxic effects in mouse germ cells.

    PubMed

    Fernandes, Fábio Henrique; Bustos-Obregon, Eduardo; Salvadori, Daisy Maria Fávero

    2015-06-01

    Disperse Red 1 (DR1), which is widely used in the textile industry, is an azo dye that contributes to the toxicity and pollution of wastewater. To assess the toxic effects of DR1 on reproduction, sexually mature male mice (Mus musculus, strain CF-1) were orally (gavage) treated with single doses of the compound at 20, 100 and 500 mg/kg body weight. Testicular features and sperm parameters were evaluated 8.3, 16.6 and 24.9 days after treatments. In addition to testicular toxicity caused by the dye, the data clearly showed an increased frequency of sperm with abnormal morphology and decreased fertility. An increased amount of DNA damage was also detected in testis cells 16.6 and 24.9 days after treatments with 100 and 500 mg/kg. This study demonstrated the toxic and genotoxic effects of DR1, indicating the harmful activity of this dye on reproductive health. PMID:25883024

  10. Current state of the opportunities for derivation of germ-like cells from pluripotent stem cells: are you a man, or a mouse?

    PubMed Central

    Petkova, Rumena; Arabadjiev, Borislav; Chakarov, Stoyan; Pankov, Roumen

    2014-01-01

    The concept of pluripotency as a prerogative of cells of early mammal embryos and cultured embryonic stem cells (ESC) has been invalidated with the advent of induced pluripotent stem cells. Later, it became clear that the ability to generate all cell types of the adult organism is also a questionable aspect of pluripotency, as there are cell types, such as germ cells, which are difficult to produce from pluripotent stem cells. Recently it has been proposed that there are at least two different states of pluripotency; namely, the naïve, or ground state, and the primed state, which may differ radically in terms of timeline of existence, signalling mechanisms, cell properties, capacity for differentiation into different cell types, etc. Germ-like male and female rodent cells have been successfully produced in vitro from ESC and induced pluripotent stem cells. The attempts to derive primate primordial germ cells (PGC) and germ cells in vitro from pluripotent stem cells, however, still have a low success rate, especially with the female germline. The paper reviews the properties of rodent and primate ESC with regard to their capacity for differentiation in vitro to germ-like cells, outlining the possible caveats to derivation of PGC and germ cells from primate and human pluripotent cells. PMID:26019504

  11. Palifosfamide in Treating Patients With Recurrent Germ Cell Tumors

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2015-06-11

    Adult Central Nervous System Germ Cell Tumor; Adult Teratoma; Malignant Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumor; Malignant Extragonadal Non-Seminomatous Germ Cell Tumor; Extragonadal Seminoma; Recurrent Malignant Testicular Germ Cell Tumor; Recurrent Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Stage IV Extragonadal Non-Seminomatous Germ Cell Tumor; Stage IV Extragonadal Seminoma; Stage IV Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor

  12. General Information about Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumors

    MedlinePlus

    ... Germ Cell Tumors Treatment (PDQ®)–Patient Version General Information About Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumors Go to Health ... the PDQ Adult Treatment Editorial Board . Clinical Trial Information A clinical trial is a study to answer ...

  13. General Information about Ovarian Germ Cell Tumors

    MedlinePlus

    ... Germ Cell Tumors Treatment (PDQ®)–Patient Version General Information About Ovarian Germ Cell Tumors Go to Health ... the PDQ Adult Treatment Editorial Board . Clinical Trial Information A clinical trial is a study to answer ...

  14. HISTORY OF GERM CELL MUTAGENESIS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Much of the early work on germ cell mutation analysis was conducted with nonmammalian species, but this historical overview will begin with the rodent studies that provided quantitative data on induced mutations. The initial studies of mutation induction utilized the newly develo...

  15. The viability of mouse spermatogonial germ cells on a novel scaffold, containing human serum albumin and calcium phosphate nanoparticles

    PubMed Central

    Yadegar, Mona; Hekmatimoghaddam, Seyed Hossein; Nezami Saridar, Saeide; Jebali, Ali

    2015-01-01

    Background: In spermatogenesis, spermatogonial cells differentiate to the haploid gametes. It has been shown that spermatogenesis can be done at in vitro condition. In vitro spermatogenesis may provide an open window to treat male infertility. Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of a novel scaffold containing human serum albumin (HSA)/tri calcium phosphate nanoparticles (TCP NPs) on the mouse spermatogonial cell line (SCL). Materials and Methods: First, TCP NPs were synthesized by reaction of calcium nitrate and diammonium phosphate at pH 13. Then, serial concentrations of TCP NPs were separately added to 500 mg/mL HSA, and incubated in the 100oC water for 30 min. In the next step, each scaffold was cut (2×2mm), placed into sterile well of microplate, and then incubated for 1, 2, and 3 days at 37oC with mouse SCL. After incubation, the cytotoxicity of the scaffolds was evaluated by different tests including 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyl-tetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) assay, vital staining, and cell counting. On the other hand, the release of TCP NPs and HSA from the scaffolds was measured. Results: Based on microscopic observation, the size of cavities for all scaffolds was near 200-500 µm, and the size of TCP NPs was near 50-100 nm. All toxicity tests showed that the increase of TCP concentration in the scaffold did not affect mouse SCL. It means that the percentage of cell viability, LDH release, vital cells, and cell quantity was 85%, 105%, 90%, and 110%, respectively. But, the increase of incubation time led to increase of LDH release (up to 115%) and cell count (up to 115%). Also, little decrease of cell viability and vital cells was seen when incubation time was increased. Here, no release of TCP NPs and HSA was seen after increase of TCP concentration and incubation time. Conclusion: It can be concluded that the increase of TCP concentration in HSA/ TCP NPs scaffold does not lead to

  16. Differential response of mouse male germ-cell stages to radiation-induced specific-locus and dominant mutations.

    PubMed Central

    Russell, W L; Bangham, J W; Russell, L B

    1998-01-01

    In an attempt to provide a systematic assessment of the frequency and nature of mutations induced in successive stages of spermato- and spermiogenesis, X-irradiated male mice were re-mated at weekly intervals, and large samples of progeny, observed from birth onward, were scored and genetically tested for recessive mutations at seven specific loci and for externally recognizable dominant mutations. Productivity findings provided a rough measure of induced dominant-lethal frequencies. A qualitative assessment of specific-locus mutations (which include deletions and other rearrangements) was made on the basis of homozygosity test results, as well as from information derived from more recent complementation studies and molecular analyses. Both recessive and dominant visibles revealed clear distinctions between spermatogonia and postspermatogonial stages. In addition, differences for both of these endpoints, as well as for presumed dominant lethals, were found among various postspermatogonial stages. It may be concluded that radiation produces its maximum rates of genetic damage in germ-cell stages ranging from midpachytene spermatocytes through early spermatids, a pattern unlike any of those that have been defined for chemicals; further, the frequency peaks for radiation are lower and broader. The difference between post-stem-cell stages overall and stem-cell spermatogonia was smaller than is generally found with chemicals, not only with respect to the frequency but also the nature of mutations. PMID:9560376

  17. Reprogramming of germ cells into pluripotency

    PubMed Central

    Sekita, Yoichi; Nakamura, Toshinobu; Kimura, Tohru

    2016-01-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are precursors of all gametes, and represent the founder cells of the germline. Although developmental potency is restricted to germ-lineage cells, PGCs can be reprogrammed into a pluripotent state. Specifically, PGCs give rise to germ cell tumors, such as testicular teratomas, in vivo, and to pluripotent stem cells known as embryonic germ cells in vitro. In this review, we highlight the current knowledge on signaling pathways, transcriptional controls, and post-transcriptional controls that govern germ cell differentiation and de-differentiation. These regulatory processes are common in the reprogramming of germ cells and somatic cells, and play a role in the pathogenesis of human germ cell tumors. PMID:27621759

  18. Reprogramming of germ cells into pluripotency.

    PubMed

    Sekita, Yoichi; Nakamura, Toshinobu; Kimura, Tohru

    2016-08-26

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are precursors of all gametes, and represent the founder cells of the germline. Although developmental potency is restricted to germ-lineage cells, PGCs can be reprogrammed into a pluripotent state. Specifically, PGCs give rise to germ cell tumors, such as testicular teratomas, in vivo, and to pluripotent stem cells known as embryonic germ cells in vitro. In this review, we highlight the current knowledge on signaling pathways, transcriptional controls, and post-transcriptional controls that govern germ cell differentiation and de-differentiation. These regulatory processes are common in the reprogramming of germ cells and somatic cells, and play a role in the pathogenesis of human germ cell tumors. PMID:27621759

  19. Erasure of DNA methylation, genomic imprints, and epimutations in a primordial germ-cell model derived from mouse pluripotent stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Miyoshi, Norikatsu; Stel, Jente M.; Shioda, Keiko; Qu, Na; Odahima, Junko; Mitsunaga, Shino; Zhang, Xiangfan; Nagano, Makoto; Hochedlinger, Konrad; Isselbacher, Kurt J.; Shioda, Toshi

    2016-01-01

    The genome-wide depletion of 5-methylcytosines (5meCs) caused by passive dilution through DNA synthesis without daughter strand methylation and active enzymatic processes resulting in replacement of 5meCs with unmethylated cytosines is a hallmark of primordial germ cells (PGCs). Although recent studies have shown that in vitro differentiation of pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) to PGC-like cells (PGCLCs) mimics the in vivo differentiation of epiblast cells to PGCs, how DNA methylation status of PGCLCs resembles the dynamics of 5meC erasure in embryonic PGCs remains controversial. Here, by differential detection of genome-wide 5meC and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmeC) distributions by deep sequencing, we show that PGCLCs derived from mouse PSCs recapitulated the process of genome-wide DNA demethylation in embryonic PGCs, including significant demethylation of imprint control regions (ICRs) associated with increased mRNA expression of the corresponding imprinted genes. Although 5hmeCs were also significantly diminished in PGCLCs, they retained greater amounts of 5hmeCs than intragonadal PGCs. The genomes of both PGCLCs and PGCs selectively retained both 5meCs and 5hmeCs at a small number of repeat sequences such as GSAT_MM, of which the significant retention of bisulfite-resistant cytosines was corroborated by reanalysis of previously published whole-genome bisulfite sequencing data for intragonadal PGCs. PSCs harboring abnormal hypermethylation at ICRs of the Dlk1-Gtl2-Dio3 imprinting cluster diminished these 5meCs upon differentiation to PGCLCs, resulting in transcriptional reactivation of the Gtl2 gene. These observations support the usefulness of PGCLCs in studying the germline epigenetic erasure including imprinted genes, epimutations, and erasure-resistant loci, which may be involved in transgenerational epigenetic inheritance. PMID:27486249

  20. Perspectives of germ cell development in vitro in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Hayashi, Katsuhiko; Saitou, Mitinori

    2014-01-01

    Pluripotent stem cells, such as embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are able to differentiate into all cell lineages of the embryo proper, including germ cells. This pluripotent property has a huge impact on the fields of regenerative medicine, developmental biology and reproductive engineering. Establishing the germ cell lineage from ESCs/iPSCs is the key biological subject, since it would contribute not only to dissection of the biological processes of germ cell development but also to production of unlimited numbers of functional gametes in vitro. Toward this goal, we recently established a culture system that induces functional mouse primordial germ cells (PGCs), precursors of all germ cells, from mouse ESCs/iPSCs. The successful in vitro production of PGCs arose from the study of pluripotent cell state, the signals inducing PGCs and the technology of transplantation. However, there are many obstacles to be overcome for the robust generation of mature gametes or for application of the culture system to other species, including humans and livestock. In this review, we discuss the requirements for a culture system to generate the germ cell lineage from ESCs/iPSCs. PMID:24725251

  1. Identification of Potential Germ-Cell Mutagens

    EPA Science Inventory

    The existence of agents that can induce germ-cell mutations in experimental systems has been recognized since 1927 with the discovery of the ability of X-rays to induce such mutations in Drosophila. Various rodent-based germ-cell mutation assays have been developed, and ~50 germ...

  2. dead end, a novel vertebrate germ plasm component, is required for zebrafish primordial germ cell migration and survival.

    PubMed

    Weidinger, Gilbert; Stebler, Jürg; Slanchev, Krasimir; Dumstrei, Karin; Wise, Clare; Lovell-Badge, Robin; Thisse, Christine; Thisse, Bernard; Raz, Erez

    2003-08-19

    In most animals, primordial germ cell (PGC) specification and development depend on maternally provided cytoplasmic determinants that constitute the so-called germ plasm. Little is known about the role of germ plasm in vertebrate germ cell development, and its molecular mode of action remains elusive. While PGC specification in mammals occurs via different mechanisms, several germ plasm components required for early PGC development in lower organisms are expressed in mammalian germ cells after their migration to the gonad and are involved in gametogenesis. Here we show that the RNA of dead end, encoding a novel putative RNA binding protein, is a component of the germ plasm in zebrafish and is specifically expressed in PGCs throughout embryogenesis; Dead End protein is localized to perinuclear germ granules within PGCs. Knockdown of dead end blocks confinement of PGCs to the deep blastoderm shortly after their specification and results in failure of PGCs to exhibit motile behavior and to actively migrate thereafter. PGCs subsequently die, while somatic development is not effected. We have identified dead end orthologs in other vertebrates including Xenopus, mouse, and chick, where they are expressed in germ plasm and germ-line cells, suggesting a role in germ-line development in these organisms as well. PMID:12932328

  3. Mouse D1Pas1, a DEAD-box RNA helicase, is required for the completion of first meiotic prophase in male germ cells.

    PubMed

    Inoue, Hiroki; Ogonuki, Narumi; Hirose, Michiko; Hatanaka, Yuki; Matoba, Shogo; Chuma, Shinichiro; Kobayashi, Kimio; Wakana, Shigeharu; Noguchi, Junko; Inoue, Kimiko; Tanemura, Kentaro; Ogura, Atsuo

    2016-09-16

    D1Pas1 is a mouse autosomal DEAD-box RNA helicase expressed predominantly in the testis. To assess its possible function, we generated D1Pas1-deficient mice using embryonic stem cells with a targeted D1Pas1 allele. Deletion of D1Pas1 did not cause noticeable embryonic defects or death, indicating that D1Pas1 is not essential for embryogenesis. Whereas homozygous knockout female mice showed normal reproductive performance, homozygous knockout male mice were completely sterile. The seminiferous epithelium of D1Pas1-deficient males contained no spermatids or spermatozoa because of spermatogenic arrest at the late pachytene stage. Upregulation of retrotransposons such as LINE-1 was not found in D1Pas1-deficient males, unlike males lacking Mvh, another testicular DEAD-box RNA helicase. Meiotic chromosome behavior in developing spermatocytes of D1Pas1-deficient males was indistinguishable from that in wild-type males, at least until synaptonemal complex formation. Thus, mouse D1Pas1 is the first-identified DEAD-box RNA helicase that plays critical roles in the final step of the first meiotic prophase in male germ cells. PMID:27473657

  4. Primordial Germ Cell Specification and Migration

    PubMed Central

    Marlow, Florence

    2015-01-01

    Primordial germ cells are the progenitor cells that give rise to the gametes. In some animals, the germline is induced by zygotic transcription factors, whereas in others, primordial germ cell specification occurs via inheritance of maternally provided gene products known as germ plasm. Once specified, the primordial germ cells of some animals must acquire motility and migrate to the gonad in order to survive. In all animals examined, perinuclear structures called germ granules form within germ cells. This review focuses on some of the recent studies, conducted by several groups using diverse systems, from invertebrates to vertebrates, which have provided mechanistic insight into the molecular regulation of germ cell specification and migration. PMID:26918157

  5. DNA repair efficiency in germ cells and early mouse embryos and consequences for radiation-induced transgenerational genomic damage

    SciTech Connect

    Marchetti, Francesco; Wyrobek, Andrew J.

    2009-01-18

    Exposure to ionizing radiation and other environmental agents can affect the genomic integrity of germ cells and induce adverse health effects in the progeny. Efficient DNA repair during gametogenesis and the early embryonic cycles after fertilization is critical for preventing transmission of DNA damage to the progeny and relies on maternal factors stored in the egg before fertilization. The ability of the maternal repair machinery to repair DNA damage in both parental genomes in the fertilizing egg is especially crucial for the fertilizing male genome that has not experienced a DNA repair-competent cellular environment for several weeks prior to fertilization. During the DNA repair-deficient period of spermatogenesis, DNA lesions may accumulate in sperm and be carried into the egg where, if not properly repaired, could result in the formation of heritable chromosomal aberrations or mutations and associated birth defects. Studies with female mice deficient in specific DNA repair genes have shown that: (i) cell cycle checkpoints are activated in the fertilized egg by DNA damage carried by the sperm; and (ii) the maternal genotype plays a major role in determining the efficiency of repairing genomic lesions in the fertilizing sperm and directly affect the risk for abnormal reproductive outcomes. There is also growing evidence that implicates DNA damage carried by the fertilizing gamete as a mediator of postfertilization processes that contribute to genomic instability in subsequent generations. Transgenerational genomic instability most likely involves epigenetic mechanisms or error-prone DNA repair processes in the early embryo. Maternal and embryonic DNA repair processes during the early phases of mammalian embryonic development can have far reaching consequences for the genomic integrity and health of subsequent generations.

  6. Primordial Germ Cells: Current Knowledge and Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Nikolic, Aleksandar; Volarevic, Vladislav; Armstrong, Lyle; Lako, Majlinda; Stojkovic, Miodrag

    2016-01-01

    Infertility is a condition that occurs very frequently and understanding what defines normal fertility is crucial to helping patients. Causes of infertility are numerous and the treatment often does not lead to desired pregnancy especially when there is a lack of functional gametes. In humans, the primordial germ cell (PGC) is the primary undifferentiated stem cell type that will differentiate towards gametes: spermatozoa or oocytes. With the development of stem cell biology and differentiation protocols, PGC can be obtained from pluripotent stem cells providing a new therapeutic possibility to treat infertile couples. Recent studies demonstrated that viable mouse pups could be obtained from in vitro differentiated stem cells suggesting that translation of these results to human is closer. Therefore, the aim of this review is to summarize current knowledge about PGC indicating the perspective of their use in both research and medical application for the treatment of infertility. PMID:26635880

  7. Cytogenetic adaptive response with multiple small X-ray doses in mouse germ cells and its biological influence on the offspring of adapted males.

    PubMed

    Cai, L; Wang, P; Piao, X G

    1994-06-01

    Cytogenetic adaptive response of mouse germ cells was studied by exposing male mice to a sequence of 4 conditioning doses of 0.05 Gy each (D1) administered at 10-day intervals and subsequently to a single challenging dose of 1.5 Gy (D2). In concurrent experiments, male mice after treatment with D1 doses alone were mated to unirradiated females and the F1 males were given the D2 dose. Chromosomal aberrations in both spermatocytes and bone-marrow cells and UV-induced UDS in splenocytes of these mice were studied. Adapted mice (i.e., D1 + D2 exposures) responded with a significantly lower frequency of chromosomal aberrations than the non-adapted (D2 exposure only) controls. The relative reduction in frequencies was, however, similar to that observed in earlier work with a single conditioning dose of 0.05 Gy. The frequencies of chromosomal aberrations in spermatocytes and bone-marrow cells as well as the levels of UV-induced UDS in splenocytes of the F1 males in the group D1 to fathers + D2 to F1 males were the same as those in F1 males which received only the D2 exposure. PMID:7515464

  8. Direct exposure of mouse ovaries and oocytes to high doses of an adenovirus gene therapy vector fails to lead to germ cell transduction.

    PubMed

    Gordon, J W

    2001-04-01

    The risk of insertion of adenovirus gene therapy DNA into female germ cells during the course of somatic gene therapy was stringently tested in the mouse by injecting up to 10(10) infectious particles directly into the ovary and by incubating naked oocytes in a solution of 2 x 10(8) particles/ml for 1 h prior to in vitro fertilization (IVF). The vector used was a recombinant adenovirus carrying the bacterial lacZ gene driven by the cytomegalovirus promoter (Adbeta-gal). Ovaries were stained for LacZ activity, or immunochemically for LacZ, 5-7 days after injection. Although very large amounts of LacZ activity and protein were detected, all positive staining was in the thecal portion of the ovary, with no staining seen in oocytes. In another series of experiments, mice with injected ovaries were mated, and preimplantation embryos or fetuses were analyzed either for LacZ expression or by PCR for lacZ DNA. None of 202 preimplantation embryos stained positively for LacZ and none of 58 fetuses were positive for DNA by PCR analysis. Finally, more than 1400 eggs were fertilized after exposure to the vector prior to IVF and stained as morulae for LacZ activity. Fewer than 2% of the embryos stained positively for LacZ, and experiments indicated that the staining was due to incomplete washing of the eggs prior to IVF. These data provide strong evidence that adenoviruses cannot infect oocytes and that the risk of female germ-line transduction with such vectors is very low. PMID:11319918

  9. [Ovarian germ cell tumors in girls].

    PubMed

    Nechushkina, I V; Karseladze, A I

    2015-01-01

    Morphological structure of tumor influences on the clinical course of the disease in children with germ cell tumors. Patients with ovarian dysgerminoma at the time of diagnosis are significantly older than patients with immature teratoma and yolk sac tumor. Immature teratoma and mixed germ cell tumors are significantly larger compared to other germ cell tumors. Yolk sac tumor and embryonal carcinoma are the most common cause of emergency surgical interventions and are accompanied by rupture of tumor capsule. PMID:26087605

  10. Germ cell binding to rat Sertoli cells in vitro

    SciTech Connect

    DePhilip, R.M.; Danahey, D.G.

    1987-12-01

    The interaction between male germ cells and Sertoli cells was studied in vitro by co-incubation experiments using isolated rat germ cells and primary cultures of Sertoli cells made germ cell-free by the differential sensitivity of germ cells to hypotonic shock. The germ cell/Sertoli cell interaction was examined morphologically with phase-contrast and scanning electron microscopy and then quantified by measuring radioactivity bound to Sertoli cell cultures after co-incubation with added (/sup 3/H)leucine-labeled germ cells. Germ cell binding to Sertoli cell cultures was the result of specific adhesion between these two cell types, and several features of this specific adhesion were observed. First, germ cells adhered to Sertoli cell cultures under conditions during which spleen cells and red blood cells did not. Second, germ cells had a greater affinity for Sertoli cell cultures than they had for cultures of testicular peritubular cells or cerebellar astrocytes. Third, germ cells fixed with paraformaldehyde adhered to live Sertoli cultures while similarly fixed spleen cells adhered less tightly. Neither live nor paraformaldehyde-fixed germ cells adhered to fixed Sertoli cell cultures. Fourth, germ cell binding to Sertoli cell cultures was not immediate but increased steadily and approached a maximum at 4 h of co-incubation. Saturation of germ cell binding to Sertoli cell cultures occurred when more than 4200 germ cells were added per mm2 of Sertoli cell culture surface. Finally, germ cell binding to Sertoli cell cultures was eliminated when co-incubation was performed on ice. Based on these observations, we concluded that germ cell adhesion to Sertoli cells was specific, temperature-dependent, and required a viable Sertoli cell but not necessarily a viable germ cell.

  11. The role of dead-end in germ-cell tumor development.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Rui; Bhattacharya, Chitralekha; Matin, Angabin

    2007-12-01

    Testicular germ-cell tumors occur in human males of all age groups, from infants to men over 50 years old. Most commonly, germ-cell tumors (generally known as testicular cancer) occur in young males between the ages of 15 to 35 years. The tumor tissues are usually histologically diverse, and testicular tumors that occur in the different age groups tend to be of specific histological subtypes. Most germ-cell tumors originate from primordial germ cells during embryonic development, although the progression and eventual detection of the disease occurs decades later in humans. Mouse strains spontaneously develop a specific subtype of testicular germ-cell tumors, the type I germ-cell tumors, and these tumors are similar to the germ-cell tumors (or teratomas) that occur in human infants. Some mouse strains, such as the 129-Ter strain, have extremely high germ-cell tumor incidences, making such strains ideal for genetic and biological studies of germ cell-tumor development. Here a brief overview of the recently identified genetic defect in the Ter strain, inactivation of the dead-end (Dnd1) gene, and the ongoing studies on Dnd1 to understand its role in germ-cell and germ cell-tumor development, are provided. PMID:17905939

  12. Beyond the Mouse Monopoly: Studying the Male Germ Line in Domestic Animal Models

    PubMed Central

    González, Raquel; Dobrinski, Ina

    2015-01-01

    Spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) are the foundation of spermatogenesis and essential to maintain the continuous production of spermatozoa after the onset of puberty in the male. The study of the male germ line is important for understanding the process of spermatogenesis, unravelling mechanisms of stemness maintenance, cell differentiation, and cell-to-cell interactions. The transplantation of SSCs can contribute to the preservation of the genome of valuable individuals in assisted reproduction programs. In addition to the importance of SSCs for male fertility, their study has recently stimulated interest in the generation of genetically modified animals because manipulations of the male germ line at the SSC stage will be maintained in the long term and transmitted to the offspring. Studies performed mainly in the mouse model have laid the groundwork for facilitating advancements in the field of male germ line biology, but more progress is needed in nonrodent species in order to translate the technology to the agricultural and biomedical fields. The lack of reliable markers for isolating germ cells from testicular somatic cells and the lack of knowledge of the requirements for germ cell maintenance have precluded their long-term maintenance in domestic animals. Nevertheless, some progress has been made. In this review, we will focus on the state of the art in the isolation, characterization, culture, and manipulation of SSCs and the use of germ cell transplantation in domestic animals. PMID:25991701

  13. How to make a human germ cell.

    PubMed

    Cooke, Paul S; Nanjappa, Manjunatha K

    2015-01-01

    How the primordial germ cell (PGC) lineage, which eventually gives rise to spermatozoa in males and oocytes in females, is established in the developing mammalian embryo has been a critical topic in both developmental and reproductive biology for many years. There have been significant breakthroughs over the past two decades in establishing both the source of PGCs and the factors that regulate the specification of this lineage in mice, [1] but our understanding of the factors that control PGC development in the human is rudimentary. The SRY-related HMG-box (SOX) family of transcription factors consists of 20 genes in humans and mice that are involved in the maintenance of pluripotency, male sexual development, and other processes. A recent paper in Cell has identified one member of this family, SOX17, as an essential factor for inducing the PGC lineage in humans. [2] Surprisingly, this protein does not appear to have a role in PGC specification in mice. This work not only introduces a new and important player to the field of germ cell specification, but also emphasizes the uniqueness of human PGC development compared to more extensively studied mouse models. PMID:25791734

  14. Germ Cell Nuclear Factor Regulates Gametogenesis in Developing Gonads

    PubMed Central

    Sabour, Davood; Xu, Xueping; Chung, Arthur C. K.; Le Menuet, Damien; Ko, Kinarm; Tapia, Natalia; Araúzo-Bravo, Marcos J.; Gentile, Luca; Greber, Boris; Hübner, Karin; Sebastiano, Vittorio; Wu, Guangming; Schöler, Hans R.; Cooney, Austin J.

