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Sample records for mouse germ cell

  1. Enhanced Genetic Integrity in Mouse Germ Cells1

    PubMed Central

    Murphey, Patricia; McLean, Derek J.; McMahan, C. Alex; Walter, Christi A.; McCarrey, John R.

    2012-01-01

    ABSTRACT Genetically based diseases constitute a major human health burden, and de novo germline mutations represent a source of heritable genetic alterations that can cause such disorders in offspring. The availability of transgenic rodent systems with recoverable, mutation reporter genes has been used to assess the occurrence of spontaneous point mutations in germline cells. Previous studies using the lacI mutation reporter transgenic mouse system showed that the frequency of spontaneous mutations is significantly lower in advanced male germ cells than in somatic cell types from the same individuals. Here we used this same mutation reporter transgene system to show that female germ cells also display a mutation frequency that is lower than that in corresponding somatic cells and similar to that seen in male germ cells, indicating this is a common feature of germ cells in both sexes. In addition, we showed that statistically significant differences in mutation frequencies are evident between germ cells and somatic cells in both sexes as early as mid-fetal stages in the mouse. Finally, a comparison of the mutation frequency in a general population of early type A spermatogonia with that in a population enriched for Thy-1-positive spermatogonia suggests there is heterogeneity among the early spermatogonial population such that a subset of these cells are predestined to form true spermatogonial stem cells. Taken together, these results support the disposable soma theory, which posits that genetic integrity is normally maintained more stringently in the germ line than in the soma and suggests that this is achieved by minimizing the initial occurrence of mutations in early germline cells and their subsequent gametogenic progeny relative to that in somatic cells. PMID:23153565

  2. Chlorambucil effectively induces deletion mutations in mouse germ cells

    SciTech Connect

    Russell, L.B.; Hunsicker, P.R.; Cacheiro, N.L.A.; Bangham, J.W.; Russell, W.L.; Shelby, M.D. )

    1989-05-01

    The chemotherapeutic agent chlorambucil was found to be more effective than x-rays or any chemical investigated to data in inducing high yields of mouse germ-line mutations that appear to be deletions or other structural changes. Induction of mutations involving seven specific loci was studied after exposures of various male germ-cell stages to chlorambucil at 10-25 mg/kg. A total of 60,750 offspring was scored. Mutation rates in spermatogonial stem cells were not significantly increased over control values; this negative result is not attributable to selective elimination of mutant cells. Mutations were, however, clearly induced in treated post-stem-cell stages, among which marked variations in mutational response were found. Maximum yield occurred after exposure of early spermatids, with {approx} 1% of all offspring carrying a specific-locus mutation in the 10 mg/kg group. The stage-response pattern for chlorambucil differs from that of all other chemicals investigated to date in the specific-locus test. Thus far, all but one of the tested mutations induced by chlorambucil in post-stem-cell stages have been proved deletions or other structural changes by genetic, cytogenetic, and/or molecular criteria. Deletion mutations have recently been useful for molecular mapping and for structure-function correlations of genomic regions. For generating presumed large-lesion germline mutations at highest frequencies, chlorambucil may be the mutagen of choice.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2007-01-01

    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 α (DND1- α) and DND1-isoform β (DND1-β). Using isoform specific antibodies, we determined DND1-α is expressed in embryos and embryonic gonads whereas DND1-β expression is restricted to germ cells of the adult testis. Our data implicates DND1-α 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

  4. DNA methylation and chromatin accessibility profiling of mouse and human fetal germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Hongshan; Hu, Boqiang; Yan, Liying; Yong, Jun; Wu, Yan; Gao, Yun; Guo, Fan; Hou, Yu; Fan, Xiaoying; Dong, Ji; Wang, Xiaoye; Zhu, Xiaohui; Yan, Jie; Wei, Yuan; Jin, Hongyan; Zhang, Wenxin; Wen, Lu; Tang, Fuchou; Qiao, Jie

    2017-01-01

    Chromatin remodeling is important for the epigenetic reprogramming of human primordial germ cells. However, the comprehensive chromatin state has not yet been analyzed for human fetal germ cells (FGCs). Here we use nucleosome occupancy and methylation sequencing method to analyze both the genome-wide chromatin accessibility and DNA methylome at a series of crucial time points during fetal germ cell development in both human and mouse. We find 116 887 and 137 557 nucleosome-depleted regions (NDRs) in human and mouse FGCs, covering a large set of germline-specific and highly dynamic regulatory genomic elements, such as enhancers. Moreover, we find that the distal NDRs are enriched specifically for binding motifs of the pluripotency and germ cell master regulators such as NANOG, SOX17, AP2γ and OCT4 in human FGCs, indicating the existence of a delicate regulatory balance between pluripotency-related genes and germ cell-specific genes in human FGCs, and the functional significance of these genes for germ cell development in vivo. Our work offers a comprehensive and high-resolution roadmap for dissecting chromatin state transition dynamics during the epigenomic reprogramming of human and mouse FGCs. PMID:27824029

  5. Tests for urethane induction of germ-cell mutations and germ-cell killing in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Russell, L B; Hunsicker, P R; Oakberg, E F; Cummings, C C; Schmoyer, R L

    1987-08-01

    Urethane, a chemical that has given varied results in mutagenesis assays, was tested in the mouse specific-locus test, and its effect on germ-cell survival was explored. Altogether 32,828 offspring were observed from successive weekly matings of males exposed to the maximum tolerated i.p. dose of 1750 mg urethane/kg. The combined data rule out (at the 5% significance level) an induced mutation rate greater than 1.7 times the historical control rate. For spermatogonial stem cells alone, the multiple ruled out is 3.2, and for poststem-cell stages, 3.5. Litter sizes from successive conceptions made in any of the first 7 weeks give no indication of induced dominant lethality, confirming results of past dominant-lethal assays. That urethane (or an active metabolite) reaches germ cells is indicated by SCE induction in spermatogonia demonstrated by other investigators. Cytotoxic effects in spermatogonia are suggested by our finding of a slight reduction in numbers of certain types of spermatogonia in seminiferous tubule cross-sections and of a borderline decrease in the number of litters conceived during the 8th and 9th posttreatment weeks. The negative results for induction of gene mutations as well as clastogenic damage are at variance with Nomura's reports of dominant effects (F1 cancers and malformations) produced by urethane.

  6. [Derivation of germ cells from mouse embryonic stem cells in culture].

    PubMed

    Fuhrmann, G

    2005-10-01

    Mouse embryonic stem cells derive from the inner cell mass of the blastocyst and give rise to the three primitive embryonic layers, which later will form all the different tissue types of an adult. Embryonic stem cells are thus defined as totipotent cells. In vitro, these cells can give rise to all the somatic cells. Different laboratories have now shown that cultured embryonic stem cells can also differentiate into germline cells. By using the transcription factor Oct-4 as a tool for the visualization of germ cells, it has been shown the derivation of oocytes from mouse embryonic stem cells. These works should contribute to various areas, including therapeutic cloning which associates nuclear transfer and selective production of a specific cell type.

  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

    2016-05-15

    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.

  8. Transmitted mutational events induced in mouse germ cells following acrylamide or glycidamide exposure.

    PubMed

    Favor, Jack; Shelby, Michael D

    2005-02-07

    An increase in the germ line mutation rate in humans will result in an increase in the incidence of genetically determined diseases in subsequent generations. Thus, it is important to identify those agents that are mutagenic in mammalian germ cells. Acrylamide is water soluble, absorbed and distributed in the body, chemically reactive with nucleophilic sites, and there are known sources of human exposure. Here we review all seven published studies that assessed the effectiveness of acrylamide or its active metabolite, glycidamide, in inducing transmitted reciprocal translocations or gene mutations in the mouse. Major conclusions were (a) acrylamide is mutagenic in spermatozoa and spermatid stages of the male germ line; (b) in these spermatogenic stages acrylamide is mainly or exclusively a clastogen; (c) per unit dose, i.p. exposure is more effective than dermal exposure; and (d) per unit dose, glycidamide is more effective than acrylamide. Since stem cell spermatogonia persist and may accumulate mutations throughout the reproductive life of males, assessment of induced mutations in this germ cell stage is critical for the assessment of genetic risk associated with exposure to a mutagen. The two specific-locus mutation experiments which studied the stem cell spermatogonial stage yielded conflicting results. This discrepancy should be resolved. Finally, it is noted that no experiments have studied the mutagenic potential of acrylamide to increase the frequency of transmitted mutational events following exposure in the female germ line.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-01

    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.

  10. Utility of Dexrazoxane for the Attenuation of Epirubicin-Induced Genetic Alterations in Mouse Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Ahmad, Sheikh F.; Ansaria, Mushtaq A.; Nadeem, Ahmed; Al-Shabanah, Othman A.; Al-Harbi, Mohammed M.; Bakheet, Saleh A.

    2016-01-01

    Dexrazoxane has been approved to treat anthracycline-induced cardiomyopathy and extravasation. However, the effect of dexrazoxane on epirubicin-induced genetic alterations in germ cells has not yet been reported. Thus, the aim of this study was to determine whether dexrazoxane modulates epirubicin-induced genetic damage in the germ cells of male mice. Our results show that dexrazoxane was not genotoxic at the tested doses. Furthermore, it protected mouse germ cells against epirubicin-induced genetic alterations as detected by the reduction in disomic and diploid sperm, spermatogonial chromosomal aberrations, and abnormal sperm heads. The attenuating effect of dexrazoxane was greater at higher dose, indicating a dose-dependent effect. Moreover, sperm motility and count were ameliorated by dexrazoxane pretreatment. Epirubicin induced marked biochemical changes characteristic of oxidative DNA damage including elevated 8-hydroxy-2ʹ-deoxyguanosine levels and reduction in reduced glutathione. Pretreatment of mice with dexrazoxane before epirubicin challenge restored these altered endpoints. We conclude that dexrazoxane may efficiently mitigate the epirubicin insult in male germ cells, and prevent the enhanced risk of abnormal reproductive outcomes and associated health risks. Thus, pretreating patients with dexrazoxane prior to epirubicin may efficiently preserve not only sperm quality but also prevent the transmission of genetic damage to future generations. PMID:27690233

  11. Retinoic acid combined with spermatogonial stem cell conditions facilitate the generation of mouse germ-like cells.

    PubMed

    Dong, Guoyi; Shang, Zhouchun; Liu, Longqi; Liu, Chuanyu; Ge, Yuping; Wang, Quanlei; Wu, Liang; Chen, Fang; Li, Baolin; Liu, Xin; Xu, Xun; Yang, Huanming; DU, Yutao; Jiang, Hui

    2017-03-17

    Spermatogenic lineage has been directly generated in spermatogonial stem cell (SSC) conditions from human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs). However, it remains unknown whether mouse ESCs can directly differentiate into advanced male germ cell lineage in the same conditions. Here, we showed that rather low efficiency of germ-like cell generation from mouse ESCs in SSC conditions. Interestingly, addition of retinoic acid (RA) into SSC conditions enabled efficient differentiation of mouse ESCs into germ-like cells, as shown by activating the expression of spermatogenesis-associated genes during differentiation process, such as Mvh , Dazl , Prdm14 , Stella , Scp1 , Scp3 , Stra8 and Rec8 In contrast, for cells cultured in control medium, the activation of these above genes barely occurred. In addition, RA with SSC conditions yielded colonies of Acrosin expressing cells and the positive ratio reached a peak at day 6. Our work thus establishes a simple and cost efficient approach for male germ-like cell differentiation from mouse pluripotent stem cells and may propose a useful strategy for studying spermatogenesis in vitro.

  12. High-frequency induction of chromosomal rearrangements in mouse germ cells by the chemotherapeutic agent chlorambucil.

    PubMed

    Rinchik, E M; Flaherty, L; Russell, L B

    1993-12-01

    Recent mutagenesis studies have demonstrated that the chemotherapeutic agent, chlorambucil (CHL), is highly mutagenic in male germ cells of the mouse. Post-meiotic germ cells, and especially early spermatids, are the most sensitive to the cytotoxic and mutagenic effects of this agent. Genetic, cytogenetic and molecular analyses of many induced mutations have shown that, in these germ-cell stages, CHL induces predominantly chromosomal rearrangements (deletions and translocations), and mutation-rate studies show that, in terms of tolerated doses, CHL is perhaps five to ten times more efficient in inducing rearrangements than is radiation exposure. Appropriate breeding protocols, along with knowledge of the advantages and limitations associated with the use of CHL, can be used to expand the current resource of chromosomal rearrangements in the mouse and to provide new phenotype-associated mutations amenable to positional-cloning techniques. The analysis of CHL-induced mutations has also contributed to understanding the factors that affect the yield and nature of chemically induced germline mutations in mammals.

  13. 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

  14. Mouse germ cell mutation tests in genetic risk evaluation of chemical mutagens.

    PubMed

    Generoso, W M

    1988-12-01

    That certain environmental chemicals can induce transmissible mutations in germ cells of experimental mammal is clear. The assumption that under certain conditions these chemicals are also likely to be mutagenic to human germ cells is not detectable. However, it is a difficult challenge to determine the level of human exposure at which such chemicals can be produced and used economically without significantly harming human health. Data on transmitted genetic effects in mice are necessary, not only as a measure of endpoints that are considered directly in genetic risk assessment, but also as the standard for evaluating the usefulness of non-germ-cell effects as predictors in genetic risk assessment. To carry out a "real world" genetic risk assessment exercise, in vivo mouse data are being obtained for two model chemicals--ethylene oxide and acrylamide. Both chemicals are capable of inducing transmissible genetic effects in mice; their production and use involve measurable human exposures; and, because they are socially and economically important, they are not likely to be banned altogether despite their mutagenicity. For both chemicals, data are not sufficient for accurate low-dose and low-dose-rate extrapolations.

  15. Proteomic analysis of male 4C germ cell proteins involved in mouse meiosis.

    PubMed

    Guo, Xuejiang; Zhang, Ping; Qi, Yujuan; Chen, Wen; Chen, Xiangxiang; Zhou, Zuomin; Sha, Jiahao

    2011-01-01

    Male meiosis is a specialized type of cell division that gives rise to sperm. Errors in this process can result in the generation of aneuploid gametes, which are associated with birth defects and infertility in humans. Until now, there has been a lack of a large-scale identification of proteins involved in male meiosis in mammals. In this study, we report the high-confidence identification of 3625 proteins in mouse male germ cells with 4C DNA content undergoing meiosis I. Of these, 397 were found to be testis specific. Bioinformatics analysis of the proteome led to the identification of 28 proteins known to be essential for male meiosis in mice. We also found 172 proteins that had yeast orthologs known to be essential for meiosis. Chromosome distribution analysis of the proteome showed underrepresentation of the identified proteins on the X chromosome, which may be due to meiotic sex chromosome inactivation. Characterization of the proteome of 4C germ cells from mouse testis provides an inventory of proteins, which is useful for understanding meiosis and the mechanisms of male infertility.

  16. Retinoic acid metabolism links the periodical differentiation of germ cells with the cycle of Sertoli cells in mouse seminiferous epithelium.

    PubMed

    Sugimoto, Ryo; Nabeshima, Yo-ichi; Yoshida, Shosei

    2012-01-01

    Homeostasis of tissues relies on the regulated differentiation of stem cells. In the epithelium of mouse seminiferous tubules, the differentiation process from undifferentiated spermatogonia (A(undiff)), which harbor the stem cell functions, to sperm occurs in a periodical manner, known as the "seminiferous epithelial cycle". To identify the mechanism underlying this periodic differentiation, we investigated the roles of Sertoli cells (the somatic supporting cells) and retinoic acid (RA) in the seminiferous epithelial cycle. Sertoli cells cyclically change their functions in a coordinated manner with germ cell differentiation and support the entire process of spermatogenesis. RA is known to play essential roles in this periodic differentiation, but its precise mode of action and its regulation remains largely obscure. We showed that an experimental increase in RA signaling was capable of both inducing A(undiff) differentiation and resetting the Sertoli cell cycle to the appropriate stage. However, these actions of exogenous RA signaling on A(undiff) and Sertoli cells were strongly interfered by the differentiating germ cells of intimate location. Based on the expression of RA metabolism-related genes among multiple cell types - including germ and Sertoli cells - and their regulation by RA signaling, we propose here that differentiating germ cells play a primary role in modulating the local RA metabolism, which results in the timed differentiation of A(undiff) and the appropriate cycling of Sertoli cells. Similar regulation by differentiating progeny through the modulation of local environment could also be involved in other stem cell systems.

  17. Autonomous regulation of sex-specific developmental programming in mouse fetal germ cells.

    PubMed

    Iwahashi, Kazuhiro; Yoshioka, Hirotaka; Low, Eleanor W; McCarrey, John R; Yanagimachi, Ryuzo; Yamazaki, Yukiko

    2007-10-01

    In mice, unique events regulating epigenetic programming (e.g., genomic imprinting) and replication state (mitosis versus meiosis) occur during fetal germ cell development. To determine whether these processes are autonomously programmed in fetal germ cells or are dependent upon ongoing instructive interactions with surrounding gonadal somatic cells, we isolated male and female germ cells at 13.5 days postcoitum (dpc) and maintained them in culture for 6 days, either alone or in the presence of feeder cells or gonadal somatic cells. We examined allele-specific DNA methylation in the imprinted H19 and Snrpn genes, and we also determined whether these cells remained mitotic or entered meiosis. Our results show that isolated male germ cells are able to establish a characteristic "paternal" methylation pattern at imprinted genes in the absence of any support from somatic cells. On the other hand, cultured female germ cells maintain a hypomethylated status at these loci, characteristic of the normal "maternal" methylation pattern in endogenous female germ cells before birth. Further, the surviving female germ cells entered first meiotic prophase and reached the pachytene stage, whereas male germ cells entered mitotic arrest. These results indicate that mechanisms controlling both epigenetic programming and replication state are autonomously regulated in fetal germ cells that have been exposed to the genital ridge prior to 13.5 dpc.

  18. Germ Cells Are Not Required to Establish the Female Pathway in Mouse Fetal Gonads

    PubMed Central

    Maatouk, Danielle M.; Mork, Lindsey; Hinson, Ashley; Kobayashi, Akio; McMahon, Andrew P.; Capel, Blanche

    2012-01-01

    The fetal gonad is composed of a mixture of somatic cell lineages and germ cells. The fate of the gonad, male or female, is determined by a population of somatic cells that differentiate into Sertoli or granulosa cells and direct testis or ovary development. It is well established that germ cells are not required for the establishment or maintenance of Sertoli cells or testis cords in the male gonad. However, in the agametic ovary, follicles do not form suggesting that germ cells may influence granulosa cell development. Prior investigations of ovaries in which pre-meiotic germ cells were ablated during fetal life reported no histological changes during stages prior to birth. However, whether granulosa cells underwent normal molecular differentiation was not investigated. In cases where germ cell loss occurred secondary to other mutations, transdifferentiation of granulosa cells towards a Sertoli cell fate was observed, raising questions about whether germ cells play an active role in establishing or maintaining the fate of granulosa cells. We developed a group of molecular markers associated with ovarian development, and show here that the loss of pre-meiotic germ cells does not disrupt the somatic ovarian differentiation program during fetal life, or cause transdifferentiation as defined by expression of Sertoli markers. Since we do not find defects in the ovarian somatic program, the subsequent failure to form follicles at perinatal stages is likely attributable to the absence of germ cells rather than to defects in the somatic cells. PMID:23091613

  19. Symmetry breaking, germ layer specification and axial organisation in aggregates of mouse embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    van den Brink, Susanne C; Baillie-Johnson, Peter; Balayo, Tina; Hadjantonakis, Anna-Katerina; Nowotschin, Sonja; Turner, David A; Martinez Arias, Alfonso

    2014-11-01

    Mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) are clonal populations derived from preimplantation mouse embryos that can be propagated in vitro and, when placed into blastocysts, contribute to all tissues of the embryo and integrate into the normal morphogenetic processes, i.e. they are pluripotent. However, although they can be steered to differentiate in vitro into all cell types of the organism, they cannot organise themselves into structures that resemble embryos. When aggregated into embryoid bodies they develop disorganised masses of different cell types with little spatial coherence. An exception to this rule is the emergence of retinas and anterior cortex-like structures under minimal culture conditions. These structures emerge from the cultures without any axial organisation. Here, we report that small aggregates of mESCs, of about 300 cells, self-organise into polarised structures that exhibit collective behaviours reminiscent of those that cells exhibit in early mouse embryos, including symmetry breaking, axial organisation, germ layer specification and cell behaviour, as well as axis elongation. The responses are signal specific and uncouple processes that in the embryo are tightly associated, such as specification of the anteroposterior axis and anterior neural development, or endoderm specification and axial elongation. We discuss the meaning and implications of these observations and the potential uses of these structures which, because of their behaviour, we suggest to call 'gastruloids'.

  20. Germ-cell culture conditions facilitate the production of mouse embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Ramos-Ibeas, Priscila; Pericuesta, Eva; Fernández-González, Raúl; Gutiérrez-Adán, Alfonso; Ramírez, Miguel Ángel

    2014-09-01

    The derivation of embryonic stem-cell (ESC) lines from blastocysts is a very inefficient process. Murine ESCs are thought to arise from epiblast cells that are already predisposed to a primordial-germ-cell fate. During the process of ESC derivation from B6D2 F1 hybrid mice, if we first culture the embryo from the two-cell stage in medium supplemented with LIF, we improve the quality of the blastocyst. When the blastocyst is then cultured in a germ-line stem-cell culture medium (GSCm), we are able to more efficiently (28.3%) obtain quality ESC lines that have a normal karyotype, proper degree of chimerism, and exhibit germ-line transmission when microinjected into blastocysts. Although germ-cell-specific genes were expressed in all culture medium conditions, GSCm did not shift the transcriptome towards germ-cell specification. A correlation was further observed between ESC derivation efficiency and the expression of some imprinted genes and retrotransposable elements. In conclusion, the combination of LIF supplementation followed by culture in GSCm establishes a higher efficiency method for ESC derivation.

  1. Notch pathway regulates female germ cell meiosis progression and early oogenesis events in fetal mouse.

    PubMed

    Feng, Yan-Min; Liang, Gui-Jin; Pan, Bo; Qin, Xun-Si; Zhang, Xi-Feng; Chen, Chun-Lei; Li, Lan; Cheng, Shun-Feng; De Felici, Massimo; Shen, Wei

    2014-01-01

    A critical process of early oogenesis is the entry of mitotic oogonia into meiosis, a cell cycle switch regulated by a complex gene regulatory network. Although Notch pathway is involved in numerous important aspects of oogenesis in invertebrate species, whether it plays roles in early oogenesis events in mammals is unknown. Therefore, the rationale of the present study was to investigate the roles of Notch signaling in crucial processes of early oogenesis, such as meiosis entry and early oocyte growth. Notch receptors and ligands were localized in mouse embryonic female gonads and 2 Notch inhibitors, namely DAPT and L-685,458, were used to attenuate its signaling in an in vitro culture system of ovarian tissues from 12.5 days post coitum (dpc) fetus. The results demonstrated that the expression of Stra8, a master gene for germ cell meiosis, and its stimulation by retinoic acid (RA) were reduced after suppression of Notch signaling, and the other meiotic genes, Dazl, Dmc1, and Rec8, were abolished or markedly decreased. Furthermore, RNAi of Notch1 also markedly inhibited the expression of Stra8 and SCP3 in cultured female germ cells. The increased methylation status of CpG islands within the Stra8 promoter of the oocytes was observed in the presence of DAPT, indicating that Notch signaling is probably necessary for maintaining the epigenetic state of this gene in a way suitable for RA stimulation. Furthermore, in the presence of Notch inhibitors, progression of oocytes through meiosis I was markedly delayed. At later culture periods, the rate of oocyte growth was decreased, which impaired subsequent primordial follicle assembly in cultured ovarian tissues. Taken together, these results suggested new roles of the Notch signaling pathway in female germ cell meiosis progression and early oogenesis events in mammals.

  2. Multiplex shRNA Screening of Germ Cell Development by in Vivo Transfection of Mouse Testis

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Nicholas R. Y.; Usmani, Abul R.; Yin, Yan; Ma, Liang; Conrad, Donald F.

    2016-01-01

    Spermatozoa are one of the few mammalian cell types that cannot be fully derived in vitro, severely limiting the application of modern genomic techniques to study germ cell biology. The current gold standard approach of characterizing single-gene knockout mice is slow as generation of each mutant line can take 6–9 months. Here, we describe an in vivo approach to rapid functional screening of germline genes based on a new nonsurgical, nonviral in vivo transfection method to deliver nucleic acids into testicular germ cells. By coupling multiplex transfection of short hairpin RNA (shRNA) constructs with pooled amplicon sequencing as a readout, we were able to screen many genes for spermatogenesis function in a quick and inexpensive experiment. We transfected nine mouse testes with a pilot pool of RNA interference (RNAi) against well-characterized genes to show that this system is highly reproducible and accurate. With a false negative rate of 18% and a false positive rate of 12%, this method has similar performance as other RNAi screens in the well-described Drosophila model system. In a separate experiment, we screened 26 uncharacterized genes computationally predicted to be essential for spermatogenesis and found numerous candidates for follow-up studies. Finally, as a control experiment, we performed a long-term selection screen in neuronal N2a cells, sampling shRNA frequencies at five sequential time points. By characterizing the effect of both libraries on N2a cells, we show that our screening results from testis are tissue-specific. Our calculations indicate that the current implementation of this approach could be used to screen thousands of protein-coding genes simultaneously in a single mouse testis. The experimental protocols and analysis scripts provided will enable other groups to use this procedure to study diverse aspects of germ cell biology ranging from epigenetics to cell physiology. This approach also has great promise as an applied tool for

  3. PCGF6-PRC1 suppresses premature differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells by regulating germ cell-related genes

    PubMed Central

    Endoh, Mitsuhiro; Endo, Takaho A; Shinga, Jun; Hayashi, Katsuhiko; Farcas, Anca; Ma, Kit-Wan; Ito, Shinsuke; Sharif, Jafar; Endoh, Tamie; Onaga, Naoko; Nakayama, Manabu; Ishikura, Tomoyuki; Masui, Osamu; Kessler, Benedikt M; Suda, Toshio; Ohara, Osamu; Okuda, Akihiko; Klose, Robert; Koseki, Haruhiko

    2017-01-01

    The ring finger protein PCGF6 (polycomb group ring finger 6) interacts with RING1A/B and E2F6 associated factors to form a non-canonical PRC1 (polycomb repressive complex 1) known as PCGF6-PRC1. Here, we demonstrate that PCGF6-PRC1 plays a role in repressing a subset of PRC1 target genes by recruiting RING1B and mediating downstream mono-ubiquitination of histone H2A. PCGF6-PRC1 bound loci are highly enriched for promoters of germ cell-related genes in mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs). Conditional ablation of Pcgf6 in ESCs leads to robust de-repression of such germ cell-related genes, in turn affecting cell growth and viability. We also find a role for PCGF6 in pre- and peri-implantation mouse embryonic development. We further show that a heterodimer of the transcription factors MAX and MGA recruits PCGF6 to target loci. PCGF6 thus links sequence specific target recognition by the MAX/MGA complex to PRC1-dependent transcriptional silencing of germ cell-specific genes in pluripotent stem cells. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.21064.001 PMID:28304275

  4. The induction of recessive mutations in mouse primordial germ cells with N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea.

    PubMed

    Shibuya, T; Murota, T; Horiya, N; Matsuda, H; Hara, T

    1993-12-01

    A specific-locus test was carried out to examine the mutagenic activity of N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea (ENU) on mouse primordial germ cells (PGC). Embryos of C3H/He mice were treated transplacentally with 30 or 50 mg ENU per kg of maternal body weight on day 8.5, 10.5, or 13.5 of gestation (G8.5 day, G10.5 day, or G13.5 day). Male and female mice that had been treated with ENU in embryonic stages were mated with female or male tester PW mice to detect recessive mutations induced in PGC. ENU induced recessive mutations at a relatively high rate in PGC at these developmental stages. The most sensitive stage was G10.5 day. On G8.5 day, the induced mutation rate in males and females was not significantly different. Cluster mutations, which originate from the limited number of PGC and cell killing, were more frequently induced at an earlier developmental stage. The induced mutation rate per unit dose of ENU (1 mg/kg) was higher in G8.5 and G10.5 day PGC than in stem-cell spermatogonia. It can be concluded that mouse PGC are more sensitive than stem-cell spermatogonia to the induction of recessive mutations by ENU.

  5. 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

  6. BOULE, a Deleted in Azoospermia Homolog, Is Recruited to Stress Granules in the Mouse Male Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Byunghyuk; Rhee, Kunsoo

    2016-01-01

    High temperature adversely affects normal development of male germ cells in mammals. Acute heat stress induces the formation of stress granules (SGs) in a set of male germ cells, and the SGs have been proposed to protect those cells from heat-induced apoptosis. DAZL, one of DAZ (Deleted in Azoospermia) family proteins, was shown to be an essential component of SGs, which is required for SG formation in the mouse testis. In the present study, we asked whether BOULE, the founding member of DAZ family proteins, is a component of the SGs. We show that BOULE is recruited to the SGs upon heat stress, and that these SGs are developmental stage-specific. These results suggest that DAZ family proteins may have conserved roles in the SGs of male germ cells. PMID:27632217

  7. 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

  8. Differential expression of sex-linked and autosomal germ-cell-specific genes during spermatogenesis in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Wang, P Jeremy; Page, David C; McCarrey, John R

    2005-10-01

    We have examined expression during spermatogenesis in the mouse of three Y-linked genes, 11 X-linked genes and 22 autosomal genes, all previously shown to be germ-cell-specific and expressed in premeiotic spermatogonia, plus another 21 germ-cell-specific autosomal genes that initiate expression in meiotic spermatocytes. Our data demonstrate that, like sex-linked housekeeping genes, germ-cell-specific sex-linked genes are subject to meiotic sex-chromosome inactivation (MSCI). Although all the sex-linked genes we investigated underwent MSCI, 14 of the 22 autosomal genes expressed in spermatogonia showed no decrease in expression in meiotic spermatocytes. This along with our observation that an additional 21 germ-cell-specific autosomal genes initiate or significantly up-regulate expression in spermatocytes confirms that MSCI is indeed a sex-chromosome-specific effect. Our results further demonstrate that the chromosome-wide repression imposed by MSCI is limited to meiotic spermatocytes and that postmeiotic expression of sex-linked genes is variable. Thus, 13 of the 14 sex-linked genes we examined showed some degree of postmeiotic reactivation. The extent of postmeiotic reactivation of germ-cell-specific X-linked genes did not correlate with proximity to the X inactivation center or the Xist gene locus. The implications of these findings are discussed with respect to differential gene regulation and the function of MSCI during spermatogenesis, including epigenetic programming of the future paternal genome during spermatogenesis.

  9. A single, mild, transient scrotal heat stress causes hypoxia and oxidative stress in mouse testes, which induces germ cell death.