    2014-01-01

    Expression of germ cell nuclear factor (GCNF; Nr6a1), an orphan member of the nuclear receptor gene family of transcription factors, during gastrulation and neurulation is critical for normal embryogenesis in mice. Gcnf represses the expression of the POU-domain transcription factor Oct4 (Pou5f1) during mouse post-implantation development. Although Gcnf expression is not critical for the embryonic segregation of the germ cell lineage, we found that sexually dimorphic expression of Gcnf in germ cells correlates with the expression of pluripotency-associated genes, such as Oct4, Sox2, and Nanog, as well as the early meiotic marker gene Stra8. To elucidate the role of Gcnf during mouse germ cell differentiation, we generated an ex vivo Gcnf-knockdown model in combination with a regulated CreLox mutation of Gcnf. Lack of Gcnf impairs normal spermatogenesis and oogenesis in vivo, as well as the derivation of germ cells from embryonic stem cells (ESCs) in vitro. Inactivation of the Gcnf gene in vivo leads to loss of repression of Oct4 expression in both male and female gonads. PMID:25140725

  15. Treatment Option Overview (Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumors)

    MedlinePlus

    ... hCG and LDH may be at any level. Poor prognosis A nonseminoma extragonadal germ cell tumor is in the poor prognosis group if: the tumor is in the ... extragonadal germ cell tumor does not have a poor prognosis group. Treatment Option Overview Key Points There ...

  16. Specification of germ cell fate in mice.

    PubMed Central

    Saitou, Mitinori; Payer, Bernhard; Lange, Ulrike C; Erhardt, Sylvia; Barton, Sheila C; Surani, M Azim

    2003-01-01

    An early fundamental event during development is the segregation of germ cells from somatic cells. In many organisms, this is accomplished by the inheritance of preformed germ plasm, which apparently imposes transcriptional repression to prevent somatic cell fate. However, in mammals, pluripotent epiblast cells acquire germ cell fate in response to signalling molecules. We have used single cell analysis to study how epiblast cells acquire germ cell competence and undergo specification. Germ cell competent cells express Fragilis and initially progress towards a somatic mesodermal fate. However, a subset of these cells, the future primordial germ cells (PGCs), then shows rapid upregulation of Fragilis with concomitant transcriptional repression of a number of genes, including Hox and Smad genes. This repression may be a key event associated with germ cell specification. Furthermore, PGCs express Stella and other genes, such as Oct-4 that are associated with pluripotency. While these molecules are also detected in mature oocytes as maternally inherited factors, their early role is to regulate development and maintain pluripotency, and they do not serve the role of classical germline determinants. PMID:14511483

  17. How free of germs is germ-free? Detection of bacterial contamination in a germ free mouse unit.

    PubMed

    Fontaine, Clinton A; Skorupski, Anna M; Vowles, Chriss J; Anderson, Natalie E; Poe, Sara A; Eaton, Kathryn A

    2015-07-01

    Management of germ free animals has changed little since the beginning of the 20th century. The current upswing in their use, however, has led to interest in improved methods of screening and housing. Traditionally, germ free colonies are screened for bacterial colonization by culture and examination of Gram stained fecal samples, but some investigators have reported using PCR-based methods of microbial detection, presumably because of perceived increased sensitivity. The accuracy and detection limit for traditional compared to PCR-based screening assays are not known. The purpose of this study was to determine the limit of detection of bacterial contamination of mouse feces by aerobic and anaerobic culture, Gram stain, and qPCR, and to compare the accuracy of these tests in the context of a working germ free mouse colony. We found that the limit of detection for qPCR (approximately 10(5) cfu/g of feces) was lower than for Gram stain (approximately 10(9) cfu/g), but that all 3 assays were of similar accuracy. Bacterial culture was the most sensitive, but the least specific, and qPCR was the least sensitive and most specific. Gram stain but not qPCR detected heat-killed bacteria, indicating that bacteria in autoclaved diet are unlikely to represent a potential confounding factor for PCR screening. We conclude that as a practical matter, bacterial culture and Gram stain are adequate for screening germ free mouse colonies for bacterial contaminants, but that should low numbers of unculturable bacteria be present, they would not be detected with any of the currently available means. PMID:26018301

  18. How free of germs is germ-free? Detection of bacterial contamination in a germ free mouse unit

    PubMed Central

    Fontaine, Clinton A; Skorupski, Anna M; Vowles, Chriss J; Anderson, Natalie E; Poe, Sara A; Eaton, Kathryn A

    2015-01-01

    Management of germ free animals has changed little since the beginning of the 20th century. The current upswing in their use, however, has led to interest in improved methods of screening and housing. Traditionally, germ free colonies are screened for bacterial colonization by culture and examination of Gram stained fecal samples, but some investigators have reported using PCR-based methods of microbial detection, presumably because of perceived increased sensitivity. The accuracy and detection limit for traditional compared to PCR-based screening assays are not known. The purpose of this study was to determine the limit of detection of bacterial contamination of mouse feces by aerobic and anaerobic culture, Gram stain, and qPCR, and to compare the accuracy of these tests in the context of a working germ free mouse colony. We found that the limit of detection for qPCR (approximately 105 cfu/g of feces) was lower than for Gram stain (approximately 109 cfu/g), but that all 3 assays were of similar accuracy. Bacterial culture was the most sensitive, but the least specific, and qPCR was the least sensitive and most specific. Gram stain but not qPCR detected heat-killed bacteria, indicating that bacteria in autoclaved diet are unlikely to represent a potential confounding factor for PCR screening. We conclude that as a practical matter, bacterial culture and Gram stain are adequate for screening germ free mouse colonies for bacterial contaminants, but that should low numbers of unculturable bacteria be present, they would not be detected with any of the currently available means. PMID:26018301

  19. In vitro differentiation of germ cells from stem cells: a comparison between primordial germ cells and in vitro derived primordial germ cell-like cells.

    PubMed

    Ge, W; Chen, C; De Felici, M; Shen, W

    2015-01-01

    Stem cells are unique cell types capable to proliferate, some of them indefinitely, while maintaining the ability to differentiate into a few or any cell lineages. In 2003, a group headed by Hans R. Schöler reported that oocyte-like cells could be produced from mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells in vitro. After more than 10 years, where have these researches reached? Which are the major successes achieved and the problems still remaining to be solved? Although during the last years, many reviews have been published about these topics, in the present work, we will focus on an aspect that has been little considered so far, namely a strict comparison between the in vitro and in vivo developmental capabilities of the primordial germ cells (PGCs) isolated from the embryo and the PGC-like cells (PGC-LCs) produced in vitro from different types of stem cells in the mouse, the species in which most investigation has been carried out. Actually, the formation and differentiation of PGCs are crucial for both male and female gametogenesis, and the faithful production of PGCs in vitro represents the basis for obtaining functional germ cells. PMID:26469955

  20. In vitro differentiation of germ cells from stem cells: a comparison between primordial germ cells and in vitro derived primordial germ cell-like cells

    PubMed Central

    Ge, W; Chen, C; De Felici, M; Shen, W

    2015-01-01

    Stem cells are unique cell types capable to proliferate, some of them indefinitely, while maintaining the ability to differentiate into a few or any cell lineages. In 2003, a group headed by Hans R. Schöler reported that oocyte-like cells could be produced from mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells in vitro. After more than 10 years, where have these researches reached? Which are the major successes achieved and the problems still remaining to be solved? Although during the last years, many reviews have been published about these topics, in the present work, we will focus on an aspect that has been little considered so far, namely a strict comparison between the in vitro and in vivo developmental capabilities of the primordial germ cells (PGCs) isolated from the embryo and the PGC-like cells (PGC-LCs) produced in vitro from different types of stem cells in the mouse, the species in which most investigation has been carried out. Actually, the formation and differentiation of PGCs are crucial for both male and female gametogenesis, and the faithful production of PGCs in vitro represents the basis for obtaining functional germ cells. PMID:26469955

  1. Germ cell quantitation in human testicular biopsy.

    PubMed

    Sinha Hikim, A P; Chakraborty, J; Jhunjhunwala, J S

    1985-01-01

    Quantitative analysis of human seminiferous epithelium was carried out using an improved method of glutaraldehyde and osmium fixation with plastic embedding. Part of each biopsy specimen was fixed in Bouin's fixative and embedded in paraffin for comparison. Epon embedded tissue had very little artifactual damage compared with paraffin embedded tissue sections. The germ cell to Sertoli cell ratios were determined by counting the various germ cells per "unit" tubular area. Data obtained by this method reflect a remarkable stability of Sertoli cell number and germ cell-Sertoli cell ratios both between biopsies from different individuals and between biopsies from right and left testes from the same individual. Agreement between the present results and those of earlier studies based on paraffin embedded testicular specimens supports the validity of this method of germ cell quantitation of human testicular biopsy samples. PMID:3927550

  2. Specifying and protecting germ cell fate

    PubMed Central

    Strome, Susan; Updike, Dustin

    2015-01-01

    Germ cells are the special cells in the body that undergo meiosis to generate gametes and subsequently entire new organisms after fertilization, a process that continues generation after generation. Recent studies have expanded our understanding of the factors and mechanisms that specify germ cell fate, including the partitioning of maternally supplied ‘germ plasm’, inheritance of epigenetic memory and expression of transcription factors crucial for primordial germ cell (PGC) development. Even after PGCs are specified, germline fate is labile and thus requires protective mechanisms, such as global transcriptional repression, chromatin state alteration and translation of only germline-appropriate transcripts. Findings from diverse species continue to provide insights into the shared and divergent needs of these special reproductive cells. PMID:26122616

  3. Steel factor controls midline cell death of primordial germ cells and is essential for their normal proliferation and migration.

    PubMed

    Runyan, Christopher; Schaible, Kyle; Molyneaux, Kathleen; Wang, Zhuoqiao; Levin, Linda; Wylie, Christopher

    2006-12-01

    During germ-cell migration in the mouse, the dynamics of embryo growth cause many germ cells to be left outside the range of chemoattractive signals from the gonad. At E10.5, movie analysis has shown that germ cells remaining in the midline no longer migrate directionally towards the genital ridges, but instead rapidly fragment and disappear. Extragonadal germ cell tumors of infancy, one of the most common neonatal tumors, are thought to arise from midline germ cells that failed to die. This paper addresses the mechanism of midline germ cell death in the mouse. We show that at E10.5, the rate of apoptosis is nearly four-times higher in midline germ cells than those more laterally. Gene expression profiling of purified germ cells suggests this is caused by activation of the intrinsic apoptotic pathway. We then show that germ cell apoptosis in the midline is activated by down-regulation of Steel factor (kit ligand) expression in the midline between E9.5 and E10.5. This is confirmed by the fact that removal of the intrinsic pro-apoptotic protein Bax rescues the germ-cell apoptosis seen in Steel null embryos. Two interesting things are revealed by this: first, germ-cell proliferation does not take place in these embryos after E9.0; second, migration of germ cells is highly abnormal. These data show first that changing expression of Steel factor is required for normal midline germ cell death, and second, that Steel factor is required for normal proliferation and migration of germ cells. PMID:17107997

  4. BMP signaling is required for the generation of primordial germ cells in an insect

    PubMed Central

    Donoughe, Seth; Nakamura, Taro; Ewen-Campen, Ben; Green, Delbert A.; Henderson, Lory; Extavour, Cassandra G.

    2014-01-01

    Two modes of germ cell formation are known in animals. Specification through maternally inherited germ plasm occurs in many well-characterized model organisms, but most animals lack germ plasm by morphological and functional criteria. The only known alternative mechanism is induction, experimentally described only in mice, which specify germ cells through bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signal-mediated induction of a subpopulation of mesodermal cells. Until this report, no experimental evidence of an inductive germ cell signal for specification has been available outside of vertebrates. Here we provide functional genetic experimental evidence consistent with a role for BMP signaling in germ cell formation in a basally branching insect. We show that primordial germ cells of the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus transduce BMP signals and require BMP pathway activity for their formation. Moreover, increased BMP activity leads to ectopic and supernumerary germ cells. Given the commonality of BMP signaling in mouse and cricket germ cell induction, we suggest that BMP-based germ cell formation may be a shared ancestral mechanism in animals. PMID:24591634

  5. BMP signaling is required for the generation of primordial germ cells in an insect.

    PubMed

    Donoughe, Seth; Nakamura, Taro; Ewen-Campen, Ben; Green, Delbert A; Henderson, Lory; Extavour, Cassandra G

    2014-03-18

    Two modes of germ cell formation are known in animals. Specification through maternally inherited germ plasm occurs in many well-characterized model organisms, but most animals lack germ plasm by morphological and functional criteria. The only known alternative mechanism is induction, experimentally described only in mice, which specify germ cells through bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signal-mediated induction of a subpopulation of mesodermal cells. Until this report, no experimental evidence of an inductive germ cell signal for specification has been available outside of vertebrates. Here we provide functional genetic experimental evidence consistent with a role for BMP signaling in germ cell formation in a basally branching insect. We show that primordial germ cells of the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus transduce BMP signals and require BMP pathway activity for their formation. Moreover, increased BMP activity leads to ectopic and supernumerary germ cells. Given the commonality of BMP signaling in mouse and cricket germ cell induction, we suggest that BMP-based germ cell formation may be a shared ancestral mechanism in animals. PMID:24591634

  6. Elucidating human male germ cell development by studying germ cell cancer.

    PubMed

    Nettersheim, Daniel; Jostes, Sina; Schneider, Simon; Schorle, Hubert

    2016-10-01

    Human germ cell development is regulated in a spatio-temporal manner by complex regulatory networks. Here, we summarize results obtained in germ cell tumors and respective cell lines and try to pinpoint similarities to normal germ cell development. This comparison allows speculating about the critical and error-prone mechanisms, which when disturbed, lead to the development of germ cell tumors. Short after specification, primordial germ cells express markers of pluripotency, which, in humans, persists up to the stage of fetal/infantile spermatogonia. Aside from the rare spermatocytic tumors, virtually all seminomas and embryonal carcinomas express markers of pluripotency and show signs of pluripotency or totipotency. Therefore, it appears that proper handling of the pluripotency program appears to be the most critical step in germ cell development in terms of tumor biology. Furthermore, data from mice reveal that germline cells display an epigenetic signature, which is highly similar to pluripotent cells. This signature (poised histone code, DNA hypomethylation) is required for the rapid induction of toti- and pluripotency upon fertilization. We propose that adult spermatogonial cells, when exposed to endocrine disruptors or epigenetic active substances, are prone to reinitiate the pluripotency program, giving rise to a germ cell tumor. The fact that pluripotent cells can be derived from adult murine and human testicular cells further corroborates this idea. PMID:27512122

  7. Germ Cells Need Folate to Proliferate.

    PubMed

    Walker, Amy K

    2016-07-11

    In this issue of Developmental Cell, Chaudhari and colleagues (2016) use a novel method to create an in vitro proliferative cell line from tumorous C. elegans germ cells, and in the process discover that bacterial folates act as signals for proliferation, independent of their roles as vitamins. PMID:27404353

  8. Surgery and Combination Chemotherapy in Treating Children With Extracranial Germ Cell Tumors

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-05-06

    Childhood Embryonal Tumor; Childhood Extracranial Germ Cell Tumor; Childhood Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumor; Childhood Malignant Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Childhood Malignant Testicular Germ Cell Tumor; Childhood Teratoma; Ovarian Embryonal Carcinoma; Ovarian Yolk Sac Tumor; Stage II Malignant Testicular Germ Cell Tumor; Stage IIA Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Stage IIB Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Stage IIC Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Stage III Malignant Testicular Germ Cell Tumor; Stage IIIA Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Stage IIIB Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Stage IIIC Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Testicular Choriocarcinoma and Yolk Sac Tumor; Testicular Embryonal Carcinoma

  9. A concerted approach to the study of the aneuploidogenic properties of two chelating agents (EDTA and NTA) in the germ and somatic cell lines of Drosophila and the mouse

    SciTech Connect

    Zordan, M.; Russo, A.; Costa, R.; Bianco, N.; Beltrame, C.; Levis, A.G. )

    1990-01-01

    The genetic effects of nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA) and ethylenedinitrilotetraacetic acid (EDTA), two widely used chelating agents, were investigated by using a somatic mutation and recombination test (SMART) after treatment of larvae and the FIX test for aneuploidy after treatment of adult female Drosophila melanogaster. Chloral hydrate (CH) and 5-fluorodeoxyuridine (FdUr) were used as positive controls. Effectively absorbed amounts of the test compounds assayed in Drosophila were estimated at the single fly level by a method using {sup 3}H-leucine. NTA and EDTA were also assayed in tests for aneuploidy based on chromosome counting in mouse germ and somatic cells. The authors previously showed that NTA was able to induce aneuploidy in the germ cells of both Drosophila and the mouse when tested at the exposure levels of 5 {times} 10{sup {minus}2} M and 275 mg per kg body weight, respectively. In the present experiments, EDTA was assayed at 2.5 {times} 10{sup {minus}2} M and 7.5 {times} 10{sup {minus}3} M in the FIX test adopting a three-stage brooding scheme. Significant increases in chromosomal loss were observed int he second brook and in the combined three-brook total for both exposure levels of EDTA. The previously observed induction of germ cell aneuploidy by NTA was confirmed in the present experiments on a different strain of mice. These results compared and discussed with reference to the characteristics of the different test systems used and to the different chelating properties of NTA and EDTA.

  10. Autophagy is a cell survival program for female germ cells in the murine ovary.

    PubMed

    Gawriluk, Thomas R; Hale, Amber N; Flaws, Jodi A; Dillon, Christopher P; Green, Douglas R; Rucker, Edmund B

    2011-06-01

    It is estimated that infertility affects 15-20% of couples and can arise from female or male reproductive defects. Mouse models have ascribed roles to over 100 genes in the maintenance of female fertility. Although previous models have determined roles for apoptosis in male and female fertility, we find that compromised autophagy within the perinatal ovary, through the loss of Becn1 or Atg7, results in the premature loss of female germ cells. Becn1(+/-) ovaries have a 56% reduction of germ cells compared with control ovaries at post-natal day 1, whereas Atg7(-/-) ovaries lack discernable germ cells at this stage. Thus autophagy appears to be a cell survival mechanism to maintain the endowment of female germ cells prior to establishing primordial follicle pools in the ovary. PMID:21464117

  11. Tritium effects on germ cells and fertility

    SciTech Connect

    Dobson, R.L.; Kwan, T.C.; Straume, T.

    1982-11-19

    Primordial oocytes in juvenile mice show acute gamma-ray LD/sub 50/ as low as 6 rad. This provides opportunities for determining dose-response relations at low doses and chronic exposure in the intact animal - conditions of particular interest for hazard evaluation. Examined in this way, /sup 3/HOH in body water is found to kill murine oocytes exponentially with dose, the LD/sub 50/ level for chronic exposure being only 2..mu..Ci/ml (delivering 0.4 rad/day). At very low doses and dose rates, where comparisons between tritium and other radiations are of special significance for radiological protection, the RBE of tritium compared with /sup 60/Co gamma radiation reaches approximately 3. Effects on murine fertility from tritium-induced oocyte loss have been quantified by reproductive capacity measurements. Chronic low-level exposure has been examined also in three primate species - squirrel, rhesus, and bonnet monkeys. In squirrel monkeys the ovarian germ-cell supply is 99% destroyed by the time of birth from prenatal exposure to body-water levels of /sup 3/HOH (administered in maternal drinking water) of only 3 ..mu..Ci/ml, the LD/sub 50/ level being 0.5 ..mu..Ci/ml (giving 0.1 rad/day), one fourth that in mice. Though not completely ruled out, similar high sensitivity of female germ cells has not been found in macaques; and it probably does not occur in man. The exquisite radiosensitivity of primordial oocytes in mice is apparently due to vulnerability of the plasma membrane (or something of similar geometry and location), not DNA. Evidence for this comes from tritium data as well as neutron studies. Tritium administered as /sup 3/HOH, and therefore generally distributed, is much more effective in killing murine oocytes than is tritium administered as /sup 3/H-TdR, localized in the nucleus. This situation in the mouse may have implications for estimating radiation genetic risk in the human female.

  12. General Information about Childhood Extracranial Germ Cell Tumors

    MedlinePlus

    ... Germ Cell Tumors Treatment (PDQ®)–Patient Version General Information About Childhood Extracranial Germ Cell Tumors Go to ... the PDQ Pediatric Treatment Editorial Board . Clinical Trial Information A clinical trial is a study to answer ...

  13. DNA Methylation Errors in Cloned Mouse Sperm by Germ Line Barrier Evasion.

    PubMed

    Koike, Tasuku; Wakai, Takuya; Jincho, Yuko; Sakashita, Akihiko; Kobayashi, Hisato; Mizutani, Eiji; Wakayama, Sayaka; Miura, Fumihito; Ito, Takashi; Kono, Tomohiro

    2016-06-01

    The germ line reprogramming barrier resets parental epigenetic modifications according to sex, conferring totipotency to mammalian embryos upon fertilization. However, it is not known whether epigenetic errors are committed during germ line reprogramming that are then transmitted to germ cells, and consequently to offspring. We addressed this question in the present study by performing a genome-wide DNA methylation analysis using a target postbisulfite sequencing method in order to identify DNA methylation errors in cloned mouse sperm. The sperm genomes of two somatic cell-cloned mice (CL1 and CL7) contained significantly higher numbers of differentially methylated CpG sites (P = 0.0045 and P = 0.0116). As a result, they had higher numbers of differentially methylated CpG islands. However, there was no evidence that these sites were transmitted to the sperm genome of offspring. These results suggest that DNA methylation errors resulting from embryo cloning are transmitted to the sperm genome by evading the germ line reprogramming barrier. PMID:27103445

  14. Standard-Dose Combination Chemotherapy or High-Dose Combination Chemotherapy and Stem Cell Transplant in Treating Patients With Relapsed or Refractory Germ Cell Tumors

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-07-26

    Germ Cell Tumor; Teratoma; Choriocarcinoma; Germinoma; Mixed Germ Cell Tumor; Yolk Sac Tumor; Childhood Teratoma; Malignant Germ Cell Neoplasm; Extragonadal Seminoma; Non-seminomatous Germ Cell Tumor; Seminoma

  15. Approaches for identifying germ cell mutagens: Report of the 2013 IWGT workshop on germ cell assays(☆).

    PubMed

    Yauk, Carole L; Aardema, Marilyn J; Benthem, Jan van; Bishop, Jack B; Dearfield, Kerry L; DeMarini, David M; Dubrova, Yuri E; Honma, Masamitsu; Lupski, James R; Marchetti, Francesco; Meistrich, Marvin L; Pacchierotti, Francesca; Stewart, Jane; Waters, Michael D; Douglas, George R

    2015-05-01

    This workshop reviewed the current science to inform and recommend the best evidence-based approaches on the use of germ cell genotoxicity tests. The workshop questions and key outcomes were as follows. (1) Do genotoxicity and mutagenicity assays in somatic cells predict germ cell effects? Limited data suggest that somatic cell tests detect most germ cell mutagens, but there are strong concerns that dictate caution in drawing conclusions. (2) Should germ cell tests be done, and when? If there is evidence that a chemical or its metabolite(s) will not reach target germ cells or gonadal tissue, it is not necessary to conduct germ cell tests, notwithstanding somatic outcomes. However, it was recommended that negative somatic cell mutagens with clear evidence for gonadal exposure and evidence of toxicity in germ cells could be considered for germ cell mutagenicity testing. For somatic mutagens that are known to reach the gonadal compartments and expose germ cells, the chemical could be assumed to be a germ cell mutagen without further testing. Nevertheless, germ cell mutagenicity testing would be needed for quantitative risk assessment. (3) What new assays should be implemented and how? There is an immediate need for research on the application of whole genome sequencing in heritable mutation analysis in humans and animals, and integration of germ cell assays with somatic cell genotoxicity tests. Focus should be on environmental exposures that can cause de novo mutations, particularly newly recognized types of genomic changes. Mutational events, which may occur by exposure of germ cells during embryonic development, should also be investigated. Finally, where there are indications of germ cell toxicity in repeat dose or reproductive toxicology tests, consideration should be given to leveraging those studies to inform of possible germ cell genotoxicity. PMID:25953399

  16. Rebuilding Pluripotency from Primordial Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Leitch, Harry G.; Nichols, Jennifer; Humphreys, Peter; Mulas, Carla; Martello, Graziano; Lee, Caroline; Jones, Ken; Surani, M. Azim; Smith, Austin

    2013-01-01

    Mammalian primordial germ cells (PGCs) are unipotent progenitors of the gametes. Nonetheless, they can give rise directly to pluripotent stem cells in vitro or during teratocarcinogenesis. This conversion is inconsistent, however, and has been difficult to study. Here, we delineate requirements for efficient resetting of pluripotency in culture. We demonstrate that in defined conditions, routinely 20% of PGCs become EG cells. Conversion can occur from the earliest specified PGCs. The entire process can be tracked from single cells. It is driven by leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) and the downstream transcription factor STAT3. In contrast, LIF signaling is not required during germ cell ontogeny. We surmise that ectopic LIF/STAT3 stimulation reconstructs latent pluripotency and self-renewal. Notably, STAT3 targets are significantly upregulated in germ cell tumors, suggesting that dysregulation of this pathway may underlie teratocarcinogenesis. These findings demonstrate that EG cell formation is a robust experimental system for exploring mechanisms involved in reprogramming and cancer. PMID:24052943

  17. The transcriptional repressor Blimp-1 acts downstream of BMP signaling to generate primordial germ cells in the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Taro; Extavour, Cassandra G

    2016-01-15

    Segregation of the germ line from the soma is an essential event for transmission of genetic information across generations in all sexually reproducing animals. Although some well-studied systems such as Drosophila and Xenopus use maternally inherited germ determinants to specify germ cells, most animals, including mice, appear to utilize zygotic inductive cell signals to specify germ cells during later embryogenesis. Such inductive germ cell specification is thought to be an ancestral trait of Bilateria, but major questions remain as to the nature of an ancestral mechanism to induce germ cells, and how that mechanism evolved. We previously reported that BMP signaling-based germ cell induction is conserved in both the mouse Mus musculus and the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus, which is an emerging model organism for functional studies of induction-based germ cell formation. In order to gain further insight into the functional evolution of germ cell specification, here we examined the Gryllus ortholog of the transcription factor Blimp-1 (also known as Prdm1), which is a widely conserved bilaterian gene known to play a crucial role in the specification of germ cells in mice. Our functional analyses of the Gryllus Blimp-1 ortholog revealed that it is essential for Gryllus primordial germ cell development, and is regulated by upstream input from the BMP signaling pathway. This functional conservation of the epistatic relationship between BMP signaling and Blimp-1 in inductive germ cell specification between mouse and cricket supports the hypothesis that this molecular mechanism regulated primordial germ cell specification in a last common bilaterian ancestor. PMID:26786211

  18. Bone morphogenetic protein 4 mediates human embryonic germ cell derivation.

    PubMed

    Hiller, Marc; Liu, Cyndi; Blumenthal, Paul D; Gearhart, John D; Kerr, Candace L

    2011-02-01

    Human primordial germ cells (PGCs) have proven to be a source of pluripotent stem cells called embryonic germ cells (EGCs). Unlike embryonic stem cells, virtually little is known regarding the factors that regulate EGC survival and maintenance. In mice, the growth factor bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4) has been shown to be required for maintaining mouse embryonic stem cells, and disruptions in this gene lead to defects in mouse PGC specification. Here, we sought to determine whether recombinant human BMP4 could influence EGC derivation and/or human PGC survival. We found that the addition of recombinant BMP4 increased the number of human PGCs after 1 week of culture in a dose-responsive manner. The efficiency of EGC derivation and maintenance in culture was also enhanced by the presence of recombinant BMP4 based on alkaline phosphatase and OCT4 staining. In addition, an antagonist of the BMP4 pathway, Noggin, decreased PGC proliferation and led to an increase in cystic embryoid body formation. Quantitative real-time (qRT)-polymerase chain reaction analyses and immunostaining confirmed that the constituents of the BMP4 pathway were upregulated in EGCs versus PGCs. Downstream activators of the BMP4 pathway such as ID1 and phosphorylated SMADs 1 and 5 were also expressed, suggesting a role of this growth factor in EGC pluripotency. PMID:20486775

  19. The role of sex chromosomes in mammalian germ cell differentiation: can the germ cells carrying X and Y chromosomes differentiate into fertile oocytes?

    PubMed Central

    Taketo, Teruko

    2015-01-01

    The sexual differentiation of germ cells into spermatozoa or oocytes is strictly regulated by their gonadal environment, testis or ovary, which is determined by the presence or absence of the Y chromosome, respectively. Hence, in normal mammalian development, male germ cells differentiate in the presence of X and Y chromosomes, and female germ cells do so in the presence of two X chromosomes. However, gonadal sex reversal occurs in humans as well as in other mammalian species, and the resultant XX males and XY females can lead healthy lives, except for a complete or partial loss of fertility. Germ cells carrying an abnormal set of sex chromosomes are efficiently eliminated by multilayered surveillance mechanisms in the testis, and also, though more variably, in the ovary. Studying the molecular basis for sex-specific responses to a set of sex chromosomes during gametogenesis will promote our understanding of meiotic processes contributing to the evolution of sex determining mechanisms. This review discusses the fate of germ cells carrying various sex chromosomal compositions in mouse models, the limitation of which may be overcome by recent successes in the differentiation of functional germ cells from embryonic stem cells under experimental conditions. PMID:25578929

  20. On the number of founding germ cells in humans

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Chang-Jiang; Luebeck, E Georg; Byers, Breck; Moolgavkar, Suresh H

    2005-01-01

    Background The number of founding germ cells (FGCs) in mammals is of fundamental significance to the fidelity of gene transmission between generations, but estimates from various methods vary widely. In this paper we obtain a new estimate for the value in humans by using a mathematical model of germ cell development that depends on available oocyte counts for adult women. Results The germline-development model derives from the assumption that oogonial proliferation in the embryonic stage starts with a founding cells at t = 0 and that the subsequent proliferation can be defined as a simple stochastic birth process. It follows that the population size X(t) at the end of germline expansion (around the 5th month of pregnancy in humans; t = 0.42 years) is a random variable with a negative binomial distribution. A formula based on the expectation and variance of this random variable yields a moment-based estimate of a that is insensitive to the progressive reduction in oocyte numbers due to their utilization and apoptosis at later stages of life. In addition, we describe an algorithm for computing the maximum likelihood estimation of the FGC population size (a), as well as the rates of oogonial division and loss to apoptosis. Utilizing both of these approaches to evaluate available oocyte-counting data, we have obtained an estimate of a = 2 – 3 for Homo sapiens. Conclusion The estimated number of founding germ cells in humans corresponds well with values previously derived from chimerical or mosaic mouse data. These findings suggest that the large variation in oocyte numbers between individual women is consistent with a smaller founding germ cell population size than has been estimated by cytological analyses. PMID:16120211

  1. Quantification of immunocompetent cells in testicular germ cell tumours.

    PubMed

    Torres, A; Casanova, J F; Nistal, M; Regadera, J

    1997-01-01

    The immunocompetent cells present in the different histological patterns of 43 testicular germ cell tumours were evaluated. CD3 + and CD45RO + (UCHL1 +) T lymphocytes, CD68 + and MAC 387 + macrophages, CD20 + (L26 +) B lymphocytes, and kappa and lambda + plasma cells were counted. The number of immunocompetent cells per mm2 of tumour tissue, excluding the necrotic areas, was evaluated. Microscopic fields were randomly selected by two observers. In order to guarantee randomization each surface was divided into parts, numbered through a lattice, and some fields were chosen via a random numbers table. This procedure yielded significantly different counts from those obtained on subjective selection. The number of T-lymphocytes and macrophages was higher in seminomas than in the non-seminomatous testicular germ cell tumours (P < 0.05) Embryonal carcinomas had more T-lymphocytes than immature teratomas. No significant differences were found among testicular germ cell tumours with regards to the B-lymphocytes, with the exception of the high number of B-lymphocytes in mature teratomas. Kappa + and lambda + plasma cells were few in the testicular germ cell tumours. Randomization in the quantification of immunocompetent cells in testicular germ cell tumours is a good means for evaluation of immune response in all the tumour mass, not only in the areas with the most intense inflammatory cell infiltrate, and permits comparison of testicular germ cell tumours with other malignant tumours. Study of immunocompetent cells in every histological type of testicular germ cell tumour is useful in comparing them with other extra-testicular germ cell tumours. PMID:9023554

  2. TOPAZ1, a Novel Germ Cell-Specific Expressed Gene Conserved during Evolution across Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Baillet, Adrienne; Le Bouffant, Ronan; Volff, Jean Nicolas; Luangpraseuth, Alix; Poumerol, Elodie; Thépot, Dominique; Pailhoux, Eric; Livera, Gabriel; Cotinot, Corinne; Mandon-Pépin, Béatrice

    2011-01-01

    Background We had previously reported that the Suppression Subtractive Hybridization (SSH) approach was relevant for the isolation of new mammalian genes involved in oogenesis and early follicle development. Some of these transcripts might be potential new oocyte and granulosa cell markers. We have now characterized one of them, named TOPAZ1 for the Testis and Ovary-specific PAZ domain gene. Principal Findings Sheep and mouse TOPAZ1 mRNA have 4,803 bp and 4,962 bp open reading frames (20 exons), respectively, and encode putative TOPAZ1 proteins containing 1,600 and 1653 amino acids. They possess PAZ and CCCH domains. In sheep, TOPAZ1 mRNA is preferentially expressed in females during fetal life with a peak during prophase I of meiosis, and in males during adulthood. In the mouse, Topaz1 is a germ cell-specific gene. TOPAZ1 protein is highly conserved in vertebrates and specifically expressed in mouse and sheep gonads. It is localized in the cytoplasm of germ cells from the sheep fetal ovary and mouse adult testis. Conclusions We have identified a novel PAZ-domain protein that is abundantly expressed in the gonads during germ cell meiosis. The expression pattern of TOPAZ1, and its high degree of conservation, suggests that it may play an important role in germ cell development. Further characterization of TOPAZ1 may elucidate the mechanisms involved in gametogenesis, and particularly in the RNA silencing process in the germ line. PMID:22069478

  3. Dnd knockout ablates germ cells and demonstrates germ cell independent sex differentiation in Atlantic salmon

    PubMed Central

    Wargelius, Anna; Leininger, Sven; Skaftnesmo, Kai Ove; Kleppe, Lene; Andersson, Eva; Taranger, Geir Lasse; Schulz, Rüdiger W; Edvardsen, Rolf B

    2016-01-01

    Introgression of farmed salmon escapees into wild stocks is a major threat to the genetic integrity of wild populations. Using germ cell-free fish in aquaculture may mitigate this problem. Our study investigated whether it is possible to produce germ cell-free salmon in F0 by using CRISPR-Cas9 to knock out dnd, a factor required for germ cell survival in vertebrates. To avoid studying mosaic animals, sgRNA targeting alb was simultaneously used as a visual tracer since the phenotype of alb KO is complete loss of pigmentation. Induced mutations for the tracer (alb) and the target (dnd) genes were highly correlated and produced germ cell-less fish lacking pigmentation, underlining the suitability of alb KO to serve as tracer for targeted double allelic mutations in F0 animals in species with prohibitively long generation times. This is also the first report describing dnd knockout in any fish species. Analyzing gene expression and histology of dnd KO fish revealed that sex differentiation of the somatic compartment does not depend on the presence of germ cells. However, the organization of the ovarian somatic compartment seems compromised in mutant fish. PMID:26888627

  4. Cytoplasmic protein binding to highly conserved sequences in the 3' untranslated region of mouse protamine 2 mRNA, a translationally regulated transcript of male germ cells.

    PubMed

    Kwon, Y K; Hecht, N B

    1991-05-01

    The expression of the protamines, the predominant nuclear proteins of mammalian spermatozoa, is regulated translationally during male germ-cell development. The 3' untranslated region (UTR) of protamine 1 mRNA has been reported to control its time of translation. To understand the mechanisms controlling translation of the protamine mRNAs, we have sought to identify cis elements of the 3' UTR of protamine 2 mRNA that are recognized by cytoplasmic factors. From gel retardation assays, two sequence elements are shown to form specific RNA-protein complexes. Protein binding sites of the two complexes were determined by RNase T1 mapping, by blocking the putative binding sites with antisense oligonucleotides, and by competition assays. The sequences of these elements, located between nucleotides + 537 and + 572 in protamine 2 mRNA, are highly conserved among postmeiotic translationally regulated nuclear proteins of the mammalian testis. Two closely linked protein binding sites were detected. UV-crosslinking studies revealed that a protein of about 18 kDa binds to one of the conserved sequences. These data demonstrate specific protein binding to a highly conserved 3' UTR of translationally regulated testicular mRNA. PMID:2023906

  5. Repressive translational control in germ cells.

    PubMed

    Lai, Fangfang; King, Mary Lou

    2013-08-01

    The earliest stages of embryonic development in many animals proceed without zygotic transcription. Genetic control is executed by maternally inherited mRNAs that are under translational control. To set aside the future germ cell lineage, it is pivotal to both exert translational regulation of maternal germline mRNAs and to repress maternal signals in those same cells that drive somatic cell-fate determination. Here we review repressive translational regulation in the germline from the perspective of the conserved RNA binding proteins Pumilio and Nanos, and discuss common themes that have emerged. PMID:23408501

  6. Molecular biology of testicular germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez-Exposito, R; Merino, M; Aguayo, C

    2016-06-01

    Testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs) are the most common solid tumors in young adult men. They constitute a unique pathology because of their embryonic and germ origin and their special behavior. Genetic predisposition, environmental factors involved in their development and genetic aberrations have been under study in many works throughout the last years trying to explain the susceptibility and the transformation mechanism of TGCTs. Despite the high rate of cure in this type of tumors because its particular sensitivity to cisplatin, there are tumors resistant to chemotherapy for which it is needed to find new therapies. In the present work, it has been carried out a literature review on the most important molecular aspects involved in the onset and development of such tumors, as well as a review of the major developments regarding prognostic factors, new prognostic biomarkers and the possibility of new targeted therapies. PMID:26482724

  7. On the development of extragonadal and gonadal human germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Heeren, A. Marijne; He, Nannan; de Souza, Aline F.; Goercharn-Ramlal, Angelique; van Iperen, Liesbeth; Roost, Matthias S.; Gomes Fernandes, Maria M.; van der Westerlaken, Lucette A. J.; Chuva de Sousa Lopes, Susana M.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Human germ cells originate in an extragonadal location and have to migrate to colonize the gonadal primordia at around seven weeks of gestation (W7, or five weeks post conception). Many germ cells are lost along the way and should enter apoptosis, but some escape and can give rise to extragonadal germ cell tumors. Due to the common somatic origin of gonads and adrenal cortex, we investigated whether ectopic germ cells were present in the human adrenals. Germ cells expressing DDX4 and/or POU5F1 were present in male and female human adrenals in the first and second trimester. However, in contrast to what has been described in mice, where ‘adrenal’ and ‘ovarian’ germ cells seem to enter meiosis in synchrony, we were unable to observe meiotic entry in human ‘adrenal’ germ cells until W22. By contrast, ‘ovarian’ germ cells at W22 showed a pronounced asynchronous meiotic entry. Interestingly, we observed that immature POU5F1+ germ cells in both first and second trimester ovaries still expressed the neural crest marker TUBB3, reminiscent of their migratory phase. Our findings highlight species-specific differences in early gametogenesis between mice and humans. We report the presence of a population of ectopic germ cells in the human adrenals during development. PMID:26834021

  8. The Ter Mutation In The Dead End Gene Causes Germ Cell Loss And Testicular Germ Cell Tumours

    SciTech Connect

    Youngren, Kirsten K.; Coveney, Douglas; Peng, Xiaoning; Bhattacharya, Chitralekha; Schmidt, Laura S.; Nickerson, Michael L.; Lamb, Bruce T.; Deng Jian Min; Behringer, Richard R.; Capel, Blanche; Rubin, Edward M.; Nadeau, Joseph H.; Matin, Angabin

    2005-01-01

    In mice, the Ter mutation causes primordial germ cell (PGC) loss in all genetic backgrounds1. Ter is also a potent modifier of spontaneous testicular germ cell tumour (TGCT) susceptibility in the 129 family of inbred strains, and markedly increases TGCT incidence in 129-Ter/Ter males2 4. In 129-Ter/Ter mice, some of the remaining PGCs transform into undifferentiated pluripotent embryonal carcinoma cells2 6, and after birth differentiate into various cells and tissues that compose TGCTs. Here, we report the positional cloning of Ter, revealing a point mutation that introduces a termination codon in the mouse orthologue (Dnd1) of the zebrafish dead end (dnd) gene. PGC deficiency is corrected both with bacterial artificial chromosomes that contain Dnd1 and with a Dnd1-encoding transgene. Dnd1 is expressed in fetal gonads during the critical period when TGCTs originate. DND1 has an RNA recognition motif and is most similar to the apobec complementation factor, a component of the cytidine t o uridine RNA-editing complex. These results suggest that Ter may adversely affect essential aspects of RNA biology during PGC development. DND1 is the first protein known to have an RNA recognition motif directly implicated as a heritable cause of spontaneous tumorigenesis. TGCT development in the 129-Ter mouse strain models paediatric TGCT in humans. This work will have important implications for our understanding of the genetic control of TGCT pathogenesis and PGC biology.

  9. Chromosome X modulates incidence of testicular germ cell tumors in Ter mice.

    PubMed

    Hammond, Shirley; Zhu, Rui; Youngren, Kirsten K; Lam, Josephine; Anderson, Philip; Matin, Angabin

    2007-12-01

    Germ cell tumor development in humans has been proposed to be part of testicular dysgenesis syndrome (TDS), which manifests as undescended testes, sterility, hypospadias, and, in extreme cases, as germ cell tumors. Males of the Ter mouse strain show interesting parallels to TDS because they either lack germ cells and are sterile or develop testicular germ cell tumors. We found that these defects in Ter mice are due to mutational inactivation of the Dead-end (Dnd1) gene. Here we report that chromosome X modulates germ cell tumor development in Ter mice. We tested whether the X or the Y chromosome influences tumor incidence. We used chromosome substitution strains to generate two new mouse strains: 129-Ter/Ter that carry either a C57BL/6J (B6)-derived chromosome (Chr) X or Y. We found that Ter/Ter males with B6-Chr X, but not B6-Chr Y, showed a significant shift in propensity from testicular tumor development to sterile testes phenotype. Thus, our studies provide unambiguous evidence that genetic factors from Chr X modulate the incidence of germ cell tumors in mice with inactivated Dnd1. PMID:18049836

  10. Combination Chemotherapy in Treating Young Patients With Recurrent or Resistant Malignant Germ Cell Tumors

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-04-12

    Childhood Extracranial Germ Cell Tumor; Childhood Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumor; Childhood Malignant Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Childhood Malignant Testicular Germ Cell Tumor; Ovarian Choriocarcinoma; Ovarian Embryonal Carcinoma; Ovarian Yolk Sac Tumor; Recurrent Childhood Malignant Germ Cell Tumor; Recurrent Malignant Testicular Germ Cell Tumor; Recurrent Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Testicular Choriocarcinoma; Testicular Choriocarcinoma and Embryonal Carcinoma; Testicular Choriocarcinoma and Yolk Sac Tumor; Testicular Embryonal Carcinoma; Testicular Embryonal Carcinoma and Yolk Sac Tumor; Testicular Yolk Sac Tumor

  11. Murine somatic cell nuclear transfer using reprogrammed donor cells expressing male germ cell-specific genes.

    PubMed

    Kang, Hoin; Park, Jong Im; Roh, Sangho

    2016-01-01

    In vivo-matured mouse oocytes were enucleated, and a single murine embryonic fibroblast (control or reprogrammed by introducing extracts from murine testis tissue, which showed expression of male germ cell-specific genes) was injected into the cytoplasm of the oocytes. The rate of blastocyst development and expression levels of Oct-4, Eomes and Cdx-2 were not significantly different in both experimental groups. However, the expression levels of Nanog, Sox9 and Glut-1 were significantly increased when reprogrammed cells were used as donor nuclei. Increased expression of Nanog can be supportive of complete reprogramming of somatic cell nuclear transfer murine embryos. The present study suggested that donor cells expressing male germ cell-specific genes can be reconstructed and can develop into embryos with normal high expression of developmentally essential genes. PMID:26369430

  12. Primary pulmonary germ cell tumor with blastomatous differentiation.

    PubMed

    Miller, R R; Champagne, K; Murray, R C

    1994-11-01

    We describe the clinical and pathologic findings of a patient with mixed blastoma-germ cell malignancy primary in the lung. Serum alpha-fetoprotein levels were elevated at presentation, and normalized with anti-germ cell chemotherapy. The resection specimen contained massively necrotic germ cell tumor with viable mature neural tissue, plus viable biphasic blastoma with stromal bone and skeletal muscle differentiation. It is not clear whether the germ cell component represents unusual differentiation of a somatic cell line or whether the blastoma component represents an unusual pattern of teratomatous differentiation. PMID:7525163

  13. A germ cell determinant reveals parallel pathways for germ line development in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Mainpal, Rana; Nance, Jeremy; Yanowitz, Judith L

    2015-10-15

    Despite the central importance of germ cells for transmission of genetic material, our understanding of the molecular programs that control primordial germ cell (PGC) specification and differentiation are limited. Here, we present findings that X chromosome NonDisjunction factor-1 (XND-1), known for its role in regulating meiotic crossover formation, is an early determinant of germ cell fates in Caenorhabditis elegans. xnd-1 mutant embryos display a novel 'one PGC' phenotype as a result of G2 cell cycle arrest of the P4 blastomere. Larvae and adults display smaller germ lines and reduced brood size consistent with a role for XND-1 in germ cell proliferation. Maternal XND-1 proteins are found in the P4 lineage and are exclusively localized to the nucleus in PGCs, Z2 and Z3. Zygotic XND-1 turns on shortly thereafter, at the ∼300-cell stage, making XND-1 the earliest zygotically expressed gene in worm PGCs. Strikingly, a subset of xnd-1 mutants lack germ cells, a phenotype shared with nos-2, a member of the conserved Nanos family of germline determinants. We generated a nos-2 null allele and show that nos-2; xnd-1 double mutants display synthetic sterility. Further removal of nos-1 leads to almost complete sterility, with the vast majority of animals without germ cells. Sterility in xnd-1 mutants is correlated with an increase in transcriptional activation-associated histone modification and aberrant expression of somatic transgenes. Together, these data strongly suggest that xnd-1 defines a new branch for PGC development that functions redundantly with nos-2 and nos-1 to promote germline fates by maintaining transcriptional quiescence and regulating germ cell proliferation. PMID:26395476

  14. Late Relapse of Testicular Germ Cell Tumors.

    PubMed

    O'Shaughnessy, Matthew J; Feldman, Darren R; Carver, Brett S; Sheinfeld, Joel

    2015-08-01

    Germ cell tumors of the testis have an overall survival rate greater than 90% as a result of a successful multidisciplinary approach to management. Late relapse affects a subset of patients however, and tends to be chemorefractory and the overall prognosis is poor. Surgery is the mainstay in management of late relapse but salvage chemotherapy can be successful. In this review, the clinical presentation and detection of late relapse, clinical outcomes, and predictors of survival in late relapse and the importance of a multidisciplinary treatment approach for successful management of late relapse are discussed. PMID:26216823

  15. Differentiation of early germ cells from human skin-derived stem cells without exogenous gene integration.

    PubMed

    Ge, Wei; Ma, Hua-Gang; Cheng, Shun-Feng; Sun, Yuan-Chao; Sun, Li-Lan; Sun, Xiao-Feng; Li, Lan; Dyce, Paul; Li, Julang; Shi, Qing-Hua; Shen, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Infertility has long been a difficult issue for many couples. The successful differentiation of germ cells and live progeny from pluripotent stem cells brings new hope to the couples suffering with infertility. Here we successfully isolated human fetus skin-derived stem cells (hfSDSCs) from fetus skin tissue and demonstrated that hfSDSCs can be differentiated into early human germ cell-like cells (hGCLCs). These cells express human germ cell markers DAZL and VASA. Moreover, these pluripotent stem cell-derived hGCLCs are free of exogenous gene integration. When hfSDSCs were differentiated in porcine follicle fluid (PFF) conditioned media, which has been shown to promote the differentiation of mouse and porcine SDSCs into oocyte-like cells (OLCs), we observed some vesicular structures formed from hfSDSCs. Moreover, when hfSDSCs were cultured with specific conditioned media, we observed punctate and elongated SCP3 staining foci, indicating the initiation of meiosis. Ploidy analysis and fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis indicated that a small percentage of putative 1N populations formed from hfSDSCs when compared with positive controls. In conclusion, our data here, for the first time, demonstrated that hfSDSCs possess the differentiation potential into germ lines, and they may differentiate both male and female hGCLCs in vitro under appropriate conditions. PMID:26347377

  16. Pediatric germ cell tumors presenting beyond childhood?

    PubMed

    Oosterhuis, J W; Stoop, J A; Rijlaarsdam, M A; Biermann, K; Smit, V T H B M; Hersmus, R; Looijenga, L H J

    2015-01-01

    Four cases are reported meeting the criteria of a pediatric (i.e., Type I) testicular germ cell tumor (TGCT), apart from the age of presentation, which is beyond childhood. The tumors encompass the full spectrum of histologies of pediatric TGCT: teratoma, yolk sac tumor, and various combinations of the two, and lack intratubular germ cell neoplasia/carcinoma in situ in the adjacent parenchyma. The neoplasms are (near)diploid, and lack gain of 12p, typical for seminomas and non-seminomas of the testis of adolescents and adults (i.e., Type II). It is proposed that these neoplasms are therefore late appearing pediatric (Type I) TGCT. The present report broadens the concept of earlier reported benign teratomas of the post-pubertal testis to the full spectrum of pediatric TGCT. The possible wide age range of pediatric TGCT, demonstrated in this study, lends credence to the concept that TGCT should according to their pathogenesis be classified into the previously proposed types. This classification is clinically relevant, because Type I mature teratomas are benign tumors, which are candidates for testis conserving surgery, as opposed to Type II mature teratomas, which have to be treated as Type II (malignant) non-seminomas. PMID:25427839

  17. Molecular genetics of testicular germ cell tumors

    PubMed Central

    Sheikine, Yuri; Genega, Elizabeth; Melamed, Jonathan; Lee, Peng; Reuter, Victor E.; Ye, Huihui

    2012-01-01

    Testicular germ cell tumors (TGCT) are the most common malignancy in young men. While most TGCT are potentially curable, approximately 5% of patients with TGCT may develop chemoresistance and die from the disease. This review article summarizes current knowledge in genetics underlying the development, progression and chemoresistance of TGCT. Most post-pubertal TGCT originate from intratubular germ cell neoplasia unclassified (IGCNU), which are transformed fetal gonocytes. Development of IGCNU may involve aberrantly activated KITLG/KIT pathway and overexpression of embryonic transcription factors such as NANOG and POU5F1, which leads to suppression of apoptosis, increased proliferation, and accumulation of mutations in gonocytes. Invasive TGCT consistently show gain of chromosome 12p, typically isochromosome 12p. Single gene mutations are uncommon in TGCT. KIT, TP53, KRAS/NRAS, and BRAF are genes most commonly mutated in TGCT and implicated in their pathogenesis. Different histologic subtypes of TGCT possess different gene expression profiles that reflect different directions of differentiation. Their distinct gene expression profiles are likely caused by epigenetic regulation, in particular DNA methylation, but not by gene copy number alterations. Resistance of TGCT to chemotherapy has been linked to karyotypic aberrations, single-gene mutations, and epigenetic regulation of gene expression in small-scale studies. The study of TGCT genetics could ultimately translate into development of new molecular diagnostic and therapeutic modalities for these tumors and improve the care of patients with these malignancies. PMID:22432056

  18. EDITORIAL INTRODUCTION [TO FEMALE GERM CELLS: BIOLOGY AND GENETIC RISK

    EPA Science Inventory

    This is an editorial introduction to the special issue of utation Research, titled, emale Germ Cells: Biology and Genetic isk, which is an attempt to present a collection of papers that emphasize the distinct properties of female germ cells and their characteristic response to mu...

  19. Spermatogonial Nature of the Germ Cell Component of Canine Testicular Mixed Germ Cell-Sex Cord Stromal Tumours.

    PubMed

    Mizukami, S; Murakami, T; Tanaka, T; Machida, N; Nomura, K; Yoshida, T; Shibutani, M

    2016-07-01

    The present study has characterized the germ cell component of canine testicular mixed germ cell-sex cord stromal tumours (MGSCTs) by examining the histological nature and histochemical and immunohistochemical features using gonocytic and spermatogonial cellular markers, c-Kit, placental alkaline phosphatase (PLAP), protein gene product 9.5 (PGP9.5), Sal-like protein 4 (SALL4), and the periodic acid-Schiff (PAS) reaction. Histologically, all 45 examples of MGSCTs were classified as spermatocytic seminomas (SSs) and Sertoli cell tumours in combination. The germ cell component of all MGSCTs was negative by PAS staining. Immunohistochemically, PLAP immunoreactivity was lacking in the germ cell component of all MGSCTs, which is not consistent with a gonocytic origin. The germ cell component was positive for PGP9.5 and SALL4 in all MGSCTs and positive for c-Kit in 53% of MGSCTs, which is consistent with the phenotype of spermatogonia. Furthermore, the germ cell component in 71% of MGSCTs had moderate immunoreactivity for SALL4, which is suggestive of a spermatogonial phenotype. Conversely, 29% of cases had a minor population of germ cells showing strong SALL4 immunoreactivity, suggesting a phenotype similar to prespermatogonia. The results suggest that the germ cell component of canine MGSCTs is morphologically classified as SS, with the majority of cases showing the spermatogonial phenotype and some cases containing a small population of prespermatogonia. PMID:27241073

  20. Dearth and Delayed Maturation of Testicular Germ Cells in Fanconi Anemia E Mutant Male Mice

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Chun; Begum, Khurshida; Jordan, Philip W.; He, Yan; Overbeek, Paul A.

    2016-01-01

    After using a self-inactivating lentivirus for non-targeted insertional mutagenesis in mice, we identified a transgenic family with a recessive mutation that resulted in reduced fertility in homozygous transgenic mice. The lentiviral integration site was amplified by inverse PCR. Sequencing revealed that integration had occurred in intron 8 of the mouse Fance gene, which encodes the Fanconi anemia E (Fance) protein. Fanconi anemia (FA) proteins play pivotal roles in cellular responses to DNA damage and Fance acts as a molecular bridge between the FA core complex and Fancd2. To investigate the reduced fertility in the mutant males, we analyzed postnatal development of testicular germ cells. At one week after birth, most tubules in the mutant testes contained few or no germ cells. Over the next 2–3 weeks, germ cells accumulated in a limited number of tubules, so that some tubules contained germ cells around the full periphery of the tubule. Once sufficient numbers of germ cells had accumulated, they began to undergo the later stages of spermatogenesis. Immunoassays revealed that the Fancd2 protein accumulated around the periphery of the nucleus in normal developing spermatocytes, but we did not detect a similar localization of Fancd2 in the Fance mutant testes. Our assays indicate that although Fance mutant males are germ cell deficient at birth, the extant germ cells can proliferate and, if they reach a threshold density, can differentiate into mature sperm. Analogous to previous studies of FA genes in mice, our results show that the Fance protein plays an important, but not absolutely essential, role in the initial developmental expansion of the male germ line. PMID:27486799

  1. [Updated genomics of testicular germ cell tumor].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Meng; He, An-bang; Cai, Zhi-ming; Wu, Song

    2015-04-01

    Testicular germ cell tumor (TGCT) is a most common testicular malignancy with an increasing incidence, and its pathogenesis and mechanisms are not yet clear. The next generation sequencing has become the main tool to uncover the underlying mechanisms of TGCT. The differential gene expressions, gene mutation, predisposing gene-dominated signaling pathways, and changes of the relevant genes in the sex chromosome are largely involved in the occurrence and development of TGCT. Studies on the genomics of TGCT contribute a lot to identifying the pivotal pathogenic genes and paving a theoretical ground for the early screening and targeted therapy of TGCT. This paper summarizes the advances in the studies of the genomics of TGCT so as to reveal thetmechanisms of the disease at the genetic level. PMID:26027106

  2. Germ tube-specific antigens of Candida albicans cell walls

    SciTech Connect

    Sundstrom, P.R.