    PubMed

    Paul, Catriona; Teng, Serena; Saunders, Philippa T K

    2009-05-01

    Spermatogenesis is a temperature-dependent process, and increases in scrotal temperature can disrupt its progression. We previously showed that heat stress causes DNA damage in germ cells, an increase in germ cell death (as seen on TUNEL staining), and subfertility. The present study evaluated the stress response in mouse testes following a single mild transient scrotal heat exposure (40 degrees C or 42 degrees C for 30 min). We investigated markers of three types of stress response, namely, hypoxia, oxidative stress, and apoptosis. Heat stress caused an increase in expression of hypoxia-inducible factor 1 alpha (Hif1a) mRNA expression and translocation of HIF1A protein to the germ cell nucleus, consistent with hypoxic stress. Increased expression of heme oxygenase 1 (Hmox1) and the antioxidant enzymes glutathione peroxidase 1 (GPX1) and glutathione S-transferase alpha (GSTA) was consistent with a robust oxidative stress response. Germ cell death was associated with an increase in expression of the effector caspase cleaved caspase 3 and a decrease in expression of the protein inhibitor of caspase-activated DNase (ICAD). Reduced expression of ICAD contributes to increased activity of caspase-activated DNase and is consistent with the increased rates of DNA fragmentation that have been detected previously using TUNEL staining. These studies confirmed that transient mild testicular hyperthermia results in temperature-dependent germ cell death and demonstrated that elevated temperature results in a complex stress response, including induction of genes associated with oxidative stress and hypoxia.

  10. 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.

  11. Retinoic acid derived from the fetal ovary initiates meiosis in mouse germ cells.

    PubMed

    Mu, Xinyi; Wen, Jing; Guo, Meng; Wang, Jianwei; Li, Ge; Wang, Zhengpin; Wang, Yijing; Teng, Zhen; Cui, Yan; Xia, Guoliang

    2013-03-01

    Meiotic initiation of germ cells at 13.5 dpc (days post-coitus) indicates female sex determination in mice. Recent studies reveal that mesonephroi-derived retinoic acid (RA) is the key signal for induction of meiosis. However, whether the mesonephroi is dispensable for meiosis is unclear and the role of the ovary in this meiotic process remains to be clarified. This study provides data that RA derived from fetal ovaries is sufficient to induce germ cell meiosis in a fetal ovary culture system. When fetal ovaries were collected from 11.5 to 13.5 dpc fetuses, isolated and cultured in vitro, germ cells enter meiosis in the absence of mesonephroi. To exclude RA sourcing from mesonephroi, 11.5 dpc urogenital ridges (UGRs; mesonephroi and ovary complexes) were treated with diethylaminobenzaldehyde (DEAB) to block retinaldehyde dehydrogenase (RALDH) activity in the mesonephros and the ovary. Meiosis occurred when DEAB was withdrawn and the mesonephros was removed 2 days later. Furthermore, RALDH1, rather than RALDH2, serves as the major RA synthetase in UGRs from 12.5 to 15.5 dpc. DEAB treatment to the ovary alone was able to block germ cell meiotic entry. We also found that exogenously supplied RA dose-dependently reduced germ cell numbers in ovaries by accelerating the entry into meiosis. These results suggest that ovary-derived RA is responsible for meiosis initiation.

  12. Developmental control of sumoylation pathway proteins in mouse male germ cells.

    PubMed

    La Salle, Sophie; Sun, Fengyun; Zhang, Xiang-Dong; Matunis, Michael J; Handel, Mary Ann

    2008-09-01

    Protein sumoylation regulates a variety of nuclear functions and has been postulated to be involved in meiotic chromosome dynamics as well as other processes of spermatogenesis. Here, the expression and distribution of sumoylation pathway genes and proteins were determined in mouse male germ cells, with a particular emphasis on prophase I of meiosis. Immunofluorescence microscopy revealed that SUMO1, SUMO2/3 and UBE2I (also known as UBC9) were localized to the XY body in pachytene and diplotene spermatocytes, while only SUMO2/3 and UBE2I were detected near centromeres in metaphase I spermatocytes. Quantitative RT-PCR and Western blotting were used to examine the expression of sumoylation pathway genes and proteins in enriched preparations of leptotene/zygotene spermatocytes, prepubertal and adult pachytene spermatocytes, as well as round spermatids. Two general expression profiles emerged from these data. The first profile, where expression was more prominent during meiosis, identified sumoylation pathway participants that could be involved in meiotic chromosome dynamics. The second profile, elevated expression in post-meiotic spermatids, suggested proteins that could be involved in spermiogenesis-related sumoylation events. In addition to revealing differential expression of protein sumoylation mediators, which suggests differential functioning, these data demonstrate the dynamic nature of SUMO metabolism during spermatogenesis.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Studies on glycoproteins produced by wild type and wheat germ agglutinin-resistant B16 mouse melanoma cells

    SciTech Connect

    Pinnaduwage, P.D.

    1985-01-01

    Two variants of B16 mouse melanoma cells have been selected in serum-free medium for their resistance to toxic levels of wheat germ agglutinin isolation 1 (WGA). Chromosome analysis and characteristic melanin production showed that the variants are derived from the parent mouse melanoma cell lines. However, the two variants were less tumorigenic in mice compared to the parent B16 mouse melanoma cells. The variants showed a marked decrease in cell agglutination with WGA. Cell agglutination with recin and peanut lectin was not different between the three cell lines, but the two variants showed a slight increase in agglutination with concanavalin A. The binding of /sup 125/I-labeled wheat germ agglutinin to the two variant cells was reduced compared to that of the parent cell. Glycoproteins secreted or shed by the three lines were isolated after growth in serum-free medium in the presence of (/sup 3/He)glucosamine and bovine serum albumin (1%). These metabolically labeled products were fractionated on the basis of their interaction with WGA-Sepharose (2 mg/ml). The WGA-Sepharose affinity chromatographic data suggested a decrease in WGA-binding glycoprotein(s) secreted to the medium by the two variants. The WGA-bound glycoproteins from the two variants upon SDS-PAGE revealed three bands of approximate molecular weights, 92,000, 56,000, and 42,000, none of which were present in the parent cell line (50,000 molecular weight).

  16. Homologous recombination-mediated double-strand break repair in mouse testicular extracts and comparison with different germ cell stages.

    PubMed

    Srivastava, Niloo; Raman, Mercy J

    2007-01-01

    Homologous recombination (HR) is established as a significant contributor to double-strand break (DSB) repair in mammalian somatic cells; however, its role in mammalian germ cells has not been characterized, although being conservative in nature it is anticipated to be the major pathway in germ cells. The germ cell system has inherent limitations by which intact cell approaches are not feasible. The present study, therefore, investigates HR-mediated DSB repair in mouse germ cell extracts by using an in vitro plasmid recombination assay based on functional rescue of a neomycin (neo) gene. A significantly high-fold increase in neo+ (Kan(R)) colonies following incubation of two plasmid substrates (neo delta1 and neo delta2) with testicular extracts demonstrated the extracts' ability to catalyze intermolecular recombination. A significant enhancement in recombinants upon linearization of one of the plasmids suggested the existence of an HR-mediated DSB repair activity. Comparison of the activity at sequential developmental stages, spermatogonia, spermatocytes and spermatids revealed its presence at all the stages; spermatocyte being the most proficient stage. Further, restriction analysis of recombinant plasmids indicated the predominance of gene conversion in enriched spermatocytes (mostly pachytenes), in contrast to gonial and spermatid extracts that showed higher reciprocal exchange. In conclusion, this study demonstrates HR repair activity at all stages of male germ cells, suggesting an important role of HR-mediated DSB repair during mammalian spermatogenesis. Further, the observed preference of gene conversion over reciprocal exchange at spermatocyte stage correlates with the close association of gene conversion with the meiotic recombination program.

  17. Abnormal sperm morphology in mouse germ cells after short-term exposures to acetamiprid, propineb, and their mixture.

    PubMed

    Rasgele, Pinar Göç

    2014-03-01

    Pesticides are one of the most potent environmental contaminants, which accumulate in biotic and abiotic components of ecosystems. Acetamiprid (Acm), a neonicotinoid insecticide, and Propineb (Pro), a dithiocarbamate fungicide, are widely used to control sucking insects and fungal infections on crops, respectively. The present study was undertaken to investigate the genotoxic effects of these compounds, individually and in mixtures, in mouse germ cells by using the sperm morphology assay. Mice were injected intraperitoneally with 0.625, 1.25, and 2.50 μg mL⁻¹ of Acm, 12.5, 25, and 50 μg mL⁻¹ of Pro, and their mixture at the same concentrations over 24 and 48 h. Acm did not significantly increase the percentage of abnormal sperm at any concentration. The frequency of abnormal sperm significantly increased after 24 and 48 h of exposure to 50 μg mL⁻¹ of Pro. The mixtures of 2.50 μg mL⁻¹ of Acm and 50 μg mL⁻¹ of Pro induced sperm abnormalities antagonistically both after 24 and 48 h of exposure. Results suggest that Acm was non-genotoxic for mouse germ cells, while Pro may have been a germ cell mutagen due to the observed increase in the frequency of sperm abnormalities. However, to gain better insight into the mutagenicity and DNA damaging potential of both of these pesticides, further studies at molecular level should be done.

  18. 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

  19. Acrylamide: dermal exposure produces genetic damage in male mouse germ cells.

    PubMed

    Gutierrez-Espeleta, G A; Hughes, L A; Piegorsch, W W; Shelby, M D; Generoso, W M

    1992-02-01

    Acrylamide is used extensively in sewage and wastewater treatment plants, in the paper and pulp industry, in treatment of potable water, and in research laboratories for chromatography, electrophoresis, and electron microscopy. Dermal contact is a major route of human exposure. It has been shown that acrylamide is highly effective in breaking chromosomes of germ cells of male mice and rats when administered intraperitoneally or orally, resulting both in the early death of conceptuses and in the transmission of reciprocal translocations to live-born progeny. It is now reported that acrylamide is absorbed through the skin of male mice, reaches the germ cells, and induces chromosomal damage. The magnitude of genetic damage appears to be proportional to the dose administered topically.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. [Retroperitoneal germ cell tumor].

    PubMed

    Borrell Palanca, A; García Garzón, J; Villamón Fort, R; Domenech Pérez, C; Martínez Lorente, A; Gunthner, S; García Sisamón, F

    1999-03-01

    We report a case of retroperitoneal extragonadal germ-cell tumor in an 17 years old patient who presented with aedema and pain in left inferior extremity asociated with hemopthysis caused by pulmonar metastasis, who was treated with chemotherapy and resection of residual mass and pulmonary nodes. Dyagnosis was stableshed by fine neadle aspiration biopsy of the wass. We comment on the difficult of stableshing differential dyagnosis between retroperitoneal extragonadal germ-cell tumor and metastasis of a testicular tumor. Dyagnosis is stableshed by the finding of a histologically malignant germ-cell tumor with normal testis. We considered physical examination and ecographyc exploration enough for a correct dyagnosis.

  3. Mouse embryos lacking Smad1 signals display defects in extra-embryonic tissues and germ cell formation.

    PubMed

    Tremblay, K D; Dunn, N R; Robertson, E J

    2001-09-01

    The Smad proteins are important intracellular mediators of the transforming growth factor beta (TGFbeta) family of secreted growth factors. Smad1 is an effector of signals provided by the bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) sub-group of TGFbeta molecules. To understand the role of Smad1 in mouse development, we have generated a Smad1 loss-of-function allele using homologous recombination in ES cells. Smad1-/- embryos die by 10.5 dpc because they fail to connect to the placenta. Mutant embryos are first recognizable by 7.0 dpc, owing to a characteristic localized outpocketing of the visceral endoderm at the posterior embryonic/extra-embryonic junction, accompanied by a dramatic twisting of the epiblast and nascent mesoderm. Chimera analysis reveals that these two defects are attributable to a requirement for Smad1 in the extra-embryonic tissues. By 7.5 dpc, Smad1-deficient embryos show a marked impairment in allantois formation. By contrast, the chorion overproliferates, is erratically folded within the extra-embryonic space and is impeded in proximal migration. BMP signals are known to be essential for the specification and proliferation of primordial germ cells. We find a drastic reduction of primordial germ cells in Smad1-deficient embryos, suggesting an essential role for Smad1-dependent signals in primordial germ cell specification. Surprisingly, despite the key involvement of BMP signaling in tissues of the embryo proper, Smad1-deficient embryos develop remarkably normally. An examination of the expression domains of Smad1, Smad5 and Smad8 in early mouse embryos show that, while Smad1 is uniquely expressed in the visceral endoderm at 6.5 dpc, in other tissues Smad1 is co-expressed with Smad5 and/or Smad8. Collectively, these data have uncovered a unique function for Smad1 signaling in coordinating the growth of extra-embryonic structures necessary to support development within the uterine environment.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Induction of specific-locus mutations in male germ cells of the mouse by acrylamide monomer.

    PubMed

    Russell, L B; Hunsicker, P R; Cacheiro, N L; Generoso, W M

    1991-02-01

    Acrylamide monomer (AA), injected into male mice at the maximum tolerated dose of 5 x 50 mg/kg (24-h intervals), significantly increased the specific-locus mutation rate in certain poststem-cell stages of spermatogenesis, but not in spermatogonial stem cells. Germ-cell stages in which the treatment induced dominant lethals--namely, exposed spermatozoa and late spermatids (number of surviving offspring only 3% and 27%, respectively, of those in concurrent controls)--jointly yielded the highest frequency of specific-locus mutations. AA thus conforms to Pattern 1 in our earlier classification of chemicals according to the spermatogenic stage at which they elicit maximum response (Russell et al., 1990). No specific-locus mutations were observed among 17,112 offspring derived from exposed spermatogonial stem cells, a result which rules out (at the 5% significance level) an induced mutation rate greater than 2.3 times the historical control rate. A sustained high productivity in matings made for several months following week 3 indicates that there is no significant spermatogonial killing and that cell selection is presumably not the explanation for the negative result. On the basis of genetic and/or cytogenetic evidence, the mutations induced postmeiotically by AA were 'large lesions' (multi-locus), while one of 2 recovered from exposure of differentiating spermatogonia is probably a small lesion. An earlier survey of mammalian mutagenesis results led us to conclude that, regardless of the classification of a chemical according to the stage at which it elicits its maximum response, the nature of mutations is determined by the germ-cell stage in which they are induced (Russell et al., 1990). The AA results on lesion size and on distribution of mutations among the loci fit the general pattern.

  7. [Testicular germ cell tumors].

    PubMed

    Dourthe, L M; Ouachet, M; Fizazi, K; Droz, J P

    1998-09-01

    Testicle germ cells tumors are the most common young men neoplasm. The incidence is maximal in Scandinavian countries. Cryptorchidism is a predisposing factor. Diagnosis is clinic, first treatment is radical orchidectomy by inguinal incision, after study of tumor markers. Histology shows seminoma or non seminomatous tumor. Carcinoma in situ is the precursor of invasive germ cell tumors. Germ cell tumors have no p53 mutation, and have isochrome of the short arm of chromosome 12 as a specific marker. With the results of histological, biochemical and radiographic evaluation, patient are classified as follows: good, intermediate and poor risk prognosis. Standard treatment of stage I seminoma is prophylactic irradiation. Stage II with less than 3 cm lymph node too. Other situations need a cisplatin based chemotherapy. In case of metastatic residuals masses more than 3 cm, surgery need to be discussed. Stage I non seminomatous germ cell tumors are treated by retroperitoneal lymphadenectomy, by surveillance or by two cycles of adjuvant chemotherapy with cisplatin, etoposide and bleomycin (BEP). Standard treatment of good prognosis stage II and III is three cycles of BEP, four for poor prognosis. Residual mass need surgery, adjuvant chemotherapy is necessary in presence of viable germ cell. Standard treatment for relapses is chemotherapy with cisplatin, ifosfamide and vinblastine with a 30% remission rate. The place of high dose chemotherapy with autologous stem cell transplantation is not yet standardised. New drugs, as paclitaxel, are under studies.

  8. Locus- and domain-dependent control of DNA methylation at mouse B1 retrotransposons during male germ cell development.

    PubMed

    Ichiyanagi, Kenji; Li, Yufeng; Li, Yungfeng; Watanabe, Toshiaki; Ichiyanagi, Tomoko; Fukuda, Kei; Kitayama, Junko; Yamamoto, Yasuhiro; Kuramochi-Miyagawa, Satomi; Nakano, Toru; Yabuta, Yukihiro; Seki, Yoshiyuki; Saitou, Mitinori; Sasaki, Hiroyuki

    2011-12-01

    In mammals, germ cells undergo striking dynamic changes in DNA methylation during their development. However, the dynamics and mode of methylation are poorly understood for short interspersed elements (SINEs) dispersed throughout the genome. We investigated the DNA methylation status of mouse B1 SINEs in male germ cells at different developmental stages. B1 elements showed a large locus-to-locus variation in methylation; loci close to RNA polymerase II promoters were hypomethylated, while most others were hypermethylated. Interestingly, a mutation that eliminates Piwi-interacting RNAs (piRNAs), which are involved in methylation of long interspersed elements (LINEs), did not affect the level of B1 methylation, implying a piRNA-independent mechanism. Methylation at B1 loci in SINE-poor genomic domains showed a higher dependency on the de novo DNA methyltransferase DNMT3A but not on DNMT3B, suggesting that DNMT3A plays a major role in methylation of these domains. We also found that many genes specifically expressed in the testis possess B1 elements in their promoters, suggesting the involvement of B1 methylation in transcriptional regulation. Taken altogether, our results not only reveal the dynamics and mode of SINE methylation but also suggest how the DNA methylation profile is created in the germline by a pair of DNA methyltransferases.

  9. A replication-dependent passive mechanism modulates DNA demethylation in mouse primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Ohno, Rika; Nakayama, Megumi; Naruse, Chie; Okashita, Naoki; Takano, Osamu; Tachibana, Makoto; Asano, Masahide; Saitou, Mitinori; Seki, Yoshiyuki

    2013-07-01

    Germline cells reprogramme extensive epigenetic modifications to ensure the cellular totipotency of subsequent generations and to prevent the accumulation of epimutations. Notably, primordial germ cells (PGCs) erase genome-wide DNA methylation and H3K9 dimethylation marks in a stepwise manner during migration and gonadal periods. In this study, we profiled DNA and histone methylation on transposable elements during PGC development, and examined the role of DNA replication in DNA demethylation in gonadal PGCs. CpGs in short interspersed nuclear elements (SINEs) B1 and B2 were substantially demethylated in migrating PGCs, whereas CpGs in long interspersed nuclear elements (LINEs), such as LINE-1, were resistant to early demethylation. By contrast, CpGs in both LINE-1 and SINEs were rapidly demethylated in gonadal PGCs. Four major modifiers of DNA and histone methylation, Dnmt3a, Dnmt3b, Glp and Uhrf1, were actively repressed at distinct stages of PGC development. DNMT1 was localised at replication foci in nascent PGCs, whereas the efficiency of recruitment of DNMT1 into replication foci was severely impaired in gonadal PGCs. Hairpin bisulphite sequencing analysis showed that strand-specific hemi-methylated CpGs on LINE-1 were predominant in gonadal PGCs. Furthermore, DNA demethylation in SINEs and LINE-1 was impaired in Cbx3-deficient PGCs, indicating abnormalities in G1 to S phase progression. We propose that PGCs employ active and passive mechanisms for efficient and widespread erasure of genomic DNA methylation.

  10. 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

  11. In vivo epigenomic profiling of germ cells reveals germ cell molecular signatures.

    PubMed

    Ng, Jia-Hui; Kumar, Vibhor; Muratani, Masafumi; Kraus, Petra; Yeo, Jia-Chi; Yaw, Lai-Ping; Xue, Kun; Lufkin, Thomas; Prabhakar, Shyam; Ng, Huck-Hui

    2013-02-11

    The limited number of in vivo germ cells poses an impediment to genome-wide studies. Here, we applied a small-scale chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-seq) method on purified mouse fetal germ cells to generate genome-wide maps of four histone modifications (H3K4me3, H3K27me3, H3K27ac, and H2BK20ac). Comparison of active chromatin state between somatic, embryonic stem, and germ cells revealed promoters and enhancers needed for stem cell maintenance and germ cell development. We found the nuclear receptor Nr5a2 motif to be enriched at a subset of germ cell cis-regulatory regions, and our results implicate Nr5a2 in germ cell biology. Interestingly, in germ cells, the H3K27me3 histone modification occurs more frequently at regions that are enriched for retrotransposons and MHC genes, indicating that these loci are specifically silenced in germ cells. Together, our study provides genome-wide histone modification maps of in vivo germ cells and reveals the molecular chromatin signatures of germ cells.

  12. Spata22, a novel vertebrate-specific gene, is required for meiotic progress in mouse germ cells.

    PubMed

    La Salle, Sophie; Palmer, Kristina; O'Brien, Marilyn; Schimenti, John C; Eppig, John; Handel, Mary Ann

    2012-02-01

    The N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea-induced repro42 mutation, identified by a forward genetics strategy, causes both male and female infertility, with no other apparent phenotypes. Positional cloning led to the discovery of a nonsense mutation in Spata22, a hitherto uncharacterized gene conserved among bony vertebrates. Expression of both transcript and protein is restricted predominantly to germ cells of both sexes. Germ cells of repro42 mutant mice express Spata22 transcript, but not SPATA22 protein. Gametogenesis is profoundly affected by the mutation, and germ cells in repro42 mutant mice do not progress beyond early meiotic prophase, with subsequent germ cell loss in both males and females. The Spata22 gene is essential for one or more key events of early meiotic prophase, as homologous chromosomes of mutant germ cells do not achieve normal synapsis or repair meiotic DNA double-strand breaks. The repro42 mutation thus identifies a novel mammalian germ cell-specific gene required for meiotic progression.

  13. Retinoic acid can induce mouse embryonic stem cell R1/E to differentiate toward female germ cells while oleanolic acid can induce R1/E to differentiate toward both types of germ cells.

    PubMed

    Wan, Qian; Lu, Hua; Wu, Lin-Tao; Liu, Xia; Xiang, Jun-Bei

    2014-12-01

    Retinoic acid (RA) and oleanolic acid (OA) were studied about their potential to induce mouse embryonic stem cell R1/E (MESC-R1/E) to differentiate toward germ cells. Embryoid bodies (EBs) first formed from MESC-R1/E and EBs were allowed to attach to the bottoms of normal cell-culturing plate and grow. Then, different compounds including RA, OA and so on were respectively added to induce MESC-R1/E to differentiate. After 72 h, microscopy images were taken for all interventions, then total RNAs were extracted, cDNAs were synthesized and real-time fluorescence quantitative PCR (qPCR) was performed to detect the transcriptional expression patterns of 11 reproductive-differentiation-related genes for different compounds respectively. During the data analysis, it was found RA significantly up-regulated the expression levels of GDF-9, Stra8, SCP3, Mvh, ZP1, ZP2, and ZP3, while significantly down-regulated the levels of Itag6 and Itgb1, and the level of Oct-4 was down-regulated insignificantly, while the level of TP2 was up-regulated insignificantly; OA significantly up-regulated the expression levels of Stra8, SCP3, Mvh, ZP1, ZP2, Itgb1, and TP2, and the levels of Oct-4, GDF-9, ZP3, and Itga6 were up-regulated insignificantly. The data showed that RA can induce MESC-R1/E to differentiate toward female germ cells while OA can induce MESC-R1/E to differentiate toward male and female germ cells.

  14. Isolation and characterization of germ line DNA from mouse sperm.

    PubMed Central

    Shiurba, R; Nandi, S

    1979-01-01

    Mouse germ line DNA was isolated from sperm by a physicochemical procedure that preferentially destroys contaminating somatic cell DNA. The use of reducing conditions and chelating agents in combination with phenol permitted extraction of molecular weight DNA from mature sperm nuclei with approximately 80% efficiency. Less than 0.1% somatic cell DNA contamination remained in sperm DNA prepared by this method. Germ line DNA was characterized by determination of its ultraviolet absorbance spectrum, buoyant density in cesium chloride, and melting profile on a hydroxyapatite column. Contamination by mitochondrial DNA was assessed by cesium chloride/ethidium bromide gradient centrifugation. The significance of the mouse germ line DNA isolation procedure is discussed with respect to the possible genetic transmission of mammary tumor virus and leukemia virus, the origin of antibody diversity, and the origin of testicular teratomas. PMID:291053

  15. ARX/Arx is expressed in germ cells during spermatogenesis in both marsupial and mouse.

    PubMed

    Yu, Hongshi; Pask, Andrew J; Hu, Yanqiu; Shaw, Geoff; Renfree, Marilyn B

    2014-03-01

    The X-linked aristaless gene, ARX, is essential for the development of the gonads, forebrain, olfactory bulb, pancreas, and skeletal muscle in mice and humans. Mutations cause neurological diseases, often accompanied by ambiguous genitalia. There are a disproportionately high number of testis and brain genes on the human and mouse X chromosomes. It is still unknown whether the X chromosome accrued these genes during its evolution or whether genes that find themselves on the X chromosome evolve such roles. ARX was originally autosomal in mammals and remains so in marsupials, whereas in eutherian mammals it translocated to the X chromosome. In this study, we examined autosomal ARX in tammars and compared it with the X-linked Arx in mice. We detected ARX mRNA in the neural cells of the forebrain, midbrain and hindbrain, and olfactory bulbs in developing tammars, consistent with the expression in mice. ARX was detected by RT-PCR and mRNA in situ hybridization in the developing tammar wallaby gonads of both sexes, suggestive of a role in sexual development as in mice. We also detected ARX/Arx mRNA in the adult testis in both tammars and mice, suggesting a potential novel role for ARX/Arx in spermiogenesis. ARX transcripts were predominantly observed in round spermatids. Arx mRNA localization distributions in the mouse adult testis suggest that it escaped meiotic sex chromosome inactivation during spermatogenesis. Our findings suggest that ARX in the therian mammal ancestor already played a role in male reproduction before it was recruited to the X chromosome in eutherians.

  16. Regulation of germ cell function by SUMOylation

    PubMed Central

    Rodriguez, Amanda; Pangas, Stephanie A.

    2015-01-01

    Oogenesis and spermatogenesis are tightly regulated complex processes that are critical for fertility function. Germ cells undergo meiosis to generate haploid cells necessary for reproduction. Errors in meiosis, including the generation of chromosomal abnormalities, can result in reproductive defects and infertility. Meiotic proteins are regulated by post-translational modifications including SUMOylation, the covalent attachment of small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO) proteins. Here, we review the role of SUMO proteins in controlling germ cell development and maturation based on recent findings from mouse models. Several studies have characterized the localization of SUMO proteins in male and female germ cells. However, a deeper understanding of how SUMOylation regulates proteins with essential roles in oogenesis and spermatogenesis will provide useful insight into the underlying mechanisms of germ cell development and fertility. PMID:26374733

  17. 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.

  18. Retinoic acid promotes the proliferation of primordial germ cell-like cells differentiated from mouse skin-derived stem cells in vitro.

    PubMed

    Tan, Hui; Wang, Jun-Jie; Cheng, Shun-Feng; Ge, Wei; Sun, Yuan-Chao; Sun, Xiao-Feng; Sun, Rui; Li, Lan; Li, Bo; Shen, Wei

    2016-02-01

    Skin-derived stem cells (SDSCs) have the potential to differentiate into gametes and are a potential resource for research and clinical applications. Sufficient amount of primordial germ cells (PGCs) is an important requirement for successful differentiation of SDSCs into gametes in vitro. Retinoic acid (RA), a vitamin A-derived small lipophilic molecule, promotes the growth of PGCs in vivo; however, the role of RA on the proliferation of PGC-like cells (PGCLCs) derived from SDSCs remains unknown. In this study, SDSCs were induced to differentiate into the embryoid body and cocultured with mouse fibroblasts to form PGCLCs. The proliferation of PGCLCs with the presence of various concentrations of RA was investigated in vitro. Immunofluorescence labeling showed that the 5-Bromo-2-deoxyUridine-positive ratio of PGCLCs was increased after the cells were treated with 5-μM RA, and flow cytometry results showed that the number of cells in the S phase was increased significantly. The messenger RNA expression levels of cell cycle-related genes, CCND1 and CDK2, were also increased. Furthermore, RA effectively promoted the external proliferation of endogenous PGCs when 11.5-days postcoitum fetal mouse genital ridges were cultured in vitro. In conclusion, 5-μM RA promoted the proliferation of SDSCs-derived PGCLCs and endogenous PGCs. Our study will provide a valuable model system for studying the differentiation of stem cells into gametes in vitro.

  19. Interaction between NANOS2 and the CCR4-NOT deadenylation complex is essential for male germ cell development in mouse.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Atsushi; Saba, Rie; Miyoshi, Kei; Morita, Yoshinori; Saga, Yumiko

    2012-01-01

    Nanos is one of the evolutionarily conserved proteins implicated in germ cell development and we have previously shown that it interacts with the CCR4-NOT deadenylation complex leading to the suppression of specific RNAs. However, the molecular mechanism and physiological significance of this interaction have remained elusive. In our present study, we identify CNOT1, a component of the CCR4-NOT deadenylation complex, as a direct factor mediating the interaction with NANOS2. We find that the first 10 amino acids (AAs) of NANOS2 are required for this binding. We further observe that a NANOS2 mutant lacking these first 10 AAs (NANOS2-ΔN10) fails to rescue defects in the Nanos2-null mouse. Our current data thus indicate that the interaction with the CCR4-NOT deadenylation complex is essential for NANOS2 function. In addition, we further demonstrate that NANOS2-ΔN10 can associate with specific mRNAs as well as wild-type NANOS2, suggesting the existence of other NANOS2-associated factor(s) that determine the specificity of RNA-binding independently of the CCR4-NOT deadenylation complex.

  20. Dynamic expression of DNMT3a and DNMT3b isoforms during male germ cell development in the mouse.

    PubMed

    La Salle, Sophie; Trasler, Jacquetta M

    2006-08-01

    In the male germ line, sequence-specific methylation patterns are initially acquired prenatally in diploid gonocytes and are further consolidated after birth during spermatogenesis. It is still unclear how DNA methyltransferases are involved in establishing and/or maintaining these patterns in germ cells, or how their activity is regulated. We compared the temporal expression patterns of the postulated de novo DNA methyltransferases DNMT3a and DNMT3b in murine male germ cells. Mitotic, meiotic and post-meiotic male germ cells were isolated, and expression of various transcript variants and isoforms of Dnmt3a and Dnmt3b was examined using Quantitative RT-PCR and Western blotting. We found that proliferating and differentiating male germ cells were marked by distinctive expression profiles. Dnmt3a2 and Dnmt3b transcripts were at their highest levels in type A spermatogonia, decreased dramatically in type B spermatogonia and preleptotene spermatocytes and rose again in leptotene/zygotene spermatocytes, while Dnmt3a expression was mostly constant, except in type B spermatogonia where it increased. In all cases, expression declined as pachynema progressed. At the protein level, DNMT3a was the predominant isoform in type B spermatogonia, while DNMT3a2, DNMT3b2, and DNMT3b3 were expressed throughout most of spermatogenesis, except in pachytene spermatocytes. We also detected DNMT3a2 and DNMT3b2 in round spermatids. Taken together, these data highlight the tightly regulated expression of these genes during spermatogenesis and provide evidence that DNMTs may be contributing differentially to the establishment and/or maintenance of methylation patterns in male germ cells.

  1. 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 Central

    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 Rosa26tdTm/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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Genetic disorders in house mouse germ cells after the Chernobyl catastrophe.