    1986-01-01

    Studies were performed to characterize the surface differences between blastospores and germ tubes of the pathogenic, dimorphic yeast, Candida albicans, and to identify components of yeast cells responsible for these differences. Investigation of surfaces differences of the two growth forms was facilitated by the production of rabbit antiserum prepared against Formalin-treated yeast possessing germ tubes. To prepare antiserum specific for germ tubes, this serum was adsorbed with stationary phase blastospores. Whereas the unadsorbed antiserum reacted with both blastospore and germ tube forms by immunofluorescence and Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay, the adsorbed antiserum did not react with blastospores but detected germ tube-specific antigens in hyphal forms. The differences between blastospores and germ tubes of Candida albicans, were further studied by comparing enzymatic digests of cell walls of both growth forms in radiolabeled organisms. Organisms were labeled either on the surface with /sup 125/I, or metabolically with (/sup 35/S) methionine or (/sup 3/H) mannose. Three-surface-located components (as shown by antibody adsorption and elution experiments) were precipitated from Zymolase digests. All three components were mannoproteins as shown by their ability to bind Concanavalin A, and to be labeled in protein labeling procedures, and two of these (200,000 and 155,000 molecular weight) were germ tube specific, as shown by their ability to be precipitated by germ tube-specific antiserum. Monoclonal antibodies were prepared to C. albicans, using blastospores bearing germ tubes as immunogen.

  3. Analysis of chicken primordial germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Motono, Makoto; Ohashi, Takuya; Iijima, Shinji

    2008-01-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are precursors of germline cells. Although avian PGCs have been used to produce transgenic birds, their characteristics largely remain unknown. In this study, we isolated PGCs from chicken embryos at various developmental stages and analyzed the gene expression. Using the expression of stage-specific embryonic antigen-1 (SSEA-1) as a marker of chicken PGCs, we purified PGCs from embryos by fluorescence-activated cell sorting after incubation for 2.5–8.5 days. The number of SSEA-1+ cells was almost unchanged during days 2.5–8.5 of incubation in females but continuously increased in male. Expression of several genes, including Blimp1, SOX2, and CXCR4, was observed in SSEA-1+ cells but not in SSEA-1− cells in both female and male embryos. Quantitative reverse-transcription PCR analysis revealed that the expression of CXCR4, a chemokine receptor essential for migration of PGCs from the bloodstream to the gonads, was reduced after the circulating PGC stage (day 2.5). PMID:19003166

  4. Development without germ cells: the role of the germ line in zebrafish sex differentiation.

    PubMed

    Slanchev, Krasimir; Stebler, Jürg; de la Cueva-Méndez, Guillermo; Raz, Erez

    2005-03-15

    The progenitors of the gametes, the primordial germ cells (PGCs) are typically specified early in the development in positions, which are distinct from the gonad. These cells then migrate toward the gonad where they differentiate into sperms and eggs. Here, we study the role of the germ cells in somatic development and particularly the role of the germ line in the sex differentiation in zebrafish. To this end, we ablated the germ cells using two independent methods and followed the development of the experimental fish. First, PGCs were ablated by knocking down the function of dead end, a gene important for the survival of this lineage. Second, a method to eliminate the PGCs using the toxin-antitoxin components of the parD bacterial genetic system was used. Specifically, we expressed a bacterial toxin Kid preferentially in the PGCs and at the same time protected somatic cells by uniformly expressing the specific antidote Kis. Our results demonstrate an unexpected role for the germ line in promoting female development because PGC-ablated fish invariably developed as males. PMID:15728735

  5. Development without germ cells: The role of the germ line in zebrafish sex differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Slanchev, Krasimir; Stebler, Jürg; de la Cueva-Méndez, Guillermo; Raz, Erez

    2005-01-01

    The progenitors of the gametes, the primordial germ cells (PGCs) are typically specified early in the development in positions, which are distinct from the gonad. These cells then migrate toward the gonad where they differentiate into sperms and eggs. Here, we study the role of the germ cells in somatic development and particularly the role of the germ line in the sex differentiation in zebrafish. To this end, we ablated the germ cells using two independent methods and followed the development of the experimental fish. First, PGCs were ablated by knocking down the function of dead end, a gene important for the survival of this lineage. Second, a method to eliminate the PGCs using the toxin–antitoxin components of the parD bacterial genetic system was used. Specifically, we expressed a bacterial toxin Kid preferentially in the PGCs and at the same time protected somatic cells by uniformly expressing the specific antidote Kis. Our results demonstrate an unexpected role for the germ line in promoting female development because PGC-ablated fish invariably developed as males. PMID:15728735

  6. Alvocidib and Oxaliplatin With or Without Fluorouracil and Leucovorin Calcium in Treating Patients With Relapsed or Refractory Germ Cell Tumors

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2015-05-11

    Recurrent Extragonadal Seminoma; Recurrent Malignant Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumor; Recurrent Malignant Extragonadal Non-Seminomatous Germ Cell Tumor; Recurrent Malignant Testicular Germ Cell Tumor; Recurrent Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Stage III Testicular Cancer; Stage IV Extragonadal Non-Seminomatous Germ Cell Tumor; Stage IV Extragonadal Seminoma; Stage IV Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor

  7. SALL4 expression in germ cell and non-germ cell tumors: a systematic immunohistochemical study of 3215 cases.

    PubMed

    Miettinen, Markku; Wang, Zengfeng; McCue, Peter A; Sarlomo-Rikala, Maarit; Rys, Janusz; Biernat, Wojciech; Lasota, Jerzy; Lee, Yi-Shan

    2014-03-01

    The SALL4 transcription factor is associated with embryonic cell pluripotency and has been shown as a useful immunohistochemical marker for germ cell tumors. However, information of SALL4 distribution in normal human tissues and non-germ cell tumors is limited. In this study we examined normal human tissues and 3215 tumors for SALL4 expression using a monoclonal antibody 6E3 and automated immunohistochemistry. In a 10-week embryo, SALL4 was expressed in ovocytes, intestine, kidney, and some hepatocytes. In adult tissues, it was only detected in germ cells. SALL4 was consistently expressed in all germ cell tumors except some trophoblastic tumors and mature components of teratomas, in which it was selectively expressed in intestinal-like and some squamous epithelia. In non-germ cell carcinomas, SALL4 was detected in 20% of cases or more of serous carcinoma of the ovary, urothelial high-grade carcinoma, and gastric adenocarcinoma (especially the intestinal type). SALL4 was only rarely (≤ 5%) expressed in mammary, colorectal, prostatic, and squamous cell carcinomas. Many SALL4-positive carcinomas showed poorly differentiated patterns, and some showed positivity in most tumor cells mimicking the expression in germ cell tumors. SALL4 was commonly expressed in rhabdoid tumors of the kidney and extrarenal sites and in the Wilms tumor. Expression of SALL4 was rare in other mesenchymal and neuroendocrine tumors but was occasionally detected in melanoma, desmoplastic small round cell tumor, epithelioid sarcoma, and rhabdomyosarcoma. All hematopoietic tumors were negative. SALL4 is an excellent marker of nonteratomatous germ cell tumors, but it is also expressed in other tumors, sometimes extensively. Such expression may reflect stem cell-like differentiation and must be considered when using SALL4 as a marker for germ cell tumors. Observed lack of other pluripotency factors, OCT4 and NANOG, in SALL4-positive non-germ cell tumors can also be diagnostically helpful. PMID

  8. Development of malignant germ cells - the genvironmental hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Looijenga, Leendert H J; Van Agthoven, Ton; Biermann, Katharina

    2013-01-01

    Human germ cell tumors are of interest because of their epidemiology, clinic and patho-biology. Histologically, they are subdivided into various elements, with similarities to embryogenesis. Recent insight triggered development of a higher order division into five types of human germ cell tumors. In the context of male germ cells, only three are relevant; Type I: teratomas and yolk sac tumors of neonates and infants; Type II: seminomas and nonseminomas of (predominantly) adolescents and adults; and Type III: spermatocytic seminomas of the elderly. Various animal models, both occurring spontaneous or induced, are reported, of which their relevance is still a matter of debate. Recent multidisciplinary studies have led to a significant increase in our understanding of the parameters involved in the earliest pathogenetic steps of human germ cells tumors, particularly the seminomas and nonseminomas (Type II). This paper will discuss a number of interesting insights into the normal and aberrant regulation of germ cell development, resulting in the so-called genvironmental hypothesis. This assumes a subtle interaction between environmental- and (epi)genetic parameters, resulting in clinical/phenotypical characteristics. These influence signaling pathways and thereby developmental processes, including gonadal development, germ cell proliferation, maturation and apoptosis. In the case of a disturbed physiology, either due to the germ cell itself, or the micro-environment, embryonic germ cells, during a specific window of sensitization, might be blocked in their maturation, resulting in carcinoma in situ or gonadoblastoma, the precursors of seminomas and nonseminomas. The level of testicularization of the gonad determines the histological composition of the precursor. These insights will allow a better definition of individuals at risk of developing a germ cell malignancy, and allow a better selection of scientific approaches to elucidate the corresponding pathogenesis. PMID

  9. The testicular germ cell tumour transcriptome.

    PubMed

    Alagaratnam, S; Lind, G E; Kraggerud, S M; Lothe, R A; Skotheim, R I

    2011-08-01

    Testicular germ cell tumours (TGCTs) are characterized by young age of onset and a complex pattern of histological subtypes. Transcriptomic studies have tried to uncover the gene expression patterns underlying this. Here, we present a systematic review of transcriptome studies of TGCTs of adolescents and young adults and identify genes common across the various studies, both for TGCTs in general as well as the histological subtypes, hence elucidating both transcriptional changes associated with malignant transformation and differentiation patterns. A meta-analysis of this type adds power and significance to the genes thus found, where most studies have included only a limited number of samples. Both known (KRAS, MYCN and TPD52) and novel (CCT6A, IGFBP3 and SALL2) cancer genes are implicated in TGC tumorigenesis. Gene expression patterns characteristic to embryonic stem cells are also found deregulated in TGC tumorigenesis. This is reflected in how pluripotent embryonal carcinoma cells commonly differentiate into a variety of embryonic and extra-embryonic histological types, each with unique transcriptomes. The embryonal carcinomas in particular are found to overexpress pluripotency genes, while gene signatures for seminomas, teratomas and yolk sac tumours were also identified. This underlines the distinctive transcriptomic programme across histological subtypes, especially striking given that the TGCT genome is largely similar across the same subtypes. PMID:21651573

  10. Dnd Is a Critical Specifier of Primordial Germ Cells in the Medaka Fish.

    PubMed

    Hong, Ni; Li, Mingyou; Yuan, Yongming; Wang, Tiansu; Yi, Meisheng; Xu, Hongyan; Zeng, Huaqiang; Song, Jianxing; Hong, Yunhan

    2016-03-01

    Primordial germ cell (PGC) specification occurs early in development. PGC specifiers have been identified in Drosophila, mouse, and human but remained elusive in most animals. Here we identify the RNA-binding protein Dnd as a critical PGC specifier in the medaka fish (Oryzias latipes). Dnd depletion specifically abolished PGCs, and its overexpression boosted PGCs. We established a single-cell culture procedure enabling lineage tracing in vitro. We show that individual blastomeres from cleavage embryos at the 32- and 64-cell stages are capable of PGC production in culture. Importantly, Dnd overexpression increases PGCs via increasing PGC precursors. Strikingly, dnd RNA forms prominent particles that segregate asymmetrically. Dnd concentrates in germ plasm and stabilizes germ plasm RNA. Therefore, Dnd is a critical specifier of fish PGCs and utilizes particle partition as a previously unidentified mechanism for asymmetric segregation. These findings offer insights into PGC specification and manipulation in medaka as a lower vertebrate model. PMID:26852942

  11. Dnd Is a Critical Specifier of Primordial Germ Cells in the Medaka Fish

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Ni; Li, Mingyou; Yuan, Yongming; Wang, Tiansu; Yi, Meisheng; Xu, Hongyan; Zeng, Huaqiang; Song, Jianxing; Hong, Yunhan

    2016-01-01

    Summary Primordial germ cell (PGC) specification occurs early in development. PGC specifiers have been identified in Drosophila, mouse, and human but remained elusive in most animals. Here we identify the RNA-binding protein Dnd as a critical PGC specifier in the medaka fish (Oryzias latipes). Dnd depletion specifically abolished PGCs, and its overexpression boosted PGCs. We established a single-cell culture procedure enabling lineage tracing in vitro. We show that individual blastomeres from cleavage embryos at the 32- and 64-cell stages are capable of PGC production in culture. Importantly, Dnd overexpression increases PGCs via increasing PGC precursors. Strikingly, dnd RNA forms prominent particles that segregate asymmetrically. Dnd concentrates in germ plasm and stabilizes germ plasm RNA. Therefore, Dnd is a critical specifier of fish PGCs and utilizes particle partition as a previously unidentified mechanism for asymmetric segregation. These findings offer insights into PGC specification and manipulation in medaka as a lower vertebrate model. PMID:26852942

  12. Protective effect of quercetin on cadmium-induced oxidative toxicity on germ cells in male mice.

    PubMed

    Bu, Tongliang; Mi, Yuling; Zeng, Weidong; Zhang, Caiqiao

    2011-03-01

    Cadmium is a toxic heavy metal that is widely distributed in the environment. As a critical process, oxidative toxicity mediates the morphological and functional damages in germ cells after cadmium exposure. In this study, the protective effect of quercetin on cadmium-induced oxidative toxicity was investigated in mouse testicular germ cells. After oral administration of cadmium chloride at 4 mg/kg body weight for 2 weeks, damages in spermatozoa occurred in the early stage of spermatogenesis. Cadmium treatment significantly decreased the testicular antioxidant system, including decreases in the glutathione (GSH) level, superoxide dismutase (SOD), and GSH peroxidase (GSH-Px) activities. Moreover, exposure to cadmium resulted in an increase of hydrogen peroxide production and lipid peroxidation in testes. In addition, cadmium provoked germ cell apoptosis by upregulating expression of the proapoptotic proteins Bax and caspase-3 and downregulating expression of the antiapoptotic protein Bcl-XL. However, combined administration of a common flavonoid quercetin at 75 mg/kg body weight significantly attenuated cadmium-induced germ cell apoptosis by suppressing the hydrogen peroxide production and lipid peroxidation in testicular tissue. Simultaneous supplementation of quercetin markedly restored the decrease in GSH level and SOD and GSH-Px activities elicited by cadmium treatment. Additionally, quercetin protected germ cells from cadmium-induced apoptosis by downregulating the expression of Bax and caspase-3 and upregulating Bcl-XL expression. These results indicate that quercetin, due to its antioxidative and antiapoptotic characters, may manifest effective protective action against cadmium-induced oxidative toxicity in mouse testicular germ cells. PMID:21337715

  13. General Information About Childhood Central Nervous System Germ Cell Tumors

    MedlinePlus

    ... before the cancer is diagnosed and continue for months or years. Childhood CNS germ cell tumors may ... after treatment. Some cancer treatments cause side effects months or years after treatment has ended. Some cancer ...

  14. Male germ cell-specific expression of a novel Patched-domain containing gene Ptchd3

    SciTech Connect

    Fan Jun; Akabane, Hiroto; Zheng Xuehai; Zhou Xuan; Zhang Li; Liu Qiang; Zhang Yonglian; Yang Jing; Zhu Guozhang

    2007-11-23

    The Hedgehog (Hh) signaling pathway plays an important role in various biological processes, including pattern formation, cell fate determination, proliferation, and differentiation. Hh function is mediated through its membrane receptor Patched. Herein, we have characterized a novel Patched-domain containing gene Ptchd3 in mouse. Messenger RNA of Ptchd3 was exclusively detected in the testis, and existed in two isoforms Ptchd3a and Ptchd3b. The expression of these two mRNA isoforms was shown to be developmentally regulated in testes, and specifically found in male germ cells. Further analysis revealed that the Ptchd3 protein was located on the midpiece of mouse, rat and human sperm. Collectively, these results indicate that Ptchd3 is a novel male germ cell-specific gene and may be involved in the Hh signaling to regulate sperm development and/or sperm function.

  15. Activity of nintedanib in germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Steinemann, Gustav; Jacobsen, Christine; Gerwing, Mirjam; Hauschild, Jessica; von Amsberg, Gunhild; Höpfner, Michael; Nitzsche, Bianca; Honecker, Friedemann

    2016-02-01

    Germ cell tumors (GCTs) are the most frequent malignancy in male patients between 15 and 45 years of age. Cisplatin-based chemotherapy shows excellent cure rates, but patients with cisplatin-resistant GCTs have a poor prognosis. Nintedanib (BIBF 1120, Vargatef) inhibits the receptor classes vascular endothelial growth factor receptor, platelet derived growth factor receptor, and fibroblast growth factor receptor, and has shown activity against many tumors, as well as in idiopathic lung fibrosis and bleomycin-induced lung injury. Here, we investigated the antineoplastic and antiangiogenic properties of nintedanib in cisplatin-resistant and cisplatin-sensitive GCT cells, both alone and in combination with classical cytotoxic agents such as cisplatin, etoposide, and bleomycin. The half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) of nintedanib was 4.5 ± 0.43 μmol/l, 3.1 ± 0.45 μmol/l, and 3.6 ± 0.33 μmol/l in cisplatin-sensitive NTERA2, 2102Ep, and NCCIT cells, whereas the IC50 doses of the cisplatin-resistant counterparts were 6.6 ± 0.37 μmol/l (NTERA2-R), 4.5 ± 0.83 μmol/l (2102Ep-R), and 6.1 ± 0.41 μmol/l (NCCIT-R), respectively. Single treatment with nintedanib induced apoptosis and resulted in a sustained reduction in the capacity of colony formation in both cisplatin-sensitive and cisplatin-resistant GCT cells. Cell cycle analysis showed that nintedanib induced a strong G0/G1-phase arrest in all investigated cell lines. Combination treatment with cisplatin did not result in additive, synergistic, or antagonistic effects. The in-vivo activity was studied using the chorioallantoic membrane assay and indicated the antiangiogenic potency of nintedanib with markedly reduced microvessel density. Topical treatment of inoculated tumor plaques resulted in a significant reduction of the tumor size. This indicates that nintedanib might be a promising substance in the treatment of GCT. PMID:26479145

  16. Topology of the germ plasm and development of primordial germ cells in inverted amphibian eggs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wakahara, M.; Neff, A. W.; Malacinski, G. M.

    1984-01-01

    Inverted Xenopus eggs have reduced numbers of primordial germ cells (PGCs). The extent of the reduction varies from spawning to spawning. Histologic examination revealed that PGC counts were lowest in inverted eggs which displayed the greatest amount of shift in the vegetal mass of large yolk platelets, although the germ plasm itself always remained localized in the egg's original vegetal hemisphere. Even at blastulation the germ plasm continued to be localized in the egg's original vegetal hemisphere. In many cases, however, it was confined to the periphery of the embryo, which probably accounts for the reduced PGC number in some tadpoles. In other cases it may have been dispersed and therefore not detectable in histologic analyses. Although the altered site of involution in inverted embryos did not influence PGC development, subsequent cell movement patterns apparently did. Those embryos which displayed the largest degree of pattern reversal at the tail-bud stage also exhibited the most extreme reduction in PGC numbers. A brief cold shock (4 degrees C, 10 min) prior to first cleavage leads to a further reduction in PGC numbers in inverted embryos, probably as a result of the displacement of the germ plasm away from its original vegetal pole location.

  17. Akt1 protects against germ cell apoptosis in the post natal mouse testis following lactational exposure to 6-N-propylthiouracil

    EPA Science Inventory

    Lactational exposure to 6-propyl-2-thio-uracil (PTU), a neonatal goitrogen, leads to increased testis size and sperm production in rodents. Aktl, a gene involved in cell survival and proliferation is also phosphorylated by thyroxine (T4). Therefore, we examined the requirement f...

  18. The chemosensitivity of testicular germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Voutsadakis, Ioannis A

    2014-04-01

    Although rare cancers overall, testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs) are the most common type of cancer in young males below 40 years of age. Both subtypes of TGCTs, i.e., seminomas and non-seminomas, are highly curable and the majority of even metastatic patients may expect to be cured. These high cure rates are not due to the indolent nature of these cancers, but rather to their sensitivity to chemotherapy (and for seminomas to radiotherapy). The delineation of the cause of chemosensitivity at the molecular level is of paramount importance, because it may provide insights into the minority of TGCTs that are chemo-resistant and, thereby, provide opportunities for specific therapeutic interventions aimed at reverting them to chemosensitivity. In addition, delineation of the molecular basis of TGCT chemo-sensitivity may be informative for the cause of chemo-resistance of other more common types of cancer and, thus, may create new therapeutic leads. p53, a frequently mutated tumor suppressor in cancers in general, is not mutated in TGCTs, a fact that has implications for their chemo-sensitivity. Oct4, an embryonic transcription factor, is uniformly expressed in the seminoma and embryonic carcinoma components of non-seminomas, and its interplay with p53 may be important in the chemotherapy response of these tumors. This interplay, together with other features of TGCTs such as the gain of genetic material from the short arm of chromosome 12 and the association with disorders of testicular development, will be discussed in this paper and integrated in a unifying hypothesis that may explain their chemo-sensitivity. PMID:24692098

  19. Marijuana use and testicular germ cell tumors

    PubMed Central

    Trabert, Britton; Sigurdson, Alice J.; Sweeney, Anne M.; Strom, Sara S.; McGlynn, Katherine A.

    2010-01-01

    Background Since the early 1970's the incidence of testicular germ cell tumors (TGCT) in the U.S. has been increasing, however, potential environmental exposures accounting for this rise have not been identified. A prior study reported a significant association among frequent and long-term current users of marijuana and TGCT risk. We aimed to evaluate the relationship of marijuana use and TGCT in a hospital-based case-control study conducted at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. Methods TGCT cases diagnosed between January 1990 and October 1996 (n=187) and male friend controls (n=148) were enrolled in the study. All participants were between the ages of 18 and 50 at the time of cases' diagnosis and resided in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, or Oklahoma. Associations of marijuana use and TGCT were estimated using unconditional logistic regression, adjusting for age, race, prior cryptorchidism, cigarette smoking and alcohol intake. Results Overall, TGCT cases were more likely to be frequent marijuana users (daily or greater) than were controls [OR: 2.2, 95% CI: 1.0, 5.1]. In the histologic-specific analyses nonseminoma cases were significantly more likely than controls to be frequent users [OR: 3.1, 95% CI: 1.2, 8.2] and long-term users (10+ years) [OR: 2.4, 95% CI: 1.0, 6.1]. Discussion Our finding of an association between frequent marijuana use and TGCT, particularly among men with nonseminoma, is consistent with the findings of a previous report. Additional studies of marijuana use and TGCT are warranted, especially studies evaluating the role of endocannabinoid signaling and cannabinoid receptors in TGCT. PMID:20925043

  20. bFGF signaling-mediated reprogramming of porcine primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yu; Ma, Jing; Li, Hai; Lv, Jiawei; Wei, Renyue; Cong, Yimei; Liu, Zhonghua

    2016-05-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) have the ability to be reprogrammed into embryonic germ cells (EGCs) in vitro and are an alternative source of embryonic stem cells. Other than for the mouse, the systematic characterization of mammalian PGCs is still lacking, especially the process by which PGCs convert to pluripotency. This hampers the understanding of germ cell development and the derivation of authenticated EGCs from other species. We observed the morphological development of the genital ridge from Bama miniature pigs and found primary sexual differentiation in the E28 porcine embryo, coinciding with Blimp1 nuclear exclusion in PGCs. To explore molecular events involved in porcine PGC reprogramming, transcriptome data of porcine EGCs and fetal fibroblasts (FFs) were assembled and 1169 differentially expressed genes were used for Gene Ontology analysis. These genes were significantly enriched in cell-surface receptor-linked signal transduction, in agreement with the activation of LIF/Stat3 signaling and FGF signaling during the derivation of porcine EG-like cells. Using a growth-factor-defined culture system, we explored the effects of bFGF on the process and found that bFGF not only functioned at the very beginning of PGC dedifferentiation by impeding Blimp1 nuclear expression via a PI3K/AKT-dependent pathway but also maintained the viability of cultured PGCs thereafter. These results provide further insights into the development of germ cells from livestock and the mechanism of porcine PGC reprogramming. PMID:26613602

  1. Mechanisms and chemical induction of aneuploidy in rodent germ cells

    SciTech Connect

    Mailhes, J B; Marchetti, F

    2004-10-15

    The objective of this review is to suggest that the advances being made in our understanding of the molecular events surrounding chromosome segregation in non-mammalian and somatic cell models be considered when designing experiments for studying aneuploidy in mammalian germ cells. Accurate chromosome segregation requires the temporal control and unique interactions among a vast array of proteins and cellular organelles. Abnormal function and temporal disarray among these, and others to be inidentified, biochemical reactions and cellular organelles have the potential for predisposing cells to aneuploidy. Although numerous studies have demonstrated that certain chemicals (mainly those that alter microtubule function) can induce aneuploidy in mammalian germ cells, it seems relevant to point out that such data can be influenced by gender, meiotic stage, and time of cell-fixation post-treatment. Additionally, a consensus has not been reached regarding which of several germ cell aneuploidy assays most accurately reflects the human condition. More recent studies have shown that certain kinase, phosphatase, proteasome, and topoisomerase inhibitors can also induce aneuploidy in rodent germ cells. We suggest that molecular approaches be prudently incorporated into mammalian germ cell aneuploidy research in order to eventually understand the causes and mechanisms of human aneuploidy. Such an enormous undertaking would benefit from collaboration among scientists representing several disciplines.

  2. In Vitro Ectopic Behavior of Porcine Spermatogonial Germ Cells and Testicular Somatic Cells.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kyung Hoon; Lee, Won Young; Do, Jung Tae; Park, Chan Kyu; Kim, Nam Hyung; Kim, Jin Hoi; Chung, Hak Jae; Kim, Dong Woon; Song, Hyuk

    2016-08-01

    Embryonic body-like colony formation is a unique pattern in male germ cell cultures, including spermatogonial stem cells. However, detailed information of the colony formation has not yet been sufficiently reported in male germ cell culture. To elucidate the formation of germ cell-derived colony (GDC), glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor receptor alpha-1 (GFRα-1)-positive pig germ cells were isolated using an immunomagnetic cell isolation method and labeled with red- or green-fluorescent dye. In GDC culture, red-fluorescent-labeled germ cells were evenly distributed in the wells from day 1 to 4, and they clustered together at the time of GDC formation on day 6. Interestingly, feeder cells migrated to the site of colony formation as spermatogonia carriers. Furthermore, when freshly prepared green-labeled GFRα-1-positive germ cells were added, mixed-fluorescent dye (red and green) colonies were observed. On bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) treatment, 58% ± 3.13% of germ cells were positive to protein gene product 9.5 but negative to BrdU cells. Immunocytochemistry and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction results showed that cultured GDC cells were positive to stem cell- and pig germ cell-specific marker genes. In conclusion, in vitro formation of GDCs is mainly dependent on the aggregation of single germ cells as well as on the slow proliferation of germ cells. PMID:27328332

  3. Dynamics of 5-methylcytosine and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine during germ cell reprogramming.

    PubMed

    Yamaguchi, Shinpei; Hong, Kwonho; Liu, Rui; Inoue, Azusa; Shen, Li; Zhang, Kun; Zhang, Yi

    2013-03-01

    Previous studies have revealed that mouse primordial germ cells (PGCs) undergo genome-wide DNA methylation reprogramming to reset the epigenome for totipotency. However, the precise 5-methylcytosine (5mC) dynamics and its relationship with the generation of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) are not clear. Here we analyzed the dynamics of 5mC and 5hmC during PGC reprograming and germ cell development. Unexpectedly, we found a specific period (E8.5-9.5) during which both 5mC and 5hmC levels are low. Subsequently, 5hmC levels increase reaching its peak at E11.5 and gradually decrease until E13.5 likely by replication-dependent dilution. Interestingly, 5hmC is enriched in chromocenters during this period. While this germ cell-specific 5hmC subnuclear localization pattern is maintained in female germ cells even in mature oocytes, such pattern is gradually lost in male germ cells as mitotic proliferation resumes during the neonatal stage. Pericentric 5hmC plays an important role in silencing major satellite repeat, especially in female PGCs. Global transcriptome analysis by RNA-seq revealed that the great majority of differentially expressed genes from E9.5 to 13.5 are upregulated in both male and female PGCs. Although only female PGCs enter meiosis during the prenatal stage, meiosis-related and a subset of imprinted genes are significantly upregulated in both male and female PGCs at E13.5. Thus, our study not only reveals the dynamics of 5mC and 5hmC during PGC reprogramming and germ cell development, but also their potential role in epigenetic reprogramming and transcriptional regulation of meiotic and imprinted genes. PMID:23399596

  4. Anticlastogenic effects of a polyvitamin product, 'Pharmavit', on gamma-ray induction of somatic and germ cell chromosome aberrations in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Benova, D K

    1992-10-01

    The polyvitamin product 'Pharmavit' (Pv), comprising vitamins A, D2, B1, B2, B6, C, E, nicotinamide, and calcium pantothene, was tested for anticlastogenic properties against gamma-rays in mice. Pretreatment with Pv consisted of daily administration by gavage for 30 days at dose levels corresponding to clinical recommendations for an adult human, as recalculated in terms of mg/kg. Findings indicated a reduction of chromosome aberrations in bone marrow cells from mice exposed to 3.0 Gy 137Cs gamma-rays; the reduction concerned predominantly fragments of the chromatid type. Furthermore, a reduction factor of 1.6 was obtained for the frequency of reciprocal translocations induced by spermatogonial irradiation in mice exposed to 4.0 Gy gamma-rays. Pretreatment with vitamin C alone, at the dose present in Pv, proved nearly ineffective in protecting from chromosome aberrations in bone marrow cells. Pharmavit is believed to be a promising agent for application to human populations exposed to the carcinogenic and genetic hazards of ionizing radiation. PMID:1383709

  5. Embryonic germ cells from mice and rats exhibit properties consistent with a generic pluripotent ground state

    PubMed Central

    Leitch, Harry G.; Blair, Kate; Mansfield, William; Ayetey, Harold; Humphreys, Peter; Nichols, Jennifer; Surani, M. Azim; Smith, Austin

    2010-01-01

    Mouse and rat embryonic stem cells can be sustained in defined medium by dual inhibition (2i) of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (Erk1/2) cascade and of glycogen synthase kinase 3. The inhibitors suppress differentiation and enable self-renewal of pluripotent cells that are ex vivo counterparts of naïve epiblast cells in the mature blastocyst. Pluripotent stem cell lines can also be derived from unipotent primordial germ cells via a poorly understood process of epigenetic reprogramming. These are termed embryonic germ (EG) cells to denote their distinct origin. Here we investigate whether EG cell self-renewal and derivation are supported by 2i. We report that mouse EG cells can be established with high efficiency using 2i in combination with the cytokine leukaemia inhibitory factor (LIF). Furthermore, addition of fibroblast growth factor or stem cell factor is unnecessary using 2i-LIF. The derived EG cells contribute extensively to healthy chimaeric mice, including to the germline. Using the same conditions, we describe the first derivations of EG cells from the rat. Rat EG cells express a similar marker profile to rat and mouse ES cells. They have a diploid karyotype, can be clonally expanded and genetically manipulated, and are competent for multilineage colonisation of chimaeras. These findings lend support to the postulate of a conserved molecular ground state in pluripotent rodent cells. Future research will determine the extent to which this is maintained in other mammals and whether, in some species, primordial germ cells might be a more tractable source than epiblast for the capture of naïve pluripotent stem cells. PMID:20519324

  6. Positive mRNA Translational Control in Germ Cells by Initiation Factor Selectivity

    PubMed Central

    Friday, Andrew J.; Keiper, Brett D.

    2015-01-01

    Ultimately, the production of new proteins in undetermined cells pushes them to new fates. Other proteins hold a stem cell in a mode of self-renewal. In germ cells, these decision-making proteins are produced largely from translational control of preexisting mRNAs. To date, all of the regulation has been attributed to RNA binding proteins (RBPs) that repress mRNAs in many models of germ cell development (Drosophila, mouse, C. elegans, and Xenopus). In this review, we focus on the selective, positive function of translation initiation factors eIF4E and eIF4G, which recruit mRNAs to ribosomes upon derepression. Evidence now shows that the two events are not separate but rather are coordinated through composite complexes of repressors and germ cell isoforms of eIF4 factors. Strikingly, the initiation factor isoforms are themselves mRNA selective. The mRNP complexes of translation factors and RBPs are built on specific populations of mRNAs to prime them for subsequent translation initiation. Simple rearrangement of the partners causes a dormant mRNP to become synthetically active in germ cells when and where they are required to support gametogenesis. PMID:26357652

  7. Primordial germ cells: the first cell lineage or the last cells standing?

    PubMed

    Johnson, Andrew D; Alberio, Ramiro

    2015-08-15

    Embryos of many animal models express germ line determinants that suppress transcription and mediate early germ line commitment, which occurs before the somatic cell lineages are established. However, not all animals segregate their germ line in this manner. The 'last cell standing' model describes primordial germ cell (PGC) development in axolotls, in which PGCs are maintained by an extracellular signalling niche, and germ line commitment occurs after gastrulation. Here, we propose that this 'stochastic' mode of PGC specification is conserved in vertebrates, including non-rodent mammals. We postulate that early germ line segregation liberates genetic regulatory networks for somatic development to evolve, and that it therefore emerged repeatedly in the animal kingdom in response to natural selection. PMID:26286941

  8. Primordial germ cells: the first cell lineage or the last cells standing?

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Andrew D.; Alberio, Ramiro

    2015-01-01

    Embryos of many animal models express germ line determinants that suppress transcription and mediate early germ line commitment, which occurs before the somatic cell lineages are established. However, not all animals segregate their germ line in this manner. The ‘last cell standing’ model describes primordial germ cell (PGC) development in axolotls, in which PGCs are maintained by an extracellular signalling niche, and germ line commitment occurs after gastrulation. Here, we propose that this ‘stochastic’ mode of PGC specification is conserved in vertebrates, including non-rodent mammals. We postulate that early germ line segregation liberates genetic regulatory networks for somatic development to evolve, and that it therefore emerged repeatedly in the animal kingdom in response to natural selection. PMID:26286941

  9. Vanadium induced ultrastructural changes and apoptosis in male germ cells.

    PubMed

    Aragón, M A; Ayala, M E; Fortoul, T I; Bizarro, P; Altamirano-Lozano, M

    2005-01-01

    Vanadium is a transition metal that is emitted to the atmosphere during combustion of fossil fuels. In the environment, vanadium occurs in the (V) oxidized form, but in the body it is found exclusively in the (IV) oxidized form. Vanadium tetraoxide is an inorganic chemical species in the (IV) oxidized form that has been shown to induce toxic effects in vitro and in vivo. The reproductive toxicity of vanadium in males was studied through monitoring germ cell apoptosis during spermatogenesis. We analyzed ultrastructural damage, and testosterone and progesterone concentrations following vanadium tetraoxide administered to male mice for 60 days. Spermatogenesis stages I-III and X-XII frequently showed apoptotic germ cells in control and treated animals; vanadium tetraoxide treatment induced an increase in the number of germ cell apoptosis in stages I-III and XII at 9.4 and 18.8 mg/kg, respectively. Although spermatogenesis is regulated by testosterone, in our study this hormone level was not modified by vanadium administration; thus, germ cell death was not related with testosterone concentration. At the ultrastructural level, we observed inclusion structures that varied as to location and content in the Sertoli and germ cells. PMID:15808796

  10. Signaling from germ cells mediated by the rhomboid homolog stet organizes encapsulation by somatic support cells.

    PubMed

    Schulz, Cordula; Wood, Cricket G; Jones, D Leanne; Tazuke, Salli I; Fuller, Margaret T

    2002-10-01

    Germ cells normally differentiate in the context of encapsulating somatic cells. However, the mechanisms that set up the special relationship between germ cells and somatic support cells and the signals that mediate the crucial communications between the two cell types are poorly understood. We show that interactions between germ cells and somatic support cells in Drosophila depend on wild-type function of the stet gene. In males, stet acts in germ cells to allow their encapsulation by somatic cyst cells and is required for germ cell differentiation. In females, stet function allows inner sheath cells to enclose early germ cells correctly at the tip of the germarium. stet encodes a homolog of rhomboid, a component of the epidermal growth factor receptor signaling pathway involved in ligand activation in the signaling cell. The stet mutant phenotype suggests that stet facilitates signaling from germ cells to the epidermal growth factor receptor on somatic cells, resulting in the encapsulation of germ cells by somatic support cells. The micro-environment provided by the surrounding somatic cells may, in turn, regulate differentiation of the germ cells they enclose. PMID:12223409

  11. Facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD) region gene 1 (FRG1) expression and possible function in mouse tooth germ development.

    PubMed

    Hasegawa, Kana; Wada, Hiroko; Nagata, Kengo; Fujiwara, Hiroaki; Wada, Naohisa; Someya, Hirotaka; Mikami, Yurie; Sakai, Hidetaka; Kiyoshima, Tamotsu

    2016-08-01

    Abnormal expression of Facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD) region gene 1 (FRG1) is involved in the pathogenesis of FSHD. FRG1 is also important for the normal muscular and vascular development. Our previous study showed that FRG1 is one of the highly expressed genes in the mandible on embryonic day 10.5 (E10.5) than on E12.0. In this study, we investigated the temporospatial expression pattern of FRG1 mRNA and protein during the development of the mouse lower first molar, and also evaluated the subcellular localization of the FRG1 protein in mouse dental epithelial (mDE6) cells. The FRG1 expression was identified in the dental epithelial and mesenchymal cells at the initiation and bud stages. It was detected in the inner enamel epithelium at the cap and early bell stages. At the late bell and root formation stages, these signals were detected in ameloblasts and odontoblasts during the formation of enamel and dentin matrices, respectively. The FRG1 protein was localized in the cytoplasm in the mouse tooth germ in vivo, while FRG1 was detected predominantly in the nucleus and faintly in the cytoplasm in mDE6 cells in vitro. In mDE6 cells treated with bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4), the protein expression of FRG1 increased in cytoplasm, suggesting that FRG1 may translocate to the cytoplasm. These findings suggest that FRG1 is involved in the morphogenesis of the tooth germ, as well as in the formation of enamel and dentin matrices and that FRG1 may play a role in the odontogenesis in the mouse following BMP4 stimulation. PMID:27234941

  12. Cholesterol induces proliferation of chicken primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Dongyang; Chen, Meijuan; Lu, Zhenping; Yang, Mengmeng; Xie, Long; Zhang, Wenxin; Xu, Huiyan; Lu, Kehuan; Lu, Yangqing

    2016-08-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are the precursors of sperm and eggs and may serve as suitable cells for use in research in developmental biology and transgenic animals. However, the long-term propagation of PGCs in vitro has so far been plagued by the loss of their germ cell characteristics. This is largely because of the scarcity of knowledge concerning cell division and proliferation in these cells and the poor optimization of the culture medium. The sonic hedgehog (SHH) signaling pathway is involved in proliferation of many types of cells, but little is known about its role in chicken PGCs. The results of the current study indicate that the proliferation of chicken PGCs increases significantly when cholesterol, a molecule that facilitates the trafficking of HH ligands, is supplemented in the culture medium. This effect was attenuated when an SHH antagonist, cyclopamine was added, suggesting the involvement of SHH signaling in this process. The characterization of PGCs treated with cholesterol has shown that these cells express germ-cell-related markers and retain their capability to colonize the embryonic gonad after re-introduction to vasculature of stage-15 HH embryos, indicating that proliferation of PGCs induced by cholesterol does not alter the germ cell characteristics of these cells. PMID:27269880

  13. The Magea gene cluster regulates male germ cell apoptosis without affecting the fertility in mice.

    PubMed

    Hou, Siyuan; Xian, Li; Shi, Peiliang; Li, Chaojun; Lin, Zhaoyu; Gao, Xiang

    2016-01-01

    While apoptosis is essential for male germ cell development, improper activation of apoptosis in the testis can affect spermatogenesis and cause reproduction defects. Members of the MAGE-A (melanoma antigen family A) gene family are frequently clustered in mammalian genomes and are exclusively expressed in the testes of normal animals but abnormally activated in a wide variety of cancers. We investigated the potential roles of these genes in spermatogenesis by generating a mouse model with a 210-kb genomic deletion encompassing six members of the Magea gene cluster (Magea1, Magea2, Magea3, Magea5, Magea6 and Magea8). Male mice carrying the deletion displayed smaller testes from 2 months old with a marked increase in apoptotic germ cells in the first wave of spermatogenesis. Furthermore, we found that Magea genes prevented stress-induced spermatogenic apoptosis after N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea (ENU) treatment during the adult stage. Mechanistically, deletion of the Magea gene cluster resulted in a dramatic increase in apoptotic germ cells, predominantly spermatocytes, with activation of p53 and induction of Bax in the testes. These observations demonstrate that the Magea genes are crucial in maintaining normal testicular size and protecting germ cells from excessive apoptosis under genotoxic stress. PMID:27226137

  14. The Magea gene cluster regulates male germ cell apoptosis without affecting the fertility in mice

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Siyuan; Xian, Li; Shi, Peiliang; Li, Chaojun; Lin, Zhaoyu; Gao, Xiang

    2016-01-01

    While apoptosis is essential for male germ cell development, improper activation of apoptosis in the testis can affect spermatogenesis and cause reproduction defects. Members of the MAGE-A (melanoma antigen family A) gene family are frequently clustered in mammalian genomes and are exclusively expressed in the testes of normal animals but abnormally activated in a wide variety of cancers. We investigated the potential roles of these genes in spermatogenesis by generating a mouse model with a 210-kb genomic deletion encompassing six members of the Magea gene cluster (Magea1, Magea2, Magea3, Magea5, Magea6 and Magea8). Male mice carrying the deletion displayed smaller testes from 2 months old with a marked increase in apoptotic germ cells in the first wave of spermatogenesis. Furthermore, we found that Magea genes prevented stress-induced spermatogenic apoptosis after N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea (ENU) treatment during the adult stage. Mechanistically, deletion of the Magea gene cluster resulted in a dramatic increase in apoptotic germ cells, predominantly spermatocytes, with activation of p53 and induction of Bax in the testes. These observations demonstrate that the Magea genes are crucial in maintaining normal testicular size and protecting germ cells from excessive apoptosis under genotoxic stress. PMID:27226137

  15. Crucial Genes and Pathways in Chicken Germ Stem Cell Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhentao; Elsayed, Ahmed Kamel; Shi, Qingqing; Zhang, Yani; Zuo, Qisheng; Li, Dong; Lian, Chao; Tang, Beibei; Xiao, Tianrong; Xu, Qi; Chang, Guobin; Chen, Guohong; Zhang, Lei; Wang, Kehua; Wang, Yingjie; Jin, Kai; Wang, Yilin; Song, Jiuzhou; Cui, Hengmi; Li, Bichun

    2015-01-01

    Male germ cell differentiation is a subtle and complex regulatory process. Currently, its regulatory mechanism is still not fully understood. In our experiment, we performed the first comprehensive genome and transcriptome-wide analyses of the crucial genes and signaling pathways in three kinds of crucial cells (embryonic stem cells, primordial germ cell, and spermatogonial stem cells) that are associated with the male germ cell differentiation. We identified thousands of differentially expressed genes in this process, and from these we chose 173 candidate genes, of which 98 genes were involved in cell differentiation, 19 were involved in the metabolic process, and 56 were involved in the differentiation and metabolic processes, like GAL9, AMH, PLK1, and PSMD7 and so on. In addition, we found that 18 key signaling pathways were involved mainly in cell proliferation, differentiation, and signal transduction processes like TGF-β, Notch, and Jak-STAT. Further exploration found that the candidate gene expression patterns were the same between in vitro induction experiments and transcriptome results. Our results yield clues to the mechanistic basis of male germ cell differentiation and provide an important reference for further studies. PMID:25847247

  16. Reproduction of wild birds via interspecies germ cell transplantation.

    PubMed

    Kang, Seok Jin; Choi, Jin Won; Kim, Sun Young; Park, Kyung Je; Kim, Tae Min; Lee, Young Mok; Kim, Heebal; Lim, Jeong Mook; Han, Jae Yong

    2008-11-01

    The present study was conducted to apply an interspecies germ cell transfer technique to wild bird reproduction. Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus) primordial germ cells (PGCs) retrieved from the gonads of 7-day-old embryos were transferred to the bloodstream of 2.5-day-old chicken (Gallus gallus) embryos. Pheasant-to-chicken germline chimeras hatched from the recipient embryos, and 10 pheasants were derived from testcross reproduction of the male chimeras with female pheasants. Gonadal migration of the transferred PGCs, their involvement in spermatogenesis, and production of chimeric semen were confirmed. The phenotype of pheasant progenies derived from the interspecies transfer was identical to that of wild pheasants. The average efficiency of reproduction estimated from the percentage of pheasants to total progenies was 17.5%. In conclusion, interspecies germ cell transfer into a developing embryo can be used for wild bird reproduction, and this reproductive technology may be applicable in conserving endangered bird species. PMID:18685127

  17. A functional genomic screen in planarians identifies novel regulators of germ cell development

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yuying; Stary, Joel M.; Wilhelm, James E.; Newmark, Phillip A.

    2010-01-01

    Germ cells serve as intriguing examples of differentiated cells that retain the capacity to generate all cell types of an organism. Here we used functional genomic approaches in planarians to identify genes required for proper germ cell development. We conducted microarray analyses and in situ hybridization to discover and validate germ cell-enriched transcripts, and then used RNAi to screen for genes required for discrete stages of germ cell development. The majority of genes we identified encode conserved RNA-binding proteins, several of which have not been implicated previously in germ cell development. We also show that a germ cell-specific subunit of the conserved transcription factor CCAAT-binding protein/nuclear factor-Y is required for maintaining spermatogonial stem cells. Our results demonstrate that conserved transcriptional and post-transcriptional mechanisms regulate germ cell development in planarians. These findings suggest that studies of planarians will inform our understanding of germ cell biology in higher organisms. PMID:20844018

  18. Germ-cell malignant tumours in father and son.

    PubMed Central

    Musa, M. B.

    1975-01-01

    Germ-cell malignant tumours occurred in a man and his son. The father, who had a teratoma of the right testicle removed 24 years ago, is presently alive and well. The son, who had a choriocarcinoma presenting as an abdominal mass, possibly originating in the testicle, died within 7 months of the diagnosis with metastases in the lungs, liver and retroperitoneum. This report documents the third such case of germ-cell neoplasms occurring in father and son. Images FIG. 1 FIG. 2 FIG. 3 PMID:1168534

  19. Paternity in patients with bilateral testicular germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Heidenreich, A; Vorreuther, R; Neubauer, S; Zumbe, J; Engelmann, U H

    1997-01-01

    We report on the finding of paternity in 1 patient with metachronous bilateral testis germ cell tumor (BTGCT) and in another patient with a unilateral testicular germ cell tumor and contralateral carcinoma in situ (CIS). These cases demonstrate that patients with BTGCT or CIS in their solitary testicle are not necessarily infertile. Surveillance might be a therapeutic modality in patients with contralateral CIS and active spermatogenesis and the desire for paternity assumed that they are included in close follow-up protocols. PMID:9076475

  20. Germ cell neoplasia in situ (GCNIS): evolution of the current nomenclature for testicular pre-invasive germ cell malignancy.

    PubMed

    Berney, Daniel M; Looijenga, Leendert H J; Idrees, Muhammad; Oosterhuis, J Wolter; Rajpert-De Meyts, Ewa; Ulbright, Thomas M; Skakkebaek, Niels E

    2016-07-01

    The pre-invasive lesion associated with post-pubertal malignant germ cell tumours of the testis was first recognized in the early 1970s and confirmed by a number of observational and follow-up studies. Until this year, this scientific story has been confused by resistance to the entity and disagreement on its name. Initially termed 'carcinoma in situ' (CIS), it has also been known as 'intratubular germ cell neoplasia, unclassified' (IGCNU) and 'testicular intraepithelial neoplasia' (TIN). In this paper, we review the history of discovery and controversy concerning these names and introduce the reasoning for uniting behind a new name, endorsed unanimously at the World Health Organization (WHO) consensus classification 2016: germ cell neoplasia in situ (GCNIS). PMID:26918959

  1. Germ cell DNA quantification shortly after IR laser radiation.

    PubMed

    Bermúdez, D; Carrasco, F; Diaz, F; Perez-de-Vargas, I

    1991-01-01

    The immediate effect of IR laser radiation on rat germ cells was studied by cytophotometric quantification of the nuclear DNA content in testicular sections. Two different levels of radiation were studied: one according to clinical application (28.05 J/cm2) and another known to increase the germ cell number (46.80 J/cm2). The laser beam induced changes in the germ cell DNA content depending on the cell type, the cell cycle phase and the doses of radiation energy applied. Following irradiation at both doses the percentage of spermatogonia showing a 4c DNA content was increased, while the percentage of these with a 2c DNA content was decreased. Likewise, the percentages of primary spermatocytes with a DNA content equal to 4c (at 28.05 J/cm2), between 2c and 4c (at 46.80 J/cm2) and higher than 4c (at both doses) were increased. No change in the mean spermatid DNA content was observed. Nevertheless, at 46.80 J/cm2 the percentages of elongated spermatids with a c or 2c DNA content differed from the controls. Data show that, even at laser radiation doses used in therapy, the germ cell DNA content is increased shortly after IR laser radiation. PMID:1772145

  2. Transplantation of male germ line stem cells restores fertility in infertile mice

    PubMed Central

    Ogawa, Takehiko; Dobrinski, Ina; Avarbock, Mary R.

    2016-01-01

    Azoospermia or oligozoospermia due to disruption of spermatogenesis are common causes of human male infertility. We used the technique of spermatogonial transplantation in two infertile mouse strains, Steel (Sl) and dominant white spotting (W), to determine if stem cells from an infertile male were capable of generating spermatogenesis. Transplantation of germ cells from infertile Sl/Sld mutant male mice to infertile W/Wv or Wv/W54 mutant male mice restored fertility to the recipient mice. Thus, transplantation of spermatogonial stem cells from an infertile donor to a permissive testicular environment can restore fertility and result in progeny with the genetic makeup of the infertile donor male. PMID:10613820

  3. DDX4 (VASA) is conserved in germ cell development in marsupials and monotremes.

    PubMed

    Hickford, Danielle E; Frankenberg, Stephen; Pask, Andrew J; Shaw, Geoff; Renfree, Marilyn B

    2011-10-01

    DDX4 (VASA) is an RNA helicase expressed in the germ cells of all animals. To gain greater insight into the role of this gene in mammalian germ cell development, we characterized DDX4 in both a marsupial (the tammar wallaby) and a monotreme (the platypus). DDX4 is highly conserved between eutherian, marsupial, and monotreme mammals. DDX4 protein is absent from tammar fetal germ cells but is present from Day 1 postpartum in both sexes. The distribution of DDX4 protein during oogenesis and spermatogenesis in the tammar is similar to eutherians. Female tammar germ cells contain DDX4 protein throughout all stages of postnatal oogenesis. In males, DDX4 is in gonocytes, and during spermatogenesis it is present in spermatocytes and round spermatids. A similar distribution of DDX4 occurs in the platypus during spermatogenesis. There are several DDX4 isoforms in the tammar, resulting from both pre- and posttranslational modifications. DDX4 in marsupials and monotremes has multiple splice variants and polyadenylation motifs. Using in silico analyses of genomic databases, we found that these previously unreported splice variants also occur in eutherians. In addition, several elements implicated in the control of Ddx4 expression in the mouse, including RGG (arginine-glycine-glycine) and dimethylation of arginine motifs and CpG islands within the Ddx4 promoter, are also highly conserved. Collectively these data suggest that DDX4 is essential for the regulation of germ cell proliferation and differentiation across all three extant mammalian groups-eutherians, marsupials, and monotremes. PMID:21653890

  4. Stem cells and germ cells: microRNA and gene expression signatures.

    PubMed

    Dyce, Paul William; Toms, Derek; Li, Julang

    2010-04-01

    The study of primordial germ cell development in vivo is hampered by their low numbers and inaccessibility. Recent research has shown the ability of embryonic and adult stem cells to differentiate into primordial germ cells and more mature gametes and this generation of germ cells in vitro may be an attractive model for their study. One of the biggest challenges facing in vitro differentiation of stem cells into primordial germ cells is the lack of markers to clearly distinguish the two. As both cell types originate early in embryonic development they share many pluripotent markers such as OCT4, VASA, FRAGILIS, and NANOG. Genome wide microarray profiling has been used to identify transcriptome patterns unique to primordial germ cells. A more thorough analysis of the temporal and quantitative expression of a panel of genes may be more robust in distinguishing these two cell populations. MicroRNAs, short RNA molecules that have been shown to regulate translation through interactions with mRNA transcripts, have also recently come under investigation for the role they may play in pluripotency. Attempts to elucidate key microRNAs responsible for both stem cell and primordial germ cell characteristics have recently been undertaken. Unique microRNAs, either individually or as global profiles, may also help to distinguish differentiated primordial germ cells from stem cells in vitro. This review will examine gene expression and microRNA signatures in stem cells and germ cells as ways to distinguish these closely related cell types. PMID:20183803

  5. Declaring the Existence of Human Germ-Cell Mutagens

    EPA Science Inventory

    After more than 80 years of searching for human germ-cell mutagens, I think that sufficient evidence already exists for a number of agents to be so considered, and definitive confirmation seems imminent due to the application ofrecently developed genomic techniques. In preparatio...

  6. Restricted distribution of mrg-1 mRNA in C. elegans primordial germ cells through germ granule-independent regulation.