    PubMed

    Pomerantseva, M D; Ramaiya, L K; Chekhovich, A V

    1997-11-19

    Genetic effects were studied in house mice caught from 1986 to 1994 in regions polluted by radionuclides as a result of the Chernobyl disaster. The dose rates of gamma-radiation on the soil surface ranged from 0.0002 to 2 mGy/h. The frequency of reciprocal translocations in mouse spermatocytes was relatively low, but increased with the dose rate. Embryo mortality was increased only in the progeny of male mice in males caught in 1987 in the area with maximal contamination. The frequency of mice heterozygous for recessive lethal mutations decreased with time after the accident.

  5. Treatment Option Overview (Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumors)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Professional Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumors Treatment Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumors Treatment (PDQ®)–Patient Version General Information About Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumors Go to Health Professional Version Key Points ...

  6. Enhancement of mouse germ cell-associated genes expression by injection of human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells into the testis of chemical-induced azoospermic mice.

    PubMed

    Yang, Rui-Feng; Liu, Tai-Hua; Zhao, Kai; Xiong, Cheng-Liang

    2014-01-01

    Various methods are currently under investigation to preserve fertility in males treated with high-dose chemotherapy and radiation for malignant and nonmalignant disorders. Human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (HUC-MSCs), which possess potent immunosuppressive function and secrete various cytokines and growth factors, have the potential clinical applications. As a potential alternative, we investigate whether injection of HUC-MSCs into the interstitial compartment of the testes to promote spermatogenic regeneration efficiently. HUC-MSCs were isolated from different sources of umbilical cords and injected into the interstitial space of one testis from 10 busulfan-treated mice (saline and HEK293 cells injections were performed in a separate set of mice) and the other testis remained uninjected. Three weeks after MSCs injection, Relative quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction was used to identify the expression of 10 of germ cell associated, which are all related to meiosis, demonstrated higher levels of spermatogenic gene expression (2-8 fold) in HUC-MSCs injected testes compared to the contralateral uninjected testes (five mice). Protein levels for germ cell-specific genes, miwi, vasa and synaptonemal complex protein (Scp3) were also higher in MSC-treated testes compared to injected controls 3 weeks after treatment. However, no different expression was detected in saline water and HEK293 cells injection control group. We have demonstrated HUC-MSCs could affect mouse germ cell-specific genes expression. The results also provide a possibility that the transplanted HUC-MSCs may promote the recovery of spermatogenesis. This study provides further evidence for preclinical therapeutic effects of HUC-MSCs, and explores a new approach to the treatment of azoospermia.

  7. Fatty acid degradation plays an essential role in proliferation of mouse female primordial germ cells via the p53-dependent cell cycle regulation

    PubMed Central

    Teng, Hui; Sui, Xuesong; Zhou, Cheng; Shen, Cong; Yang, Ye; Zhang, Pang; Guo, Xuejiang; Huo, Ran

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are embryonic founders of germ cells that ultimately differentiate into oocytes and spermatogonia. Embryonic proliferation of PGCs starting from E11.5 ensures the presence of germ cells in adulthood, especially in female mammals whose total number of oocytes declines after this initial proliferation period. To better understand mechanisms underlying PGC proliferation in female mice, we constructed a proteome profile of female mouse gonads at E11.5. Subsequent KEGG pathway analysis of the 3,662 proteins profiled showed significant enrichment of pathways involved in fatty acid degradation. Further, the number of PGCs found in in vitro cultured fetal gonads significantly decreased with application of etomoxir, an inhibitor of the key rate-limiting enzyme of fatty acid degradation carnitine acyltransferase I (CPT1). Decrease in PGCs was further determined to be the result of reduced proliferation rather than apoptosis. The inhibition of fatty acid degradation by etomoxir has the potential to activate the Ca2+/CamKII/5′-adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) pathway; while as an upstream activator, activated AMPK can function as activator of p53 to induce cell cycle arrest. Thus, we detected the expressional level of AMPK, phosphorylated AMPK (P-AMPK), phosphorylated p53 (P-p53) and cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1 (p21) by Western blots, the results showed increased expression of them after treatment with etomoxir, suggested the activation of p53 pathway was the reason for reduced proliferation of PGCs. Finally, the involvement of p53-dependent G1 cell cycle arrest in defective proliferation of PGCs was verified by rescue experiments. Our results demonstrate that fatty acid degradation plays an important role in proliferation of female PGCs via the p53-dependent cell cycle regulation. PMID:26716399

  8. A TB-RBP and Ter ATPase complex accompanies specific mRNAs from nuclei through the nuclear pores and into intercellular bridges in mouse male germ cells.

    PubMed

    Morales, Carlos R; Lefrancois, Stephane; Chennathukuzhi, Vargheese; El-Alfy, Mohamed; Wu, XinQi; Yang, Juxiang; Gerton, George L; Hecht, Norman B

    2002-06-15

    The testis brain RNA-binding protein (TB-RBP) functions as an RNA-binding protein in brain and testis, binding to conserved sequence elements present in specific mRNAs, such as protamine 1 and 2. We show here by RNA gel shift assays, immunoprecipitation, and by a novel in situ hybridization immunohistochemical technique that TB-RBP binds to AKAP4 mRNA in male mouse germ cells. AKAP4 is a component of the fibrous sheath and functions as a scaffolding protein in the sperm flagellum. AKAP4 is encoded by an X-linked gene, is expressed solely in postmeiotic (haploid) male germ cells, and is an essential protein in all spermatozoa, requiring its transport between spermatids as a protein or mRNA. AKAP4 mRNA forms a complex with TB-RBP and the Ter ATPase in nuclei and remains associated with these proteins as it exits nuclei into the cytoplasm and as it passes through intercellular bridges between spermatids. A similar mRNA-TB-RBP-Ter ATPase association is seen for protamine 2 mRNA, which is stored in the cytoplasm of postmeiotic germ cells about 7 days before translation. In contrast, no association is seen with PGK-2 mRNA which is initially transcribed early in meiosis with increased transcription in postmeiotic male germ cells. Although PGK-2 mRNA is subject to translational control, it lacks TB-RBP-binding sequences in its mRNA. The AKAP4 or protamine 2 mRNA-protein complexes dissociate in late-stage male germ cells when the mRNAs are translated. We propose that TB-RBP and the Ter ATPase are part of a complex that accompanies specific mRNAs in haploid mouse male germ cells in intracellular and intercellular movement. The temporal relationship of TB-RBP binding and mRNA inactivation in conjunction with the subsequent dissociation of the mRNA-protein complex at the time of mRNA translation suggests a role in translational suppression and/or mRNA stabilization.

  9. 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.

  10. Extragonadal Germ Cell Cancer (EGC)

    MedlinePlus

    ... germ cells are first seen outside of the embryo in the yolk sac. At about 4 to ... weeks of development, these cells migrate into the embryo where they populate the developing testes or ovaries. ...

  11. Testis-specific transcriptional regulators selectively occupy BORIS-bound CTCF target regions in mouse male germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Rivero-Hinojosa, Samuel; Kang, Sungyun; Lobanenkov, Victor V.; Zentner, Gabriel E.

    2017-01-01

    Despite sharing the same sequence specificity in vitro and in vivo, CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) and its paralog brother of the regulator of imprinted sites (BORIS) are simultaneously expressed in germ cells. Recently, ChIP-seq analysis revealed two classes of CTCF/BORIS-bound regions: single CTCF target sites (1xCTSes) that are bound by CTCF alone (CTCF-only) or double CTCF target sites (2xCTSes) simultaneously bound by CTCF and BORIS (CTCF&BORIS) or BORIS alone (BORIS-only) in germ cells and in BORIS-positive somatic cancer cells. BORIS-bound regions (CTCF&BORIS and BORIS-only sites) are, on average, enriched for RNA polymerase II (RNAPII) binding and histone retention in mature spermatozoa relative to CTCF-only sites, but little else is known about them. We show that subsets of CTCF&BORIS and BORIS-only sites are occupied by several testis-specific transcriptional regulators (TSTRs) and associated with highly expressed germ cell-specific genes and histone retention in mature spermatozoa. We also demonstrate a physical interaction between BORIS and one of the analyzed TSTRs, TATA-binding protein (TBP)-associated factor 7-like (TAF7L). Our data suggest that CTCF and BORIS cooperate with additional TSTRs to regulate gene expression in developing male gametes and histone retention in mature spermatozoa, potentially priming certain regions of the genome for rapid activation following fertilization. PMID:28145452

  12. Is Tobacco Smoke a Germ-Cell Mutagen?

    EPA Science Inventory

    Although no international organization exists to declare whether an agent is a germ-cell mutagen, tobacco smoke may be a human germ-cell mutagen. In the mouse, tobacco smoke induces a significant increase in the mutation frequency at an expanded simple tandem repeat (ESTR) locus....

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. Multispecies Purification of Testicular Germ Cells.

    PubMed

    Lima, Ana C; Jung, Min; Rusch, Jannette; Usmani, Abul; Lopes, Alexandra; Conrad, Donald F

    2016-08-24

    Advanced methods of cellular purification are required to apply genome technology to the study of spermatogenesis. One approach, based on flow cytometry of murine testicular cells stained with Hoechst-33342 (Ho-FACS), has been extensively optimized and currently allows the isolation of 9 germ cell types. This staining technique is straightforward to implement, highly effective at purifying specific germ cell types and yields sufficient cell numbers for high throughput studies. Ho-FACS is a technique that does not require species-specific markers, but whose applicability to other species is largely unexplored. We hypothesized that, due to the similar cell physiology of spermatogenesis across mammals, Ho-FACS could be used to produce highly purified subpopulations of germ cells in mammals other than mouse. To test this hypothesis, we applied Ho-FACS to 4 mammalian species that are widely used in testis research - Rattus norvegicus, Cavia porcellus, Canis familiaris and Sus scrofa domesticus We successfully isolated 4 germ cell populations from these species with average purity of 79% for spermatocytes, and 90% for spermatids and 66% for spermatogonia. Additionally, we compare the performance of mechanical and chemical dissociation for each species, and propose an optimized gating strategy to better discriminate round and elongating spermatids in the mouse, which can potentially be applied to other species. Our work indicates that spermatogenesis may be uniquely accessible among mammalian developmental systems, as a single set of reagents may be sufficient to isolate germ cell populations from many different mammalian species, opening new avenues in the fields of development and male reproductive biology.

  19. 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

  20. Effects of male germ-cell stage on the frequency, nature, and spectrum of induced specific-locus mutations in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Russell, Liane B

    2004-09-01

    By means of the mouse specific-locus test (SLT) with visible markers, which is capable of detecting intragenic mutations as well as larger lesions, about 20 mutagens have been studied comparatively across arrays of male germ-cell stages. In addition, a very large historical control, accumulated over decades, provides data on spontaneous mutations in males. Each mutagen has a characteristic germ-cell-stage sensitivity pattern. Although most chemicals yield their maximum numbers of mutations following exposure of spermatozoa and late spermatids, mutagens have now been identified that peak in each of the major stages of spermatogenesis and spermiogenesis, including those in which effects on recombination can also be induced. Stem-cell spermatogonia have yielded positive results with only five of 15 mutagenic chemicals. In postspermatogonial stages, all chemicals, as well as radiations, induce primarily large lesions (LL). By contrast, in spermatogonia (either stem-cell or differentiating) all chemicals except one (bleomycin) produce very few such lesions. The spectrum of relative mutation frequencies at the seven loci of the SLT is characteristic for treated germ-cell stage and mutagen. Treatments that induce primarily LL are characterized by a great preponderance of s (Ednrb)-locus mutations (possibly due to a paucity of haplo-insufficient genes in the surrounding region); and those that induce very few, if any, LL by a great preponderance of p-locus mutations. Spontaneous locus-spectra differ from both types of treatment-induced spectra; moreover, there are two distinct types of spontaneous spectra, depending on whether mutations occurred in mitotic cells or during the perigametic interval.

  1. Meiosis and retrotransposon silencing during germ cell development in mice.

    PubMed

    Ollinger, Rupert; Reichmann, Judith; Adams, Ian R

    2010-03-01

    In mammals, germ cells derive from the pluripotent cells that are present early in embryogenesis, and then differentiate into male sperm or female eggs as development proceeds. Fusion between an egg and a sperm at fertilization allows genetic information from both parents to be transmitted to the next generation, and produces a pluripotent zygote to initiate the next round of embryogenesis. Meiosis is a central event in this self-perpetuating cycle that creates genetic diversity by generating new combinations of existing genetic alleles, and halves the number of chromosomes in the developing male and female germ cells to allow chromosome number to be maintained through successive generations. The developing germ cells also help to maintain genetic and chromosomal stability through the generations by protecting the genome from excessive de novo mutation. Several mouse mutants have recently been characterised whose germ cells exhibit defects in silencing the potentially mutagenic endogenous retroviruses and other retrotransposons that are prevalent in mammalian genomes, and these germ cells also exhibit defects in progression through meiosis. Here we review how mouse germ cells develop and proceed through meiosis, how mouse germ cells silence endogenous retroviruses and other retrotransposons, and discuss why silencing of endogenous retroviruses and other retrotransposons may be required for meiotic progression in mice.

  2. Role of mouse germ-cell mutagenesis in understanding genetic risk and in generating mutations that are prime tools for studies in modern biology.

    PubMed

    Russell, L B

    1994-01-01

    Highlights are presented on (1) the role mouse germ-cell mutagenesis has played in assessing the genetic harm from radiations and chemicals, and (2) the contributions to the field of modern biology that are being made by the products of this research--the propagated mutations. Among the numerous findings in radiation mutagenesis were the humped dose-effect curve for spermatogonial stem cells, the major differences between the sexes and between germ-cell stages of each sex in both yield and nature of mutations, the dose-rate effect, which provided the first evidence for repair of mutational (or premutational) damage, the augmenting effect of certain regimes of dose fractionation, and many others. Chemical mutagenesis studies that followed revealed at least three patterns of mutation yield and demonstrated that germ-cell stage--much more than the nature of the chemical--governs the nature of the DNA lesions induced. Two "supermutagens," one for intragenic mutations and one for deletions and other rearrangements, have become very useful in the manufacture of mutations for specific purposes. The mutations propagated from radiation- and chemical-mutagenesis experiments are providing prime resources for basic studies in genome organization, gene structure, and function. DNA lesions that involve specific loci have made possible increasingly detailed characterization of extensive deletion complexes that facilitate high-intensity physical and functional mapping within them. Numerous loci associated with interesting developmental anomalies have been identified and have become accessible to positional cloning. Several of the genes accessed with the aid of induced mutations (deletions, other rearrangements, and point mutations) are furnishing prime reagents for elucidating human disease conditions.

  3. Griseofulvin-induced aneuploidy and meiotic delay in male mouse germ cells: detected by using conventional cytogenetics and three-color FISH.

    PubMed

    Shi, Q; Schmid, T E; Adler, I

    1999-05-17

    Griseofulvin (GF) was tested in male mouse germ cells for the induction of meiotic delay and aneuploidy. Starved mice were orally treated with 500, 1000 and 2000 mg/kg of GF in corn oil and testes were sampled 22 h later for meiotic delay analysis and chromosome counting in spermatocytes at the second meiotic metaphase (MMII). A dose-related increase in meiotic delay by dose-dependently arresting spermatocytes in first meiotic metaphase (MMI) or/and prolonging interkinesis was observed. Hyperhaploid MMII cells were not significantly increased. Sperm were sampled from the Caudae epididymes 22 days after GF-treatment of the males for three-color fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). The frequencies of diploidies were 0.01-0.02% in sperm of the solvent control animals and increased dose-dependently to 0.03%, 0.068% and 0.091%, respectively, for 500, 1000 and 2000 mg/kg of GF. The frequencies of disomic sperm were increased significantly above the controls in all GF-treated groups but showed no dose response. The data for individual classes of disomic sperm indicated that MII was more sensitive than MI to GF-induced non-disjunction in male mice. A comparison of the present data from male mice and literature data from female mice suggests that mouse oocytes are more sensitive than mouse spermatocytes to GF-induced meiotic delay and aneuploidy.

  4. 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

  5. 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...

  6. 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

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

    PubMed

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

    1998-04-01

    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.

  8. On the formation of germ cells: The good, the bad and the ugly.

    PubMed

    Chuva de Sousa Lopes, Susana M; Roelen, Bernard A J

    2010-03-01

    Mammalian germ cells are powerful cells, the only ones that transmit information to the next generation ensuring the continuation of the species. But "with great power, comes great responsibility", meaning that germ cells are only a few steps away from turning carcinogenic. Despite recent advances little is known about germ cell formation in mammals, predominantly because of the inaccessibility of these cells. Moreover, it is difficult to pin down what in essence is characteristic of a germ cell, as germ cells keep changing place, morphology, expression markers and epigenetic identity. Formation of (primordial) germ cells in primate ES cell cultures would therefore be helpful to identify molecular signalling pathways associated with germ cell differentiation and to study epigenetic changes in germ cells. In addition, the in vitro derivation of functional germ cells from ES cells could be used in combination with therapeutic cloning to generate patient-specific ES cell lines, and can have applications in animal breeding. In this review we present the state-of-the-art on how mouse and human germ cells are formed in vivo (the good), we discuss the link between germ cells, pluripotency and germ cell tumours (the bad) and show that despite continuous progress in trying to differentiate germ cells in vitro (the ugly) the generation of functional germ cells is still a real challenge.

  9. 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; Odajima, 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

  10. 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

  11. Implication of DNA demethylation and bivalent histone modification for selective gene regulation in mouse primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Mochizuki, Kentaro; Tachibana, Makoto; Saitou, Mitinori; Tokitake, Yuko; Matsui, Yasuhisa

    2012-01-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) sequentially induce specific genes required for their development. We focused on epigenetic changes that regulate PGC-specific gene expression. mil-1, Blimp1, and Stella are preferentially expressed in PGCs, and their expression is upregulated during PGC differentiation. Here, we first determined DNA methylation status of mil-1, Blimp1, and Stella regulatory regions in epiblast and in PGCs, and found that they were hypomethylated in differentiating PGCs after E9.0, in which those genes were highly expressed. We used siRNA to inhibit a maintenance DNA methyltransferase, Dnmt1, in embryonic stem (ES) cells and found that the flanking regions of all three genes became hypomethylated and that expression of each gene increased 1.5- to 3-fold. In addition, we also found 1.5- to 5-fold increase of the PGC genes in the PGCLCs (PGC-like cells) induced form ES cells by knockdown of Dnmt1. We also obtained evidence showing that methylation of the regulatory region of mil-1 resulted in 2.5-fold decrease in expression in a reporter assay. Together, these results suggested that DNA demethylation does not play a major role on initial activation of the PGC genes in the nascent PGCs but contributed to enhancement of their expression in PGCs after E9.0. However, we also found that repression of representative somatic genes, Hoxa1 and Hoxb1, and a tissue-specific gene, Gfap, in PGCs was not dependent on DNA methylation; their flanking regions were hypomethylated, but their expression was not observed in PGCs at E13.5. Their promoter regions showed the bivalent histone modification in PGCs, that may be involved in repression of their expression. Our results indicated that epigenetic status of PGC genes and of somatic genes in PGCs were distinct, and suggested contribution of epigenetic mechanisms in regulation of the expression of a specific gene set in PGCs.

  12. Reciprocal relationship between mouse germ-cell mutagenesis and basic genetics: from early beginnings to future opportunities.

    PubMed

    Russell, L B

    1989-01-01

    The scientific foundations for several mammalian germ-line mutagenesis tests in common use today were laid in the 1930s, 1940s, and early 1950s. Subsequent developments in the field have had multiple objectives: detection of mutagenicity of environmental agents (which has led to the development of numerous methodologies), identification of biological and physical factors that affect mutation yield, analysis of the structural nature of the genetic alterations, and assessment of the organismic effects of various types of mutations. Mutagenesis studies have made numerous contributions to basic genetics by generating mutant types that led to elucidation of sex-determining mechanisms in mammals; formulation of the single-active-, or inactive-, X-chromosome hypothesis; correlation of genetic and cytological maps; discovery of genetic "imprinting" phenomena; study of developmental pathways and cell lineages, etc. Particularly useful are sets of complexly overlapping deletions that have been recovered in radiation mutagenesis studies, propagated in breeding stocks, and genetically analyzed; these have constituted prerequisites for molecular genetic studies aimed at development of the DNA structure-function relationships for important genomic regions. Mutagenesis experiments have also served to identify mutagens that are particularly effective in inducing specific types of genetic lesions desired for basic studies. Reciprocally, basic genetics has contributed to the development of mutagenesis tests and has enhanced the value of the specific-locus test by adding to its quantitative capabilities the capability for qualitatively characterizing the actions of mutagens.

  13. 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...

  14. 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.

  15. The effect of dose fractionation on the frequency of ethylnitrosourea-induced dominant cataract and recessive specific locus mutations in germ cells of the mouse.

    PubMed

    Favor, J; Neuhäuser-Klaus, A; Ehling, U H

    1988-04-01

    A combined dominant cataract-recessive specific locus mutation experiment for fractionated exposure to ethylnitrosourea (2 X 80 mg/kg, 24-h fractionation interval) was designed to determine if lower doses of ethylnitrosourea are more effective in inducing dominant cataract mutations as suggested by previous results. This observation was not confirmed by the present experiment. The extensive, statistically more reliable specific locus results indicate an additive effect of fractionated ethylnitrosourea treatment. A saturable repair system for ethylnitrosourea-induced DNA damage has been previously documented (Karran et al., 1979; Sega et al., 1986; Van Zeeland et al., 1985). Two parameters inherent to a saturable system, the minimal time required for the saturated system to recover and the minimal dose to saturate the system are important, and results of experiments employing a fractionation exposure protocol must be interpreted relative to these two parameters. Longer fractionation intervals or smaller doses result in a reduced mutagenic effect. Due to the inherently lower experimental variability of the specific locus mutation assay as compared to the dominant cataract assay, the specific locus assay is the test of choice to determine factors affecting the mammalian germ cell mutation rate. The dominant cataract test requires a larger investment of experimental resources to achieve a comparable degree of accuracy. The dominant cataract mutation test is important in assessing the mutation rate to dominant alleles in germ cells of mammals. Due to the immediate expression of the mutant phenotype in newly occurring dominant mutations, a dominant mutation assay screens a genetically relevant endpoint in an assessment of the mutagenic hazard for man in mouse experiments. A multi-endpoint design screening specific locus, dominant cataract, and biochemical mutational endpoints (Ehling et al., 1985) allows a systematic comparison of mutagenic results for different classes

  16. 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

  17. A set of genes critical to development is epigenetically poised in mouse germ cells from fetal stages through completion of meiosis.

    PubMed

    Lesch, Bluma J; Dokshin, Gregoriy A; Young, Richard A; McCarrey, John R; Page, David C

    2013-10-01

    In multicellular organisms, germ cells carry the hereditary material from one generation to the next. Developing germ cells are unipotent gamete precursors, and mature gametes are highly differentiated, specialized cells. However, upon gamete union at fertilization, their genomes drive a totipotent program, giving rise to a complete embryo as well as extraembryonic tissues. The biochemical basis for the ability to transition from differentiated cell to totipotent zygote is unknown. Here we report that a set of developmentally critical genes is maintained in an epigenetically poised (bivalent) state from embryonic stages through the end of meiosis. We performed ChIP-seq and RNA-seq analysis on flow-sorted male and female germ cells during embryogenesis at three time points surrounding sexual differentiation and female meiotic initiation, and then extended our analysis to meiotic and postmeiotic male germ cells. We identified a set of genes that is highly enriched for regulators of differentiation and retains a poised state (high H3K4me3, high H3K27me3, and lack of expression) across sexes and across developmental stages, including in haploid postmeiotic cells. The existence of such a state in embryonic stem cells has been well described. We now demonstrate that a subset of genes is maintained in a poised state in the germ line from the initiation of sexual differentiation during fetal development and into postmeiotic stages. We propose that the epigenetically poised condition of these developmental genes is a fundamental property of the mammalian germ-line nucleus, allowing differentiated gametes to unleash a totipotent program following fertilization.

  18. 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

  19. Germ line, stem cells, and epigenetic reprogramming.

    PubMed

    Surani, M A; Durcova-Hills, G; Hajkova, P; Hayashi, K; Tee, W W

    2008-01-01

    The germ cell lineage has the unique attribute of generating the totipotent state. Development of blastocysts from the totipotent zygote results in the establishment of pluripotent primitive ectoderm cells in the inner cell mass of blastocysts, which subsequently develop into epiblast cells in postimplantation embryos. The germ cell lineage in mice originates from these pluripotent epiblast cells of postimplantation embryos in response to specific signals. Pluripotent stem cells and unipotent germ cells share some fundamental properties despite significant phenotypic differences between them. Additionally, early primordial germ cells can be induced to undergo dedifferentiation into pluripotent embryonic germ cells. Investigations on the relationship between germ cells and pluripotent stem cells may further elucidate the nature of the pluripotent state. Furthermore, comprehensive epigenetic reprogramming of the genome in early germ cells, including extensive erasure of epigenetic modifications, is a critical step toward establishment of totipotency. The mechanisms involved may be relevant for gaining insight into events that lead to reprogramming of somatic cells into pluripotent stem cells.

  20. Effects of multiple doses of cyclophosphamide on mouse testes: accessing the germ cells lost, and the functional damage of stem cells.

    PubMed

    Drumond, Ana Luiza; Weng, Connie C; Wang, Gensheng; Chiarini-Garcia, Helio; Eras-Garcia, Leticia; Meistrich, Marvin L

    2011-12-01

    Spermatogenesis is sensitive to the chemotherapeutic drug cyclophosphamide, which decreases the patients' sperm count. Since the recovery of fertility is dependent on regeneration from stem cells, in the present study we evaluated the ability of cyclophosphamide-exposed stem spermatogonia from mice to regenerate spermatogenesis in situ and after transplantation. When seven doses of cyclophosphamide were given at 4-day intervals, the differentiating germ cells were largely eliminated but ~50% of the undifferentiated type A spermatogonia remained. We monitored the recovery and found that sperm production recovered to 64% of control within the time expected. When the cyclophosphamide-surviving spermatogonia were transplanted into recipient mice, recovery of spermatogenesis from the cyclophosphamide-exposed donor cells was observed, but was reduced when compared to cells from cryptorchid donors. Thus, multidose regimens of cyclophosphamide did not eliminate the stem spermatogonia, but resulted in cell loss and residual damage.

  1. 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

  2. Regulative germ cell specification in axolotl embryos: a primitive trait conserved in the mammalian lineage.

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Andrew D; Crother, Brian; White, Mary E; Patient, Roger; Bachvarova, Rosemary F; Drum, Matthew; Masi, Thomas

    2003-01-01

    How germ cells are specified in the embryos of animals has been a mystery for decades. Unlike most developmental processes, which are highly conserved, embryos specify germ cells in very different ways. Curiously, in mouse embryos germ cells are specified by extracellular signals; they are not autonomously specified by maternal germ cell determinants (germ plasm), as are the germ cells in most animal model systems. We have developed the axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum), a salamander, as an experimental system, because classic experiments have shown that the germ cells in this species are induced by extracellular signals in the absence of germ plasm. Here, we provide evidence that the germ cells in axolotls arise from naive mesoderm in response to simple inducing agents. In addition, by analysing the sequences of axolotl germ-cell-specific genes, we provide evidence that mice and urodele amphibians share a common mechanism of germ cell development that is ancestral to tetrapods. Our results imply that germ plasm, as found in species such as frogs and teleosts, is the result of convergent evolution. We discuss the evolutionary implications of our findings. PMID:14511484

  3. 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

    2015-10-15

    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.

  4. Germ cell specification and regeneration in planarians.

    PubMed

    Newmark, P A; Wang, Y; Chong, T

    2008-01-01

    In metazoans, two apparently distinct mechanisms specify germ cell fate: Determinate specification (observed in animals including Drosophila, Caenorhabditis elegans, zebra fish, and Xenopus) uses cytoplasmic factors localized to specific regions of the egg, whereas epigenetic specification (observed in many basal metazoans, urodeles, and mammals) involves inductive interactions between cells. Much of our understanding of germ cell specification has emerged from studies of model organisms displaying determinate specification. In contrast, our understanding of epigenetic/inductive specification is less advanced and would benefit from studies of additional organisms. Freshwater planarians--widely known for their remarkable powers of regeneration--are well suited for studying the mechanisms by which germ cells can be induced. Classic experiments showed that planarians can regenerate germ cells from body fragments entirely lacking reproductive structures, suggesting that planarian germ cells could be specified by inductive signals. Furthermore, the availability of the genome sequence of the planarian Schmidtea mediterranea, coupled with the animal's susceptibility to systemic RNA interference (RNAi), facilitates functional genomic analyses of germ cell development and regeneration. Here, we describe recent progress in studies of planarian germ cells and frame some of the critical unresolved questions for future work.

  5. Germ cell formation from embryonic stem cells and the use of somatic cell nuclei in oocytes.

    PubMed

    Pelosi, Emanuele; Forabosco, Antonino; Schlessinger, David

    2011-03-01

    Embryonic stem cells (ESCs) have remarkable properties of pluripotency and self-renewal, along with the retention of chromosomal integrity. Germ cells function as a kind of "transgenerational stem cells," transmitting genetic information from one generation to the next. The formation of putative primordial germ cells (PGCs) and germ cells from mouse and human ESCs (hESCs) has, in fact, been shown, and the apparent derivation of functional mouse male gametes has also been described. Additionally, investigators have successfully reprogrammed somatic nuclei into a pluripotent state by inserting them into ESCs or oocytes. This would enable the generation of ESCs genetically identical to the somatic cell donor and their use in cell therapy. However, these methodologies are still inefficient and their mechanisms poorly understood. Until full comprehension of these processes is obtained, clinical applications remain remote. Nevertheless, they represent promising tools in the future, enhancing methods of therapeutic cloning and infertility treatment.

  6. Germ Cell Differentiation from Pluripotent Cells

    PubMed Central

    Medrano, Jose V.; Pera, Renee A. Reijo; Simón, Carlos

    2014-01-01

    Infertility is a medical condition with an increasing impact in Western societies with causes linked to toxins, genetics, and aging (primarily delay of motherhood). Within the different pathologies that can lead to infertility, poor quality or reduced quantity of gametes plays an important role. Gamete donation and therefore demand on donated sperm and eggs in fertility clinics is increasing. It is hoped that a better understanding of the conditions related to poor gamete quality may allow scientists to design rational treatments. However, to date, relatively little is known about human germ cell development in large part due to the inaccessibility of human development to molecular genetic analysis. It is hoped that pluripotent human embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells may provide an accessible in vitro model to study germline development; these cells are able to differentiate to cells of all three primary embryonic germ layers, as well as to germ cells in vitro. We review the state of the art in germline differentiation from pluripotent stem cells. PMID:23329632

  7. The deubiquitinating enzyme mUBPy interacts with the sperm-specific molecular chaperone MSJ-1: the relation with the proteasome, acrosome, and centrosome in mouse male germ cells.