    PubMed

    Miwa, Takashi; Takasaki, Teruaki; Inoue, Kunio; Sakamoto, Hiroshi

    2015-11-01

    The chromodomain protein MRG-1 is an essential maternal factor for proper germline development that protects germ cells from cell death in C. elegans. Unlike germ granules, which are exclusively segregated to the germline blastomeres at each cell division from the first cleavage of the embryo, MRG-1 is abundant in all cells in early embryos and is then gradually restricted to the primordial germ cells (PGCs) by the morphogenesis stage. Here, we show that this characteristic spatiotemporal expression pattern is dictated by the mrg-1 3'UTR and is differentially regulated at the RNA level between germline and somatic cells. Asymmetric segregation of germ granules is not necessary to localize MRG-1 to the PGCs. We found that MES-4, an essential chromatin regulator in germ cells, also accumulates in the PGCs in a germ granule-independent manner. We propose that C.elegans PGCs have a novel mechanism to accumulate at least some chromatin-associated proteins that are essential for germline immortality. PMID:26537333

  7. DNA Analysis in Samples From Younger Patients With Germ Cell Tumors and Their Parents or Siblings

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-04-07

    Childhood Malignant Ovarian Germ Cell Tumor; Childhood Malignant Testicular Germ Cell Tumor; Ovarian Choriocarcinoma; Ovarian Embryonal Carcinoma; Ovarian Mixed Germ Cell Tumor; Ovarian Teratoma; Ovarian Yolk Sac Tumor; Testicular Choriocarcinoma; Testicular Embryonal Carcinoma; Testicular Seminoma; Testicular Teratoma; Testicular Yolk Sac Tumor

  8. Identification of a mouse B-type cyclin which exhibits developmentally regulated expression in the germ line

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chapman, D. L.; Wolgemuth, D. J.

    1992-01-01

    To begin to examine the function of cyclins in mammalian germ cells, we have screened an adult mouse testis cDNA library for the presence of B-type cyclins. We have isolated cDNAs that encode a murine B-type cyclin, which has been designated cycB1. cycB1 was shown to be expressed in several adult tissues and in the midgestation mouse embryo. In the adult tissues, the highest levels of cycB1 transcripts were seen in the testis and ovary, which contain germ cells at various stages of differentiation. The major transcripts corresponding to cycB1 are 1.7 and 2.5 kb, with the 1.7 kb species being the predominant testicular transcript and the 2.5 kb species more abundant in the ovary. Examination of cDNAs corresponding to the 2.5 kb and 1.7 kb mRNAs revealed that these transcripts encode identical proteins, differing only in the polyadenylation signal used and therefore in the length of their 3' untranslated regions. Northern blot and in situ hybridization analyses revealed that the predominant sites of cycB1 expression in the testis and ovary were in the germinal compartment, particularly in early round spermatids in the testis and growing oocytes in the ovary. Thus cycB1 is expressed in both meiotic and postmeiotic cells. This pattern of cycB1 expression further suggests that cycB1 may have different functions in the two cell types, only one of which correlates with progression of the cell cycle.

  9. Transcriptomic profiling comparison of YAP over-expression and conditional knockout mouse tooth germs

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Ming; Wang, Xiu-Ping

    2015-01-01

    To identify the downstream target genes of YAP, we used RNA-Seq technology to compare the transcriptomic profilings of Yap conditional knockout (Yap CKO) and YAP over-expression mouse tooth germs. Our results showed that some Hox, Wnt and Laminin family genes had concurrent changes with YAP transcripts, indicating that the expression of these genes may be regulated by YAP. Here, we provide the detailed experimental procedure for the transcriptomic profiling results (NCBI GEO accession number GSE65524). The associated study on the regulation of Hoxa1 and Hoxc13 genes by YAP was published in Molecular Cellular Biology in 2015 [Liu et al., 2015]. PMID:26484260

  10. Critical role of CCDC6 in the neoplastic growth of testicular germ cell tumors

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background DNA damage response has been clearly described as an anti-cancer barrier in early human tumorigenesis. Moreover, interestingly, testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs) have been reported to lack the DNA Damage Response (DDR) pathway activation. CCDC6 is a pro-apoptotic phosphoprotein substrate of the kinase ataxia telangectasia mutated (ATM) able to sustain DNA damage checkpoint in response to genotoxic stress and is commonly rearranged in malignancies upon fusion with different partners. In our study we sought to determine whether CCDC6 could have a role in the patho-genesis of testicular germ cell tumors. Methods To achieve this aim, analysis for CCDC6 expression has been evaluated on serial sections of the mouse testis by immunohistochemistry and on separate populations of murine testicular cells by western blot. Next, the resistance to DNA damage-induced apoptosis and the production of reactive oxygen species has been investigated in GC1 cells, derived from immortalized type B murine germ cells, following CCDC6 silencing. Finally, the CCDC6 expression in normal human testicular cells, in Intratubular Germ Cell Neoplasia Unclassified (IGCNU), in a large series of male germ cell tumours and in the unique human seminoma TCam2 cell line has been evaluated by immunohistochemistry and by Western Blot analyses. Results The analysis of the CCDC6 expression revealed its presence in Sertoli cells and in spermatogonial cells. CCDC6 loss was the most consistent feature among the primary tumours and TCam2 cells. Interestingly, following treatment with low doses of H2O2, the silencing of CCDC6 in GC1 cells caused a decrease in the oxidized form of cytochrome c and low detection of Bad, PARP-1 and Caspase 3 proteins. Moreover, in the silenced cells, upon oxidative damage, the cell viability was protected, the γH2AX activation was impaired and the Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) release was decreased. Conclusions Therefore, our results suggest that the loss of CCDC6

  11. Models of germ cell development and their application for toxicity studies.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Daniel W; Allard, Patrick

    2015-10-01

    Germ cells are unique in their ability to transfer genetic information and traits from generation to generation. As such, the proper development of germ cells and the integrity of their genome are paramount to the health of organisms and the survival of species. Germ cells are also exquisitely sensitive to environmental influences although the testing of germ cell toxicity, especially in females, has proven particularly challenging. In this review, we first describe the remarkable odyssey of germ cells in mammals, with an emphasis on the female germline, from their initial specification early during embryogenesis to the generation of mature gametes in adults. We also describe the current methods used in germ cell toxicity testing and their limitations in examining the complex features of mammalian germ cell development. To bypass these challenges, we propose the use of alternative model systems such as Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Drosophila melanogaster, Caenorhabditis elegans, and in vitro germ cell methods that have distinct advantages over traditional toxicity models. We discuss the benefits and limitations of each approach, their application to germ cell toxicity studies, and the need for computational approaches to maximize the usefulness of these models. Together, the inclusion of these alternative germ cell toxicity models will be invaluable for the examination of stages not easily accessible in mammals as well as the large scale, high-throughput investigation of germ cell toxicity. PMID:25821157

  12. Prmt5 is required for germ cell survival during spermatogenesis in mice

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yanbo; Zhu, Tianxiang; Li, Qiuling; Liu, Chunyi; Han, Feng; Chen, Min; Zhang, Lianjun; Cui, Xiuhong; Qin, Yan; Bao, Shilai; Gao, Fei

    2015-01-01

    During germ cell development, epigenetic modifications undergo extensive remodeling. Abnormal epigenetic modifications usually result in germ cell loss and reproductive defect. Prmt5 (Protein arginine methyltransferase 5) encodes a protein arginine methyltransferase which has been demonstrated to play important roles in germ cell development during embryonic stages. In the present study, we found that Prmt5 was also abundantly expressed in male germ cells after birth. Inactivation of this gene by crossing with Stra8-Cre transgenic mice resulted in germ cell loss during spermatogenesis. Further study revealed that the germ cell development was grossly normal before P10. However, most of the germ cells in Prmt5Δ/f; Stra8-Cre mice were blocked at meiotic stage. The expression of meiosis associated genes was reduced in Prmt5Δ/f; Stra8-Cre testes compared to control testes at P10. γH2AX was detected in sex body of control germ cells at P12, whereas multiple foci were observed in Prmt5-deficient germ cells. Further study revealed that H4R3me2s was virtually absent in germ cells after Prmt5 inactivation. The results of this study indicate that Prmt5 also plays important roles in germ cell development during spermatogenesis. PMID:26072710

  13. Insulin regulates primordial-follicle assembly in vitro by affecting germ-cell apoptosis and elevating oestrogen.

    PubMed

    Feng, Xin-Lei; Sun, Yuan-Chao; Zhang, Min; Cheng, Shun-Feng; Feng, Yan-Ni; Liu, Jing-Cai; Wang, Hong-Hui; Li, Lan; Qin, Guo-Qing; Shen, Wei

    2015-11-01

    Insulin is a protein secreted by pancreatic β-cells, which plays an important role in the regulation of ovarian function. However, the specific molecular mechanism of its function remains largely unknown. This study aimed to assess the effect of insulin on mouse folliculogenesis using an in vitro ovary-culture model. The results demonstrated that insulin promoted the proliferation of ovarian granulosa cells in vitro, and thereby accelerated the progress of folliculogenesis (the percentage of oocytes in cysts declined from 42.6% to 29.3%); however, the percentage of apoptotic oocytes increased after insulin treatment. Further investigation indicated that apoptosis occurred mainly in germ-cell cysts. After 3 days of insulin treatment, oestrogen in the culture medium of mouse ovaries significantly increased (P<0.01), while the lower dose of oestrogen promoted primordial-follicle assembly in vitro. In conclusion, insulin promoted folliculogenesis by facilitating germ-cell apoptosis within the cysts and upregulating oestrogen levels. PMID:24931389

  14. STELLA Facilitates Differentiation of Germ Cell and Endodermal Lineages of Human Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Wongtrakoongate, Patompon; Jones, Mark; Gokhale, Paul J.; Andrews, Peter W.

    2013-01-01

    Stella is a developmentally regulated gene highly expressed in mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells and in primordial germ cells (PGCs). In human, the gene encoding the STELLA homologue lies on chromosome 12p, which is frequently amplified in long-term cultured human ES cells. However, the role played by STELLA in human ES cells has not been reported. In the present study, we show that during retinoic acid (RA)-induced differentiation of human ES cells, expression of STELLA follows that of VASA, a marker of germline differentiation. By contrast, human embryonal carcinoma cells express STELLA at a higher level compared with both karyotypically normal and abnormal human ES cell lines. We found that over-expression of STELLA does not interfere with maintenance of the stem cell state of human ES cells, but following retinoic acid induction it leads to up-regulation of germline- and endodermal-associated genes, whereas neural markers PAX6 and NEUROD1 are down-regulated. Further, STELLA over-expression facilitates the differentiation of human ES cells into BE12-positive cells, in which the expression of germline- and endodermal-associated genes is enriched, and suppresses differentiation of the neural lineage. Taken together, this finding suggests a role for STELLA in facilitating germline and endodermal differentiation of human ES cells. PMID:23457636

  15. The majority of early primordial germ cells acquire pluripotency by AKT activation.

    PubMed

    Matsui, Yasuhisa; Takehara, Asuka; Tokitake, Yuko; Ikeda, Makiko; Obara, Yuka; Morita-Fujimura, Yuiko; Kimura, Tohru; Nakano, Toru

    2014-12-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are undifferentiated germ cells in embryos, the fate of which is to become gametes; however, mouse PGCs can easily be reprogrammed into pluripotent embryonic germ cells (EGCs) in culture in the presence of particular extracellular factors, such as combinations of Steel factor (KITL), LIF and bFGF (FGF2). Early PGCs form EGCs more readily than do later PGCs, and PGCs lose the ability to form EGCs by embryonic day (E) 15.5. Here, we examined the effects of activation of the serine/threonine kinase AKT in PGCs during EGC formation; notably, AKT activation, in combination with LIF and bFGF, enhanced EGC formation and caused ∼60% of E10.5 PGCs to become EGCs. The results indicate that the majority of PGCs at E10.5 could acquire pluripotency with an activated AKT signaling pathway. Importantly, AKT activation did not fully substitute for bFGF and LIF, and AKT activation without both LIF and bFGF did not result in EGC formation. These findings indicate that AKT signal enhances and/or collaborates with signaling pathways of bFGF and of LIF in PGCs for the acquisition of pluripotency. PMID:25359722

  16. PGC-Enriched miRNAs Control Germ Cell Development

    PubMed Central

    Bhin, Jinhyuk; Jeong, Hoe-Su; Kim, Jong Soo; Shin, Jeong Oh; Hong, Ki Sung; Jung, Han-Sung; Kim, Changhoon; Hwang, Daehee; Kim, Kye-Seong

    2015-01-01

    Non-coding microRNAs (miRNAs) regulate the translation of target messenger RNAs (mRNAs) involved in the growth and development of a variety of cells, including primordial germ cells (PGCs) which play an essential role in germ cell development. However, the target mRNAs and the regulatory networks influenced by miRNAs in PGCs remain unclear. Here, we demonstrate a novel miRNAs control PGC development through targeting mRNAs involved in various cellular pathways. We reveal the PGC-enriched expression patterns of nine miRNAs, including miR-10b, -18a, -93, -106b, -126-3p, -127, -181a, -181b, and -301, using miRNA expression analysis along with mRNA microarray analysis in PGCs, embryonic gonads, and postnatal testes. These miRNAs are highly expressed in PGCs, as demonstrated by Northern blotting, miRNA in situ hybridization assay, and miRNA qPCR analysis. This integrative study utilizing mRNA microarray analysis and miRNA target prediction demonstrates the regulatory networks through which these miRNAs regulate their potential target genes during PGC development. The elucidated networks of miRNAs disclose a coordinated molecular mechanism by which these miRNAs regulate distinct cellular pathways in PGCs that determine germ cell development. PMID:26442865

  17. Cryopreservation of specialized chicken lines using cultured primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Nandi, S; Whyte, J; Taylor, L; Sherman, A; Nair, V; Kaiser, P; McGrew, M J

    2016-08-01

    Biosecurity and sustainability in poultry production requires reliable germplasm conservation. Germplasm conservation in poultry is more challenging in comparison to other livestock species. Embryo cryopreservation is not feasible for egg-laying animals, and chicken semen conservation has variable success for different chicken breeds. A potential solution is the cryopreservation of the committed diploid stem cell precursors to the gametes, the primordial germ cells ( PGCS: ). Primordial germ cells are the lineage-restricted cells found at early embryonic stages in birds and form the sperm and eggs. We demonstrate here, using flocks of partially inbred, lower-fertility, major histocompatibility complex- ( MHC-: ) restricted lines of chicken, that we can easily derive and cryopreserve a sufficient number of independent lines of male and female PGCs that would be sufficient to reconstitute a poultry breed. We demonstrate that germ-line transmission can be attained from these PGCs using a commercial layer line of chickens as a surrogate host. This research is a major step in developing and demonstrating that cryopreserved PGCs could be used for the biobanking of specialized flocks of birds used in research settings. The prospective application of this technology to poultry production will further increase sustainability to meet current and future production needs. PMID:27099306

  18. NUT protein immunoreactivity in ovarian germ cell tumours.

    PubMed

    Iacobelli, J F; Charles, A K; Crook, M; Stewart, C J R

    2015-02-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate NUT (nuclear protein in the testis) expression in ovarian germ cell tumours (GCTs). Immunostaining for NUT protein was performed in 10 mature cystic teratomas and in 49 malignant ovarian GCTs including 15 pure dysgerminomas, six dysgerminomas associated with gonadoblastoma, nine yolk sac tumours, 12 immature teratomas, and seven mixed malignant tumours. Only nuclear staining was considered a positive finding although cytoplasmic staining was noted when present. Thirty-seven (76%) malignant GCTs were NUT positive but staining was usually of weak to moderate intensity and observed in a relatively small proportion of neoplastic cells. Staining in immature teratomas and yolk sac tumours was restricted to foci of hepatoid and intestinal/glandular differentiation, where both nuclear and cytoplasmic reactivity were observed. In dysgerminoma associated with gonadoblastoma only the in situ and invasive germ cell elements were NUT positive. Nuclear staining was not seen in benign teratomas. Most malignant ovarian GCTs express NUT protein, albeit focally, and this should be considered when evaluating immunostaining in the differential diagnosis of poorly differentiated malignancies, particularly NUT midline carcinoma. Since NUT protein appears to play a role in normal germ cell maturation it may influence intestinal or hepatoid differentiation within malignant GCTs. PMID:25551299

  19. Cryopreservation of specialized chicken lines using cultured primordial germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Nandi, S.; Whyte, J.; Taylor, L.; Sherman, A.; Nair, V.; Kaiser, P.; McGrew, M. J.

    2016-01-01

    Biosecurity and sustainability in poultry production requires reliable germplasm conservation. Germplasm conservation in poultry is more challenging in comparison to other livestock species. Embryo cryopreservation is not feasible for egg-laying animals, and chicken semen conservation has variable success for different chicken breeds. A potential solution is the cryopreservation of the committed diploid stem cell precursors to the gametes, the primordial germ cells (PGCs). Primordial germ cells are the lineage-restricted cells found at early embryonic stages in birds and form the sperm and eggs. We demonstrate here, using flocks of partially inbred, lower-fertility, major histocompatibility complex- (MHC-) restricted lines of chicken, that we can easily derive and cryopreserve a sufficient number of independent lines of male and female PGCs that would be sufficient to reconstitute a poultry breed. We demonstrate that germ-line transmission can be attained from these PGCs using a commercial layer line of chickens as a surrogate host. This research is a major step in developing and demonstrating that cryopreserved PGCs could be used for the biobanking of specialized flocks of birds used in research settings. The prospective application of this technology to poultry production will further increase sustainability to meet current and future production needs. PMID:27099306

  20. Updates in the management of ovarian germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Matei, Daniela; Brown, Jubilee; Frazier, Lindsay

    2013-01-01

    Ovarian germ cell tumors are rare events at all ages-in pediatrics, adolescence, and during young adulthood. Combining the knowledge and experience of pediatric and gynecologic oncologists can lead to better outcomes for all. In this review, we intend to present the latest consensus on management of women and children with this disease and highlight the opportunities for collaboration and clinical research going forward. PMID:23714505

  1. The diversity of nanos expression in echinoderm embryos supports different mechanisms in germ cell specification.

    PubMed

    Fresques, Tara; Swartz, Steven Zachary; Juliano, Celina; Morino, Yoshiaki; Kikuchi, Mani; Akasaka, Koji; Wada, Hiroshi; Yajima, Mamiko; Wessel, Gary M

    2016-07-01

    Specification of the germ cell lineage is required for sexual reproduction in all animals. However, the timing and mechanisms of germ cell specification is remarkably diverse in animal development. Echinoderms, such as sea urchins and sea stars, are excellent model systems to study the molecular and cellular mechanisms that contribute to germ cell specification. In several echinoderm embryos tested, the germ cell factor Vasa accumulates broadly during early development and is restricted after gastrulation to cells that contribute to the germ cell lineage. In the sea urchin, however, the germ cell factor Vasa is restricted to a specific lineage by the 32-cell stage. We therefore hypothesized that the germ cell specification program in the sea urchin/Euechinoid lineage has evolved to an earlier developmental time point. To test this hypothesis we determined the expression pattern of a second germ cell factor, Nanos, in four out of five extant echinoderm clades. Here we find that Nanos mRNA does not accumulate until the blastula stage or later during the development of all other echinoderm embryos except those that belong to the Echinoid lineage. Instead, Nanos is expressed in a restricted domain at the 32-128 cell stage in Echinoid embryos. Our results support the model that the germ cell specification program underwent a heterochronic shift in the Echinoid lineage. A comparison of Echinoid and non-Echinoid germ cell specification mechanisms will contribute to our understanding of how these mechanisms have changed during animal evolution. PMID:27402572

  2. Detection of phase specificity of in vivo germ cell mutagens in an in vitro germ cell system.

    PubMed

    Habas, Khaled; Anderson, Diana; Brinkworth, Martin

    2016-04-15

    In vivo tests for male reproductive genotoxicity are time consuming, resource-intensive and their use should be minimised according to the principles of the 3Rs. Accordingly, we investigated the effects in vitro, of a variety of known, phase-specific germ cell mutagens, i.e., pre-meiotic, meiotic, and post-meiotic genotoxins, on rat spermatogenic cell types separated using Staput unit-gravity velocity sedimentation, evaluating DNA damage using the Comet assay. N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea (ENU), N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU) (spermatogenic phase), 6-mercaptopurine (6-MP) and 5-bromo-2'-deoxy-uridine (5-BrdU) (meiotic phase), methyl methanesulphonate (MMS) and ethyl methanesulphonate (EMS) (post-meiotic phase) were selected for use as they are potent male rodent, germ cell mutagens in vivo. DNA damage was detected directly using the Comet assay and indirectly using the TUNEL assay. Treatment of the isolated cells with ENU and MNU produced the greatest concentration-related increase in DNA damage in spermatogonia. Spermatocytes were most sensitive to 6-MP and 5-BrdU while spermatids were particularly susceptible to MMS and EMS. Increases were found when measuring both Olive tail moment (OTM) and% tail DNA, but the greatest changes were in OTM. Parallel results were found with the TUNEL assay, which showed highly significant, concentration dependent effects of all these genotoxins on spermatogonia, spermatocytes and spermatids in the same way as for DNA damage. The specific effects of these chemicals on different germ cell types matches those produced in vivo. This approach therefore shows potential for use in the detection of male germ cell genotoxicity and could contribute to the reduction of the use of animals in such toxicity assays. PMID:27059372

  3. POMB/ACE chemotherapy for mediastinal germ cell tumours.

    PubMed

    Bower, M; Brock, C; Holden, L; Nelstrop, A; Makey, A R; Rustin, G J; Newlands, E S

    1997-05-01

    Mediastinal germ cell tumours (MGCT) are rare and most published series reflect the experiences of individual institutions over many years. Since 1979, we have treated 16 men (12 non-seminomatous germ cell tumours and 4 seminomas) with newly diagnosed primary MGCT with POMB/ACE chemotherapy and elective surgical resection of residual masses. This approach yielded complete remissions in 15/16 (94%) patients. The median follow-up was 6.0 years and no relapses occurred more than 2 years after treatment. The 5 year overall survival in the non-seminomatous germ cell tumours (NSGCT) is 73% (95% confidence interval 43-90%). One patient with NSGCT developed drug-resistant disease and died without achieving remission and 2 patients died of relapsed disease. In addition, 4 patients with bulky and/or metastatic seminoma were treated with POMB/ACE. One died of treatment-related neutropenic sepsis in complete remission and one died of relapsed disease. Finally, 4 patients (2 NSGCT and 2 seminomas) referred at relapse were treated with POMB/ACE and one was successfully salvaged. The combination of POMB/ACE chemotherapy and surgery is effective management for MGCT producing high long-term survival rates. PMID:9291802

  4. Development of germ cell neoplasia in situ in chinchilla rabbits.

    PubMed

    Vigueras-Villaseñor, Rosa María; Montelongo Solís, Paola; Chávez-Saldaña, Margarita; Gutiérrez-Pérez, Oscar; Cortés Trujillo, Lucero; Rojas-Castañeda, Julio César

    2016-05-01

    The present study was designed to describe the development of germ cell neoplasia in situ in Chinchilla rabbit by administration of estradiol. The study was performed in rabbits distributed into two groups: control and 17 β-estradiol. The determination of histological alterations and POU5F1 and c-kit proteins employed as biomarkers for the diagnosis of this neoplasia was carried out. Testicular descent and complete spermatogenesis were observed in the control group. The protein biomarkers were negative. However, in the rabbits treated with estradiol, the testes remained undescended with the gonocytes undifferentiated to spermatogonia. There were histological lesions owing to germ cell neoplasia in situ and positive to POU5F1 and c-kit proteins. These findings indicate that the chinchilla rabbit is an ideal model to study this neoplasia in which the histological characteristics and biomarkers of the disease could be clearly observed. Using this model we suggested that the persisting gonocytes could be responsible for the development of germ cell neoplasia in situ. PMID:26617392

  5. Telomere homeostasis in mammalian germ cells: a review.

    PubMed

    Reig-Viader, Rita; Garcia-Caldés, Montserrat; Ruiz-Herrera, Aurora

    2016-06-01

    Telomeres protect against genome instability and participate in chromosomal movements during gametogenesis, especially in meiosis. Thus, maintaining telomere structure and telomeric length is essential to both cell integrity and the production of germ cells. As a result, alteration of telomere homeostasis in the germ line may result in the generation of aneuploid gametes or gametogenesis disruption, triggering fertility problems. In this work, we provide an overview on fundamental aspects of the literature regarding the organization of telomeres in mammalian germ cells, paying special attention to telomere structure and function, as well as the maintenance of telomeric length during gametogenesis. Moreover, we discuss the different roles recently described for telomerase and TERRA in maintaining telomere functionality. Finally, we review how new findings in the field of reproductive biology underscore the role of telomere homeostasis as a potential biomarker for infertility. Overall, we anticipate that the study of telomere stability and equilibrium will contribute to improve diagnoses of patients; assess the risk of infertility in the offspring; and in turn, find new treatments. PMID:26525972

  6. A miR-372/let-7 Axis Regulates Human Germ Versus Somatic Cell Fates.

    PubMed

    Tran, Nam D; Kissner, Michael; Subramanyam, Deepa; Parchem, Ronald J; Laird, Diana J; Blelloch, Robert H

    2016-07-01

    The embryonic stem cell cycle (ESCC) and let-7 families of miRNAs function antagonistically in the switch between mouse embryonic stem cell self-renewal and somatic differentiation. Here, we report that the human ESCC miRNA miR-372 and let-7 act antagonistically in germline differentiation from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). hESC and iPSC-derived primordial germ cell-like cells (PGCLCs) expressed high levels of miR-372 and conversely, somatic cells expressed high levels of let-7. Manipulation of miRNA levels by introduction of miRNA mimics or knockdown with miRNA sponges demonstrated that miR-372 promotes whereas let-7 antagonizes PGCLC differentiation. Knockdown of the individual miR-372 targets SMARCC1, MECP2, CDKN1, RBL2, RHOC, and TGFBR2 increased PGCLC production, whereas knockdown of the let-7 targets CMYC and NMYC suppressed PGCLC differentiation. These findings uncover a miR-372/let-7 axis regulating human primordial germ cell (PGC) specification. Stem Cells 2016;34:1985-1991. PMID:27066911

  7. Tre1, a G Protein-Coupled Receptor, Directs Transepithelial Migration of Drosophila Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    2003-01-01

    In most organisms, germ cells are formed distant from the somatic part of the gonad and thus have to migrate along and through a variety of tissues to reach the gonad. Transepithelial migration through the posterior midgut (PMG) is the first active step during Drosophila germ cell migration. Here we report the identification of a novel G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR), Tre1, that is essential for this migration step. Maternal tre1 RNA is localized to germ cells, and tre1 is required cell autonomously in germ cells. In tre1 mutant embryos, most germ cells do not exit the PMG. The few germ cells that do leave the midgut early migrate normally to the gonad, suggesting that this gene is specifically required for transepithelial migration and that mutant germ cells are still able to recognize other guidance cues. Additionally, inhibiting small Rho GTPases in germ cells affects transepithelial migration, suggesting that Tre1 signals through Rho1. We propose that Tre1 acts in a manner similar to chemokine receptors required during transepithelial migration of leukocytes, implying an evolutionarily conserved mechanism of transepithelial migration. Recently, the chemokine receptor CXCR4 was shown to direct migration in vertebrate germ cells. Thus, germ cells may more generally use GPCR signaling to navigate the embryo toward their target. PMID:14691551

  8. Human primordial germ cell commitment in vitro associates with a unique PRDM14 expression profile

    PubMed Central

    Sugawa, Fumihiro; Araúzo-Bravo, Marcos J; Yoon, Juyong; Kim, Kee-Pyo; Aramaki, Shinya; Wu, Guangming; Stehling, Martin; Psathaki, Olympia E; Hübner, Karin; Schöler, Hans R

    2015-01-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) develop only into sperm and oocytes in vivo. The molecular mechanisms underlying human PGC specification are poorly understood due to inaccessibility of cell materials and lack of in vitro models for tracking the earliest stages of germ cell development. Here, we describe a defined and stepwise differentiation system for inducing pre-migratory PGC-like cells (PGCLCs) from human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs). In response to cytokines, PSCs differentiate first into a heterogeneous mesoderm-like cell population and then into PGCLCs, which exhibit minimal PRDM14 expression. PGC specification in humans is similar to the murine process, with the sequential activation of mesodermal and PGC genes, and the suppression of neural induction and of de novo DNA methylation, suggesting that human PGC formation is induced via epigenesis, the process of germ cell specification via inductive signals from surrounding somatic cells. This study demonstrates that PGC commitment in humans shares key features with that of the mouse, but also highlights key differences, including transcriptional regulation during the early stage of human PGC development (3–6 weeks). A more comprehensive understanding of human germ cell development may lead to methodology for successfully generating PSC-derived gametes for reproductive medicine. PMID:25750208

  9. Primary Malignant Mixed Germ Cell Tumour with Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Mandible; A Rare Entity

    PubMed Central

    Paul, Arun; Parmar, Harshad; Chacko, Rabin

    2015-01-01

    Germ cell Tumours (GCT) are neoplasm derived from germ cells. GCT usually occurs inside the gonads. Extragonadal GCT’s are rare. Most common GCT associated with head and neck region are the teratomas. Of the few teratomas found in the head and neck, malignant transformation of a teratomatous element is very uncommon, and primary bone involvement within the head and neck is even rare. We present a case of primary malignant mixed germ cell Tumour involving the mandible, the present case presented malignant transformation of the epithelial component showing foci of squamous cell carcinoma within the GCT. PMID:26266228

  10. Generation of exogenous germ cells in the ovaries of sterile NANOS3-null beef cattle

    PubMed Central

    Ideta, Atsushi; Yamashita, Shiro; Seki-Soma, Marie; Yamaguchi, Ryosaku; Chiba, Shiori; Komaki, Haruna; Ito, Tetsuya; Konishi, Masato; Aoyagi, Yoshito; Sendai, Yutaka

    2016-01-01

    Blastocyst complementation (BC) systems have enabled in vivo generation of organs from allogeneic pluripotent cells, compensating for an empty germ cell niche in gene knockout (KO) animals. Here, we succeeded in producing chimeric beef cattle (Wagyu) by transferring allogenic germ cells into ovaries using somatic cell nuclear transfer and BC technology. The KO of NANOS3 (NANOS3−/−) in Wagyu bovine ovaries produced a complete loss of germ cells. Holstein blastomeres (NANOS3+/+) were injected into NANOS3−/− Wagyu embryos. Subsequently, exogenous germ cells (NANOS3+/+) were identified in the NANOS3−/− ovary. These results clearly indicate that allogeneic germ cells can be generated in recipient germ cell-free gonads using cloning and BC technologies. PMID:27117862

  11. Generation of exogenous germ cells in the ovaries of sterile NANOS3-null beef cattle.

    PubMed

    Ideta, Atsushi; Yamashita, Shiro; Seki-Soma, Marie; Yamaguchi, Ryosaku; Chiba, Shiori; Komaki, Haruna; Ito, Tetsuya; Konishi, Masato; Aoyagi, Yoshito; Sendai, Yutaka

    2016-01-01

    Blastocyst complementation (BC) systems have enabled in vivo generation of organs from allogeneic pluripotent cells, compensating for an empty germ cell niche in gene knockout (KO) animals. Here, we succeeded in producing chimeric beef cattle (Wagyu) by transferring allogenic germ cells into ovaries using somatic cell nuclear transfer and BC technology. The KO of NANOS3 (NANOS3(-/-)) in Wagyu bovine ovaries produced a complete loss of germ cells. Holstein blastomeres (NANOS3(+/+)) were injected into NANOS3(-/-) Wagyu embryos. Subsequently, exogenous germ cells (NANOS3(+/+)) were identified in the NANOS3(-/-) ovary. These results clearly indicate that allogeneic germ cells can be generated in recipient germ cell-free gonads using cloning and BC technologies. PMID:27117862

  12. Effect of Antioxidants and Apoptosis Inhibitors on Cryopreservation of Murine Germ Cells Enriched for Spermatogonial Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Yong-An; Kim, Yong-Hee; Kim, Bang-Jin; Jung, Sang-Eun; Pang, Myeong-Geol; Ryu, Buom-Yong

    2016-01-01

    Spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) are germline stem cells that serve as the foundation of spermatogenesis to maintain fertility throughout a male’s lifetime. To treat male infertility using stem cell banking systems and transplantation, it is important to be able to preserve SSCs for long periods of time. Therefore, this study was conducted to develop an optimal cryopreservation protocol for SSCs using antioxidants and apoptosis inhibitors in freezing medium. No differences were observed compared to controls when SSCs were cryopreserved in the presence of apoptosis inhibitors by themselves. However, mouse germ cells cryopreserved in basal medium containing the antioxidant hypotaurine (14 mM) resulted in significantly greater proliferation potential and mitochondrial activity. Furthermore, treatment groups with combinations containing 200 mM trehalose and 14 mM hypotaurine showed higher proliferation rates compared to controls. In addition, several serum free conditions were evaluated for SSC cryopreservation. Treatment media containing 10% or 20% knockout serum replacement resulted in similar cryopreservation results compared to media containing FBS. SSC transplantation was also performed to confirm the functionality of SSCs frozen in 14 mM hypotaurine. Donor SSCs formed normal spermatogenic colonies and sperm in the recipient testis. These data indicate that inclusion of 14 mM hypotaurine in cryopreservation media is an effective way to efficiently cryopreserve germ cells enriched for SSCs and that knockout serum replacement can replace FBS in germ cell cryopreservation media. PMID:27548381

  13. Effect of Antioxidants and Apoptosis Inhibitors on Cryopreservation of Murine Germ Cells Enriched for Spermatogonial Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Ha, Seung-Jung; Kim, Byung-Gak; Lee, Yong-An; Kim, Yong-Hee; Kim, Bang-Jin; Jung, Sang-Eun; Pang, Myeong-Geol; Ryu, Buom-Yong

    2016-01-01

    Spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) are germline stem cells that serve as the foundation of spermatogenesis to maintain fertility throughout a male's lifetime. To treat male infertility using stem cell banking systems and transplantation, it is important to be able to preserve SSCs for long periods of time. Therefore, this study was conducted to develop an optimal cryopreservation protocol for SSCs using antioxidants and apoptosis inhibitors in freezing medium. No differences were observed compared to controls when SSCs were cryopreserved in the presence of apoptosis inhibitors by themselves. However, mouse germ cells cryopreserved in basal medium containing the antioxidant hypotaurine (14 mM) resulted in significantly greater proliferation potential and mitochondrial activity. Furthermore, treatment groups with combinations containing 200 mM trehalose and 14 mM hypotaurine showed higher proliferation rates compared to controls. In addition, several serum free conditions were evaluated for SSC cryopreservation. Treatment media containing 10% or 20% knockout serum replacement resulted in similar cryopreservation results compared to media containing FBS. SSC transplantation was also performed to confirm the functionality of SSCs frozen in 14 mM hypotaurine. Donor SSCs formed normal spermatogenic colonies and sperm in the recipient testis. These data indicate that inclusion of 14 mM hypotaurine in cryopreservation media is an effective way to efficiently cryopreserve germ cells enriched for SSCs and that knockout serum replacement can replace FBS in germ cell cryopreservation media. PMID:27548381

  14. Expression of BLIMP1/PRMT5 and concurrent histone H2A/H4 arginine 3 dimethylation in fetal germ cells, CIS/IGCNU and germ cell tumors

    PubMed Central

    Eckert, Dawid; Biermann, Katharina; Nettersheim, Daniel; Gillis, Ad JM; Steger, Klaus; Jäck, Hans-Martin; Müller, Annette M; Looijenga, Leendert HJ; Schorle, Hubert

    2008-01-01

    Background Most testicular germ cell tumors arise from intratubular germ cell neoplasia unclassified (IGCNU, also referred to as carcinoma in situ), which is thought to originate from a transformed primordial germ cell (PGC)/gonocyte, the fetal germ cell. Analyses of the molecular profile of IGCNU and seminoma show similarities to the expression profile of fetal germ cells/gonocytes. In murine PGCs, expression and interaction of Blimp1 and Prmt5 results in arginine 3 dimethylation of histone H2A and H4. This imposes epigenetic modifications leading to transcriptional repression in mouse PGCs enabling them to escape the somatic differentiation program during migration, while expressing markers of pluripotency. Results In the present study, we show that BLIMP1 and PRMT5 were expressed and arginine dimethylation of histones H2A and H4 was detected in human male gonocytes at weeks 12–19 of gestation, indicating a role of this mechanism in human fetal germ cell development as well. Moreover, BLIMP1/PRMT5 and histone H2A and H4 arginine 3 dimethylation was present in IGCNU and most seminomas, while downregulated in embryonal carcinoma (EC) and other nonseminomatous tumors. Conclusion These data reveal similarities in marker expression and histone modification between murine and human PGCs. Moreover, we speculate that the histone H2A and H4 arginine 3 dimethylation might be the mechanism by which IGCNU and seminoma maintain the undifferentiated state while loss of these histone modifications leads to somatic differentiation observed in nonseminomatous tumors. PMID:18992153

  15. ELMO1 signaling in apoptotic germ cell clearance and spermatogenesis.

    PubMed

    Elliott, Michael R; Ravichandran, Kodi S

    2010-10-01

    Apoptosis and the subsequent removal of dying cells are crucial processes for tissue development and maintenance. Although we are beginning to understand the signaling pathways that control the phagocytic clearance of apoptotic cells, the physiological relevance of these pathways is lacking. During spermatogenesis, over half of the developing germ cells eventually die by apoptosis, yet the signaling pathways that regulate the phagocytic clearance of these dying cells or the impact of this clearance on development and maintenance of the germ cell population is not well understood. The ELMO1/Dock180 proteins form an evolutionarily conserved signaling module that functions as a bipartite guanine nucleotide exchange factor for the small GTPase Rac. The subsequent Rac-dependent cytoskeletal changes play an important role in the physical engulfment of apoptotic cells. Recent findings demonstrate an in vivo role for ELMO1-dependent clearance in the testes, with implications for spermatogenesis. Here we will discuss the role of apoptotic cell clearance during spermatogenesis, with a particular emphasis on ELMO1/Dock180 signaling. PMID:20958313

  16. Human somatic cells subjected to genetic induction with six germ line-related factors display meiotic germ cell-like features

    PubMed Central

    Medrano, Jose V.; Martínez-Arroyo, Ana M.; Míguez, Jose M.; Moreno, Inmaculada; Martínez, Sebastián; Quiñonero, Alicia; Díaz-Gimeno, Patricia; Marqués-Marí, Ana I.; Pellicer, Antonio; Remohí, Jose; Simón, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    The in vitro derivation of human germ cells has attracted interest in the last years, but their direct conversion from human somatic cells has not yet been reported. Here we tested the ability of human male somatic cells to directly convert into a meiotic germ cell-like phenotype by inducing them with a combination of selected key germ cell developmental factors. We started with a pool of 12 candidates that were reduced to 6, demonstrating that ectopic expression of the germ line-related genes PRDM1, PRDM14, LIN28A, DAZL, VASA and SYCP3 induced direct conversion of somatic cells (hFSK (46, XY), and hMSC (46, XY)) into a germ cell-like phenotype in vitro. Induced germ cell-like cells showed a marked switch in their transcriptomic profile and expressed several post-meiotic germ line related markers, showed meiotic progression, evidence of epigenetic reprogramming, and approximately 1% were able to complete meiosis as demonstrated by their haploid status and the expression of several post-meiotic markers. Furthermore, xenotransplantation assays demonstrated that a subset of induced cells properly colonize the spermatogonial niche. Knowledge obtained from this work can be used to create in vitro models to study gamete-related diseases in humans. PMID:27112843

  17. Complete Genome Sequence of Turicibacter sp. Strain H121, Isolated from the Feces of a Contaminated Germ-Free Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Auchtung, T. A.; Holder, M. E.; Gesell, J. R.; Ajami, N. J.; Duarte, R. T. D.; Itoh, K.; Caspi, R. R.; Petrosino, J. F.; Horai, R.

    2016-01-01

    Turicibacter bacteria are commonly detected in the gastrointestinal tracts and feces of humans and animals, but their phylogeny, ecological role, and pathogenic potential remain unclear. We present here the first complete genome sequence of Turicibacter sp. strain H121, which was isolated from the feces of a mouse line contaminated following germ-free derivation. PMID:27013036

  18. Complete Genome Sequence of Turicibacter sp. Strain H121, Isolated from the Feces of a Contaminated Germ-Free Mouse.

    PubMed

    Auchtung, T A; Holder, M E; Gesell, J R; Ajami, N J; Duarte, R T D; Itoh, K; Caspi, R R; Petrosino, J F; Horai, R; Zárate-Bladés, C R

    2016-01-01

    Turicibacterbacteria are commonly detected in the gastrointestinal tracts and feces of humans and animals, but their phylogeny, ecological role, and pathogenic potential remain unclear. We present here the first complete genome sequence ofTuricibactersp. strain H121, which was isolated from the feces of a mouse line contaminated following germ-free derivation. PMID:27013036

  19. Insights into female germ cell biology: from in vivo development to in vitro derivations

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Dajung; Kee, Kehkooi

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the mechanisms of human germ cell biology is important for developing infertility treatments. However, little is known about the mechanisms that regulate human gametogenesis due to the difficulties in collecting samples, especially germ cells during fetal development. In contrast to the mitotic arrest of spermatogonia stem cells in the fetal testis, female germ cells proceed into meiosis and began folliculogenesis in fetal ovaries. Regulations of these developmental events, including the initiation of meiosis and the endowment of primordial follicles, remain an enigma. Studying the molecular mechanisms of female germ cell biology in the human ovary has been mostly limited to spatiotemporal characterizations of genes or proteins. Recent efforts in utilizing in vitro differentiation system of stem cells to derive germ cells have allowed researchers to begin studying molecular mechanisms during human germ cell development. Meanwhile, the possibility of isolating female germline stem cells in adult ovaries also excites researchers and generates many debates. This review will mainly focus on presenting and discussing recent in vivo and in vitro studies on female germ cell biology in human. The topics will highlight the progress made in understanding the three main stages of germ cell developments: namely, primordial germ cell formation, meiotic initiation, and folliculogenesis. PMID:25652637

  20. Germ Cell Tumors in Adolescents and Young Adults.

    PubMed

    Calaminus, Gabriele; Joffe, Jonathan

    2016-01-01

    Germ cell tumors (GCTs) represent a group of biologically complex malignancies that affect patients at different sites within the body and at different ages. The varying nature of these tumors reflects their cell of origin which is the primordial germ cell, which normally gives rise to ovarian and testicular egg and sperm producing cells. These cells retain an ability to give rise to all types of human tissues, and this is illustrated by the different kinds of GCTs that occur. In adolescent and young adult (AYA) patients, GCTs predominantly present as testicular, ovarian or mediastinal primary GCTs, and represent some of the most complex therapeutic challenges within any AYA practice. The varying types of GCTs, defined by primary site and/or age at presentation, can look very similar microscopically. However, there is growing evidence that they may have different molecular characteristics, different biology and different requirements for curative treatments. Whilst in adult testicular GCTs there is evidence for an environmental cause during fetal development and a genetic component, these causative factors are much less well understood in other GCTs. GCTs are some of the most curable cancers in adults, but some patients exhibit resistance to standard treatments. Because of this, today's clinical research is directed at understanding how to best utilize toxic therapies and promote healthy survivorship. This chapter explores the biology, behavior and treatment of GCTs and discusses how the AYA group of GCTs may hold some of the keys to understanding fundamental unanswered questions of biological variance and curability in GCTs. PMID:27595361

  1. The Sm protein methyltransferase PRMT5 is not required for primordial germ cell specification in mice.

    PubMed

    Li, Ziwei; Yu, Juehua; Hosohama, Linzi; Nee, Kevin; Gkountela, Sofia; Chaudhari, Sonal; Cass, Ashley A; Xiao, Xinshu; Clark, Amander T

    2015-03-12

    PRMT5 is a type II protein arginine methyltransferase with roles in stem cell biology, reprograming, cancer and neurogenesis. During embryogenesis in the mouse, it was hypothesized that PRMT5 functions with the master germline determinant BLIMP1 to promote primordial germ cell (PGC) specification. Using a Blimp1-Cre germline conditional knockout, we discovered that Prmt5 has no major role in murine germline specification, or the first global epigenetic reprograming event involving depletion of cytosine methylation from DNA and histone H3 lysine 9 dimethylation from chromatin. Instead, we discovered that PRMT5 functions at the conclusion of PGC reprograming I to promote proliferation, survival and expression of the gonadal germline program as marked by MVH. We show that PRMT5 regulates gene expression by promoting methylation of the Sm spliceosomal proteins and significantly altering the spliced repertoire of RNAs in mammalian embryonic cells and primordial cells. PMID:25519955

  2. Tracing of Xenopus tropicalis germ plasm and presumptive primordial germ cells with the Xenopus tropicalis DAZ-like gene.

    PubMed

    Sekizaki, Hiroyuki; Takahashi, Shuji; Tanegashima, Kousuke; Onuma, Yasuko; Haramoto, Yoshikazu; Asashima, Makoto

    2004-02-01

    A gamete is derived initially from a presumptive primordial germ cell (pPGC) and transmits genetic potential to the next generation. Xenopus tropicalis, which is a close relative of Xenopus laevis, has a diploid genome and advantages for genetic and genomic research; however, little is known about the developmental mechanism of its germinal lineage. Here, we identified the Xenopus tropicalis DAZ-like gene (Xtdazl), which encodes RNA-binding proteins homologous to Xdazl in Xenopus laevis and examined the expression patterns of Xtdazl transcripts during embryogenesis. In this work, we showed that Xtdazl mRNA was localized in the germ plasm and was expressed from the previtellogenic oocyte to early tadpole, in testis and ovary. The same localization patterns have been reported in Xenopus laevis germ plasm and pPGCs. These results indicate that Xtdazl mRNA is the first specific marker of germ plasm and pPGCs in Xenopus tropicalis and is very useful to trace Xenopus tropicalis pPGCs, including germ plasm until the early tadpole stage. PMID:14745962

  3. Spectrum of germ cell tumors: from head to toe.

    PubMed

    Ueno, Teruko; Tanaka, Yumiko Oishi; Nagata, Michio; Tsunoda, Hajime; Anno, Izumi; Ishikawa, Shigemi; Kawai, Koji; Itai, Yuji

    2004-01-01

    Germ cell tumors (GCTs) occur most frequently in the gonads and are relatively rare in other sites, such as the pineal gland, neurohypophysis, mediastinum, and retroperitoneum. GCTs are thought to originate from primordial germ cells, which migrate to the primitive gonadal glands in the urogenital ridge. Extragonadal GCTs might also originate from these cells when the cells are sequestered during their migration. Pathologic subtypes of GCTs vary, and the prevalence of mixed tumors is high. These factors produce a diversity of radiologic findings and make prospective radiologic diagnosis difficult in many cases. However, similar radiologic findings have been observed in pathologically equivalent tumors in varying sites. Seminomas appear as uniformly solid, lobulated masses with fibrovascular septa that enhance intensely. Nonseminomatous GCTs appear as heterogeneous masses with areas of necrosis, hemorrhage, or cystic degeneration. Fat and calcifications are hallmarks of teratomas, most of which are benign. In immature teratomas, scattered fat and calcification within larger solid components are occasionally seen. These imaging characteristics reflect the pathologic features of each tumor, and histologically similar GCTs at varying sites have similar radiologic features. Knowledge of the pathologic appearances of GCTs and their corresponding radiologic appearances will allow radiologists to diagnose these tumors correctly. PMID:15026588

  4. Oct4 is required for primordial germ cell survival

    PubMed Central

    Kehler, James; Tolkunova, Elena; Koschorz, Birgit; Pesce, Maurizio; Gentile, Luca; Boiani, Michele; Lomelí, Hilda; Nagy, Andras; McLaughlin, K John; Schöler, Hans R; Tomilin, Alexey

    2004-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that Oct4 has an essential role in maintaining pluripotency of cells of the inner cell mass (ICM) and embryonic stem cells. However, Oct4 null homozygous embryos die around the time of implantation, thus precluding further analysis of gene function during development. We have used the conditional Cre/loxP gene targeting strategy to assess Oct4 function in primordial germ cells (PGCs). Loss of Oct4 function leads to apoptosis of PGCs rather than to differentiation into a trophectodermal lineage, as has been described for Oct4-deficient ICM cells. These new results suggest a previously unknown function of Oct4 in maintaining viability of mammalian germline. PMID:15486564

  5. Intratubular germ cell neoplasia of the human testis: heterogeneous protein expression and relation to invasive potential

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Rod T; Camacho-Moll, Maria; Macdonald, Joni; Anderson, Richard A; Kelnar, Christopher JH; O’Donnell, Marie; Sharpe, Richard M; Smith, Lee B; Grigor, Ken M; Wallace, W Hamish B; Stoop, Hans; Wolffenbuttel, Katja P; Donat, Roland

    2014-01-01

    Testicular germ cell cancer develops from pre-malignant intratubular germ cell neoplasia, unclassified cells that are believed to arise from failure of normal maturation of fetal germ cells from gonocytes (OCT4+/ MAGEA4−) into pre-spermatogonia (OCT4−/MAGEA4+). Intratubular germ cell neoplasia cell subpopulations based on stage of germ cell differentiation have been described, however the importance of these subpopulations in terms of invasive potential has not been reported. We hypothesised that cells expressing an immature (OCT4+/MAGEA4−) germ cell profile would exhibit an increased proliferation rate compared to those with a mature profile (OCT4+/ MAGEA4+). Therefore, we performed triple immunofluorescence and stereology to quantify the different intratubular germ cell neoplasia cell subpopulations, based on expression of germ cell (OCT4, PLAP, AP2γ, MAGEA4, VASA) and proliferation (Ki67) markers, in testis sections from patients with pre-invasive disease, seminoma and non-seminoma. We compared these subpopulations with normal human fetal testis and with seminoma cells. Heterogeneity of protein expression was demonstrated in intratubular germ cell neoplasia cells with respect to gonocyte and spermatogonial markers. It included an embryonic/fetal germ cell subpopulation lacking expression of the definitive intratubular germ cell neoplasia marker OCT4, that did not correspond to a physiological (fetal) germ cell subpopulation. OCT4+/MAGEA4- cells showed a significantly increased rate of proliferation compared with the OCT4+/MAGEA4+ population (12.8 v 3.4%, p<0.0001) irrespective of histological tumour type, reflected in the predominance of OCT4+/MAGEA4− cells in the invasive tumour component. Surprisingly, OCT4+/MAGEA4− cells in patients with pre-invasive disease showed significantly higher proliferation compared to those with seminoma or non-seminoma (18.1 v 10.2 v 7.2%, p<0.05 respectively). In conclusion, this study has demonstrated that OCT4+/MAGEA4

  6. 0610009K11Rik, a testis-specific and germ cell nuclear receptor-interacting protein

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang Heng; Denhard, Leslie A.; Zhou Huaxin; Liu Lanhsin; Lan Zijian

    2008-02-22

    Using an in silico approach, a putative nuclear receptor-interacting protein 0610009K11Rik was identified in mouse testis. We named this gene testis-specific nuclear receptor-interacting protein-1 (Tnrip-1). Tnrip-1 was predominantly expressed in the testis of adult mouse tissues. Expression of Tnrip-1 in the testis was regulated during postnatal development, with robust expression in 14-day-old or older testes. In situ hybridization analyses showed that Tnrip-1 is highly expressed in pachytene spermatocytes and spermatids. Consistent with its mRNA expression, Tnrip-1 protein was detected in adult mouse testes. Immunohistochemical studies showed that Tnrip-1 is a nuclear protein and mainly expressed in pachytene spermatocytes and round spermatids. Moreover, co-immunoprecipitation analyses showed that endogenous Tnrip-1 protein can interact with germ cell nuclear receptor (GCNF) in adult mouse testes. Our results suggest that Tnrip-1 is a testis-specific and GCNF-interacting protein which may be involved in the modulation of GCNF-mediated gene transcription in spermatogenic cells within the testis.

  7. Applying “Gold Standards” to In vitro-Derived Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Handel, Mary Ann; Eppig, John J.; Schimenti, John C.