    PubMed

    Berruti, Giovanna; Martegani, Enzo

    2005-01-01

    The mouse USP8/mUBPy gene codifies a deubiquitinating enzyme expressed preferentially in testis and brain. While the ubiquitin-specific processing proteases (UBPs) are known to be important for the early development in invertebrate organisms, their specific functions remain still unclear in mammals. Using specific antibodies, raised against a recombinant mUBPy protein, we studied mUBPy in mouse testis. The mUBPy is expressed exclusively by the germ cell component and is maintained in epididymal spermatozoa. The enzyme is functionally active, being able to detach ubiquitin moieties from endogenous protein substrates. Protein interaction assays showed that sperm UBPy interacts with MSJ-1, the sperm-specific DnaJ protein evolutionarily conserved for spermiogenesis. Immunocytochemistry revealed that mUBPy shares with MSJ-1 the intracellular localization during spermatid cell differentiation; intriguingly, we show here that the proteasomes also locate in mUBPy/MSJ-1-positive sites, such as the cytoplasmic surface of the developing acrosome and the centrosomal region. These colocalization sites are maintained in epididymal spermatozoa. The demonstration of a protein interaction between a deubiquitinating enzyme and a molecular chaperone and the documentation on the proteasomes in both differentiating and mature mouse male germ cells suggest that members of the chaperone and ubiquitin/proteasome systems could cooperate in the fine control of protein quality to yield functional spermatozoa.

  8. Attraction rules: germ cell migration in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Raz, Erez; Reichman-Fried, Michal

    2006-08-01

    The migration of zebrafish primordial germ cell towards the region where the gonad develops is guided by the chemokine SDF-1a. Recent studies show that soon after their specification, the cells undergo a series of morphological alterations before they become motile and are able to respond to attractive cues. As migratory cells, primordial germ cells move towards their target while correcting their path upon exiting a cyclic phase in which morphological cell polarity is lost. In the following stages, the cells gather at specific locations and move as cell clusters towards their final target. In all of these stages, zebrafish germ cells respond as individual cells to alterations in the shape of the sdf-1a expression domain, by directed migration towards their target - the position where the gonad develops.

  9. [Germ cell membrane lipids in spermatogenesis].

    PubMed

    Wang, Ting; Shi, Xiao; Quan, Song

    2016-05-01

    Spermatogenesis is a complex developmental process in which a diploid progenitor germ cell transforms into highly specialized spermatozoa. During spermatogenesis, membrane remodeling takes place, and cell membrane permeability and liquidity undergo phase-specific changes, which are all associated with the alteration of membrane lipids. Lipids are important components of the germ cell membrane, whose volume and ratio fluctuate in different phases of spermatogenesis. Abnormal lipid metabolism can cause spermatogenic dysfunction and consequently male infertility. Germ cell membrane lipids are mainly composed of cholesterol, phospholipids and glycolipids, which play critical roles in cell adhesion and signal transduction during spermatogenesis. An insight into the correlation of membrane lipids with spermatogenesis helps us to better understand the mechanisms of spermatogenesis and provide new approaches to the diagnosis and treatment of male infertility.

  10. Evolution of the mouse H-2K region: a hot spot of mutation associated with genes transcribed in embryos and/or germ cells.

    PubMed

    Yeom, Y I; Abe, K; Artzt, K

    1992-03-01

    Active gene transcription is known to promote genetic change in neighboring DNA. We reasoned that the change would be readily heritable if transcription was occurring in germ cells or early embryonic cells before the germ cells are set aside. The H-2K region of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) provides a good vehicle for testing this hypothesis because it is replete with such genes. We have compared the amount of polymorphism in 240 kb of DNA contiguous with H-2K and 150 kb of DNA flanking a homologous duplicated region in t-haplotypes and inbred strains. Using 90 probes and three restriction enzymes, we find a staggering difference in the amount of polymorphism in the H-2K region vs. the duplicated region (26% vs. 0%) of t-haplotypes. The disparity in the rate of divergence between the two regions indicates that the spatial distribution of genes and their expression pattern might be important factors in sequence evolution. Since t-haplotypes normally show extremely limited variability among themselves due to their recent divergence from a single ancestor, these results imply that the mutation rate in the H-2K region is unusually high. This is in apparent contradiction to the current view that the MHC loci have evolved at the same rate as other loci. The implications for the evolution of the H-2K gene are discussed.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. Histopathology of pineal germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Vasiljevic, A; Szathmari, A; Champier, J; Fèvre-Montange, M; Jouvet, A

    2015-01-01

    Germ cell tumors (GCTs) classically occur in gonads. However, they are the most frequent neoplasms in the pineal region. The pineal location of GCTs may be caused by the neoplastic transformation of a primordial germ cell that has mismigrated. The World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes 5 histological types of intracranial GCTs: germinoma and non-germinomatous tumors including embryonal carcinoma, yolk sac tumor, choriocarcinoma and mature or immature teratoma. Germinomas and teratomas are frequently encountered as pure tumors whereas the other types are mostly part of mixed GCTs. In this situation, the neuropathologist has to be able to identify each component of a GCT. When diagnosis is difficult, use of recent immunohistochemical markers such as OCT(octamer-binding transcription factor)3/4, Glypican 3, SALL(sal-like protein)4 may be required. OCT3/4 is helpful in the diagnosis of germinomas, Glypican 3 in the diagnosis of yolk sac tumors and SALL4 in the diagnosis of the germ cell nature of an intracranial tumor. When the germ cell nature of a pineal tumor is doubtful, the finding of an isochromosome 12p suggests the diagnosis of GCT. The final pathological report should always be confronted with the clinical data, especially the serum or cerebrospinal fluid levels of β-human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) and alpha-fetoprotein.

  14. Regulation of germ line stem cell homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, T.X.; Hofmann, M.C.

    2015-01-01

    Mammalian spermatogenesis is a complex process in which spermatogonial stem cells of the testis (SSCs) develop to ultimately form spermatozoa. In the seminiferous epithelium, SSCs self-renew to maintain the pool of stem cells throughout life, or they differentiate to generate a large number of germ cells. A balance between SSC self-renewal and differentiation is therefore essential to maintain normal spermatogenesis and fertility. Stem cell homeostasis is tightly regulated by signals from the surrounding microenvironment, or SSC niche. By physically supporting the SSCs and providing them with these extrinsic molecules, the Sertoli cell is the main component of the niche. Earlier studies have demonstrated that GDNF and CYP26B1, produced by Sertoli cells, are crucial for self-renewal of the SSC pool and maintenance of the undifferentiated state. Down-regulating the production of these molecules is therefore equally important to allow germ cell differentiation. We propose that NOTCH signaling in Sertoli cells is a crucial regulator of germ cell fate by counteracting these stimulatory factors to maintain stem cell homeostasis. Dysregulation of this essential niche component can lead by itself to sterility or facilitate testicular cancer development.

  15. LINEing germ and embryonic stem cells' silencing of retrotransposons.

    PubMed

    Ishiuchi, Takashi; Torres-Padilla, Maria-Elena

    2014-07-01

    Almost half of our genome is occupied by transposable elements. Although most of them are inactive, one type of non-long terminal repeat (LTR) retrotransposon, long interspersed nuclear element 1 (LINE1), is capable of retrotransposition. Two studies in this issue, Pezic and colleagues (pp. 1410-1428) and Castro-Diaz and colleagues (pp. 1397-1409), provide novel insight into the regulation of LINE1s in human embryonic stem cells and mouse germ cells and shed new light on the conservation of complex mechanisms to ensure silencing of transposable elements in mammals.

  16. Embryonic stem cells: testing the germ-cell theory.

    PubMed

    Hochedlinger, Konrad

    2011-10-25

    The exact cellular origin of embryonic stem cells remains elusive. Now a new study provides compelling evidence that embryonic stem cells, established under conventional culture conditions, originate from a transient germ-cell state.

  17. 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

    2017-03-06

    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

  18. 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.

  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

    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.

  20. Induction of chromosomal aberrations in mouse zygotes by acrylamide treatment of male germ cells and their correlation with dominant lethality and heritable translocations

    SciTech Connect

    Marchetti, F.; Lowe, X.; Wyrobek, A.J.; Bishop, J.

    1997-12-31

    The objectives of this research were: (1) to investigate the time course of the cytogenetic defects induced by acrylamide (AA) treatment (5 x 50 mg/kg) of male germ cells in first-cleavage zygote metaphases using PAINT/DAPI analysis, and (2) to characterize the correlation between chromosomal aberrations at first cleavage, dominant lethality, and heritable translocations. PAINT/DAPI analysis employs multicolor fluorescence in situ hybridization painting plus DAPI staining to detect both stable and unstable chromosomal aberrations at first-cleavage metaphase of the zygote. High levels of chromosomally defective zygotes were detected after mating at all postmeiotic stages (20-190-fold, P < 0.001). Early spermatozoa (6.5 d post-treatment) were the most sensitive, with 76% of the zygotes carrying cytogenetic defects. A significant 10-fold increase was also detected 27.5 d post-treatment, indicating that AA had a cytogenetic effect on meiotic stages. PAINT/DAPI analysis revealed that: (1) AA-induced chromosomal breaks occurred at random, and (2) the frequencies of symmetrical and asymmetrical exchanges were similar at all mating days, except 9.5 d after AA treatment, where significantly (P < 0.02) more asymmetrical aberrations were found. 33 refs., 5 figs., 4 tabs.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-18

    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.

  2. 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

  3. Cancer testis antigen expression in testicular germ cell tumorigenesis.

    PubMed

    Bode, Peter K; Thielken, Andrea; Brandt, Simone; Barghorn, André; Lohe, Bernd; Knuth, Alexander; Moch, Holger

    2014-06-01

    Cancer testis antigens are encoded by germ line-associated genes that are present in normal germ cells of testis and ovary but not in differentiated tissues. Their expression in various human cancer types has been interpreted as 're-expression' or as intratumoral progenitor cell signature. Cancer testis antigen expression patterns have not yet been studied in germ cell tumorigenesis with specific emphasis on intratubular germ cell neoplasia unclassified as a precursor lesion for testicular germ cell tumors. Immunohistochemistry was used to study MAGEA3, MAGEA4, MAGEC1, GAGE1 and CTAG1B expression in 325 primary testicular germ cell tumors, including 94 mixed germ cell tumors. Seminomatous and non-seminomatous components were separately arranged and evaluated on tissue microarrays. Spermatogonia in the normal testis were positive, whereas intratubular germ cell neoplasia unclassified was negative for all five CT antigens. Cancer testis antigen expression was only found in 3% (CTAG1B), 10% (GAGE1, MAGEA4), 33% (MAGEA3) and 40% (MAGEC1) of classic seminoma but not in non-seminomatous testicular germ cell tumors. In contrast, all spermatocytic seminomas were positive for cancer testis antigens. These data are consistent with a different cell origin in spermatocytic seminoma compared with classic seminoma and support a progression model with loss of cancer testis antigens in early tumorigenesis of testicular germ cell tumors and later re-expression in a subset of seminomas.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. MASTL is essential for anaphase entry of proliferating primordial germ cells and establishment of female germ cells in mice

    PubMed Central

    Risal, Sanjiv; Zhang, Jingjing; Adhikari, Deepak; Liu, Xiaoman; Shao, Jingchen; Hu, Mengwen; Busayavalasa, Kiran; Tu, Zhaowei; Chen, Zijiang; Kaldis, Philipp; Liu, Kui

    2017-01-01

    In mammals, primordial germ cells (PGCs) are the embryonic cell population that serve as germ cell precursors in both females and males. During mouse embryonic development, the majority of PGCs are arrested at the G2 phase when they migrate into the hindgut at 7.75–8.75 dpc (days post coitum). It is after 9.5 dpc that the PGCs undergo proliferation with a doubling time of 12.6 h. The molecular mechanisms underlying PGC proliferation are however not well studied. In this work. Here we studied how MASTL (microtubule-associated serine/threonine kinase-like)/Greatwall kinase regulates the rapid proliferation of PGCs. We generated a mouse model where we specifically deleted Mastl in PGCs and found a significant loss of PGCs before the onset of meiosis in female PGCs. We further revealed that the deletion of Mastl in PGCs did not prevent mitotic entry, but led to a failure of the cells to proceed beyond metaphase-like stage, indicating that MASTL-mediated molecular events are indispensable for anaphase entry in PGCs. These mitotic defects further led to the death of Mastl-null PGCs by 12.5 dpc. Moreover, the defect in mitotic progression observed in the Mastl-null PGCs was rescued by simultaneous deletion of Ppp2r1a (α subunit of PP2A). Thus, our results demonstrate that MASTL, PP2A, and therefore regulated phosphatase activity have a fundamental role in establishing female germ cell population in gonads by controlling PGC proliferation during embryogenesis. PMID:28224044

  7. Regulation of germ cell meiosis in the fetal ovary.

    PubMed

    Spiller, Cassy M; Bowles, Josephine; Koopman, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Fertility depends on correct regulation of meiosis, the special form of cell division that gives rise to haploid gametes. In female mammals, germ cells enter meiosis during fetal ovarian development, while germ cells in males avoid entering meiosis until puberty. Decades of research have shown that meiotic entry, and germ cell sex determination, are not initiated intrinsically within the germ cells. Instead, meiosis is induced by signals produced by the surrounding somatic cells. More recently, retinoic acid (RA), the active derivative of vitamin A, has been implicated in meiotic induction during fetal XX and postnatal XY germ cell development. Evidence for an intricate system of RA synthesis and degradation in the fetal ovary and testis has emerged, explaining past observations of infertility in vitamin A-deficient rodents. Here we review how meiosis is triggered in fetal ovarian germ cells, paying special attention to the role of RA in this process.

  8. 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.

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

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2017-02-07

    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

  10. Molecular mechanisms of male germ cell differentiation.

    PubMed

    Hecht, N B

    1998-07-01

    During spermatogenesis, diploid stem cells differentiate, undergo meiosis, and transform into haploid spermatozoa. As this precisely timed series of events proceeds, chromosomal ploidy is reduced and the nucleosomes of the chromatin are replaced by a transcriptionally quiescent protamine-containing nucleus. The premature termination of transcription during the haploid phase of spermatogenesis necessitates an especially prominent role for posttranscriptional regulation in the temporal and spatial expression of many testis-specific proteins and isozymes. In this review article, discussion will focus on novel mechanisms regulating gene expression in mammalian male germ cells from genome to protein.

  11. Lin28a regulates germ cell pool size and fertility

    PubMed Central

    Shinoda, Gen; de Soysa, T. Yvanka; Seligson, Marc T.; Yabuuchi, Akiko; Fujiwara, Yuko; Huang, Pei Yi; Hagan, John P.; Gregory, Richard I.; Moss, Eric G.; Daley, George Q.

    2013-01-01

    Overexpression of LIN28A is associated with human germ cell tumors and promotes primordial germ cell (PGC) development from embryonic stem cells in vitro and in chimeric mice. Knockdown of Lin28a inhibits PGC development in vitro, but how constitutional Lin28a deficiency affects the mammalian reproductive system in vivo remains unknown. Here, we generated Lin28a knockout (KO) mice and found that Lin28a deficiency compromises the size of the germ cell pool in both males and females by affecting PGC proliferation during embryogenesis. Interestingly however, in Lin28a KO males the germ cell pool partially recovers during postnatal expansion, while fertility remains impaired in both males and females mated to wild type mice. Embryonic overexpression of let-7, a microRNA negatively regulated by Lin28a, reduces the germ cell pool, corroborating the role of the Lin28a/let-7 axis in regulating the germ lineage. PMID:23378032

  12. Germ cell-specific sustained activation of Wnt signalling perturbs spermatogenesis in aged mice, possibly through non-coding RNAs

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Manish; Atkins, Joshua; Cairns, Murray; Ali, Ayesha; Tanwar, Pradeep S.

    2016-01-01

    Dysregulated Wnt signalling is associated with human infertility and testicular cancer. However, the role of Wnt signalling in male germ cells remains poorly understood. In this study, we first confirmed the activity of Wnt signalling in mouse, dog and human testes. To determine the physiological importance of the Wnt pathway, we developed a mouse model with germ cell-specific constitutive activation of βcatenin. In young mutants, similar to controls, germ cell development was normal. However, with age, mutant testes showed defective spermatogenesis, progressive germ cell loss, and flawed meiotic entry of spermatogonial cells. Flow sorting confirmed reduced germ cell populations at the leptotene/zygotene stages of meiosis in mutant group. Using thymidine analogues-based DNA double labelling technique, we further established decline in germ cell proliferation and differentiation. Overactivation of Wnt/βcatenin signalling in a spermatogonial cell line resulted in reduced cell proliferation, viability and colony formation. RNA sequencing analysis of testes revealed significant alterations in the non-coding regions of mutant mouse genome. One of the novel non-coding RNAs was switched on in mutant testes compared to controls. QPCR analysis confirmed upregulation of this unique non-coding RNA in mutant testis. In summary, our results highlight the significance of Wnt signalling in male germ cells. PMID:27992363

  13. Intracranial germ cell tumor mimicking anorexia nervosa.

    PubMed

    Andreu Martínez, F J; Martínez Mateu, J M

    2006-12-01

    We report on a case of a 23 year-old female diagnosed as having a germ-cell tumour located in the sellar region. The patient referred anorexia, psychic disorders, weight loss of 15 kilograms and secondary amenorrhea during the previous three years. This is the reason why the patient was diagnosed as having anorexia nervosa. Subsequently, the patient presented some endocrine dysfunction. MRI revealed the existence of a lesion located in suprasellar and hypothalamic regions. This case shows that the presence of intracranial tumours next to the hypothalamus must be borne in mind as a rare but real possibility in cases of anorexia nervosa, specially in those non-typical cases.

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  15. Environmentally induced transgenerational epigenetic reprogramming of primordial germ cells and the subsequent germ line.

    PubMed

    Skinner, Michael K; Guerrero-Bosagna, Carlos; Haque, M; Nilsson, Eric; Bhandari, Ramji; McCarrey, John R

    2013-01-01

    A number of environmental factors (e.g. toxicants) have been shown to promote the epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of disease and phenotypic variation. Transgenerational inheritance requires the germline transmission of altered epigenetic information between generations in the absence of direct environmental exposures. The primary periods for epigenetic programming of the germ line are those associated with primordial germ cell development and subsequent fetal germline development. The current study examined the actions of an agricultural fungicide vinclozolin on gestating female (F0 generation) progeny in regards to the primordial germ cell (PGC) epigenetic reprogramming of the F3 generation (i.e. great-grandchildren). The F3 generation germline transcriptome and epigenome (DNA methylation) were altered transgenerationally. Interestingly, disruptions in DNA methylation patterns and altered transcriptomes were distinct between germ cells at the onset of gonadal sex determination at embryonic day 13 (E13) and after cord formation in the testis at embryonic day 16 (E16). A larger number of DNA methylation abnormalities (epimutations) and transcriptional alterations were observed in the E13 germ cells than in the E16 germ cells. These observations indicate that altered transgenerational epigenetic reprogramming and function of the male germline is a component of vinclozolin induced epigenetic transgenerational inheritance of disease. Insights into the molecular control of germline transmitted epigenetic inheritance are provided.

  16. Robust In Vitro Induction of Human Germ Cell Fate from Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Kotaro; Yokobayashi, Shihori; Nakamura, Tomonori; Okamoto, Ikuhiro; Yabuta, Yukihiro; Kurimoto, Kazuki; Ohta, Hiroshi; Moritoki, Yoshinobu; Iwatani, Chizuru; Tsuchiya, Hideaki; Nakamura, Shinichiro; Sekiguchi, Kiyotoshi; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Yamamoto, Takashi; Mori, Takahide; Woltjen, Knut; Nakagawa, Masato; Yamamoto, Takuya; Takahashi, Kazutoshi; Yamanaka, Shinya; Saitou, Mitinori

    2015-08-06

    Mechanisms underlying human germ cell development are unclear, partly due to difficulties in studying human embryos and lack of suitable experimental systems. Here, we show that human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) differentiate into incipient mesoderm-like cells (iMeLCs), which robustly generate human primordial germ cell-like cells (hPGCLCs) that can be purified using the surface markers EpCAM and INTEGRINα6. The transcriptomes of hPGCLCs and primordial germ cells (PGCs) isolated from non-human primates are similar, and although specification of hPGCLCs and mouse PGCs rely on similar signaling pathways, hPGCLC specification transcriptionally activates germline fate without transiently inducing eminent somatic programs. This includes genes important for naive pluripotency and repression of key epigenetic modifiers, concomitant with epigenetic reprogramming. Accordingly, BLIMP1, which represses somatic programs in mice, activates and stabilizes a germline transcriptional circuit and represses a default neuronal differentiation program. Together, these findings provide a foundation for understanding and reconstituting human germ cell development in vitro.

  17. The Formation of Germ Cell for Organizational Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ivaldi, Silvia; Scaratti, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: The aim of the paper is to analyze the process of "germ cell" formation by framing it as an opportunity for promoting organizational learning and transformation. The paper aims to specifically answer two research questions: Why does the "germ cell" have a pivotal role in organization's transformation? and Which…

  18. Genetic and molecular analysis of chlorambucil-induced germ-line mutations in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Rinchik, E M; Bangham, J W; Hunsicker, P R; Cacheiro, N L; Kwon, B S; Jackson, I J; Russell, L B

    1990-02-01

    Eighteen variants recovered from specific locus mutation rate experiments involving the mutagen chlorambucil were subjected to several genetic and molecular analyses. Most mutations were found to be homozygous lethal. Because lethality is often presumptive evidence for multilocus-deletion events, 10 mutations were analyzed by Southern blot analysis with probes at, or closely linked to, several of the specific locus test markers, namely, albino (c), brown (b), and dilute (d). All eight mutations (two c; three b; two d; and one dilute-short ear [Df(d se)]) that arose in post-spermatogonial germ cells were deleted for DNA sequences. No evidence for deletion of two d-se region probes was obtained for the remaining two d mutations that arose in stem-cell spermatogonia. Six of the primary mutants also produced low litter sizes ("semisterility"). Karyotypic analysis has, to date, confirmed the presence of reciprocal translocations in four of the six. The high frequency of deletions and translocations among the mutations induced in post-spermatogonial stages by chlorambucil, combined with its overall high efficiency in inducing mutations in these stages, should make chlorambucil mutagenesis useful for generating experimentally valuable germ-line deletions throughout the mouse genome.

  19. 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

  20. Gonadal status of male recipient mice influences germ cell development in immature buffalo testis tissue xenograft.

    PubMed

    Reddy, Niranjan; Mahla, Ranjeet Singh; Thathi, Revanth; Suman, Sanjay Kumar; Jose, Jedy; Goel, Sandeep

    2012-01-01

    Growth and development of immature testis xenograft from various domestic mammals has been shown in mouse recipients; however, buffalo testis xenografts have not been reported to date. In this study, small fragments of testis tissue from 8-week-old buffalo calves were implanted subcutaneously onto the back of immunodeficient male mouse recipients, which were either castrated or left intact (non-castrated). The xenografts were retrieved and analyzed 12 and 24 weeks later. The grafted tissue survived and grew in both types of recipient with a significant increase in weight and seminiferous tubule diameter. Recovery of grafts from intact recipients 24 weeks post-grafting was significantly lower than that from the castrated recipients. Seminal vesicle indices and serum testosterone levels were lower in castrated recipients at both collection time points in comparison to the intact recipients and non-grafted intact mouse controls. Pachytene spermatocytes were the most advanced germ cells observed in grafts recovered from castrated recipients 24 weeks post-grafting. Complete spermatogenesis, as indicated by the presence of elongated spermatids, was present only in grafts from intact recipients collected 24 weeks post-grafting. However, significant number of germ cells with DNA damage was also detected in these grafts as indicated by TUNEL assay. The complete germ cell differentiation in xenografts from intact recipients may be attributed to efficient Sertoli cell maturation. These results suggest that germ cell differentiation in buffalo testis xenograft can be completed by altering the recipient gonadal status.

  1. 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.

  2. Easy assessment of ES cell clone potency for chimeric development and germ-line competency by an optimized aggregation method.

    PubMed

    Kondoh, G; Yamamoto, Y; Yoshida, K; Suzuki, Y; Osuka, S; Nakano, Y; Morita, T; Takeda, J

    1999-05-13

    Production of germ-line competent chimeric mice from embryonic stem (ES) cells is an inevitable step in establishing gene-manipulated mouse lineages. A common method used for creating chimeric mice is the injection of ES cells into the blastocoelic cavity (blastocyst injection). The aggregation method is an alternative way to introduce ES cells to the host embryo which is less difficult than blastocyst injection. Here we re-examined the condition of embryo-ES cell coculture on the aggregation method and found improvement of germ-line competent chimeric production by a simple modification of the coculture medium. Moreover, R1 ES cell and its 10 gene-manipulated subclones were tested by this method. Although all ES cell clones showed good morphology and a normal karyotype, the efficiency of chimeric development and germ-line transmission varied among clones and were classified into three grades according to germ-line competency. In the first group (class A), both the incidence of chimera with high ES cell contribution and the rate of germ-line transmission were fairly high. Germ-line competent chimeras were obtained but with rather low efficiency in the second group (class B), while another group (class C) showed an absence of high ES cell-contributed chimeras and no germ-line transmission. These results suggest the usefulness of this modified aggregation method to predict the potency of ES cell clones for germ-line competency.

  3. Transient translational quiescence in primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Oulhen, Nathalie; Swartz, S Zachary; Laird, Jessica; Mascaro, Alexandra; Wessel, Gary

    2017-02-24

    Stem cells in animals often exhibit a slow cell cycle and/or low transcriptional activity referred to as quiescence. Here we report that the translational activity in the primordial germ cells (PGCs) of the sea urchin embryo (Strongylocentrotus purpuratus) is quiescent. We measured new protein synthesis with O-propargyl-puromycin, and L-homopropargylglycine, Click-iT technologies and determined that these cells synthesize protein at only 6% the level of their adjacent somatic cells. Knock-down of translation of the RNA-binding protein Nanos2 by morpholino anti-sense oligonucleotides, or knock-out of the Nanos2 gene by CRISPR/Cas9 resulted in a significant, but partial increase (47%) in general translation specifically in the PGCs. We found that the mRNA of the translation factor eEF1A is excluded from the PGCs in a Nanos2-dependent manner, a consequence of a Nanos/Pumilio response element (PRE) in its 3'UTR. In addition to eEF1A, the cytoplasmic pH of the PGCs appears to repress translation and simply increasing the pH also significantly restores translation selectively in the PGCs. We conclude that the PGCs of this sea urchin institute parallel pathways to quiesce translation thoroughly but transiently.

  4. Testicular germ cell tumors: pathogenesis, diagnosis and treatment.

    PubMed

    Winter, Christian; Albers, Peter

    2011-01-01

    Testicular germ cell tumors represent the most common solid malignancy of young men aged 15-40 years. Histopathologically, testicular germ cell tumors are divided into two major groups: pure seminoma and nonseminoma. The pathogenesis of testicular germ cell tumors remains unknown; however, cryptorchidism is the main risk factor, and molecular studies have shown strong evidence of an association between genetic alterations and testicular germ cell tumors. In cases of suspicion for testicular germ cell tumor, a surgical exploration with orchiectomy is obligatory. After completion of diagnostic procedures, levels of serum tumor markers and the clinical stage based on the International Union Against Cancer tumor-node-metastasis classification should be defined. Patients with early-stage testicular germ cell tumors are treated by individualized risk stratification within a multidisciplinary approach. The individual management (surveillance, chemotherapy or radiotherapy) has to be balanced according to clinical features and the risk of short-term and long-term toxic effects. Treatment for metastatic tumors is based on risk stratification according to International Germ Cell Cancer Collaborative Group classification and is performed with cisplatin-based chemotherapy and residual tumor resection in cases of residual tumor lesion. High-dose chemotherapy represents a curative option for patients with second or subsequent relapses.

  5. 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

    2016-03-08

    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.

  6. Epigenetic transitions in germ cell development and meiosis.

    PubMed

    Kota, Satya K; Feil, Robert

    2010-11-16

    Germ cell development is controlled by unique gene expression programs and involves epigenetic reprogramming of histone modifications and DNA methylation. The central event is meiosis, during which homologous chromosomes pair and recombine, processes that involve histone alterations. At unpaired regions, chromatin is repressed by meiotic silencing. After meiosis, male germ cells undergo chromatin remodeling, including histone-to-protamine replacement. Male and female germ cells are also differentially marked by parental imprints, which contribute to sex determination in insects and mediate genomic imprinting in mammals. Here, we review epigenetic transitions during gametogenesis and discuss novel insights from animal and human studies.

  7. Retinoic acid, meiosis and germ cell fate in mammals.

    PubMed

    Bowles, Josephine; Koopman, Peter

    2007-10-01

    Although mammalian sex is determined genetically, the sex-specific development of germ cells as sperm or oocytes is initiated by cues provided by the gonadal environment. During embryogenesis, germ cells in an ovary enter meiosis, thereby committing to oogenesis. By contrast, germ cells in a testicular environment do not enter meiosis until puberty. Recent findings indicate that the key to this sex-specific timing of meiosis entry is the presence or absence of the signaling molecule retinoic acid. Although this knowledge clarifies a long-standing mystery in reproductive biology, it also poses many new questions, which we discuss in this review.

  8. 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.

  9. Epigenetics: a way to understand the origin and biology of testicular germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Okamoto, Keisei

    2012-06-01

    Testicular germ cell tumors are neoplasms carrying two unique features. First, testicular germ cell tumors have a pluripotential nature and show protean histology ranging from that of germ cells to embryonal and differentiated somatic cells. Therefore, testicular germ cell tumors are interesting resources positioned at a crossroad in developmental and neoplastic processes. The second unique feature of testicular germ cell tumors is their exquisite sensitivity to cisplatin-based chemotherapy. This review summarizes recent research progress in the epigenetics of testicular germ cell tumors in an attempt to explain the abovementioned biological and clinical characteristics of testicular germ cell tumors.

  10. Transgenic rodent assay for quantifying male germ cell mutant frequency.

    PubMed

    O'Brien, Jason M; Beal, Marc A; Gingerich, John D; Soper, Lynda; Douglas, George R; Yauk, Carole L; Marchetti, Francesco

    2014-08-06

    De novo mutations arise mostly in the male germline and may contribute to adverse health outcomes in subsequent generations. Traditional methods for assessing the induction of germ cell mutations require the use of large numbers of animals, making them impractical. As such, germ cell mutagenicity is rarely assessed during chemical testing and risk assessment. Herein, we describe an in vivo male germ cell mutation assay using a transgenic rodent model that is based on a recently approved Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) test guideline. This method uses an in vitro positive selection assay to measure in vivo mutations induced in a transgenic λgt10 vector bearing a reporter gene directly in the germ cells of exposed males. We further describe how the detection of mutations in the transgene recovered from germ cells can be used to characterize the stage-specific sensitivity of the various spermatogenic cell types to mutagen exposure by controlling three experimental parameters: the duration of exposure (administration time), the time between exposure and sample collection (sampling time), and the cell population collected for analysis. Because a large number of germ cells can be assayed from a single male, this method has superior sensitivity compared with traditional methods, requires fewer animals and therefore much less time and resources.