    2015-01-01

    Germ cells are the ultimate stem cells and reports of their in vitro derivation generate excitement due to potential applications in reproductive medicine. To date there is no firm evidence that meiosis, the hallmark of gametogenesis, can be faithfully replicated outside the gonad. We propose benchmarks for evaluating in vitro derivation of germ cells, facilitating realization of their potential. PMID:24906145

  8. nanos function is essential for development and regeneration of planarian germ cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yuying; Zayas, Ricardo M; Guo, Tingxia; Newmark, Phillip A

    2007-04-01

    Germ cells are required for the successful propagation of sexually reproducing species. Understanding the mechanisms by which these cells are specified and how their totipotency is established and maintained has important biomedical and evolutionary implications. Freshwater planarians serve as fascinating models for studying these questions. They can regenerate germ cells from fragments of adult tissues that lack reproductive structures, suggesting that inductive signaling is involved in planarian germ cell specification. To study the development and regeneration of planarian germ cells, we have functionally characterized an ortholog of nanos, a gene required for germ cell development in diverse organisms, from Schmidtea mediterranea. In the hermaphroditic strain of this species, Smed-nanos mRNA is detected in developing, regenerating, and mature ovaries and testes. However, it is not detected in the vast majority of newly hatched planarians or in small tissue fragments that will ultimately regenerate germ cells, consistent with an epigenetic origin of germ cells. We show that Smed-nanos RNA interference (RNAi) results in failure to develop, regenerate, or maintain gonads in sexual planarians. Unexpectedly, Smed-nanos mRNA is also detected in presumptive testes primordia of asexual individuals that reproduce strictly by fission. These presumptive germ cells are lost after Smed-nanos RNAi, suggesting that asexual planarians specify germ cells, but their differentiation is blocked downstream of Smed-nanos function. Our results reveal a conserved function of nanos in germ cell development in planarians and suggest that these animals will serve as useful models for dissecting the molecular basis of epigenetic germ cell specification. PMID:17376870

  9. Control of mammalian germ cell entry into meiosis.

    PubMed

    Feng, Chun-Wei; Bowles, Josephine; Koopman, Peter

    2014-01-25

    Germ cells are unique in undergoing meiosis to generate oocytes and sperm. In mammals, meiosis onset is before birth in females, or at puberty in males, and recent studies have uncovered several regulatory steps involved in initiating meiosis in each sex. Evidence suggests that retinoic acid (RA) induces expression of the critical pre-meiosis gene Stra8 in germ cells of the fetal ovary, pubertal testis and adult testis. In the fetal testis, CYP26B1 degrades RA, while FGF9 further antagonises RA signalling to suppress meiosis. Failsafe mechanisms involving Nanos2 may further suppress meiosis in the fetal testis. Here, we draw together the growing knowledge relating to these meiotic control mechanisms, and present evidence that they are co-ordinately regulated and that additional factors remain to be identified. Understanding this regulatory network will illuminate not only how the foundations of mammalian reproduction are laid, but also how mis-regulation of these steps can result in infertility or germline tumours. PMID:24076097

  10. Extragonadal germ cell tumors are often associated with Klinefelter syndrome.

    PubMed

    Aguirre, David; Nieto, Karem; Lazos, Minerva; Peña, Y Rocio; Palma, Icela; Kofman-Alfaro, Susana; Queipo, Gloria

    2006-04-01

    Klinefelter syndrome is a well documented abnormality of sex differentiation, with an incidence of 1 in 600 newborn males. It is characterized by a 47,XXY or a mosaic karyotype and clinical findings of hypergonadotrophic hypogonadism, small testes, infertility, reduced body hair, gynecomastia, and tall stature. Other conditions like venous disease, autoimmune disorders, mild neurobehavioral deficit, diabetes mellitus, sexual precocity, and osteoporosis may also affect these patients. Different malignancies such as breast cancer, testicular tumors, leukemia, and lymphomas occur in 1%-2% of the cases. Klinefelter syndrome has been associated with other malignancies such as extragonadal germ cell tumors; however, some authors consider this association an unusual finding. We report the molecular cytogenetic studies performed in 4 young males with mediastinal germ cell tumors. In 2 cases, a 47,XXY karyotype was recognized in different tissues by fluorescent in situ hybridization, whereas the other 2 had a normal XY karyotype. We propose that in young patients with mediastinal teratoma, a cytogenetic analysis must always be performed. PMID:16564924

  11. Modeling cell elongation during germ band retraction: cell autonomy versus applied anisotropic stress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lynch, Holley E.; Veldhuis, Jim; Brodland, G. Wayne; Hutson, M. Shane

    2014-05-01

    The morphogenetic process of germ band retraction in Drosophila embryos involves coordinated movements of two epithelial tissues—germ band and amnioserosa. The germ band shortens along its rostral-caudal or head-to-tail axis, widens along its perpendicular dorsal-ventral axis, and uncurls from an initial ‘U’ shape. The amnioserosa mechanically assists this process by pulling on the crook of the U-shaped germ band. The amnioserosa may also provide biochemical signals that drive germ band cells to change shape in a mechanically autonomous fashion. Here, we use a finite-element model to investigate how these two contributions reshape the germ band. We do so by modeling the response to laser-induced wounds in each of the germ band’s spatially distinct segments (T1-T3, A1-A9) during the middle of retraction when segments T1-A3 form the ventral arm of the ‘U’, A4-A7 form its crook, and A8-A9 complete the dorsal arm. We explore these responses under a range of externally applied stresses and internal anisotropy of cell edge tensions—akin to a planar cell polarity that can drive elongation of cells in a direction parallel to the minimum edge tension—and identify regions of parameter space (edge-tension anisotropy versus stress anisotropy) that best match previous experiments for each germ band segment. All but three germ band segments are best fit when the applied stress anisotropy and the edge-tension anisotropy work against one another—i.e., when the isolated effects would elongate cells in perpendicular directions. Segments in the crook of the germ band (A4-A7) have cells that elongate in the direction of maximum external stress, i.e., external stress anisotropy is dominant. In most other segments, the dominant factor is internal edge-tension anisotropy. These results are consistent with models in which the amnioserosa pulls on the crook of the germ band to mechanically assist retraction. In addition, they suggest a mechanical cue for edge

  12. Systemic mastocytosis in a patient with ovarian germ cell carcinoma and mast cell leukemia

    SciTech Connect

    Sun, G.; Hajianpour, M.J.; Hajianpour, A.K.

    1994-09-01

    We report a 12-year-old female with a history of mixed germ cell carcinoma of the right ovary who developed a generalized skin rash after oophorectomy and chemotherapy. She also presented with periodic episodes of flushing, anemia, tachycardia, shortness of breath, high fever, hepatosplenomegaly, nausea, abdominal cramping with diarrhea, and a papuloerythematous skin rash. There was no evidence of secondary carcinoma. Skin biopsy revealed nonspecific inflammatory cells with negative staining for mast cells. Peripheral blood smear showed an increased number of mast cells, thrombocytopenia and normal white cells count. Bone marrow showed hypercellularity with 38% of the nucleated cells being mast cells. Bone marrow chromosome analysis revealed hyperdiploidy in 30% of the cells: 58-64,XX, +1, +2, +5, +6, +7, +8, +14, +16, +18, +19, +19, +20, +21, +22. She expired two months after the occurrence of systemic mastocytosis. Systemic mastocytosis has been reported in association with hematopoietic disorders and with germ cell tumors. The association between mediastinal germ cell tumors and hematological malignancies has also been observed. To our knowledge, combination of most cell leukemia, systemic mastocytosis, and ovarian germ cell carcinoma has not been observed. It is know that mutations at the locus of either proto-oncogene c-kit receptor or its ligand, mast/stem cell factor (SCF) may impair the development of three stem cell populations: hematopoietic stem cells, germ cells and melanoblasts. There have been also extensive investigations on the expression and modulation of the SCF/c-kit interaction in various malignancies. Further molecular studies in patients with germ cell tumor/hematopoietic malignancy syndrome are required to delineate underlying mechanisms.

  13. AIP1-mediated actin disassembly is required for postnatal germ cell migration and spermatogonial stem cell niche establishment

    PubMed Central

    Xu, J; Wan, P; Wang, M; Zhang, J; Gao, X; Hu, B; Han, J; Chen, L; Sun, K; Wu, J; Wu, X; Huang, X; Chen, J

    2015-01-01

    In mammals, spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) arise from early germ cells called gonocytes, which are derived from primordial germ cells during embryogenesis and remain quiescent until birth. After birth, these germ cells migrate from the center of testicular cord, through Sertoli cells, and toward the basement membrane to form the SSC pool and establish the SSC niche architecture. However, molecular mechanisms underlying germ cell migration and niche establishment are largely unknown. Here, we show that the actin disassembly factor actin interacting protein 1 (AIP1) is required in both germ cells and Sertoli cells to regulate this process. Germ cell-specific or Sertoli cell-specific deletion of Aip1 gene each led to significant defects in germ cell migration after postnatal day 4 or 5, accompanied by elevated levels of actin filaments (F-actin) in the affected cells. Furthermore, our data demonstrated that interaction between germ cells and Sertoli cells, likely through E-cadherin-mediated cell adhesion, is critical for germ cells' migration toward the basement membrane. At last, Aip1 deletion in Sertoli cells decreased SSC self-renewal, increased spermatogonial differentiation, but did not affect the expression and secretion levels of growth factors, suggesting that the disruption of SSC function results from architectural changes in the postnatal niche. PMID:26181199

  14. Are There Human Germ-Cell Mutagens? We May Know Soon

    EPA Science Inventory

    The existence of agents that can induce germ-cell mutations in experimental systems has been recognized since 1927 with the discovery of the ability of X-rays to induce such mutations in Drosophila. Since then, various rodent-based assays have been used to identify ~50 germ-cell...

  15. Development of interspecies testicular germ-cell transplantation in flatfish.

    PubMed

    Pacchiarini, Tiziana; Sarasquete, Carmen; Cabrita, Elsa

    2014-06-01

    Interspecific testicular germ cell (TGC) transplantation was investigated in two commercial flatfish species. Testes from donor species (Senegalese sole) were evaluated using classical histological techniques (haematoxylin-eosin staining and haematoxylin-light green-orange G-acid fuchsine staining), in situ hybridisation and immunohistochemical analysis. Both Ssvasa1-2 mRNAs and SsVasa protein allowed the characterisation of TGCs, confirming the usefulness of the vasa gene in the detection of Senegalese sole TGCs. Xenogenic transplants were carried out using TGCs from one-year-old Senegalese sole into turbot larvae. Propidium iodide-SYBR-14 and 4',6'-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI) staining showed that 87.98% of the extracted testicular cells were viable for microinjection and that 15.63% of the total recovered cells were spermatogonia. The vasa gene was characterised in turbot recipients using cDNA cloning. Smvasa mRNA was confirmed as a germ cell-specific molecular marker in this species. Smvasa expression analysis during turbot ontogeny was carried out before Senegalese sole TGC transplants into turbot larvae. Turbot larvae at 18 days after hatching (DAH) proved to be susceptible to manipulation procedures. High survival rates (83.75±15.90-100%) were obtained for turbot larvae at 27, 34 and 42 DAH. These data highlight the huge potential of this species for transplantation studies. Quantitative PCR was employed to detect Senegalese sole vasa mRNAs (Ssvasa1-2) in the recipient turbot larvae. The Ssvasa mRNAs showed a significant increase in relative expression in 42-DAH microinjected larvae three weeks after treatment, showing the proliferation of Senegalese sole spermatogonia in transplanted turbot larvae. PMID:23735683

  16. MIWI2 as an Effector of DNA Methylation and Gene Silencing in Embryonic Male Germ Cells.

    PubMed

    Kojima-Kita, Kanako; Kuramochi-Miyagawa, Satomi; Nagamori, Ippei; Ogonuki, Narumi; Ogura, Atsuo; Hasuwa, Hidetoshi; Akazawa, Takashi; Inoue, Norimitsu; Nakano, Toru

    2016-09-13

    During the development of mammalian embryonic germ cells, global demethylation and de novo DNA methylation take place. In mouse embryonic germ cells, two PIWI family proteins, MILI and MIWI2, are essential for the de novo DNA methylation of retrotransposons, presumably through PIWI-interacting RNAs (piRNAs). Although piRNA-associated MIWI2 has been reported to play critical roles in the process, its molecular mechanisms have remained unclear. To identify the mechanism, transgenic mice were produced; they contained a fusion protein of MIWI2 and a zinc finger (ZF) that recognized the promoter region of a type A LINE-1 gene. The ZF-MIWI2 fusion protein brought about DNA methylation, suppression of the type A LINE-1 gene, and a partial rescue of the impaired spermatogenesis of MILI-null mice. In addition, ZF-MIWI2 was associated with the proteins involved in DNA methylation. These data indicate that MIWI2 functions as an effector of de novo DNA methylation of the retrotransposon. PMID:27626653

  17. Germ cells and ova in dysgenetic gonads of a 46-XY female dizygotic twin.

    PubMed

    Cussen, L J; MacMahon, R A

    1979-04-01

    The frequency of germ cell neoplasms in girls with 46-XY gonadal dysgenesis suggests that germ cells may persist in the dysgenetic gonads for many years. A phenotypic female infant with a karyotype of 46-XY in blood, skin, and gonads had a few ova in primordial follicles and numerous germ cells in her dysgenetic gonads at the age of 3 months. At 3 years and 10 months of age her gonads contained no primordial follicle and the only remaining germ cells were in a gonadoblastoma. We propose that germ cells are lost from dysgenetic gonads much more rapidly than from normal gonads, but that the rate of loss in patients with a karyotype of 46-XY may be less than the rate of loss in patients with a karyotype of 45-XO. PMID:433851

  18. Tetraploid Embryonic Stem Cells Maintain Pluripotency and Differentiation Potency into Three Germ Layers

    PubMed Central

    Imai, Hiroyuki; Kano, Kiyoshi; Fujii, Wataru; Takasawa, Ken; Wakitani, Shoichi; Hiyama, Masato; Nishino, Koichiro; Kusakabe, Ken Takeshi; Kiso, Yasuo

    2015-01-01

    Polyploid amphibians and fishes occur naturally in nature, while polyploid mammals do not. For example, tetraploid mouse embryos normally develop into blastocysts, but exhibit abnormalities and die soon after implantation. Thus, polyploidization is thought to be harmful during early mammalian development. However, the mechanisms through which polyploidization disrupts development are still poorly understood. In this study, we aimed to elucidate how genome duplication affects early mammalian development. To this end, we established tetraploid embryonic stem cells (TESCs) produced from the inner cell masses of tetraploid blastocysts using electrofusion of two-cell embryos in mice and studied the developmental potential of TESCs. We demonstrated that TESCs possessed essential pluripotency and differentiation potency to form teratomas, which differentiated into the three germ layers, including diploid embryonic stem cells. TESCs also contributed to the inner cell masses in aggregated chimeric blastocysts, despite the observation that tetraploid embryos fail in normal development soon after implantation in mice. In TESCs, stability after several passages, colony morphology, and alkaline phosphatase activity were similar to those of diploid ESCs. TESCs also exhibited sufficient expression and localization of pluripotent markers and retained the normal epigenetic status of relevant reprogramming factors. TESCs proliferated at a slower rate than ESCs, indicating that the difference in genomic dosage was responsible for the different growth rates. Thus, our findings suggested that mouse ESCs maintained intrinsic pluripotency and differentiation potential despite tetraploidization, providing insights into our understanding of developmental elimination in polyploid mammals. PMID:26091100

  19. Implications of Sertoli cell induced germ cell apoptosis to testicular pathology

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Caitlin J; Richburg, John H

    2014-01-01

    After exposure to toxicants, degenerating germ cells represents the most common testicular histopathological alteration, regardless of the mechanism of toxicity. Therefore, deciphering the primary toxicant cellular target and mechanism of action can be extremely difficult. However, most testicular toxicants display a cell-specific and a stage-specific pattern of damage, which is the best evidence for identifying the primary cellular target (i.e. germ cell, Sertoli cell, peritubular myoid cell, or Leydig cell). Some toxicant-induced Sertoli cell injury presents with germ cell apoptosis occurring primarily in spermatocytes in rats in stages XI-XIV, I and II. Although some toxicants result in spermatid degeneration and apoptosis, it is still unclear if spermatid apoptosis is a result of Sertoli cell-selective apoptosis or a direct effect of toxicants on spermatids, therefore if this is seen as the earliest change, one cannot infer the mechanism of apoptosis. This review summarizes some of the distinguishing features of Sertoli cell-induced germ cell apoptosis and the associated mechanisms of cell death to provide the toxicologist observing similar cell death, with evidence about a potential mode of action. PMID:26413394

  20. In vivo analysis of germ cell apoptosis reveals the existence of stage-specific 'social' control of germ cell death in the seminiferous epithelium.

    PubMed

    Blanco-Rodríguez, J; Martínez-García, C

    1997-12-01

    It has become clear in recent years that programmed cell death is regulated during development by signals from other cells. Nevertheless, compared to the 'social' control of cell proliferation, relatively little is known about the 'social' control of cell death in other systems. Since in a previous study we showed that induced germ cell apoptosis occurs at specific stages of the spermatogenic cycle, in this study we aimed to ascertain the existence of supracellular control of germ cell death during spermatogenesis. Therefore, the TUNEL technique has been used to analyse whether all of the different germ cell types are induced to die at these specific stages in animals injected intratesticularly with one of several inducers of apoptosis. Our findings suggest that all of the investigated agents trigger apoptosis in all the diverse progenies of germ cells existing at stages I, XII or XIV of the spermatogenic cycle. In contrast, at most other stages the number of apoptotic cells was similar to that found in control animals. These data are consistent with the existence of an intercellular control of germ cell death during spermatogenesis. We conclude that the seminiferous epithelium provides a suitable in vivo model to study the mechanisms underlying the 'social' control of apoptosis. PMID:9568531

  1. SCE AND MEITOTIC CROSSOVER EXCHANGE IN GERM CELLS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Mouse spermatogonial cells can be evaluated for SCE induction after in vivo exposure to chemical mutagens and carcinogens. In this system, cyclophosphamide and ethyl carbamate have been shown to cause significant increases in SCE which, however, tend to be lower in magnitude than...

  2. Pediatric Germ Cell Tumors; A 10-year Experience

    PubMed Central

    Khaleghnejad-Tabari, Ahmad; Mirshemirani, Alireza; Rouzrokh, Mohsen; Mohajerzadeh, Leily; Khaleghnejad-Tabari, Nasibeh; Hasas-Yeganeh, Shaghayegh

    2014-01-01

    Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the outcome of germ cell tumors in patients admitted to our center during a ten year period. Methods: In a retrospective descriptive study, patients with the pathological diagnosis of germ cell tumor (GCT) were included. All records were evaluated and patients followed by personal visit in clinic or phone call. Data regarding age, sex, tumor site, bio-chemical assay, pathology, treatment and outcomes were gathered. For qualitative variables we computed frequency and percentage and for quantitative variables, mean and standard deviation. Survival analysis was performed using Kaplan-Meier. All statistical analyses were performed by SPSS version16.0. Findings : Forty four patients consisted of 32 girls (72.7%) and 12 boys (27.3%). Their median age was 23 months. The most common pathological tumor types were 18 (40.9%) mature teratomas and 14 (31.8%) yolk sac tumors. Extra gonadal tumors were more prevalent (32 cases) and consisted of 21 (47.7%) sacrcoccygeal, 7 (15.9%) retroperitoneal, 2 (4.4%) mediastinal and 2 (4.4%) cervical tumors. In gonadal tumors 9 patients had ovarian and 3 patients testicular involvement. Staging at the time of diagnosis revealed stage one in 23 (52.3%) cases. All patients were treated surgically and the most common procedure was total resection in 41 (93.2%) patients. Fifteen (34.1%) patients received chemotherapy. In follow-up 31 (77.5%) patients were in complete remission, 9 (22.5%) had died, and 4 cases did not appear to follow-up visits. The median survival was 16 months (IQR 4-49 months). The highest mortality rate was found in patients with yolk sac tumors (8 of 13 cases). Conclusion: The patients with extra-gonadal GCT and a high AFP level have the worst prognosis and lower survival rate. Combination of surgery and chemotherapy can lead to a better prognosis. PMID:25755868

  3. Damaging effects of polychlorinated biphenyls on chicken primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Fang, Changge; Zhang, Caiqiao; Xia, Guoliang; Yang, Wei

    2002-01-01

    This work describes the effects of a commercial polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) mixture, Aroclor 1254, as well as 17beta-oestradiol (E2) and testosterone on numbers and histomorphological changes of primordial germ cells (PGCs) in gonadal regions of Day 5 Hyline chicken embryos. The oestrogen receptor antagonist, clomiphen, alone or with PCBs was used in an attempt to protect the developing gonad from oestrogen-like effects of chemical PCBs. The results were as follows: (i) PCBs delayed embryonic development independently of dose (1 microg/egg, P<0.05; 10 microg/egg, P<0.01; 100 microg/egg, P<0.001 v. the control) and caused a dose-independent increase in mortality compared with the control group (10 microg/egg, P<0.01; 100 microg/egg, P<0.05); maximal mortality was observed in the 1 microg/egg group (P<0.001); (ii) PCBs decreased PGC numbers dose dependently (P<0.001) and caused a swollen nucleus with hyperchromatism (pyknosis) or cytoplasm vacuolation as signs of gonadal PGC degeneration in all PCB groups, or even complete disappearance in the 100 microg/egg group; (iii) after PCB treatment, the index of gonadal lesion increased significantly with the decrease of gonadal PGC number (1, 10 and 100 microg/egg, P<0.001); (iv) there were no observed effects of E2, testosterone and clomiphen on PGCs in the experiments; and (v) clomiphen failed to block the damaging effects of PCBs. These results suggest that the adverse effects of PCBs on chicken gonadal and germ cell development were initiated during the early stages of incubation through direct toxic effects, rather than through oestrogen-mimicking actions. As PGC numbers in the gonads decrease and the index of gonadal lesion increases, one may expect reproductive function to be compromised. PMID:12219939

  4. Melphalan, Carboplatin, Mannitol, and Sodium Thiosulfate in Treating Patients With Recurrent or Progressive CNS Embryonal or Germ Cell Tumors

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-04-28

    Adult Central Nervous System Germ Cell Tumor; Adult Ependymoblastoma; Adult Medulloblastoma; Adult Pineoblastoma; Adult Supratentorial Primitive Neuroectodermal Tumor; Childhood Atypical Teratoid/Rhabdoid Tumor; Childhood Central Nervous System Germ Cell Tumor; Childhood Ependymoblastoma; Medulloepithelioma; Ototoxicity; Recurrent Adult Brain Neoplasm; Recurrent Childhood Central Nervous System Embryonal Neoplasm; Recurrent Childhood Malignant Germ Cell Tumor; Recurrent Childhood Medulloblastoma; Recurrent Childhood Pineoblastoma; Recurrent Childhood Supratentorial Primitive Neuroectodermal Tumor

  5. Mechano-logical model of C. elegans germ line suggests feedback on the cell cycle

    PubMed Central

    Atwell, Kathryn; Qin, Zhao; Gavaghan, David; Kugler, Hillel; Hubbard, E. Jane Albert; Osborne, James M.

    2015-01-01

    The Caenorhabditis elegans germ line is an outstanding model system in which to study the control of cell division and differentiation. Although many of the molecules that regulate germ cell proliferation and fate decisions have been identified, how these signals interact with cellular dynamics and physical forces within the gonad remains poorly understood. We therefore developed a dynamic, 3D in silico model of the C. elegans germ line, incorporating both the mechanical interactions between cells and the decision-making processes within cells. Our model successfully reproduces key features of the germ line during development and adulthood, including a reasonable ovulation rate, correct sperm count, and appropriate organization of the germ line into stably maintained zones. The model highlights a previously overlooked way in which germ cell pressure may influence gonadogenesis, and also predicts that adult germ cells might be subject to mechanical feedback on the cell cycle akin to contact inhibition. We provide experimental data consistent with the latter hypothesis. Finally, we present cell trajectories and ancestry recorded over the course of a simulation. The novel approaches and software described here link mechanics and cellular decision-making, and are applicable to modeling other developmental and stem cell systems. PMID:26428008

  6. Testicular structure and germ cells morphology in salamanders

    PubMed Central

    Uribe, Mari Carmen; Mejía-Roa, Víctor

    2014-01-01

    Testes of salamanders or urodeles are paired elongated organs that are attached to the dorsal wall of the body by a mesorchium. The testes are composed of one or several lobes. Each lobe is morphologically and functionally a similar testicular unit. The lobes of the testis are joined by cords covered by a single peritoneal epithelium and subjacent connective tissue. The cords contain spermatogonia. Spermatogonia associate with Sertoli cells to form spermatocysts or cysts. The spermatogenic cells in a cyst undergo their development through spermatogenesis synchronously. The distribution of cysts displays the cephalo-caudal gradient in respect to the stage of spermatogenesis. The formation of cysts at cephalic end of the testis causes their migration along the lobules to the caudal end. Consequently, the disposition in cephalo-caudal regions of spermatogenesis can be observed in longitudinal sections of the testis. The germ cells are spermatogonia, diploid cells with mitotic activity; primary and second spermatocytes characterized by meiotic divisions that develop haploid spermatids; during spermiogenesis the spermatids differentiate to spermatozoa. During spermiation the cysts open and spermatozoa leave the testicular lobules. After spermiation occurs the development of Leydig cells into glandular tissue. This glandular tissue regressed at the end of the reproductive cycle. PMID:26413406

  7. SYNAPTONEMAL COMPLEX DAMAGE AS A MEASURE OF CHEMICAL MUTAGEN EFFECTS ON MAMMALIAN GERM CELLS

    EPA Science Inventory

    As heritable chromosome anomalies are implicated in a variety of human disabilities, their induction in germ cells by environmental chemicals is viewed as a threat to health. Synaptonemal complex (SC) analysis is a novel approach for the detection of germ-line chromosomal damage....

  8. Control over the morphology and segregation of Zebrafish germ cell granules during embryonic development

    PubMed Central

    Strasser, Markus J; Mackenzie, Natalia C; Dumstrei, Karin; Nakkrasae, La-Iad; Stebler, Jürg; Raz, Erez

    2008-01-01

    Background Zebrafish germ cells contain granular-like structures, organized around the cell nucleus. These structures share common features with polar granules in Drosophila, germinal granules in Xenopus and chromatoid bodies in mice germ cells, such as the localization of the zebrafish Vasa, Piwi and Nanos proteins, among others. Little is known about the structure of these granules as well as their segregation in mitosis during early germ-cell development. Results Using transgenic fish expressing a fluorescently labeled novel component of Zebrafish germ cell granules termed Granulito, we followed the morphology and distribution of the granules. We show that whereas these granules initially exhibit a wide size variation, by the end of the first day of development they become a homogeneous population of medium size granules. We investigated this resizing event and demonstrated the role of microtubules and the minus-end microtubule dependent motor protein Dynein in the process. Last, we show that the function of the germ cell granule resident protein the Tudor domain containing protein-7 (Tdrd7) is required for determination of granule morphology and number. Conclusion Our results suggest that Zebrafish germ cell granules undergo a transformation process, which involves germ cell specific proteins as well as the microtubular network. PMID:18507824

  9. Vasculogenesis and angiogenesis in nonseminomatous testicular germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Silván, Unai; Díez-Torre, Alejandro; Bonilla, Zuriñe; Moreno, Pablo; Díaz-Núñez, María; Aréchaga, Juan

    2015-06-01

    Testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs) comprise the vast majority of all testicular malignancies and are the most common type of cancer among young male adults. The nonseminomatous variant of TGCTs is characterized by the presence of embryonic and extraembryonic tissues together with a population of pluripotent cancer stem cells, the so-called embryonal carcinoma. One of the main causes of the resistance of these tumors to therapy is their ability to invade adjacent tissues and metastasize into distant sites of the body. Both of these tumor processes are highly favored by the neovascularization of the malignant tissue. New vessels can be generated by means of angiogenesis or vasculogenesis, and both have been observed to occur during tumor vascularization. Nevertheless, the precise contribution of each process to the neoplastic vascular bed of TGCTs remains unknown. In addition, another process known as tumor-derived vasculogenesis, in which malignant cells give rise to endothelial cells, has also been reported to occur in a number of tumor types, including experimental TGCTs. The participation and cross talk of these 3 processes in tumor vascularization is of particular interest, given the embryonic origin of teratocarcinomas. Thus, in the present review, we discuss the importance of all 3 vascularization processes in the growth, invasion, and metastasis of testicular teratocarcinomas and summarize the current state of knowledge of the TGCT microenvironment and its relationship with vascularization. Finally, we discuss the importance of vascularization as a therapeutic target for this type of malignancy. PMID:25772688

  10. Ovarian malignant mixed germ cell tumor with clear cell carcinoma in a postmenopausal woman

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xiu-Jie; Zhang, Lin; Liu, Zai-Ping; Shi, Yi-Quan; Liu, Yi-Xin

    2014-01-01

    Malignant germ cell tumors of the ovary are very rare and account for about 2-5% of all ovarian tumors of germ origin. Most patients are adolescent and young women, approximately two-thirds of them are under 20 years of age, occasionally in postmenopausal women. But clear cell carcinoma usually occurs in older patients (median age: 57-year old), and closely related with endometriosis. Here we report a case of a 55-year old woman with right ovarian mass that discovered by B ultrasonic. Her serum levels of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) and α-fetoprotein (AFP) were elevated. Pathological examination revealed the tumor to be a mixed germ cell tumor (yolk sac tumor, embryonal carcinoma and mature teratoma) with clear cell carcinoma in a background of endometriosis. Immunohistochemical staining showed SALL4 and PLAP were positive in germ cell tumor area, hCG, CD30 and OCT4 were positive in epithelial-like cells and giant synctiotrophoblastic cells, AFP, AAT, CD117 and Glyp3 were positive in yolk sac component, EMA and CK7 were positive in clear cell carcinoma, CD10 was positive in endometrial cells of endometriotic area. She was treated with surgery followed by seven courses of chemotherapy. She is well and serum levels of hCG and AFP have been decreased to normal levels. PMID:25674278