  11. Transgenic Rodent Assay for Quantifying Male Germ Cell Mutant Frequency

    PubMed Central

    O'Brien, Jason M.; Beal, Marc A.; Gingerich, John D.; Soper, Lynda; Douglas, George R.; Yauk, Carole L.; Marchetti, Francesco

    2014-01-01

    De novo mutations arise mostly in the male germline and may contribute to adverse health outcomes in subsequent generations. Traditional methods for assessing the induction of germ cell mutations require the use of large numbers of animals, making them impractical. As such, germ cell mutagenicity is rarely assessed during chemical testing and risk assessment. Herein, we describe an in vivo male germ cell mutation assay using a transgenic rodent model that is based on a recently approved Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) test guideline. This method uses an in vitro positive selection assay to measure in vivo mutations induced in a transgenic λgt10 vector bearing a reporter gene directly in the germ cells of exposed males. We further describe how the detection of mutations in the transgene recovered from germ cells can be used to characterize the stage-specific sensitivity of the various spermatogenic cell types to mutagen exposure by controlling three experimental parameters: the duration of exposure (administration time), the time between exposure and sample collection (sampling time), and the cell population collected for analysis. Because a large number of germ cells can be assayed from a single male, this method has superior sensitivity compared with traditional methods, requires fewer animals and therefore much less time and resources. PMID:25145276

  12. Female germ cell loss from radiation and chemical exposures

    SciTech Connect

    Dobson, R.L.; Felton, J.S.

    1983-01-01

    Female germ cells in some mammals are extremely sensitive to killing by ionizing radiation, especially during development. Primordial oocytes in juvenile mice have an LD50 of only 6-7 rad, and the germ cell pool in squirrel monkeys is destroyed by prenatal exposure of 0.7 rad/day. Sensitivity varies greatly with species and germ cell stage. Unusually high sensitivity has not been found in macaques and may not occur in man, but this has not been established for all developmental stages. The exquisite oocyte radiosensitivity in mice apparently reflects vulnerability of the plasma membrane, not DNA, which may have implications for estimating human genetic risks. Germ cells can be killed also by chemicals. Such oocyte loss, with similarities to radiation effects, is under increasing study, including chemotherapy observations in women. More than 75 compounds have been tested in mice, with in vivo toxicity quantified by oocyte loss; certain chemicals apparently act on the membrane.

  13. Childhood Central Nervous System Germ Cell Tumors Treatment

    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. Ndrg3 gene regulates DSB repair during meiosis through modulation the ERK signal pathway in the male germ cells.

    PubMed

    Pan, Hongjie; Zhang, Xuan; Jiang, Hanwei; Jiang, Xiaohua; Wang, Liu; Qi, Qi; Bi, Yuan; Wang, Jian; Shi, Qinghua; Li, Runsheng

    2017-03-14

    The N-myc downstream regulated gene (NDRG) family consists of 4 members, NDRG-1, -2, -3, -4. Physiologically, we found Ndrg3, a critical gene which led to homologous lethality in the early embryo development, regulated the male meiosis in mouse. The expression of Ndrg3 was enhanced specifically in germ cells, and reached its peak level in the pachytene stage spermatocyte. Haplo-insufficiency of Ndrg3 gene led to sub-infertility during the male early maturation. In the Ndrg3(+/-) germ cells, some meiosis events such as DSB repair and synaptonemal complex formation were impaired. Disturbances on meiotic prophase progression and spermatogenesis were observed. In mechanism, the attenuation of pERK1/2 signaling was detected in the heterozygous testis. With our primary spermatocyte culture system, we found that lactate promoted DSB repair via ERK1/2 signaling in the male mouse germ cells in vitro. Deficiency of Ndrg3 gene attenuated the activation of ERK which further led to the aberrancy of DSB repair in the male germ cells in mouse. Taken together, we reported that Ndrg3 gene modulated the lactate induced ERK pathway to facilitate DSB repair in male germ cells, which further regulated meiosis and subsequently fertility in male mouse.

  15. Ndrg3 gene regulates DSB repair during meiosis through modulation the ERK signal pathway in the male germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Hongjie; Zhang, Xuan; Jiang, Hanwei; Jiang, Xiaohua; Wang, Liu; Qi, Qi; Bi, Yuan; Wang, Jian; Shi, Qinghua; Li, Runsheng

    2017-01-01

    The N-myc downstream regulated gene (NDRG) family consists of 4 members, NDRG-1, -2, -3, -4. Physiologically, we found Ndrg3, a critical gene which led to homologous lethality in the early embryo development, regulated the male meiosis in mouse. The expression of Ndrg3 was enhanced specifically in germ cells, and reached its peak level in the pachytene stage spermatocyte. Haplo-insufficiency of Ndrg3 gene led to sub-infertility during the male early maturation. In the Ndrg3+/− germ cells, some meiosis events such as DSB repair and synaptonemal complex formation were impaired. Disturbances on meiotic prophase progression and spermatogenesis were observed. In mechanism, the attenuation of pERK1/2 signaling was detected in the heterozygous testis. With our primary spermatocyte culture system, we found that lactate promoted DSB repair via ERK1/2 signaling in the male mouse germ cells in vitro. Deficiency of Ndrg3 gene attenuated the activation of ERK which further led to the aberrancy of DSB repair in the male germ cells in mouse. Taken together, we reported that Ndrg3 gene modulated the lactate induced ERK pathway to facilitate DSB repair in male germ cells, which further regulated meiosis and subsequently fertility in male mouse. PMID:28290521

  16. Effects of tritiated water on germ cells in medaka embryos.

    PubMed

    Etoh, H; Hyodo-Taguchi, Y

    1983-02-01

    Embryos of medaka, Oryzias latipes, were exposed to tritiated water and 137Cs gamma rays continuously from the one-cell stage until hatching (10 days at 26 degrees C). Germ cells in the gonads of newly hatched fry were counted in histological sections and compared with controls. The accumulated dose for 50% survival of germ cells was 195 rad for tritium beta rays and 350 rad for 137Cs gamma rays. Female progeny were produced using Yamamoto's method. The 50% survival doses for female germ cells treated in a manner similar to that described above were 140 rad for beta rays and 305 rad for gamma rays. When embryos of medaka were irradiated with gamma rays below an accumulated dose of 475 rad or treated with tritiated water at a concentration of 0.2 mCi/ml or lower, the dose response of the germ cells showed an exponential relationship. It appeared that there was no threshold or significant dose-rate effect for either beta or gamma rays on germ cell survival, and that tritium beta rays were more effective than 137Cs gamma rays in germ cell killing.

  17. 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.

  18. Role of Mael in early oogenesis and during germ-cell differentiation from embryonic stem cells in mice in vitro.

    PubMed

    Bahena, I; Xu, E; Betancourt, M; Casas, E; Ducolomb, Y; González, C; Bonilla, E

    2014-11-01

    In a previous study, we have identified a set of conserved spermatogenic genes whose expression is restricted to testis and ovary and that are developmentally regulated. One of these genes, the transcription factor Mael, has been reported to play an essential role in mouse spermatogenesis. Nevertheless, the role of Mael in mouse oogenesis has not been defined. In order to analyse the role of Mael in mouse oogenesis, the expression of this gene was blocked during early oogenesis in mouse in vitro using RNAi technology. In addition, the role of Mael during differentiation of embryonic stem cells (ESC) into germ cells in vitro was analysed. Results show that downregulation of Mael by a specific short interfering RNA disrupted fetal oocyte growth and differentiation in fetal ovary explants in culture and the expression of several germ-cell markers in ESC during their differentiation. These results suggest that there is an important role for Mael in early oogenesis and during germ-cell differentiation from embryonic stem cells in mouse in vitro.

  19. Stage specificity, dose response, and doubling dose for mouse minisatellite germ-line mutation induced by acute radiation.

    PubMed

    Dubrova, Y E; Plumb, M; Brown, J; Fennelly, J; Bois, P; Goodhead, D; Jeffreys, A J

    1998-05-26

    Germ-line mutation induction at mouse minisatellite loci by acute irradiation with x-rays was studied at premeiotic and postmeiotic stages of spermatogenesis. An elevated paternal mutation rate was found after irradiation of premeiotic spermatogonia and stem cells, whereas the frequency of minisatellite mutation after postmeiotic irradiation of spermatids was similar to that in control litters. In contrast, paternal irradiation did not affect the maternal mutation rate. A linear dose-response curve for paternal mutation induced at premeiotic stages was found, with a doubling dose of 0.33 Gy, a value close to those obtained in mice after acute spermatogonia irradiation using other systems for mutation detection. High frequencies of spontaneous and induced mutations at minisatellite loci allow mutation induction to be evaluated at low doses of exposure in very small population samples, which currently makes minisatellite DNA the most powerful tool for monitoring radiation-induced germ-line mutation.

  20. 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...

  1. 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.

  2. Control of male germ-cell development in flowering plants.

    PubMed

    Singh, Mohan B; Bhalla, Prem L

    2007-11-01

    Plant reproduction is vital for species survival, and is also central to the production of food for human consumption. Seeds result from the successful fertilization of male and female gametes, but our understanding of the development, differentiation of gamete lineages and fertilization processes in higher plants is limited. Germ cells in animals diverge from somatic cells early in embryo development, whereas plants have distinct vegetative and reproductive phases in which gametes are formed from somatic cells after the plant has made the transition to flowering and the formation of the reproductive organs. Recently, novel insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying male germ-line initiation and male gamete development in plants have been obtained. Transcriptional repression of male germ-line genes in non-male germ-line cells have been identified as a key mechanism for spatial and temporal control of male germ-line development. This review focuses on molecular events controlling male germ-line development especially, on the nature and regulation of gene expression programs operating in male gametes of flowering plants.

  3. Hormonal control of germ cell development and spermatogenesis.

    PubMed

    O'Shaughnessy, Peter J

    2014-05-01

    Spermatogenesis is completely dependent on the pituitary hormone follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and androgens locally produced in response to luteinising hormone (LH). This dual control has been known since the 1930s and 1940s but more recent work, particularly using transgenic mice, has allowed us to determine which parts of the spermatogenic pathway are regulated by each hormone. During the first spermatogenic cycle after puberty both FSH and androgen act to limit the massive wave of germ cell apoptosis which occurs at this time. The established role of FSH in all cycles is to increase spermatogonial and subsequent spermatocyte numbers with a likely effect also on spermiation. Mice lacking FSH or its receptor are fertile, albeit with reduced germ cell numbers, and so this hormone is not an essential regulator of spermatogenesis but acts to optimise germ cell production Androgens also appear to regulate spermatogonial proliferation but, crucially, they are also required to allow spermatocytes to complete meiosis and form spermatids. Animals lacking androgen receptors fail to generate post-meiotic germ cells, therefore, and are infertile. There is also strong evidence that androgens act to ensure appropriate spermiation of mature spermatids. Androgen regulation of spermatogenesis is dependent upon action on the Sertoli cell but recent studies have shown that androgenic stimulation of the peritubular myoid cells is also essential for normal germ cells development. While FSH or androgen alone will both stimulate germ cell development, together they act synergistically to maximise germ cell number. The other hormones/local factors which can regulate spermatogenesis include activins and estrogens although their role in normal physiological regulation of this process needs to be more clearly established. Regulation of spermatogenesis in primates appears to be similar to that in rodents although the role of FSH may be greater. While our knowledge of hormone function

  4. Proliferation in culture of primordial germ cells derived from embryonic stem cell: induction by retinoic acid

    PubMed Central

    Makoolati, Zohreh; Movahedin, Mansoureh; Forouzandeh-Moghadam, Mehdi

    2016-01-01

    An in vitro system that supports primordial germ cells (PGCs) survival and proliferation is useful for enhancement of these cells and efficient transplantation in infertility disorders. One approach is cultivation of PGCs under proper conditions that allow self-renewal and proliferation of PGCs. For this purpose, we compared the effects of different concentrations of retinoic acid (RA), and the effect of PGCs co-culture (Co-C) with SIM mouse embryo-derived thioguanine- and ouabain-resistant (STO) cells on the proliferation of embryonic stem cells (ESCs)-derived PGCs. One-day-old embryoid body (EB) was cultured for 4 days in simple culture system in the presence of 5 ng/ml bone morphogenetic protein-4 (BMP4) (SCB group) for PGC induction. For PGC enrichment, ESCs-derived germ cells were cultured for 7 days in the presence of different doses (0–5  μM) of RA, both in the simple and STO Co-C systems. At the end of the culture period, viability and proliferation rates were assessed and expression of mouse vasa homologue (Mvh),  α6 integrin,  β1 integrin, stimulated by retinoic acid 8 (Stra8) and piwi (Drosophila)-like 2 (Piwil2) was evaluated using quantitative PCR. Also, the inductive effects were investigated immunocytochemically with Mvh and cadherin1 (CDH1) on the selected groups. Immunocytochemistry/PCR results showed higher expression of Mvh, the PGC-specific marker, in 3  μM RA concentrations on the top of the STO feeder layer. Meanwhile, assessment of the Stra8 mRNA and CDH1 protein, the specific makers for spermatogonia, showed no significant differences between groups. Based on the results, it seems that in the presence of 3 μM RA on top of the STO feeder layer cells, the majority of the cells transdifferentiated into germ cells were PGCs. PMID:27834666

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. High-Speed Mouse Backcrossing Through the Female Germ Line

    PubMed Central

    Grove, Erin; Eckardt, Sigrid; McLaughlin, K. John

    2016-01-01

    Transferring mouse mutations into specific mouse strain backgrounds can be critical for appropriate analysis of phenotypic effects of targeted genomic alterations and quantitative trait loci. Speed congenic breeding strategies incorporating marker-assisted selection of progeny with the highest percentage target background as breeders for the next generation can produce congenic strains within approximately 5 generations. When mating selected donor males to target strain females, this may require more than 1 year, with each generation lasting 10 to 11 weeks including 3 weeks of gestation and 7 to 8 weeks until the males reach sexual maturity. Because ovulation can be induced in female mice as early as 3 weeks of age, superovulation-aided backcrossing of marker-selected females could accelerate the production of congenic animals by approximately 4 weeks per generation, reducing time and cost. Using this approach, we transferred a transgenic strain of undefined genetic background to >99% C57BL/6J within 10 months, with most generations lasting 7 weeks. This involved less than 60 mice in total, with 9 to 18 animals per generation. Our data demonstrate that high-speed backcrossing through the female germline is feasible and practical with small mouse numbers. PMID:27926922

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. Giant Mediastinal Germ Cell Tumour: An Enigma of Surgical Consideration

    PubMed Central

    Ali, Nurayub Mohd; Azizan, Nornazirah; Zakaria, Andee Dzulkarnaen; Rahman, Mohd Ramzisham Abdul

    2016-01-01

    We present a case of 16-year-old male, who was referred from private centre for dyspnoea, fatigue, and orthopnea. The chest radiograph revealed complete opacification of left chest which was confirmed by computed tomography as a large left mediastinal mass measuring 14 × 15 × 18 cm. The diagnostic needle core biopsy revealed mixed germ cell tumour with possible combination of embryonal carcinoma, yolk sac, and teratoma. After 4 cycles of neoadjuvant BEP regime, there was initial response of tumour markers but not tumour bulk. Instead of classic median sternotomy or clamshell incision, posterolateral approach with piecemeal manner was chosen. Histology confirmed mixed germ cell tumour with residual teratomatous component without yolk sac or embryonal carcinoma component. Weighing 3.5 kg, it is one of the largest mediastinal germ cell tumours ever reported. We describe this rare and gigantic intrathoracic tumour and discuss the spectrum of surgical approach and treatment of this exceptional tumour. PMID:27807495

  12. 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.

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-09-15

    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.

  14. Klinefelter Syndrome with Poor Risk Extragonadal Germ Cell Tumor.

    PubMed

    Konheim, Jeremy A; Israel, Jonathan A; Delacroix, Scott E

    2017-01-01

    Germ cell tumors are the most common malignancy in men aged 15-35 years old, with a small percentage presenting in an extragonadal location. These tumors are seldom identified in the gastrointestinal tract. There is increased risk of extragonadal germ cell tumors (EGCT) in men with Klinefelter syndrome (KS). We report a rare case of a 37-year-old male with KS and EGCT discovered in the duodenum and pelvis. After treatment with Bleomycin-Etoposide-Cisplatin (BEP), he developed growing teratoma syndrome (GTS) and myelodysplasia. Despite surgical excision of the pelvic growing teratoma, he unfortunately died secondary to complications of severe bone marrow suppression.

  15. Sertoli cell condition medium can induce germ like cells from bone marrow derived mesenchymal stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Monfared, Mahdieh Hajian; Minaee, Bagher; Rastegar, Tayebeh; Khrazinejad, Ebrahim; Barbarestani, Mohammad

    2016-01-01

    Objective(s): Although many researchers have confirmed induction of germ cells from bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMMSCs), there are no reports that confirm spontaneous differentiation of germ cells from BMMSCs. In this study, we have evaluated the effect of adult Sertoli cell condition medium (SCCM) as a mutative factor in the induction of germ cells from BMMSCs. Materials and Methods: BMMSCs were collected from the bone marrow of 6-8-week old NMRI mice and their mesenchymal entities were proven using superficial markers (expression of CD44 and CD73 and non-expresion of CD45 and CD11b) by fow cytometry. Their multi-potential entities were proved with differentiation to osteogenic and adipogenic cells for 21 days. Also isolated Sertoli cells were enriched using lectin coated plates and Sertoli cell condition medium (SCCM) was collected. Sertoli cells were identified by immunocytochemistry and Vimentin marker. The cells were then differentiated into germ cells with SCCM for 2 weeks. Finally induced cells were evaluated by RT-PCR and immunocytochemistry. Results: Differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells to osteoblast and adipocyte showed their multi-potential property. Expression of CD44 and CD73 and non-expression of CD45 and CD11b confirmed mesenchyme cells. Immunocytochemistry and RT-PCR results showed expression of germ cells specific marker (Mvh). Conclusion: This study confirmed the effect of SCCM as a motivational factor that can used for differentiation of germ cells from BMMSCs. PMID:27917274

  16. 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.

  17. Cell cycle analysis of fetal germ cells during sex differentiation in mice

    PubMed Central

    Spiller, Cassy; Wilhelm, Dagmar; Koopman, Peter

    2009-01-01

    Background information. Primordial germ cells in developing male and female gonads are responsive to somatic cell cues that direct their sex-specific differentiation into functional gametes. The first divergence of the male and female pathways is a change in cell cycle state observed from 12.5 dpc (days post coitum) in mice. At this time XY and XX germ cells cease mitotic division and enter G1/G0 arrest and meiosis prophase I respectively. Aberrant cell cycle regulation at this time can lead to disrupted ovarian development, germ cell apoptosis, reduced fertility and/or the formation of germ cell tumours. Results. In order to unravel the mechanisms utilized by germ cells to achieve and maintain the correct cell cycle states, we analysed the expression of a large number of cell cycle genes in purified germ cells across the crucial time of sex differentiation. Our results revealed common signalling for both XX and XY germ cell survival involving calcium signalling. A robust mechanism for apoptosis and checkpoint control was observed in XY germ cells, characterized by p53 and Atm (ataxia telangiectasia mutated) expression. Additionally, a member of the retinoblastoma family and p21 were identified, linking these factors to XY germ cell G1/G0 arrest. Lastly, in XX germ cells we observed a down-regulation of genes involved in both G1- and G2-phases of the cell cycle consistent with their entry into meiosis. Conclusion. The present study has provided a detailed analysis of cell cycle gene expression during fetal germ cell development and identified candidate factors warranting further investigation in order to understand cases of aberrant cell cycle control in these specialized cells. PMID:19419345

  18. [Effects of formaldehyde on germ cells of male mice].

    PubMed

    Tang, Mingde; Xie, Ying; Yi, Yizhen; Wang, Wei

    2003-11-01

    General toxicity and genetic materials damage of formaldehyde on germ cells in different stages was studied. In order to discover the toxicity mechanism of formaldehyde on germ cells and the biomarkers of effect after the presence of damage in germ cells and the estimation index, the relationships between the damage of germ cells and the MDA, SDH activity and Cu and Zn. in testicle tissue were investigated. Male mice exposed to formaldehyde by i.p. for 5 days. Formaldehyde doses were: 0.20 mg/kg, 2.00 mg/kg, 20.00 mg/kg. Mice were killed at the 6th day and the 14th day. HE staining was used to study the pathological changes happened in testicle tissue. In order to study the changes in sperm, the sperms and the abnormality of the sperm's heads were observed. In order to study the damage of the genetic material in the germ cells, the frequencies of sister chromosome exchanges and the frequencies of MN cells were studied. MDA was measured by MDA diagnosis box. Copper and zinc were determined by FAAS. US was used to determine the SDH activity in serum and testicle tissue. The results showed that: The main pathological changes in testicle tissue of formaldehyde groups were degeneration; The sperm quantity was decreased and the sperm heads deformation ratio was increased in all formaldehyde groups; There were a significant increase of MN ratio in early spermatogenic cells and SCE ratio in medial and high dose groups; The MDA in testicle tissue significant increased in high dose group. The SDH activity in testicle tissue was declined in all formaldehyde groups; There were a significant decline of copper and zinc in testicle tissue in high dose group. It is suggested that: Formaldehyde could induce genetic materials in spermatogone, primary spermatocyte and caused degeneration and necrosis in secondary spermatocyte, spermatogenic cell, sperm; The damage of LPO, decline of copper and zinc and SDH activity in mice's testicle tissue could be caused by formaldehyde; The effect

  19. Origin of germ cells and formation of new primary follicles in adult human ovaries

    PubMed Central

    Bukovsky, Antonin; Caudle, Michael R; Svetlikova, Marta; Upadhyaya, Nirmala B

    2004-01-01

    Recent reports indicate that functional mouse oocytes and sperm can be derived in vitro from somatic cell lines. We hypothesize that in adult human ovaries, mesenchymal cells in the tunica albuginea (TA) are bipotent progenitors with a commitment for both primitive granulosa and germ cells. We investigated ovaries of twelve adult women (mean age 32.8 ± 4.1 SD, range 27–38 years) by single, double, and triple color immunohistochemistry. We show that cytokeratin (CK)+ mesenchymal cells in ovarian TA differentiate into surface epithelium (SE) cells by a mesenchymal-epithelial transition. Segments of SE directly associated with ovarian cortex are overgrown by TA, forming solid epithelial cords, which fragment into small (20 micron) epithelial nests descending into the lower ovarian cortex, before assembling with zona pellucida (ZP)+ oocytes. Germ cells can originate from SE cells which cover the TA. Small (10 micron) germ-like cells showing PS1 meiotically expressed oocyte carbohydrate protein are derived from SE cells via asymmetric division. They show nuclear MAPK immunoexpression, subsequently divide symmetrically, and enter adjacent cortical vessels. During vascular transport, the putative germ cells increase to oocyte size, and are picked-up by epithelial nests associated with the vessels. During follicle formation, extensions of granulosa cells enter the oocyte cytoplasm, forming a single paranuclear CK+ Balbiani body supplying all the mitochondria of the oocyte. In the ovarian medulla, occasional vessels show an accumulation of ZP+ oocytes (25–30 microns) or their remnants, suggesting that some oocytes degenerate. In contrast to males, adult human female gonads do not preserve germline type stem cells. This study expands our previous observations on the formation of germ cells in adult human ovaries. Differentiation of primitive granulosa and germ cells from the bipotent mesenchymal cell precursors of TA in adult human ovaries represents a most

  20. Functional analysis of the Drosophila embryonic germ cell transcriptome by RNA interference.

    PubMed

    Jankovics, Ferenc; Henn, László; Bujna, Ágnes; Vilmos, Péter; Spirohn, Kerstin; Boutros, Michael; Erdélyi, Miklós

    2014-01-01

    In Drosophila melanogaster, primordial germ cells are specified at the posterior pole of the very early embryo. This process is regulated by the posterior localized germ plasm that contains a large number of RNAs of maternal origin. Transcription in the primordial germ cells is actively down-regulated until germ cell fate is established. Bulk expression of the zygotic genes commences concomitantly with the degradation of the maternal transcripts. Thus, during embryogenesis, maternally provided and zygotically transcribed mRNAs determine germ cell development collectively. In an effort to identify novel genes involved in the regulation of germ cell behavior, we carried out a large-scale RNAi screen targeting both maternal and zygotic components of the embryonic germ line transcriptome. We identified 48 genes necessary for distinct stages in germ cell development. We found pebble and fascetto to be essential for germ cell migration and germ cell division, respectively. Our data uncover a previously unanticipated role of mei-P26 in maintenance of embryonic germ cell fate. We also performed systematic co-RNAi experiments, through which we found a low rate of functional redundancy among homologous gene pairs. As our data indicate a high degree of evolutionary conservation in genetic regulation of germ cell development, they are likely to provide valuable insights into the biology of the germ line in general.

  1. Stirred suspension bioreactors as a novel method to enrich germ cells from pre-pubertal pig testis

    PubMed Central

    Dores, Camila; Rancourt, Derrick; Dobrinski, Ina

    2015-01-01

    To study spermatogonial stem cells the heterogeneous testicular cell population first needs to be enriched for undifferentiated spermatogonia, which contain the stem cell population. When working with non-rodent models, this step requires working with large numbers of cells. Available cell separation methods rely on differential properties of testicular cell types such as expression of specific cell surface proteins, size, density or differential adhesion to substrates to separate germ cells from somatic cells. The objective of this study was to develop an approach that allowed germ cell enrichment while providing efficiency of handling large cell numbers. Here we report the use of stirred suspension bioreactors to exploit the adhesion properties of Sertoli cells to enrich cells obtained from pre-pubertal porcine testes for undifferentiated spermatogonia. We also compared the bioreactor approach with an established differential plating method and the combination of both: stirred suspension bioreactor followed by differential plating. After 66 hours of culture, germ cell enrichment in stirred suspension bioreactors provided 7.3±1.0 fold (n=9), differential plating 9.8±2.4 fold (n=6) and combination of both methods resulted in 9.1±0.3 fold enrichment of germ cells from the initial germ cell population (n=3). To document functionality of cells recovered from the bioreactor, we demonstrated that cells retained their functional ability to reassemble seminiferous tubules de novo after grafting to mouse hosts and to support spermatogenesis. These results demonstrate that the stirred suspension bioreactor allows enrichment of germ cells in a controlled and scalable environment providing an efficient method when handling large cell numbers while reducing variability due to handling. PMID:25877677

  2. 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...

  3. HMG-CoA reductase guides migrating primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Van Doren, M; Broihier, H T; Moore, L A; Lehmann, R

    1998-12-03

    The enzyme 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase is best known for catalysing a rate-limiting step in cholesterol biosynthesis, but it also participates in the production of a wide variety of other compounds. Some clinical benefits attributed to inhibitors of HMG-CoA reductase are now thought to be independent of any serum cholesterol-lowering effect. Here we describe a new cholesterol-independent role for HMG-CoA reductase, in regulating a developmental process: primordial germ cell migration. We show that in Drosophila this enzyme is highly expressed in the somatic gonad and that it is necessary for primordial germ cells to migrate to this tissue. Misexpression of HMG-CoA reductase is sufficient to attract primordial germ cells to tissues other than the gonadal mesoderm. We conclude that the regulated expression of HMG-CoA reductase has a critical developmental function in providing spatial information to guide migrating primordial germ cells.

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

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-10-05

    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

  5. 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.

  6. Formation and cultivation of medaka primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhendong; Li, Mingyou; Hong, Ni; Yi, Meisheng; Hong, Yunhan

    2014-07-01

    Primordial germ cell (PGC) formation is pivotal for fertility. Mammalian PGCs are epigenetically induced without the need for maternal factors and can also be derived in culture from pluripotent stem cells. In egg-laying animals such as Drosophila and zebrafish, PGCs are specified by maternal germ plasm factors without the need for inducing factors. In these organisms, PGC formation and cultivation in vitro from indeterminate embryonic cells have not been possible. Here, we report PGC formation and cultivation in vitro from blastomeres dissociated from midblastula embryos (MBEs) of the fish medaka (Oryzias latipes). PGCs were identified by using germ-cell-specific green fluorescent protein (GFP) expression from a transgene under the control of the vasa promoter. Embryo perturbation was exploited to study PGC formation in vivo, and dissociated MBE cells were cultivated under various conditions to study PGC formation in vitro. Perturbation of somatic development did not prevent PGC formation in live embryos. Dissociated MBE blastomeres formed PGCs in the absence of normal somatic structures and of known inducing factors. Most importantly, under culture conditions conducive to stem cell derivation, some dissociated MBE blastomeres produced GFP-positive PGC-like cells. These GFP-positive cells contained genuine PGCs, as they expressed PGC markers and migrated into the embryonic gonad to generate germline chimeras. Our data thus provide evidence for PGC preformation in medaka and demonstrate, for the first time, that PGC formation and derivation can be obtained in culture from early embryos of medaka as a lower vertebrate model.

  7. Human Stem Cells Can Differentiate in Post-implantation Mouse Embryos.

    PubMed

    Tam, Patrick P L

    2016-01-07

    The potency of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) to differentiate into germ layer derivatives is conventionally assessed by teratoma induction and in vitro differentiation. In this issue of Cell Stem Cell, Mascetti and Pedersen (2016) demonstrate that the human-mouse post-implantation chimera offers an efficient avenue to test the germ layer differentiation potential of hPSCs in mouse embryos ex vivo.

  8. Risk estimation based on germ-cell mutations in animals.

    PubMed

    Favor, J

    1989-01-01

    The set of mouse germ cell mutation rate results following spermatogonial exposure to high dose rate irradiation have been presented as the most relevant experimental results upon which to extrapolate the expected genetic risk of offspring of the survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombings. Results include mutation rates to recessive specific-locus, dominant cataract, protein-charge, and enzyme-activity alleles. The mutability as determined by the various genetic end points differed: the mutation rates to recessive specific-locus alleles and enzyme-activity alleles were similar and greater than the mutation rates to dominant cataract and protein-charge alleles. It is argued that the type of mutation event scored by a particular test will determine the mutability of the genetic end point screened. When the loss of functional gene product can be scored in a particular mutation test, as in the recessive specific-locus and enzyme-activity tests, a wide spectrum of DNA alterations may result in a loss of and a higher mutation rate is observed. When an altered gene product is scored, as in the dominant cataract and protein-charge tests, a narrower spectrum of DNA alterations is screened and a lower mutation rate is observed. The radiation doubling dose, defined as the dose that induces as many mutations as occur spontaneously per generation, was shown to be four times higher in the dominant cataract test than the specific-locus test. These results indicate that to extrapolate to genetic risks in humans using the doubling-dose method, the extrapolation must be based on experimental mutation rate results for the same genetic end point.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  9. In vitro germ cell differentiation from embryonic stem cells of mice: induction control by BMP4 signalling

    PubMed Central

    Movahedin, Mansoureh; Forouzandeh-Moghadam, Mehdi

    2016-01-01

    The present study aims to confirm and analyse germ cell-related patterns and specific gene expressions at a very early stage of cell commitment. Following the XY cytogenetic confirmation of the CCE mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) line, cells were cultured to form embryoid bodies (EBs). Expression pattern assessment of the mouse vasa homologue (Mvh), Stra8, α6 and β1 integrin genes in ESC and 1–3-day-old EB showed that all genes except α6 integrin were expressed in the ESC. The mean calibration of Mvh, Stra8 and α6 integrin expression significantly increased upon EB formation compared with the ESCs. During mouse embryogenesis, the signalling of bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) is essential for germ-line formation. To investigate its role in germ-line induction in vitro, mESCs were cultured as 1-day-old EB aggregates with BMP4 for 4 days in STO co-culture systems, in the presence and absence of 5 ng/ml BMP4. At the end of the culture period, colony assay (number and diameter) was performed and the viability percentage and proliferation rate was determined. There were no significant statistical differences in the abovementioned criteria between these two groups. Moreover, the expression of Mvh, α6 and β1 integrins, Stra8 and Piwil2 genes was evaluated in co-culture groups. The molecular results of co-culture groups showed higher–but insignificant–Piwil2 and significant α6 integrin expressions in BMP4 treated co-culture systems. These results confirmed that the EB system and the presence of BMP4 in a STO co-culture system improve the differentiation of ESCs to germ cell. PMID:27694305

  10. Wheat germ systems for cell-free protein expression.

    PubMed

    Harbers, Matthias

    2014-08-25

    Cell-free protein expression plays an important role in biochemical research. However, only recent developments led to new methods to rapidly synthesize preparative amounts of protein that make cell-free protein expression an attractive alternative to cell-based methods. In particular the wheat germ system provides the highest translation efficiency among eukaryotic cell-free protein expression approaches and has a very high success rate for the expression of soluble proteins of good quality. As an open in vitro method, the wheat germ system is a preferable choice for many applications in protein research including options for protein labeling and the expression of difficult-to-express proteins like membrane proteins and multiple protein complexes. Here I describe wheat germ cell-free protein expression systems and give examples how they have been used in genome-wide expression studies, preparation of labeled proteins for structural genomics and protein mass spectroscopy, automated protein synthesis, and screening of enzymatic activities. Future directions for the use of cell-free expression methods are discussed.

  11. Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus replicates in testicular germ cells, alters spermatogenesis, and induces germ cell death by apoptosis.

    PubMed Central

    Sur, J H; Doster, A R; Christian, J S; Galeota, J A; Wills, R W; Zimmerman, J J; Osorio, F A

    1997-01-01

    Like other arteriviruses, porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) is shed in semen, a feature that is critical for the venereal transmission of this group of viruses. In spite of its epidemiological importance, little is known of the association of PRRSV or other arteriviruses with gonadal tissues. We experimentally infected a group of boars with PRRSV 12068-96, a virulent field strain. By combined use of in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry, we detected infection by PRRSV in the testes of these boars. The PRRSV testicular replication in testis centers on two types of cells: (i) epithelial germ cells of the seminiferous tubules, primarily spermatids and spermatocytes, and (ii) macrophages, which are located in the interstitium of the testis. Histopathologically, hypospermatogenesis, formation of multinucleated giant cells (MGCs), and abundant germ cell depletion and death were observed. We obtained evidence that such germ cell death occurs by apoptosis, as determined by a characteristic histologic pattern and evidence of massive DNA fragmentation detected in situ (TUNEL [terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase-mediated digoxigenin-UTP nick end labeling] assay). Simultaneously with these testicular alterations, we observed that there is a significant increase in the number of immature sperm cells (mainly MGCs, spermatids, and spermatocytes) in the ejaculates of the PRRSV-inoculated boars and that these cells are infected with PRRSV. Our results indicate that PRRSV may infect target cells other than macrophages, that these infected cells can be primarily responsible for the excretion of infectious PRRSV in semen, and that PRRSV induces apoptosis in these germ cells in vivo. PMID:9371575

  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. Exposure to Brefeldin A promotes initiation of meiosis in murine female germ cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lian-Jun; Chen, Bo; Feng, Xin-Lei; Ma, Hua-Gang; Sun, Li-Lan; Feng, Yan-Min; Liang, Gui-Jin; Cheng, Shun-Feng; Li, Lan; Shen, Wei

    2015-01-01

    In mammals, ontogenesis starts from a fusion of spermatozoon and oocyte, which are produced by reductive nuclear division of a diploid germ cell in a specialised but complex biological process known as meiosis. However, little is known about the mechanism of meiotic initiation in germ cells, although many factors may be responsible for meiosis both in male and female gonads. In this study, 11.5 days post coitum (dpc) female fetal mouse genital ridges were cultured in vitro with exposure to Brefeldin A (BFA) for 6h, and the changes in meiosis were detected. Synaptonemal-complex analysis implied that BFA played a positive role in meiosis initiation and this hypothesis was confirmed by quantitative PCR of meiosis-specific genes: stimulated by retinoic acid gene 8 (Stra8) and deleted in a zoospermia-like (DAZL). At the same time, mRNA expression of retinoic acid synthetase (Raldh2) and retinoic acid (RA) receptors increased in female gonads with in vitro exposure to BFA. Transplanting genital ridges treated with BFA into the kidney capsule of immunodeficient mice demonstrated that the development capacity of female germ cells was normal, while formation of primordial follicles was seen to be a result of accelerated meiosis after exposure to BFA. In conclusion, the study indicated that BFA stimulated meiosis initiation partly by RA signalling and then promoted the development of follicles.

  14. Management of Pediatric Malignant Germ Cell Tumors: ICMR Consensus Document.

    PubMed

    Agarwala, Sandeep; Mitra, Aparajita; Bansal, Deepak; Kapoor, Gauri; Vora, Tushar; Prasad, Maya; Chinnaswamy, Girish; Arora, Brijesh; Radhakrishnan, Venkatraman; Laskar, Siddharth; Kaur, Tanvir; Dhaliwal, Rupinder Singh; Rath, G K; Bakhshi, Sameer

    2017-04-01

    With the introduction of cisplatin, the outcome of children with malignant germ cell tumors (MGCT) has improved to nearly 90% 5 year survival. Over the years, through the results of various multinational co-operative trials, the chemotherapy and surgical guidelines for both the gonadal and extra-gonadal MGCTs have been refined to decrease the early and late morbidities and at the same time improve survival. Introduction of risk categorization has further added to this effort. There has been no recommendation on how the children with malignant germ cell tumors should be treated in India. The current manuscript is written with the objective of developing a consensus guideline for practitioners at a National level. Based on extensively reviewed literature and personal experience of the major pediatric oncology centres in India, the ICMR Expert group has made recommendations for management of children with MGCT India.

  15. Mediastinal germ cell tumors: a radiologic-pathologic review.

    PubMed

    Drevelegas, A; Palladas, P; Scordalaki, A

    2001-01-01

    Germ cell tumors of the mediastinum are histologically identical to those found in the testes and ovaries. Early diagnosis and treatment improve the survival rate. Imaging studies of teratoma demonstrate a rounded, often lobulated heterogeneous mass containing soft tissue elements with fluid and fat attenuation. Calcification is present in 20-43% of cases. Seminomas are large masses of homogeneous soft tissue attenuation. Malignant nonseminomatous germ cell tumors are heterogeneous tumors with irregular borders due to invasion of adjacent structures. CT shows the location and extent of the tumors as well as intrinsic elements including soft tissue, fat, fluid, and calcification. CT is the modality of choice for the diagnostic evaluation of these tumors. MRI reveals masses of heterogeneous signal intensity, is more sensitive in depicting infiltration of the adjacent structures by fat plane obliteration, and is performed as an ancillary study.

  16. Lifetime stress experience: transgenerational epigenetics and germ cell programming

    PubMed Central

    Bale, Tracy L.

    2014-01-01

    The transgenerational epigenetic programming involved in the passage of environmental exposures to stressful periods from one generation to the next has been examined in human populations, and mechanistically in animal models. Epidemiological studies suggest that gestational exposures to environmental factors including stress are strongly associated with an increased risk of neurodevelopmental disorders, including attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder, schizophrenia, and autism spectrum disorders. Both maternal and paternal life experiences with stress can be passed on to offspring directly during pregnancy or through epigenetic marks in the germ cell. Animal models of parental stress have examined relevant offspring phenotypes and transgenerational outcomes, and provided unique insight into the germ cell epigenetic changes associated with disruptions in neurodevelopment. Understanding germline susceptibility to exogenous signals during stress exposure and the identification of the types of epigenetic marks is critical for defining mechanisms underlying disease risk. PMID:25364281

  17. Lifetime stress experience: transgenerational epigenetics and germ cell programming.

    PubMed

    Bale, Tracy L

    2014-09-01

    The transgenerational epigenetic programming involved in the passage of environmental exposures to stressful periods from one generation to the next has been examined in human populations, and mechanistically in animal models. Epidemiological studies suggest that gestational exposures to environmental factors including stress are strongly associated with an increased risk of neurodevelopmental disorders, including attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder, schizophrenia, and autism spectrum disorders. Both maternal and paternal life experiences with stress can be passed on to offspring directly during pregnancy or through epigenetic marks in the germ cell. Animal models of parental stress have examined relevant offspring phenotypes and transgenerational outcomes, and provided unique insight into the germ cell epigenetic changes associated with disruptions in neurodevelopment. Understanding germline susceptibility to exogenous signals during stress exposure and the identification of the types of epigenetic marks is critical for defining mechanisms underlying disease risk.

  18. Paraneoplastic tumefactive demyelination with underlying combined germ cell cancer.

    PubMed

    Broadfoot, Jack R; Archer, Hilary A; Coulthard, Elizabeth; Appelman, Auke P A; Sutak, Judit; Braybrooke, Jeremy P; Love, Seth

    2015-12-01

    Paraneoplastic demyelination is a rare disorder of the central nervous system. We describe a 60-year-old man with tumefactive demyelination who had an underlying retroperitoneal germ cell cancer. He presented with visuospatial problems and memory loss and had a visual field defect. His MRI was interpreted as a glioma but stereotactic biopsy showed active demyelination. Investigation for multiple sclerosis was negative but CT imaging showed retroperitoneal lymphadenopathy, and nodal biopsy confirmed a combined germ cell cancer. He responded poorly to corticosteroid treatment, and his visual field defect progressed. However, 6 months after plasma exchange and successful chemotherapy, he has partially improved clinically and radiographically. Tumefactive demyelination is typically associated with multiple sclerosis but may be paraneoplastic. It is important to recognise paraneoplastic tumefactive demyelination early, as the neurological outcome relies on treating the associated malignancy.

  19. Rad54 is required for the normal development of male and female germ cells and contributes to the maintainance of their genome integrity after genotoxic stress

    PubMed Central

    Messiaen, S; Le Bras, A; Duquenne, C; Barroca, V; Moison, D; Déchamps, N; Doussau, M; Bauchet, A-L; Guerquin, M-J; Livera, G; Essers, J; Kanaar, R; Habert, R; Bernardino-Sgherri, J

    2013-01-01

    Rad54 is an important factor in the homologous recombination pathway of DNA double-strand break repair. However, Rad54 knockout (KO) mice do not exhibit overt phenotypes at adulthood, even when exposed to radiation. In this study, we show that in Rad54 KO mouse the germline is actually altered. Compared with the wild-type (WT) animals, these mice have less premeiotic germ cells. This germ cell loss is found as early as in E11.5 embryos, suggesting an early failure during mutant primordial germ cells development. Both testicular and ovarian KO germ cells exhibited high radiation sensitivity leading to a long-term gametogenesis defect at adulthood. The KO female germline was particularly affected displaying decreased litter size or sterility. Spermatogenesis recovery after irradiation was slower and incomplete in Rad54 KO mice compared with that of WT mice, suggesting that loss of germ stem cell precursors is not fully compensated along the successive rounds of spermatogenesis. Finally, spermatogenesis recovery after postnatal irradiation is in part regulated by glial-cell-line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) in KO but not in irradiated WT mice, suggesting that Sertoli cell GDNF production is stimulated upon substantial germ cell loss only. Our findings suggest that Rad54 has a key function in maintaining genomic integrity of the developing germ cells. PMID:23949223

  20. DAZ Family Proteins, Key Players for Germ Cell Development.

    PubMed

    Fu, Xia-Fei; Cheng, Shun-Feng; Wang, Lin-Qing; Yin, Shen; De Felici, Massimo; Shen, Wei

    2015-01-01

    DAZ family proteins are found almost exclusively in germ cells in distant animal species. Deletion or mutations of their encoding genes usually severely impair either oogenesis or spermatogenesis or both. The family includes Boule (or Boll), Dazl (or Dazla) and DAZ genes. Boule and Dazl are situated on autosomes while DAZ, exclusive of higher primates, is located on the Y chromosome. Deletion of DAZ gene is the most common causes of infertility in humans. These genes, encoding for RNA binding proteins, contain a highly conserved RNA recognition motif and at least one DAZ repeat encoding for a 24 amino acids sequence able to bind other mRNA binding proteins. Basically, Daz family proteins function as adaptors for target mRNA transport and activators of their translation. In some invertebrate species, BOULE protein play a pivotal role in germline specification and a conserved regulatory role in meiosis. Depending on the species, DAZL is expressed in primordial germ cells (PGCs) and/or pre-meiotic and meiotic germ cells of both sexes. Daz is found in fetal gonocytes, spermatogonia and spermatocytes of adult testes. Here we discuss DAZ family genes in a phylogenic perspective, focusing on the common and distinct features of these genes, and their pivotal roles during gametogenesis evolved during evolution.

  1. 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.

  2. Deregulated Sex Chromosome Gene Expression with Male Germ Cell-Specific Loss of Dicer1

    PubMed Central

    Snyder, Elizabeth; Buaas, F. William; Gu, Tongjun; Stearns, Timothy M.; Sharma, Manju; Murchison, Elizabeth P.; Puente, Gabriella C.; Braun, Robert E.

    2012-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of endogenous, non-coding RNAs that mediate post-transcriptional gene silencing by inhibiting mRNA translation and promoting mRNA decay. DICER1, an RNase III endonuclease encoded by Dicer1, is required for processing short 21–22 nucleotide miRNAs from longer double-stranded RNA precursors. Here, we investigate the loss of Dicer1 in mouse postnatal male germ cells to determine how disruptions in the miRNA biogenesis pathway may contribute to infertility. Reduced levels of Dicer1 transcripts and DICER1 were confirmed in germ cell knock-out (GCKO) testes by postnatal day 18 (P18). Compared to wild-type (WT) at 8 weeks, GCKO males had no change in body weight; yet showed significant reductions in testis mass and sperm number. Histology and fertility tests confirmed spermatogenic failure in GCKO males. Array analyses at P18 showed that in comparison to WT testes, 75% of miRNA genes and 37% of protein coding genes were differentially expressed in GCKO testes. Among these, 96% of miRNA genes were significantly down-regulated, while 4% miRNA genes were overexpressed. Interestingly, we observed preferential overexpression of genes encoded on the sex chromosomes in GCKO testes, including more than 80% of previously identified targets of meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI). Compared to WT, GCKO mice showed higher percentages of germ cells at early meiotic stages (leptotene and zygotene) but lower percentages at later stages (pachytene, diplotene and metaphase I) providing evidence that deletion of Dicer1 leads to disruptions in meiotic progression. Therefore, deleting Dicer1 in early postnatal germ cells resulted in deregulation of transcripts encoded by genes on the sex chromosomes, impaired meiotic progression and led to spermatogenic failure and infertility. PMID:23056286

  3. Deregulated sex chromosome gene expression with male germ cell-specific loss of Dicer1.

    PubMed

    Greenlee, Anne R; Shiao, Meng-Shin; Snyder, Elizabeth; Buaas, F William; Gu, Tongjun; Stearns, Timothy M; Sharma, Manju; Murchison, Elizabeth P; Puente, Gabriella C; Braun, Robert E

    2012-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of endogenous, non-coding RNAs that mediate post-transcriptional gene silencing by inhibiting mRNA translation and promoting mRNA decay. DICER1, an RNase III endonuclease encoded by Dicer1, is required for processing short 21-22 nucleotide miRNAs from longer double-stranded RNA precursors. Here, we investigate the loss of Dicer1 in mouse postnatal male germ cells to determine how disruptions in the miRNA biogenesis pathway may contribute to infertility. Reduced levels of Dicer1 transcripts and DICER1 were confirmed in germ cell knock-out (GCKO) testes by postnatal day 18 (P18). Compared to wild-type (WT) at 8 weeks, GCKO males had no change in body weight; yet showed significant reductions in testis mass and sperm number. Histology and fertility tests confirmed spermatogenic failure in GCKO males. Array analyses at P18 showed that in comparison to WT testes, 75% of miRNA genes and 37% of protein coding genes were differentially expressed in GCKO testes. Among these, 96% of miRNA genes were significantly down-regulated, while 4% miRNA genes were overexpressed. Interestingly, we observed preferential overexpression of genes encoded on the sex chromosomes in GCKO testes, including more than 80% of previously identified targets of meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI). Compared to WT, GCKO mice showed higher percentages of germ cells at early meiotic stages (leptotene and zygotene) but lower percentages at later stages (pachytene, diplotene and metaphase I) providing evidence that deletion of Dicer1 leads to disruptions in meiotic progression. Therefore, deleting Dicer1 in early postnatal germ cells resulted in deregulation of transcripts encoded by genes on the sex chromosomes, impaired meiotic progression and led to spermatogenic failure and infertility.

  4. Germ cell regeneration-mediated, enhanced mutagenesis in the ascidian Ciona intestinalis reveals flexible germ cell formation from different somatic cells.

    PubMed

    Yoshida, Keita; Hozumi, Akiko; Treen, Nicholas; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Yamamoto, Takashi; Shirae-Kurabayashi, Maki; Sasakura, Yasunori

    2017-03-15

    The ascidian Ciona intestinalis has a high regeneration capacity that enables the regeneration of artificially removed primordial germ cells (PGCs) from somatic cells. We utilized PGC regeneration to establish efficient methods of germ line mutagenesis with transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs). When PGCs were artificially removed from animals in which a TALEN pair was expressed, somatic cells harboring mutations in the target gene were converted into germ cells, this germ cell population exhibited higher mutation rates than animals not subjected to PGC removal. PGC regeneration enables us to use TALEN expression vectors of specific somatic tissues for germ cell mutagenesis. Unexpectedly, cis elements for epidermis, neural tissue and muscle could be used for germ cell mutagenesis, indicating there are multiple sources of regenerated PGCs, suggesting a flexibility of differentiated Ciona somatic cells to regain totipotency. Sperm and eggs of a single hermaphroditic, PGC regenerated animal typically have different mutations, suggesting they arise from different cells. PGCs can be generated from somatic cells even though the maternal PGCs are not removed, suggesting that the PGC regeneration is not solely an artificial event but could have an endogenous function in Ciona. This study provides a technical innovation in the genome-editing methods, including easy establishment of mutant lines. Moreover, this study suggests cellular mechanisms and the potential evolutionary significance of PGC regeneration in Ciona.

  5. Prepubertal male rats with high rates of germ-cell apoptosis present exacerbated rates of germ-cell apoptosis after serotonin depletion.

    PubMed

    Méndez Palacios, Néstor; Escobar, María Elena Ayala; Mendoza, Maximino Méndez; Crispín, Rubén Huerta; Andrade, Octavio Guerrero; Melández, Javier Hernández; Martínez, Andrés Aragón

    2016-04-01

    Male germ-cell apoptosis occurs naturally and can be increased by exposure to drugs and toxic chemicals. Individuals may have different rates of apoptosis and are likely to also exhibit differential sensitivity to outside influences. Previously, we reported that p-chloroamphetamine (pCA), a substance that inhibits serotonin synthesis, induced germ-cell apoptosis in prepubertal male rats. Here, we identified prepubertal rats with naturally high or low rates of germ-cell apoptosis and evaluated gene expression in both groups. Bax and Shbg mRNA levels were higher in rats with high rates of germ-cell apoptosis. Rats were then treated with pCA and the neuro-hormonal response and gene expression were evaluated. Treatment with pCA induced a reduction in serotonin concentrations but levels of sex hormones and gonadotrophins were not changed. Rats with initially high rates of germ-cell apoptosis had even higher rates of germ-cell apoptosis after treatment with pCA. In rats with high rates of germ-cell apoptosis Bax mRNA expression remained high after treatment with pCA. On the basis of category, an inverse relationship between mRNA expression of Bax and Bcl2, Bax and AR and Bax and Hsd3b2 was found. Here we provide evidence that innate levels of germ-cell apoptosis could be explained by the level of mRNA expression of genes involved with apoptosis and spermatogenesis.

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

    PubMed Central

    Bainton, Roland J; Heberlein, Ulrike

    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

  7. Influence of activin A supplementation during human embryonic stem cell derivation on germ cell differentiation potential.

    PubMed

    Duggal, Galbha; Heindryckx, Björn; Warrier, Sharat; O'Leary, Thomas; Van der Jeught, Margot; Lierman, Sylvie; Vossaert, Liesbeth; Deroo, Tom; Deforce, Dieter; Chuva de Sousa Lopes, Susana M; De Sutter, Petra

    2013-12-01

    Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) are more similar to "primed" mouse epiblast stem cells (mEpiSCs). mEpiSCs, which are derived in Activin A, show an increased propensity to form primordial germ cell (PGC)-like cells in response to bone morphogenic protein 4 (BMP4). Hence, we hypothesized that hESCs derived in the presence of Activin A may be more competent in differentiating towards PGC-like cells after supplementation with BMP4 compared to standard hESC lines. We were able to successfully derive two hESC lines in the presence of Activin A, which were pluripotent and showed higher base levels of STELLA and cKIT compared to standard hESC lines derived without Activin A addition. Furthermore, upon differentiation as embryoid bodies in the presence of BMP4, we observed upregulation of VASA at day 7, both at the transcript and protein level compared to standard hESC lines, which appeared to take longer time for PGC specification. Unlike other hESC lines, nuclear pSMAD2/3 presence confirmed that Activin signalling was switched on in Activin A-derived hESC lines. They were also responsive to BMP4 based on nuclear detection of pSMAD1/5/8 and showed endodermal differentiation as a result of GATA-6 expression. Hence, our results provide novel insights into the impact of hESC derivation in the presence of Activin A and its subsequent influence on germ cell differentiation potential in vitro.

  8. Engineering musculoskeletal tissues with human embryonic germ cell derivatives.

    PubMed

    Varghese, Shyni; Hwang, Nathaniel S; Ferran, Angela; Hillel, Alexander; Theprungsirikul, Parnduangjai; Canver, Adam C; Zhang, Zijun; Gearhart, John; Elisseeff, Jennifer

    2010-04-01

    The cells derived from differentiating embryoid bodies of human embryonic germ (hEG) cells express a broad spectrum of gene markers and have been induced toward ecto- and endodermal lineages. We describe here in vitro and in vivo differentiation of hEG-derived cells (LVEC line) toward mesenchymal tissues. The LVEC cells express many surface marker proteins characteristic of mesenchymal stem cells and differentiated into cartilage, bone, and fat. Homogenous hyaline cartilage was generated from cells after 63 population doublings. In vivo results demonstrate cell survival, differentiation, and tissue formation. The high proliferative capacity of hEG-derived cells and their ability to differentiate and form three-dimensional mesenchymal tissues without teratoma formation underscores their significant potential for regenerative medicine. The adopted coculture system also provides new insights into how a microenvironment comprised of extracellular and cellular components may be harnessed to generate hierarchically complex tissues from pluripotent cells.

  9. Presence of Germ Cells in Disorders of Sex Development: Implications for Fertility Potential and Preservation

    PubMed Central

    Finlayson, Courtney; Fritsch, Michael K.; Johnson, Emilie K.; Rosoklija, Ilina; Gosiengfiao, Yasmin; Yerkes, Elizabeth; Madonna, Mary Beth; Woodruff, Teresa K.; Cheng, Earl

    2017-01-01

    Purpose We sought to determine the presence of germ cells in the gonads of patients with disorders of sex development to establish whether preservation of germ cells for future fertility potential is possible. We hypothesized that germ cells are present but vary by age and diagnosis. Materials and Methods We reviewed histology from patients with disorders of sex development who underwent gonadectomy/biopsy from 2002 to 2014 at a single institution for pathological classification of the gonad, composition of gonadal stroma and germ cell presence. Results A total of 44 patients were identified and germ cells were present in 68%. The presence and average number of germ cells per mm2 were analyzed by gonad type and diagnosis. By gonad type all ovotestes, most testes, ovaries and dysgenetic testes, and 15% of streak gonads had germ cells present. By diagnosis germ cells were present in all patients with complete androgen insensitivity syndrome, Denys-Drash syndrome, SRY mutation, mixed gonadal dysgenesis, ovotesticular conditions and StAR (steroid acute regulatory protein) deficiency, in some patients with persistent müllerian duct syndrome, XO/XY Turner syndrome and disorders of sex development not otherwise specified, and in none with complete or partial gonadal dysgenesis. Germ cells were present in the gonads of 88% of patients 0 to 3 years old, 50% of those 4 to 11 years old and 43% of those older than 12 years. Conclusions Germ cells were present in the majority of our cohort and the presence decreased with age. This novel, fertility driven evaluation of germ cell quantity in a variety of disorders of sex development suggests that fertility potential may be greater than previously thought. Further studies must be done to evaluate a larger population and examine germ cell quality to determine the viability of these germ cells. PMID:27840018

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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

    2016-04-27

    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.

  13. 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

  14. Effects of mono-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (MEHP) on chicken germ cells cultured in vitro.

    PubMed

    Guibert, Edith; Prieur, Bérénice; Cariou, Ronan; Courant, Frédérique; Antignac, Jean Philippe; Pain, Bertrand; Brillard, Jean Pierre; Froment, Pascal

    2013-05-01

    In recent decades, many toxicological tests based on in vivo or in vitro models, mainly from mammalian (rat-mouse) and fish species, were used to assess the risks raised by contact or ingestion of molecules of pharmaceutical, agricultural, or natural origin. But no, or few, in vitro tests using other non-mammalian models such as bird have been explored despite their advantages: the embryonic gonads of birds have a high plasticity of development sensitive to estrogen, and sperm production is nearly two times faster than in rodents. Hence, we have established an in vitro culture of germ cells and somatic cells from chicken post-natal testis, and we have evaluated the sensitivity against the endocrine disruptor compound mono-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (MEHP) in comparison to previous studies using rodent and human models. After 96 h of exposure in presence of 10 μM MEHP, chicken seminiferous tubules cultures present a structural alteration, a reduction in cell proliferation and in germ cells population. Apoptosis of germ and somatic cells increases in presence of 1 μM MEHP. Furthermore, MEHP does not affect inhibin B and lactate production by Sertoli cells. These results are in accordance with previous studies using rat, mice, or human culture of testicular cells and in similar range of exposures or even better sensitivity for some "end-points" (biological parameters). In conclusion, the establishment of this postnatal testicular cells culture could be considered as an alternative method to in vivo experiments frequently used for evaluating the impact on the terrestrial wildlife species. This method could be also complementary to mammal model due to the limiting number of animals used and its elevated sensitivity.

  15. 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

  16. The effects of steel mutation on testicular germ cell differentiation.

    PubMed

    Nishimune, Y; Haneji, T; Kitamura, Y

    1980-10-01

    The effects of artificial cryptorchidism and its surgical reversal on spermatogenesis were examined in germ cell mutant, S1/+ and wild type, +/+, mice. In cryptorchid testes no difference was found between S1/+ and +/+ mice in the number of undifferentiated type A spermatogonia. The activity of type A spermatogonia in mutant mice appeared normal as judged by its mitotic cell number and DNA synthesis. The surgical reversal of cryptorchidism resulted in regenerative differentiation of mature germ cells in both types of mice, but the pattern of cellular differentiation in the mutant testes was completely different from that of the wild type testes. At two steps of cellular differentiation, intermediate or type B spermatogonia and spermatid, the numbers of cells were much smaller in the S1/+ testes than those in the +/+ testes. The steel gene was therefore suggested to exert its effects on the differentiation of type A spermatogonia to intermediate or type B spermatogonia, on meiotic division and/or the survival rate of these cells, but not on the undifferentiated type A spermatogonia or stem cells.

  17. 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

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

    PubMed

    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.

  19. Methods to study maternal regulation of germ cell specification in zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Kaufman, O.H.; Marlow, F.L.

    2016-01-01

    The process by which the germ line is specified in the zebrafish embryo is under the control of maternal gene products that were produced during oogenesis. Zebrafish are highly amenable to microscopic observation of the processes governing maternal germ cell specification because early embryos are transparent, and the germ line is specified rapidly (within 4–5 h post fertilization). Advantages of zebrafish over other models used to study vertebrate germ cell formation include their genetic tractability, the large numbers of progeny, and the easily manipulable genome, all of which make zebrafish an ideal system for studying the genetic regulators and cellular basis of germ cell formation and maintenance. Classical molecular biology techniques, including expression analysis through in situ hybridization and forward genetic screens, have laid the foundation for our understanding of germ cell development in zebrafish. In this chapter, we discuss some of these classic techniques, as well as recent cutting-edge methodologies that have improved our ability to visualize the process of germ cell specification and differentiation, and the tracking of specific molecules involved in these processes. Additionally, we discuss traditional and novel technologies for manipulating the zebrafish genome to identify new components through loss-of-function studies of putative germ cell regulators. Together with the numerous aforementioned advantages of zebrafish as a genetic model for studying development, we believe these new techniques will continue to advance zebrafish to the forefront for investigation of the molecular regulators of germ cell specification and germ line biology. PMID:27312489

  20. 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

  1. A zebrafish homologue of the chemokine receptor Cxcr4 is a germ-cell guidance receptor.

    PubMed

    Knaut, Holger; Werz, Christian; Geisler, Robert; Nüsslein-Volhard, Christiane

    2003-01-16

    Germ cells preserve an individual's genetic information and transmit it to the next generation. Early in development germ cells are set aside and undergo a specialized developmental programme, a hallmark of which is the migration from their site of origin to the future gonad. In Drosophila, several factors have been identified that control germ-cell migration to their target tissues; however, the germ-cell chemoattractant or its receptor have remained unknown. Here we apply genetics and in vivo imaging to show that odysseus, a zebrafish homologue of the G-protein-coupled chemokine receptor Cxcr4, is required specifically in germ cells for their chemotaxis. odysseus mutant germ cells are able to activate the migratory programme, but fail to undergo directed migration towards their target tissue, resulting in randomly dispersed germ cells. SDF-1, the presumptive cognate ligand for Cxcr4, shows a similar loss-of-function phenotype and can recruit germ cells to ectopic sites in the embryo, thus identifying a vertebrate ligand-receptor pair guiding migratory germ cells at all stages of migration towards their target.

  2. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Rod T; E Camacho-Moll, Maria; Macdonald, Joni; Anderson, Richard A; Kelnar, Christopher J H; O'Donnell, Marie; Sharpe, Richard M; Smith, Lee B; Grigor, Ken M; Wallace, W Hamish B; Stoop, Hans; Wolffenbuttel, Katja P; Donat, Roland; Saunders, Philippa Tk; Looijenga, Leendert Hj

    2014-09-01

    Testicular germ cell cancer develops from premalignant 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 hypothesized that cells expressing an immature (OCT4(+)/MAGEA4(-)) germ cell profile would exhibit an increased proliferation rate compared with 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 preinvasive 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 versus 3.4%, P<0.0001) irrespective of histological tumor type, reflected in the predominance of OCT4(+)/MAGEA4(-) cells in the invasive tumor component. Surprisingly, OCT4(+)/MAGEA4(-) cells in patients with preinvasive disease showed significantly higher proliferation compared to those with seminoma or non-seminoma (18.1 versus 10.2 versus 7.2%, P<0.05, respectively). In conclusion, this study

  4. The cell-free protein synthesis system from wheat germ.

    PubMed

    Takai, Kazuyuki; Endo, Yaeta

    2010-01-01

    The wheat-germ cell-free protein synthesis system had been one of the most efficient eukaryotic cell-free systems since it was first developed in 1964. However, radio-labeled amino acids had long been essential for detection of the products. Since the discovery of a method for prevention of the contamination by a protein synthesis inhibitor originated from endosperm, the wheat cell-free system has found a wide variety of applications in postgenomic high-throughput screening, structural biology, medicine, and so on. In this chapter, we describe a method for preparation of the cell-free extract and a standard protein synthesis method, as the methods for the applications are found in later chapters.

  5. Genotoxicity evaluation of buprofezin, petroleum oil and profenofos in somatic and germ cells of male mice.

    PubMed

    Fahmy, M A; Abdalla, E F

    1998-01-01

    The two pest control agents, buprofezin and petroleum oil (Super Royal), were tested to evaluate their potential mutagenicity, in comparison with the organophosphorus insecticide profenofos. Chromosomal aberration analysis was used in both somatic and germ cells of male mice. Single oral treatment at three different dose levels (1/16, 1/8 and 1/4 LD50) for each insecticide induced an increase in the percentage of chromosomal aberrations in bone-marrow cells 24 h post-treatment, indicating a dose-dependent relationship. The percentage of chromosomal aberrations reached 23 +/- 0.73, 10.5 +/- 0.64 and 15 +/- 1.4 after treatment with the highest tested dose of profenofos, buprofezin and Super Royal, respectively. Such percentages did not exceed the corresponding value of the positive control, mitomycin C (29.2 +/- 0.69). The percentage of chromosomal aberrations induced by the different doses of profenofos was still highly significant even after excluding gaps. The same trend of results was noticed only at the highest tested dose of buprofezin and Super Royal. With respect to germ cells, profenofos is also a potent inducer of chromosomal aberrations in 1ry spermatocytes, giving percentages of 14 +/- 1.3 and 19 +/- 1.6 at the two higher doses of 4.25 and 8.5 mg kg(-1) body wt., respectively. Buprofezin and Super Royal had no significant effect on mouse spermatocytes at the tested concentrations. The various types of induced aberrations were examined and recorded in both somatic and germ cells. In conclusion, the present investigation indicates that the two pest control agents buprofezin and Super Royal are relatively much safer compounds than the conventional organophosphorus insecticides.

  6. Genome-wide methylation profiles in primary intracranial germ cell tumors indicate a primordial germ cell origin for germinomas.

    PubMed

    Fukushima, Shintaro; Yamashita, Satoshi; Kobayashi, Hisato; Takami, Hirokazu; Fukuoka, Kohei; Nakamura, Taishi; Yamasaki, Kai; Matsushita, Yuko; Nakamura, Hiromi; Totoki, Yasushi; Kato, Mamoru; Suzuki, Tomonari; Mishima, Kazuhiko; Yanagisawa, Takaaki; Mukasa, Akitake; Saito, Nobuhito; Kanamori, Masayuki; Kumabe, Toshihiro; Tominaga, Teiji; Nagane, Motoo; Iuchi, Toshihiko; Yoshimoto, Koji; Mizoguchi, Masahiro; Tamura, Kaoru; Sakai, Keiichi; Sugiyama, Kazuhiko; Nakada, Mitsutoshi; Yokogami, Kiyotaka; Takeshima, Hideo; Kanemura, Yonehiro; Matsuda, Masahide; Matsumura, Akira; Kurozumi, Kazuhiko; Ueki, Keisuke; Nonaka, Masahiro; Asai, Akio; Kawahara, Nobutaka; Hirose, Yuichi; Takayama, Tatusya; Nakazato, Yoichi; Narita, Yoshitaka; Shibata, Tatsuhiro; Matsutani, Masao; Ushijima, Toshikazu; Nishikawa, Ryo; Ichimura, Koichi

    2017-03-01

    Intracranial germ cell tumors (iGCTs) are the second most common brain tumors among children under 14 in Japan. The World Health Organization classification recognizes several subtypes of iGCTs, which are conventionally subclassified into pure germinoma or non-germinomatous GCTs. Recent exhaustive genomic studies showed that mutations of the genes involved in the MAPK and/or PI3K pathways are common in iGCTs; however, the mechanisms of how different subtypes develop, often as a mixed-GCT, are unknown. To elucidate the pathogenesis of iGCTs, we investigated 61 GCTs of various subtypes by genome-wide DNA methylation profiling. We showed that pure germinomas are characterized by global low DNA methylation, a unique epigenetic feature making them distinct from all other iGCTs subtypes. The patterns of methylation strongly resemble that of primordial germ cells (PGC) at the migration phase, possibly indicating the cell of origin for these tumors. Unlike PGC, however, hypomethylation extends to long interspersed nuclear element retrotransposons. Histologically and epigenetically distinct microdissected components of mixed-GCTs shared identical somatic mutations in the MAPK or PI3K pathways, indicating that they developed from a common ancestral cell.

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-04-03

    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.

  8. Management of poor-prognosis testicular germ cell tumors

    PubMed Central

    Khurana, Kiranpreet; Gilligan, Timothy D.; Stephenson, Andrew J.

    2010-01-01

    Currently, the outcome of patients with intermediate-and poor-risk germ cell tumors at diagnosis is optimized by the use of risk-appropriate chemotherapy and post-chemotherapy surgical resection of residual masses. Currently, there is no role for high-dose chemotherapy in the first-line setting. Patients who progress on first-line chemotherapy or who relapse after an initial complete response also have a poor prognosis. In the setting of early relapse, the standard approach at most centers is conventional-dose, ifosfamide-based regimens and post-chemotherapy resection of residual masses. The treatment of patients with late relapse is complete surgical resection whenever feasible. Salvage chemotherapy for late relapse may be used prior to surgery in patients where a complete resection is not feasible. A complete surgical resection of all residual sites of disease after chemotherapy is critical for the prevention of relapse and the long-term survival of patients with advanced germ cell tumors. PMID:20535296

  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.

  10. Nanog regulates primordial germ cell migration through Cxcr4b.

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Sánchez, Ana Virginia; Camp, Esther; Leal-Tassias, Aránzazu; Atkinson, Stuart P; Armstrong, Lyle; Díaz-Llopis, Manuel; Mullor, José L

    2010-09-01

    Gonadal development in vertebrates depends on the early determination of primordial germ cells (PGCs) and their correct migration to the sites where the gonads develop. Several genes have been implicated in PGC specification and migration in vertebrates. Additionally, some of the genes associated with pluripotency, such as Oct4 and Nanog, are expressed in PGCs and gonads, suggesting a role for these genes in maintaining pluripotency of the germ lineage, which may be considered the only cell type that perpetually maintains stemness properties. Here, we report that medaka Nanog (Ol-Nanog) is expressed in the developing PGCs. Depletion of Ol-Nanog protein causes aberrant migration of PGCs and inhibits expression of Cxcr4b in PGCs, where it normally serves as the receptor of Sdf1a to guide PGC migration. Moreover, chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis demonstrates that Ol-Nanog protein binds to the promoter region of Cxcr4b, suggesting a direct regulation of Cxcr4b by Ol-Nanog. Simultaneous overexpression of Cxcr4b mRNA and depletion of Ol-Nanog protein in PGCs rescues the migration defective phenotype induced by a loss of Ol-Nanog, whereas overexpression of Sdf1a, the ligand for Cxcr4b, does not restore proper PGC migration. These results indicate that Ol-Nanog mediates PGC migration by regulating Cxcr4b expression.

  11. Endogenous interleukin 18 regulates testicular germ cell apoptosis during endotoxemia.

    PubMed

    Inoue, Taketo; Aoyama-Ishikawa, Michiko; Kamoshida, Shingo; Nishino, Satoshi; Sasano, Maki; Oka, Nobuki; Yamashita, Hayato; Kai, Motoki; Nakao, Atsunori; Kotani, Joji; Usami, Makoto

    2015-08-01

    Orchitis (testicular swelling) often occurs during systemic inflammatory conditions, such as sepsis. Interleukin 18 (IL18) is a proinflammatory cytokine and is an apoptotic mediator during endotoxemia, but the role of IL18 in response to inflammation in the testes was unclear. WT and IL18 knockout (KO) mice were injected lipopolysaccharide (LPS) to induce endotoxemia and examined 12 and 48  h after LPS administration to model the acute and recovery phases of endotoxemia. Caspase activation was assessed using immunohistochemistry. Protein and mRNA expression were examined by western blot and quantitative real-time RT-PCR respectively. During the acute phase of endotoxemia, apoptosis (as indicated by caspase-3 cleavage) was increased in WT mice but not in IL18 KO mice. The death receptor-mediated and mitochondrial-mediated apoptotic pathways were both activated in the WT mice but not in the KO mice. During the recovery phase of endotoxemia, apoptosis was observed in the IL18 KO mice but not in the WT mice. Activation of the death-receptor mediated apoptotic pathway could be seen in the IL18 KO mice but not the WT mice. These results suggested that endogenous IL18 induces germ cell apoptosis via death receptor mediated- and mitochondrial-mediated pathways during the acute phase of endotoxemia and suppresses germ cell apoptosis via death-receptor mediated pathways during recovery from endotoxemia. Taken together, IL18 could be a new therapeutic target to prevent orchitis during endotoxemia.

  12. Possibilities in Germ Cell Research: An Engineering Insight.

    PubMed

    Esfandiari, Fereshteh; Mashinchian, Omid; Ashtiani, Mohammad Kazemi; Ghanian, Mohammad Hossein; Hayashi, Katsuhiko; Saei, Amir Ata; Mahmoudi, Morteza; Baharvand, Hossein

    2015-12-01

    Germ cells (GCs) are responsible for fertility and disruptions in their development or function cause infertility. However, current knowledge about the diverse mechanisms involved in GC development and function is still in its infancy. This is mainly because there are low numbers of GCs, especially during embryonic development. A deeper understanding of GCs would enhance our ability to produce them from stem cells. In addition, such information would enable the production of healthy gametes for infertile couples. In this regard, pluripotent stem cells (PSCs) demonstrated a promising ability to produce GCs in vitro. In this review, we highlight recent advances in the field of tissue engineering that suggest novel strategies to enhance GC research.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    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

  14. Mutagenesis Is Elevated in Male Germ Cells Obtained from DNA Polymerase-beta Heterozygous Mice1

    PubMed Central

    Allen, Diwi; Herbert, Damon C.; McMahan, C. Alex; Rotrekl, Vladimir; Sobol, Robert W.; Wilson, Samuel H.; Walter, Christi A.

    2008-01-01

    Gametes carry the DNA that will direct the development of the next generation. By compromising genetic integrity, DNA damage and mutagenesis threaten the ability of gametes to fulfill their biological function. DNA repair pathways function in germ cells and serve to ameliorate much DNA damage and prevent mutagenesis. High base excision repair (BER) activity is documented for spermatogenic cells. DNA polymerase-beta (POLB) is required for the short-patch BER pathway. Because mice homozygous null for the Polb gene die soon after birth, mice heterozygous for Polb were used to examine the extent to which POLB contributes to maintaining spermatogenic genomic integrity in vivo. POLB protein levels were reduced only in mixed spermatogenic cells. In vitro short-patch BER activity assays revealed that spermatogenic cell nuclear extracts obtained from Polb heterozygous mice had one third the BER activity of age-matched control mice. Polb heterozygosity had no effect on the BER activities of somatic tissues tested. The Polb heterozygous mouse line was crossed with the lacI transgenic Big Blue mouse line to assess mutant frequency. The spontaneous mutant frequency for mixed spermatogenic cells prepared from Polb heterozygous mice was 2-fold greater than that of wild-type controls, but no significant effect was found among the somatic tissues tested. These results demonstrate that normal POLB abundance is necessary for normal BER activity, which is critical in maintaining a low germline mutant frequency. Notably, spermatogenic cells respond differently than somatic cells to Polb haploinsufficiency.. PMID:18650495

  15. Germline stem cells are critical for sexual fate decision of germ cells

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Egg or sperm? The mechanism of sexual fate decision in germ cells has been a long‐standing issue in biology. A recent analysis identified foxl3 as a gene that determines the sexual fate decision of germ cells in the teleost fish, medaka. foxl3/Foxl3 acts in female germline stem cells to repress commitment into male fate (spermatogenesis), indicating that the presence of mitotic germ cells in the female is critical for continuous sexual fate decision of germ cells in medaka gonads. Interestingly, foxl3 is found in most vertebrate genomes except for mammals. This provides the interesting possibility that the sexual fate of germ cells in mammals is determined in a different way compared to foxl3‐possessing vertebrates. Considering the fact that germline stem cells are the cells where foxl3 begins to express and sexual fate decision initiates and mammalian ovary does not have typical germline stem cells, the mechanism in mammals may have been co‐evolved with germline stem cell loss in mammalian ovary. PMID:27699806

  16. 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.

  17. Regulatory mechanism of protein metabolic pathway during the differentiation process of chicken male germ cell.

    PubMed

    Li, Dong; Zuo, Qisheng; Lian, Chao; Zhang, Lei; Shi, Qingqing; Zhang, Zhentao; Wang, Yingjie; Ahmed, Mahmoud F; Tang, Beibei; Xiao, Tianrong; Zhang, Yani; Li, Bichun

    2015-08-01

    We explored the regulatory mechanism of protein metabolism during the differentiation process of chicken male germ cells and provide a basis for improving the induction system of embryonic stem cell differentiation to male germ cells in vitro. We sequenced the transcriptome of embryonic stem cells, primordial germ cells, and spermatogonial stem cells with RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq), bioinformatics analysis methods, and detection of the key genes by quantitative reverse transcription PCR (qRT-PCR). Finally, we found 16 amino acid metabolic pathways enriched in the biological metabolism during the differentiation process of embryonic stem cells to primordial germ cells and 15 amino acid metabolic pathways enriched in the differentiation stage of primordial germ cells to spermatogonial stem cells. We found three pathways, arginine-proline metabolic pathway, tyrosine metabolic pathway, and tryptophan metabolic pathway, significantly enriched in the whole differentiation process of embryonic stem cells to spermatogonial stem cells. Moreover, for these three pathways, we screened key genes such as NOS2, ADC, FAH, and IDO. qRT-PCR results showed that the expression trend of these genes were the same to RNA-Seq. Our findings showed that the three pathways and these key genes play an important role in the differentiation process of embryonic stem cells to male germ cells. These results provide basic information for improving the induction system of embryonic stem cell differentiation to male germ cells in vitro.

  18. An Overview on Predictive Biomarkers of Testicular Germ Cell Tumors.

    PubMed

    Chieffi, Paolo

    2017-02-01

    Testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs) are frequent solid malignant tumors and cause of death in men between 20-40 years of age. Genetic and environmental factors play an important role in the origin and development of TGCTs. Although the majority of TGCTs are responsive to chemotherapy, about 20% of patient presents incomplete response or tumors relapse. In addition, the current treatments cause acute toxicity and several chronic collateral effects, including sterility. The present mini-review collectively summarize the most recent findings on the new discovered molecular biomarkers such as tyrosine kinases, HMGAs, Aurora B kinase, and GPR30 receptor predictive of TGCTs and as emerging new possible molecular targets for therapeutic strategies. J. Cell. Physiol. 232: 276-280, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Mixed Malignant Germ Cell Tumour of Third Ventricle with Hydrocephalus: A Rare Case with Recurrence

    PubMed Central

    Monappa, Vidya; Rao, Lakshmi; Kudva, Ranjini

    2014-01-01

    Malignant Germ Cell Tumours (GCTs) are rare, accounting for 3% of intracranial tumours and just like their extracranial counterparts represent a wide array of disease. Combination of Germinoma with Teratoma is very rare. Here in, we describe a case of Mixed Malignant Germ cell tumor of third ventricle with recurrence with emphasis on histopathological and radiological findings. PMID:25584231

  20. 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...

  1. Human germ cell formation in xenotransplants of induced pluripotent stem cells carrying X chromosome aneuploidies

    PubMed Central

    Dominguez, Antonia A.; Chiang, H. Rosaria; Sukhwani, Meena; Orwig, Kyle E.; Reijo Pera, Renee A.

    2014-01-01

    Turner syndrome is caused by complete or partial loss of the second sex chromosome and is characterized by spontaneous fetal loss in >90% of conceptions. Survivors possess an array of somatic and germline clinical characteristics. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) offer an opportunity for insight into genetic requirements of the X chromosome linked to Turner syndrome. We derived iPSCs from Turner syndrome and control individuals and examined germ cell development as a function of X chromosome composition. We demonstrate that two X chromosomes are not necessary for reprogramming or maintenance of pluripotency and that there are minimal differences in gene expression, at the single cell level, linked to X chromosome aneuploidies. Formation of germ cells, as assessed in vivo through a murine xenotransplantation model, indicated that undifferentiated iPSCs, independent of X chromosome composition, are capable of forming germ-cell-like cells (GCLCs) in vivo. In combination with clinical data regarding infertility in women with X chromosome aneuploidies, results suggest that two intact X chromosomes are not required for human germ cell formation, qualitatively or quantitatively, but rather are likely to be required for maintenance of human germ cells to adulthood. PMID:25242416

  2. Human germ cell formation in xenotransplants of induced pluripotent stem cells carrying X chromosome aneuploidies.

    PubMed

    Dominguez, Antonia A; Chiang, H Rosaria; Sukhwani, Meena; Orwig, Kyle E; Reijo Pera, Renee A

    2014-09-22

    Turner syndrome is caused by complete or partial loss of the second sex chromosome and is characterized by spontaneous fetal loss in >90% of conceptions. Survivors possess an array of somatic and germline clinical characteristics. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) offer an opportunity for insight into genetic requirements of the X chromosome linked to Turner syndrome. We derived iPSCs from Turner syndrome and control individuals and examined germ cell development as a function of X chromosome composition. We demonstrate that two X chromosomes are not necessary for reprogramming or maintenance of pluripotency and that there are minimal differences in gene expression, at the single cell level, linked to X chromosome aneuploidies. Formation of germ cells, as assessed in vivo through a murine xenotransplantation model, indicated that undifferentiated iPSCs, independent of X chromosome composition, are capable of forming germ-cell-like cells (GCLCs) in vivo. In combination with clinical data regarding infertility in women with X chromosome aneuploidies, results suggest that two intact X chromosomes are not required for human germ cell formation, qualitatively or quantitatively, but rather are likely to be required for maintenance of human germ cells to adulthood.

  3. Complete androgen insensitivity syndrome: factors influencing gonadal histology including germ cell pathology.

    PubMed

    Kaprova-Pleskacova, Jana; Stoop, Hans; Brüggenwirth, Hennie; Cools, Martine; Wolffenbuttel, Katja P; Drop, Stenvert L S; Snajderova, Marta; Lebl, Jan; Oosterhuis, J Wolter; Looijenga, Leendert H J

    2014-05-01

    Patients with complete androgen insensitivity syndrome are at an increased risk for the development of gonadal germ cell cancer. Residual androgen receptor (AR) activity and abnormal gonadal location may influence the survival of atypical germ cells and the development of other histopathological features. To assess this, we evaluated 37 gonads from 19 patients with complete androgen insensitivity (ranging in age from 3 months to 18 years). Histological abnormalities were examined using hematoxylin and eosin-stained sections and sections stained for POU5F1 and KITLG, markers of early changes in germ cells at risk for malignant transformation. Hamartomatous nodules (HNs), Leydig cell hyperplasia (LCH), decreased germ cells, tubular atrophy and stromal fibrosis were more pronounced as age increased (P<0.001). Expected residual AR activity acted as a positive predictor only for non-malignant germ cell survival in (post)pubertal patients (P<0.05). Immunohistochemical studies indicated that delayed maturation of germ cells was present in three patients, whereas intermediate changes that occurred between delayed maturation and intratubular germ cell neoplasia, designated pre-intratubular germ cell neoplasia, were identified in four cases. Intratubular germ cell neoplasia was observed in one patient. Neither POU5F1 nor KITLG expression was dependent on expected residual AR activity. An independent effect of inguinal versus abdominal position of the gonads was difficult to assess because inguinal gonads were present primarily in the youngest individuals. In conclusion, many histological changes occur increasingly with age. Expected residual AR activity contributes to better survival of the general germ cell population in (post)pubertal age; however, it did not seem to have an important role in the survival of the germ cells at risk for malignant transformation (defined by POU5F1 positivity and KITLG overexpression) in complete androgen insensitivity. Comparison of the high

  4. 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.

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

    PubMed

    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.

  6. 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.

  7. Germ cell mutagenicity of phthalic acid in mice.

    PubMed

    Jha, A M; Singh, A C; Bharti, M

    1998-12-03

    Mutagenicity of phthalic acid was evaluated by employing dominant lethal mutation and sperm head abnormality assays in male Swiss albino mice. For the dominant lethal mutation assay, adult male mice received a single intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection of either 40 mg or 80 mg/kg b.w. of phthalic acid for 5 consecutive days. For the sperm head abnormality assay, the mice were treated with 50, 100, 150, 200 and 300 mg/kg b.w. as a single i.p. injection. Treatment of adult male mice with phthalic acid resulted in induction of dominant lethal mutations and abnormal sperm heads. The results obtained indicate that phthalic acid is a germ cell mutagen.

  8. The challenge of poor-prognosis germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Toner, Guy C

    2007-05-01

    Patients who have a poor prognosis can be identified at presentation by well-defined prognostic factors. Prognostic groups as defined by the International Germ Cell Consensus Classification should be used in the clinic, in clinical trials, and when reporting results. No systemic treatment has been shown to improve outcome compared with four cycles of chemotherapy composed of bleomycin, etoposide, and cisplatin, which remains the standard of care. Surgery to resect residual masses after chemotherapy and in the salvage setting is a vital component of optimal care. The best outcomes occur with treatment at a center with experience and expertise in their management. Further major improvements are likely to require novel systemic therapies rather than modifications of existing approaches.

  9. Involvement of Fas/Fas-L and Bax/Bcl-2 systems in germ cell death following immunization with syngeneic testicular germ cells in mice.

    PubMed

    Kuerban, Maimaiti; Naito, Munekazu; Hirai, Shuichi; Terayama, Hayato; Qu, Ning; Musha, Muhetaerjiang; Ikeda, Ayumi; Koji, Takehiko; Itoh, Masahiro

    2012-01-01

    Experimental autoimmune orchitis (EAO) is characterized by T cell-dependent lymphocytic inflammation and seminiferous tubule damage, which can result in the death of germ cells. The aim of the present study is to investigate the roles of the Fas/Fas-L and Bax/Bcl-2 systems in the death of germ cells in mice with EAO that is induced by immunization with syngeneic testicular germ cells (TGC). The results using real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and immunostaining show that many terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling staining germ cells were present in seminiferous tubules during the active inflammation stage, and these cells were persistently observed in the seminiferous epithelium until the postactive inflammation stage. Intratesticular mRNA expression levels of both Fas and Bax were increased during the active inflammation stage and were dramatically decreased during the post-active inflammation stage. In contrast, the intratesticular mRNA expression levels of both Fas-L and Bcl-2 did not show significant changes during the active inflammation stage but showed extreme increases during the post-active inflammation stage. Immunohistochemically, some Fas- and Bax-positive germ cells were detected during the active inflammation stage, but these were hardly found during the post-active inflammation stage. In contrast, some Fas-L- and Bcl-2-positive germ cells were found during the active inflammation stage, and many of these were also observed during the post-active inflammation stage. These results indicate that germ cell death during TGC-induced EAO is mediated by the Fas/Fas-L and Bax/Bcl-2 systems during the active inflammation stage but not during the post-active inflammation stage.

  10. The C. elegans germ line: a model for stem cell biology

    PubMed Central

    Hubbard, E. Jane Albert

    2009-01-01

    Like many stem cell systems, the C. elegans germ line contains a self-renewing germ cell population that is maintained by a niche. Although the exact cellular mechanism for self-renewal is not yet known, three recent studies shed considerable light on the cell-cycle behavior of germ cells, including a support for significant and plastic renewal potential. This review brings together the results of the three recent cell-based studies, places them in the context of previous work, and discusses future perspectives for the field. PMID:17948315

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

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-11-07

    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

  12. [Reconsidering the roles of female germ cells in ovarian development and folliculogenesis].

    PubMed

    Guigon, Céline J; Cohen-Tannoudji, Michel

    2011-01-01

    The production of fertilizable ova is the consequence of multiple events that start as soon as ovarian development and culminate at the time of ovulation. Throughout their development, germ cells are associated with companion somatic cells, which ensure germ cell survival, growth and maturation. Data obtained in vitro and in vivo on several animal models of germ cell depletion have led to uncover the many roles of germ cells on both ovarian development and folliculogenesis. During ovarian development, germ cells become progressively enclosed within epithelial structures called "ovigerous cords" constituted by pregranulosa cells, lined by a basement membrane. At the end of ovarian development, ovigerous cords fragment into primordial follicles, which are epithelial units constituted by an oocyte surrounded by a single layer of granulosa cells. Germ cells are necessary for the fragmentation of ovigerous cords into follicles, since in their absence, no follicle will form. Germ cells also ensure the differentiation of the ovarian somatic lineage, and they may inhibit the testis-differentiating pathway by preventing the conversion of pregranulosa cells into Sertoli cells, their counterpart in the testis. Regularly, primordial follicles are recruited into the growing follicle pool and initiate their growth. They develop through primary, preantral, antral and preovulatory stages before being ovulated. Interestingly, the action of the oocyte on companion somatic cells tightly depends on the follicular stage. In primordial follicles, the oocyte prevents the transdifferentiation of granulosa cells into cells resembling Sertoli cells. By contrast, as soon as the follicle enters growth, the oocyte regulates the functional differentiation of granulosa cells and at the latest stages, it prevents their premature maturation into luteal cells. Overall, these data demonstrate that the female germ cell act on companion somatic cells to regulate ovarian development and

  13. Recent advances in molecular and cell biology of testicular germ-cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Chieffi, Paolo

    2014-01-01

    Testicular germ-cell tumors (TGCTs) are the most frequent solid malignant tumors in men 20-40 years of age and the most frequent cause of death from solid tumors in this age group. TGCTs comprise two major histologic groups: seminomas and nonseminomas germ-cell tumors (NSGCTs). NSGCTs can be further divided into embryonal, carcinoma, Teratoma, yolk sac tumor, and choriocarcinoma. Seminomas and NSGCTs present significant differences in clinical features, therapy, and prognosis, and both show characteristics of the primordial germ cells. Many discovered biomarkers including OCT3/4, SOX2, SOX17, HMGA1, Nek2, GPR30, Aurora-B, estrogen receptor β, and others have given further advantages to discriminate between histological subgroups and could represent useful novel molecular targets for antineoplastic strategies. More insight into the pathogenesis of TGCTs is likely to improve disease management not only to better treatment of these tumors but also to a better understanding of stem cells and oncogenesis.

  14. DNA damage in germ cells induces an innate immune response that triggers systemic stress resistance.

    PubMed

    Ermolaeva, Maria A; Segref, Alexandra; Dakhovnik, Alexander; Ou, Hui-Ling; Schneider, Jennifer I; Utermöhlen, Olaf; Hoppe, Thorsten; Schumacher, Björn

    2013-09-19

    DNA damage responses have been well characterized with regard to their cell-autonomous checkpoint functions leading to cell cycle arrest, senescence and apoptosis. In contrast, systemic responses to tissue-specific genome instability remain poorly understood. In adult Caenorhabditis elegans worms germ cells undergo mitotic and meiotic cell divisions, whereas somatic tissues are entirely post-mitotic. Consequently, DNA damage checkpoints function specifically in the germ line, whereas somatic tissues in adult C. elegans are highly radio-resistant. Some DNA repair systems such as global-genome nucleotide excision repair (GG-NER) remove lesions specifically in germ cells. Here we investigated how genome instability in germ cells affects somatic tissues in C. elegans. We show that exogenous and endogenous DNA damage in germ cells evokes elevated resistance to heat and oxidative stress. The somatic stress resistance is mediated by the ERK MAP kinase MPK-1 in germ cells that triggers the induction of putative secreted peptides associated with innate immunity. The innate immune response leads to activation of the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) in somatic tissues, which confers enhanced proteostasis and systemic stress resistance. We propose that elevated systemic stress resistance promotes endurance of somatic tissues to allow delay of progeny production when germ cells are genomically compromised.

  15. 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

  16. The cytogenetic theory of the pathogenesis of human adult male germ cell tumors. Review article.

    PubMed

    Chaganti, R S; Houldsworth, J

    1998-01-01

    Human male germ cell tumors (GCTs) represent a biological paradox because, in order to develop into a pluripotential tumor, a germ cell destined to a path of limited or no proliferation must acquire the potential for unlimited proliferation. In addition, it must acquire the ability to elicit embryonal differentiation patterns without the reciprocal inputs from fertilization and the imprinting-associated genomic changes which are a part of normal embryonal development. Although much speculated about, the genetic mechanisms underlying these properties of male GCTs remain enigmatic. Recent cytogenetic and molecular genetic analyses of these tumors are providing new insights and new testable hypotheses. Based on our recent work, we propose two such hypotheses. One relates to the mechanism of germ cell transformation and germ cell tumor development. We suggest that the invariable 12p amplification noted as early as in carcinoma in situ/intratubular germ cell neoplasia (CIS/ITGCN) lesions leads to deregulated overexpression of cyclin D2, a cell cycle G1/S checkpoint regulator with oncogeneic potential. Such overexpression reinitiates the cell cycle. We visualize this happening during the pachytene stage of meiosis through aberrant recombinational events which lead to 12p amplification. The other hypothesis relates to the origin of primary extragonadal GCTs. By comparing cytogenetic changes in primary mediastinal versus gonadal lesions, we propose that, in contrast to long-standing speculation that primary extra-gonadal tumors arise from embryonally misplaced primordial germ cells, these lesions arise from migration of transformed gonadal germ cells.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. Germ and lineage restricted stem/progenitors regenerate the mouse digit tip

    PubMed Central

    Rinkevich, Yuval; Lindau, Paul; Ueno, Hiroo; Longaker, Michael T.; Weissman, Irving L.

    2013-01-01

    Summary The regrowth of amputated limbs and the distal tips of digits represent models of tissue regeneration in amphibians, fish, and mice. For decades it had been assumed that limb regeneration derived from the blastema, an undifferentiated pluripotent cell population thought to be derived from mature cells via dedifferentiation. Here we show that a wide-range of tissue stem/progenitor cells contribute to restore the mouse distal digit. Genetic fate mapping and clonal analysis of individual cells revealed that these stem cells are lineage restricted, mimicking digit growth during development. Transplantation of CFP expressing hematopoietic stem cells, and parabiosis between genetically marked mice, confirmed that the stem/progenitors are tissue resident, including the cells involved in angiogenesis. These results, combined with those from appendage development/regeneration in lower vertebrates, collectively demonstrate that tissue stem cells rather than pluripotent blastema cells are an evolutionarily conserved cellular mode for limb regeneration after amputation. PMID:21866153

  20. Generation of germ-line chimera zebrafish using primordial germ cells isolated from cultured blastomeres and cryopreserved embryoids.

    PubMed

    Kawakami, Yutaka; Goto-Kazeto, Rie; Saito, Taiju; Fujimoto, Takafumi; Higaki, Shogo; Takahashi, Yoshiyuki; Arai, Katsutoshi; Yamaha, Etsuro

    2010-01-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are the only cells in developing embryos with the potential to transmit genetic information to the next generation. In our previous study, a single PGC transplanted into a host differentiated into fertile gametes and produced germ-line chimeras of cyprinid fish, including zebrafish. In this study, we aimed to induce germ-line chimeras by transplanting donor PGCs from various sources (normal embryos at different stages, dissociated blastomeres, embryoids, or embryoids cryopreserved by vitrification) into host blastulae, and compare the migration rates of the PGCs towards the gonadal ridge. Isolated, cultured blastomeres not subject to mesodermal induction were able to differentiate into PGCs that retained their motility. Moreover, these PGCs successfully migrated towards the gonadal ridge of the host and formed viable gametes. Motility depended on developmental stage and culture duration: PGCs obtained at earlier developmental stages and with shorter cultivation periods showed an increased rate of migration to the gonadal ridge. Offspring were obtained from natural spawning between normal females and chimeric males. These results provide the basis for new methods of gene preservation in zebrafish.

  1. Role of N-cadherin in proliferation, migration, and invasion of germ cell tumours

    PubMed Central

    Jarry, Hubertus; Küffer, Stefan; Kaulfuss, Silke; Burfeind, Peter; Strauβ, Arne; Thelen, Paul; Radzun, Heinz Joachim; Ströbel, Philipp; Honecker, Friedemann; Behnes, Carl Ludwig

    2015-01-01

    Germ cell tumors (GCTs) are the most common malignancies in young men. Most patients with GCT can be cured with cisplatin-based combination chemotherapy, even in metastatic disease. In case of therapy resistance, prognosis is usually poor. We investigated the potential of N-cadherin inhibition as a therapeutic strategy. We analyzed the GCT cell lines NCCIT, NTERA-2, TCam-2, and the cisplatin-resistant sublines NCCIT-R and NTERA-2R. Effects of a blocking antibody or siRNA against N-cadherin on proliferation, migration, and invasion were investigated. Mouse xenografts of GCT cell lines were analyzed by immunohistochemistry for N-cadherin expression. All investigated GCT cell lines were found to express N-cadherin protein in vitro and in vivo. Downregulation of N-cadherin in vitro leads to a significant inhibition of proliferation, migration, and invasion. N-cadherin-downregulation leads to a significantly higher level of pERK. N-cadherin-inhibition resulted in significantly higher rates of apoptotic cells in caspase-3 staining. Expression of N-cadherin is preserved in cisplatin-resistant GCT cells, pointing to an important physiological role in cell survival. N-cadherin-downregulation results in a significant decrease of proliferation, migration, and invasion and stimulates apoptosis in cisplatin-naive and resistant GCT cell lines. Therefore, targeting N-cadherin may be a promising therapeutic approach, particularly in cisplatin-resistant, therapy refractory and metastatic GCT. PMID:26451610

  2. The fog-3 gene and regulation of cell fate in the germ line of Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Ellis, R.; Kimble, J.

    1995-02-01

    In the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, germ cells normally adopt one of three fates: mitosis, spermatogenesis or oogenesis. We have identified and characterized the gene fog-3, which is required for germ cells to differentiate as sperm rather than as oocytes. Analysis of double mutants suggests that fog-3 is absolutely required for spermatogenesis and acts at the end of the regulatory hierarchy controlling sex determination for the germ line. By contrast, mutations in fog-3 do not alter the sexual identity of other tissues. We also have characterized the null phenotype of fog-1, another gene required for spermatogenesis; we demonstrate that it too controls the sexual identity of germ cells but not of other tissues. Finally, we have studied the same interaction of these two fog genes with gld-1, a gene required for germ cells to undergo oogenesis rather than mitosis. On the basis of these results, we propose that germ-cell fate might be controlled by a set of inhibitory interactions among genes that specify one of three fates: mitosis, spermatogenesis or oogenesis. Such a regulatory network would link the adoption of one germ-cell fate to the suppression of the other two. 68 refs., 7 figs., 6 tabs.

  3. The Fog-3 Gene and Regulation of Cell Fate in the Germ Line of Caenorhabditis Elegans

    PubMed Central

    Ellis, R. E.; Kimble, J.

    1995-01-01

    In the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, germ cells normally adopt one of three fates: mitosis, spermatogenesis or oogenesis. We have identified and characterized the gene fog-3, which is required for germ cells to differentiate as sperm rather than as oocytes. Analysis of double mutants suggests that fog-3 is absolutely required for spermatogenesis and acts at the end of the regulatory hierarchy controlling sex determination for the germ line. By contrast, mutations in fog-3 do not alter the sexual identity of other tissues. We also have characterized the null phenotype of fog-1, another gene required for spermatogenesis; we demonstrate that it too controls the sexual identity of germ cells but not of other tissues. Finally, we have studied the interaction of these two fog genes with gld-1, a gene required for germ cells to undergo oogenesis rather than mitosis. On the basis of these results, we propose that germ-cell fate might be controlled by a set of inhibitory interactions among genes that specify one of three fates: mitosis, spermatogenesis or oogenesis. Such a regulatory network would link the adoption of one germ-cell fate to the suppression of the other two. PMID:7713418

  4. Chemotherapy for Good-Risk Nonseminomatous Germ Cell Tumors: Current Concepts and Controversies.

    PubMed

    In, Gino; Dorff, Tanya

    2015-08-01

    The rate of diagnosis of germ cell tumors has remained fairly constant. By the International Germ Cell Cancer Consensus Classification, roughly 60% of all metastatic germ cell tumors are classified as good risk. This group of patients has an excellent prognosis, with greater than 90% expectation of cure. Treatment standards have not changed much in recent years. This article focuses on key concepts in the development of the currently accepted first-line regimens and addresses some evolving areas of interest, if not controversy.

  5. Impact of the number of Robertsonian chromosomes on germ cell death in wild male house mice.

    PubMed

    Medarde, Nuria; Merico, Valeria; López-Fuster, M José; Zuccotti, Maurizio; Garagna, Silvia; Ventura, Jacint

    2015-06-01

    Previous studies in the house mouse have shown that the presence of Robertsonian (Rb) metacentric chromosomes in heterozygous condition affects the process of spermatogenesis. This detrimental effect mainly depends on the number of metacentrics involved and the complexity of the resulting meiotic figures. In this study, we aimed at elucidating the relationship between the chromosomal composition and spermatogenesis impairment in mice present in an area of chromosomal polymorphism (the so-called Barcelona system BRbS) in which Rb mice are surrounded by all acrocentric animals, no established metacentric races are present and the level of structural heterozygosity is relatively low. Using the terminal deoxinucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labelling (TUNEL) assay, we report higher frequency of apoptotic spermatogenetic cells in mice carrying six pairs of metacentrics at the homozygous state than in those carrying two or three fusions at the heterozygous state. Specifically, we detected a higher frequency of TUNEL-positive (T+) tubules and of T+ cells per tubule cross section and also a lower spermatid/spermatocyte ratio. These results indicate that the number of metacentrics at the homozygous state is more influential in determining apoptotic germ cell death than that of moderate chromosome heterozygosity. The percentage of germ cell death lower than 50 % found in our samples and the geographic distribution of the set of metacentrics within the BRbS indicate that although the spermatogenic alterations detected in this area could act as a partial barrier to gene flow, they are not sufficient to prevent Rb chromosomes from spreading in nature.

  6. Monitoring for potential adverse effects of prenatal gene therapy: mouse models for developmental aberrations and inadvertent germ line transmission.

    PubMed

    Coutelle, Charles; Waddington, Simon N; Themis, Michael

    2012-01-01

    So far no systematic studies have been conducted to investigate developmental aberrations after prenatal gene transfer in mice. Here, we suggest procedures for such observations to be applied, tested and improved in further in utero gene therapy experiments. They are based on our own experience in husbandry for transgenic human diseases mouse models and breading, rearing, and observing mice after fetal gene transfer as well as on the systematic screens for monitoring of knock-out mutant mouse phenotypes established in international mutagenesis projects (EUMORPHIA and EUMODIC and subsequently the International Mouse Phenotyping Consortium). We also describe here the analysis procedures for detection of germ line mutations based on quantitative PCR (qPCR) by sperm-DNA analysis and breeding studies.

  7. Poultry genetic resource conservation using primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Yoshiaki

    2016-10-18

    The majority of poultry genetic resources are maintained in situ in living populations. However, in situ conservation of poultry genetic resources always carries the risk of loss owing to pathogen outbreaks, genetic problems, breeding cessation, or natural disasters. Cryobanking of germplasm in birds has been limited to the use of semen, preventing conservation of the W chromosome and mitochondrial DNA. A further challenge is posed by the structure of avian eggs, which restricts the cryopreservation of ova and fertilized embryos, a technique widely used for mammalian species. By using a unique biological property and accessibility of avian primordial germ cells (PGCs), precursor cells for gametes, which temporally circulate in the vasculature during early development, an avian PGC transplantation technique has been established. To date, several techniques for PGC manipulation including purification, cryopreservation, depletion, and long-term culture have been developed in chickens. PGC transplantation combined with recent advanced PGC manipulation techniques have enabled ex situ conservation of poultry genetic resources in their complete form. Here, the updated technologies for avian PGC manipulation are introduced, and then the concept of a poultry PGC-bank is proposed by considering the biological properties of avian PGCs.

  8. Poultry genetic resource conservation using primordial germ cells

    PubMed Central

    NAKAMURA, Yoshiaki

    2016-01-01

    The majority of poultry genetic resources are maintained in situ in living populations. However, in situ conservation of poultry genetic resources always carries the risk of loss owing to pathogen outbreaks, genetic problems, breeding cessation, or natural disasters. Cryobanking of germplasm in birds has been limited to the use of semen, preventing conservation of the W chromosome and mitochondrial DNA. A further challenge is posed by the structure of avian eggs, which restricts the cryopreservation of ova and fertilized embryos, a technique widely used for mammalian species. By using a unique biological property and accessibility of avian primordial germ cells (PGCs), precursor cells for gametes, which temporally circulate in the vasculature during early development, an avian PGC transplantation technique has been established. To date, several techniques for PGC manipulation including purification, cryopreservation, depletion, and long-term culture have been developed in chickens. PGC transplantation combined with recent advanced PGC manipulation techniques have enabled ex situ conservation of poultry genetic resources in their complete form. Here, the updated technologies for avian PGC manipulation are introduced, and then the concept of a poultry PGC-bank is proposed by considering the biological properties of avian PGCs. PMID:27210834

  9. Gonadal germ cell tumors in children and adolescents

    PubMed Central

    Cecchetto, Giovanni

    2014-01-01

    Pediatric germ cell tumors (GCT) are rare tumors: 80% are benign, 20% malignant (2-3% of all malignant pediatric tumors). The gonadal sites (ovary and testis) account for 40% of cases. Ovarian GCTs: Represent 30% of GCTs and 70% of neoplastic ovarian masses, being the most common ovarian neoplasms in children and teenagers. Benign and immature forms (teratomas) constitute about 80% of all ovarian GCTs, malignant forms represent 20% increasing during adolescence. The most common malignant entity in children is the yolk sac tumors (YST); dysgerminoma is frequent during adolescence and being bilateral in 10% of cases. Presentation is similar in malignant and benign lesions; abdominal pain (70-80%) and lower abdominal mass are common symptoms. Evaluation of alpha-fetoprotein (αFP) or beta subunit of human chorionic gonadotropin (βHCG) is essential to address the nature of the tumors: Their elevation means presence of malignancy. Surgery includes intraoperative staging procedures and requires ovariectomy or ovarosalpingectomy for malignant lesions, but may be conservative in selected benign tumors. Since malignant GCTs are very chemosensitive, primary chemotherapy is recommended in metastatic or locally advanced tumors. Testicular GCT: Represent 10% of pediatric GCT, and about 30% of malignant GCT with two age peaks: Children <3 years may experience mature teratoma and malignant GCTs, represented almost exclusively by YST, while adolescents may also show seminomas or other mixed tumors. The main clinical feature is a painless scrotal mass. Surgery represents the cornerstone of the management of testicular GCTs, with an inguinal approach and a primary high orchidectomy for malignant tumors, while a testis-sparing surgery can be considered for benign lesions. A retroperitoneal lymph node (LN) biopsy may be necessary to define the staging when the involvement of retroperitoneal LN is uncertain at imaging investigations. Conclusion: Patients with gonadal malignant GCTs

  10. Germ cell mutations of the ascidian Ciona intestinalis with TALE nucleases.

    PubMed

    Yoshida, Keita; Treen, Nicholas; Hozumi, Akiko; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Yamamoto, Takashi; Sasakura, Yasunori

    2014-05-01

    Targeted mutagenesis of genes-of-interest, or gene-knockout, is a powerful method to address the functions of genes. Engineered nucleases have enabled this approach in various organisms because of their ease of use. The ascidian Ciona intestinalis is an excellent organism to analyze gene functions by means of genetic technologies. In our previous study, we reported mutagenesis of Ciona somatic cells with TALE nucleases (TALENs) by electroporating expression constructs. In this study, we report germ cell mutagenesis of Ciona by microinjecting mRNAs encoding TALENs. TALEN mRNAs introduced mutations to target genes in both somatic and germ cells. TALEN-mediated mutations in the germ cell genome were inherited by the next generation. We conclude that knockout lines of Ciona that have disrupted target genes can be established through TALEN-mediated germ cell mutagenesis.

  11. Cold/menthol TRPM8 receptors initiate the cold-shock response and protect germ cells from cold-shock–induced oxidation

    PubMed Central

    Borowiec, Anne-Sophie; Sion, Benoit; Chalmel, Frédéric; D. Rolland, Antoine; Lemonnier, Loïc; De Clerck, Tatiana; Bokhobza, Alexandre; Derouiche, Sandra; Dewailly, Etienne; Slomianny, Christian; Mauduit, Claire; Benahmed, Mohamed; Roudbaraki, Morad; Jégou, Bernard; Prevarskaya, Natalia; Bidaux, Gabriel

    2016-01-01

    Testes of most male mammals present the particularity of being externalized from the body and are consequently slightly cooler than core body temperature (4–8°C below). Although, hypothermia of the testis is known to increase germ cells apoptosis, little is known about the underlying molecular mechanisms, including cold sensors, transduction pathways, and apoptosis triggers. In this study, using a functional knockout mouse model of the cold and menthol receptors, dubbed transient receptor potential melastatine 8 (TRPM8) channels, we found that TRPM8 initiated the cold-shock response by differentially modulating cold- and heat-shock proteins. Besides, apoptosis of germ cells increased in proportion to the cooling level in control mice but was independent of temperature in knockout mice. We also observed that the rate of germ cell death correlated positively with the reactive oxygen species level and negatively with the expression of the detoxifying enzymes. This result suggests that the TRPM8 sensor is a key determinant of germ cell fate under hypothermic stimulation.—Borowiec, A.-S., Sion, B., Chalmel, F., Rolland, A. D., Lemonnier, L., De Clerck, T., Bokhobza, A., Derouiche, S., Dewailly, E., Slomianny, C., Mauduit, C., Benahmed, M., Roudbaraki, M., Jégou, B., Prevarskaya, N., Bidaux, G. Cold/menthol TRPM8 receptors initiate the cold-shock response and protect germ cells from cold-shock–induced oxidation. PMID:27317670

  12. Identification and Genetic Analysis of Wunen, a Gene Guiding Drosophila Melanogaster Germ Cell Migration

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, N.; Zhang, J.; Cheng, Y.; Howard, K.

    1996-01-01

    We describe a novel genetic locus, wunen (wun), required for guidance of germ cell migration in early Drosophila development. Loss of wun function does not abolish movement but disrupts the orientation of the motion causing the germ cells to disperse even though their normal target, the somatic gonad, is well formed. We demonstrate that the product of this gene enables a signal to pass from the soma to the germ line and propose that the function of this signal is to selectively stabilize certain cytoplasmic extensions resulting in oriented movement. To characterize this guidance factor, we have mapped wun to within 100 kb of cloned DNA. PMID:8807296

  13. The PUF binding landscape in metazoan germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Prasad, Aman; Porter, Douglas F.; Kroll-Conner, Peggy L.; Mohanty, Ipsita; Ryan, Anne R.; Crittenden, Sarah L.; Wickens, Marvin; Kimble, Judith

    2016-01-01

    PUF (Pumilio/FBF) proteins are RNA-binding proteins and conserved stem cell regulators. The Caenorhabditis elegans PUF proteins FBF-1 and FBF-2 (collectively FBF) regulate mRNAs in germ cells. Without FBF, adult germlines lose all stem cells. A major gap in our understanding of PUF proteins, including FBF, is a global view of their binding sites in their native context (i.e., their “binding landscape”). To understand the interactions underlying FBF function, we used iCLIP (individual-nucleotide resolution UV crosslinking and immunoprecipitation) to determine binding landscapes of C. elegans FBF-1 and FBF-2 in the germline tissue of intact animals. Multiple iCLIP peak-calling methods were compared to maximize identification of both established FBF binding sites and positive control target mRNAs in our iCLIP data. We discovered that FBF-1 and FBF-2 bind to RNAs through canonical as well as alternate motifs. We also analyzed crosslinking-induced mutations to map binding sites precisely and to identify key nucleotides that may be critical for FBF–RNA interactions. FBF-1 and FBF-2 can bind sites in the 5′UTR, coding region, or 3′UTR, but have a strong bias for the 3′ end of transcripts. FBF-1 and FBF-2 have strongly overlapping target profiles, including mRNAs and noncoding RNAs. From a statistically robust list of 1404 common FBF targets, 847 were previously unknown, 154 were related to cell cycle regulation, three were lincRNAs, and 335 were shared with the human PUF protein PUM2. PMID:27165521

  14. Germ cell transplantation as a potential biotechnological approach to fish reproduction.

    PubMed

    Lacerda, S M S N; Costa, G M J; Campos-Junior, P H A; Segatelli, T M; Yazawa, R; Takeuchi, Y; Morita, T; Yoshizaki, G; França, L R

    2013-02-01

    Although the use of germ cell transplantation has been relatively well established in mammals, the technique has only been adapted for use in fish after entering the 2000s. During the last decade, several different approaches have been developed for germ cell transplantation in fish using recipients of various ages and life stages, such as blastula-stage embryos, newly hatched larvae and sexually mature specimens. As germ cells can develop into live organisms through maturation and fertilization processes, germ cell transplantation in fish has opened up new avenues of research in reproductive biotechnology and aquaculture. For instance, the use of xenotransplantation in fish has lead to advances in the conservation of endangered species and the production of commercially valuable fish using surrogated recipients. Further, this could also facilitate the engineering of transgenic fish. However, as is the case with mammals, knowledge regarding the basic biology and physiology of germline stem cells in fish remains incomplete, imposing a considerable limitation on the application of germ cell transplantation in fish. Furthering our understanding of germline stem cells would contribute significantly to advances regarding germ cell transplantation in fish.

  15. Germ cells of the centipede Strigamia maritima are specified early in embryonic development.

    PubMed

    Green, Jack E; Akam, Michael

    2014-08-15

    We provide the first systematic description of germ cell development with molecular markers in a myriapod, the centipede Strigamia maritima. By examining the expression of Strigamia vasa and nanos orthologues, we find that the primordial germ cells are specified from at least the blastoderm stage. This is a much earlier embryonic stage than previously described for centipedes, or any other member of the Myriapoda. Using these genes as markers, and taking advantage of the developmental synchrony of Strigamia embryos within single clutches, we are able to track the development of the germ cells throughout embryogenesis. We find that the germ cells accumulate at the blastopore; that the cells do not internalize through the hindgut, but rather through the closing blastopore; and that the cells undergo a long-range migration to the embryonic gonad. This is the first evidence for primordial germ cells displaying these behaviours in any myriapod. The myriapods are a phylogenetically important group in the arthropod radiation for which relatively little developmental data is currently available. Our study provides valuable comparative data that complements the growing number of studies in insects, crustaceans and chelicerates, and is important for the correct reconstruction of ancestral states and a fuller understanding of how germ cell development has evolved in different arthropod lineages.

  16. SOX17 Is a Critical Specifier of Human Primordial Germ Cell Fate

    PubMed Central

    Irie, Naoko; Weinberger, Leehee; Tang, Walfred W.C.; Kobayashi, Toshihiro; Viukov, Sergey; Manor, Yair S.; Dietmann, Sabine; Hanna, Jacob H.; Surani, M. Azim

    2015-01-01

    Summary Specification of primordial germ cells (PGCs) marks the beginning of the totipotent state. However, without a tractable experimental model, the mechanism of human PGC (hPGC) specification remains unclear. Here, we demonstrate specification of hPGC-like cells (hPGCLCs) from germline competent pluripotent stem cells. The characteristics of hPGCLCs are consistent with the embryonic hPGCs and a germline seminoma that share a CD38 cell-surface marker, which collectively defines likely progression of the early human germline. Remarkably, SOX17 is the key regulator of hPGC-like fate, whereas BLIMP1 represses endodermal and other somatic genes during specification of hPGCLCs. Notable mechanistic differences between mouse and human PGC specification could be attributed to their divergent embryonic development and pluripotent states, which might affect other early cell-fate decisions. We have established a foundation for future studies on resetting of the epigenome in hPGCLCs and hPGCs for totipotency and the transmission of genetic and epigenetic information. PMID:25543152

  17. Familial testicular germ cell tumor: no associated syndromic pattern identified

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Testicular germ cell tumor (TGCT) is the most common malignancy in young men. Familial clustering, epidemiologic evidence of increased risk with family or personal history, and the association of TGCT with genitourinary (GU) tract anomalies have suggested an underlying genetic predisposition. Linkage data have not identified a rare, highly-penetrant, single gene in familial TGCT (FTGCT) cases. Based on its association with congenital GU tract anomalies and suggestions that there is an intrauterine origin to TGCT, we hypothesized the existence of unrecognized dysmorphic features in FTGCT. Methods We evaluated 38 FTGCT individuals and 41 first-degree relatives from 22 multiple-case families with detailed dysmorphology examinations, physician-based medical history and physical examination, laboratory testing, and genitourinary imaging studies. Results The prevalence of major abnormalities and minor variants did not significantly differ between either FTGCT individuals or their first-degree relatives when compared with normal population controls, except for tall stature, macrocephaly, flat midface, and retro-/micrognathia. However, these four traits were not manifest as a constellation of features in any one individual or family. We did detect an excess prevalence of the genitourinary anomalies cryptorchidism and congenital inguinal hernia in our population, as previously described in sporadic TGCT, but no congenital renal, retroperitoneal or mediastinal anomalies were detected. Conclusions Overall, our study did not identify a constellation of dysmorphic features in FTGCT individuals, which is consistent with results of genetic studies suggesting that multiple low-penetrance genes are likely responsible for FTGCT susceptibility. PMID:24559313

  18. Inguinal lymph node metastases from germ cell testicular tumors.

    PubMed

    Klein, F A; Whitmore, W F; Sogani, P C; Batata, M; Fisher, H; Herr, H W

    1984-03-01

    Between 1948 and 1982, 22 patients were seen with metastasis to the inguinal nodes from testicular germ cell tumors: 8 had a history of unilateral or bilateral orchiopexy with or without herniorrhaphy, 4 had nonsurgically corrected or uncorrected cryptorchidism, 9 had a history of herniorrhaphy, hydrocelectomy or transscrotal orchiectomy and 1 had no history of scrotal, iliac or inguinal surgery, or of tunica vaginalis or scrotal wall involvement by tumor. The histological type was pure seminoma in 5 patients, embryonal carcinoma in 7 and mixed tumor in 10. Treatment was individualized for tumor type and mode of presentation, and varied during the years according to the modalities available. At the time of this report 8 of 22 patients (36 per cent) are alive without evidence of disease from 2 to 29.5 years, 3 (16 per cent) have died without evidence of disease 10 to 17 years after treatment, 10 (45 per cent) have died of metastases 10 months to 6 years after treatment and 1 has been lost to followup. The over-all incidence of groin metastases from testicular carcinoma is low, even with a history of scrotal or inguinal surgery.

  19. Management of primary germ cell tumors of the mediastinum.

    PubMed

    Economou, J S; Trump, D L; Holmes, E C; Eggleston, J E

    1982-05-01

    Twenty-eight patients with primary malignant germ cell tumors (GCT) of the mediastinum were treated at the University of California at Los Angeles and The Johns Hopkins Hospital in the past 30 years. Of 11 patients with pure seminomas, nine (82%) are free of disease from 6 months to 15 years following therapy. The primary treatment modality in these patients was mediastinal radiation; one patient with metastatic disease had a complete remission and prolonged survival following combination chemotherapy. Seventeen patients had GCT with nonseminomatous elements. Only three (18%) are alive and free of disease. One patient treated only surgically is alive at 15 years and two patients treated with combination chemotherapy and operation are alive and free of disease at 6 months and 3 years. When analyzed by a Kaplan-Meier actuarial survival estimate, patients with nonseminomatous GCT who were treated with cisplatin-bleomycin-based chemotherapy had a median survival of 14.0 months whereas those treated with chemotherapy regimens not employing these agents had a median survival of 4.0 months (generalized Wilcoxon test, p = 0.0495). Patients with pure seminomas are effectively treated with radiation therapy. Patients with nonseminomatous tumors have a much poorer prognosis and deserve aggressive multimodality therapy with cisplatin-bleomycin-based chemotherapy.

  20. Activation of the germ-cell potential of human bone marrow-derived cells by a chemical carcinogen.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chunfang; Ma, Zhan; Xu, Songtao; Hou, Jun; Hu, Yao; Yu, Yinglu; Liu, Ruilai; Chen, Zhihong; Lu, Yuan

    2014-07-07

    Embryonic/germ cell traits are common in malignant tumors and are thought to be involved in malignant tumor behaviors. The reasons why tumors show strong embryonic/germline traits (displaced germ cells or gametogenic programming reactivation) are controversial. Here, we show that a chemical carcinogen, 3-methyl-cholanthrene (3-MCA), can trigger the germ-cell potential of human bone marrow-derived cells (hBMDCs). 3-MCA promoted the generation of germ cell-like cells from induced hBMDCs that had undergone malignant transformation, whereas similar results were not observed in the parallel hBMDC culture at the same time point. The malignant transformed hBMDCs spontaneously and more efficiently generated into germ cell-like cells even at the single-cell level. The germ cell-like cells from induced hBMDCs were similar to natural germ cells in many aspects, including morphology, gene expression, proliferation, migration, further development, and teratocarcinoma formation. Therefore, our results demonstrate that a chemical carcinogen can reactivate the germline phenotypes of human somatic tissue-derived cells, which might provide a novel idea to tumor biology and therapy.

  1. The biology of germ cell tumors in disorders of sex development.

    PubMed

    Hersmus, Remko; van Bever, Yolande; Wolffenbuttel, Katja P; Biermann, Katharina; Cools, Martine; Looijenga, Leendert H J

    2017-02-01

    Development of a malignant germ cell tumor, i.e., germ cell cancer (GCC) in individuals with disorders of sex development (DSD) depends on a number of (epi-)genetic factors related to early gonadal- and germ cell development, possibly related to genetic susceptibility. Fetal development of germ cells is orchestrated by strict processes involving specification, migration and the development of a proper gonadal niche. In this review we will discuss the early (epi-)genetic events in normal and aberrant germ cell and gonadal development. Focus will be on the formation of the precursor lesions of GCC in individuals who have DSD. In our view, expression of the different embryonic markers in, and epigenetic profile of the precursor lesions reflects the developmental stage in which these cells are blocked in their maturation. Therefore, these are not a primary pathogenetic driving force. Progression later in life towards a full blown cancer likely depends on additional factors such as a changed endocrine environment in a susceptible individual. Genetic susceptibility is, as evidenced by the presence of specific risk genetic variants (SNPs) in patients with a testicular GCC, related to genes involved in early germ cell and gonadal development.

  2. Automatic classification of fish germ cells through optimum-path forest.

    PubMed

    Papa, João P; Gutierrez, Mario E M; Nakamura, Rodrigo Y M; Papa, Luciene P; Vicentini, Irene B F; Vicentini, Carlos A

    2011-01-01

    The spermatogenesis is crucial to the species reproduction, and its monitoring may shed light over some important information of such process. Thus, the germ cells quantification can provide useful tools to improve the reproduction cycle. In this paper, we present the first work that address this problem in fishes with machine learning techniques. We show here how to obtain high recognition accuracies in order to identify fish germ cells with several state-of-the-art supervised pattern recognition techniques.

  3. Unusual liver locations of growing teratoma syndrome in ovarian malignant germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Lorusso, Domenica; Malaguti, Paola; Trivellizzi, Ilaria Nausica; Scambia, Giovanni

    2011-01-01

    ► Growing teratoma syndrome (GTS) with unusual liver locations are described after fertility preserving surgery and chemotherapy treatment for mixed malignant ovarian germ cell tumors (MGCT). ► It's a rare syndrome of mixed malignant ovarian germ cell tumors and in both cases enlarged and growing liver masses appeared during cisplatin-etoposide-bleomicin (BEP) chemotherapy. ► Radiological exams (CT scan and MRI) were suggestive for secondary metastasis and serum markers became negative during chemotherapy.

  4. Regulation of Translocator Protein 18 kDa (TSPO) Expression in Rat and Human Male Germ Cells.

    PubMed

    Manku, Gurpreet; Culty, Martine

    2016-09-06

    Translocator protein 18 kDa (TSPO) is a high affinity cholesterol- and drug-binding protein highly expressed in steroidogenic cells, such as Leydig cells, where it plays a role in cholesterol mitochondrial transport. We have previously shown that TSPO is expressed in postnatal day 3 rat gonocytes, precursors of spermatogonial stem cells. Gonocytes undergo regulated phases of proliferation and migration, followed by retinoic acid (RA)-induced differentiation. Understanding these processes is important since their disruption may lead to the formation of carcinoma in situ, a precursor of testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs). Previously, we showed that TSPO ligands do not regulate gonocyte proliferation. In the present study, we found that TSPO expression is downregulated in differentiating gonocytes. Similarly, in F9 embryonal carcinoma cells, a mouse TGCT cell line with embryonic stem cell properties, there is a significant decrease in TSPO expression during RA-induced differentiation. Silencing TSPO expression in gonocytes increased the stimulatory effect of RA on the expression of the differentiation marker Stra8, suggesting that TSPO exerts a repressive role on differentiation. Furthermore, in normal human testes, TSPO was located not only in Leydig cells, but also in discrete spermatogenic phases such as the forming acrosome of round spermatids. By contrast, seminomas, the most common type of TGCT, presented high levels of TSPO mRNA. TSPO protein was expressed in the cytoplasmic compartment of seminoma cells, identified by their nuclear expression of the transcription factors OCT4 and AP2G. Thus, TSPO appears to be tightly regulated during germ cell differentiation, and to be deregulated in seminomas, suggesting a role in germ cell development and pathology.

  5. Regulation of Translocator Protein 18 kDa (TSPO) Expression in Rat and Human Male Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Manku, Gurpreet; Culty, Martine

    2016-01-01

    Translocator protein 18 kDa (TSPO) is a high affinity cholesterol- and drug-binding protein highly expressed in steroidogenic cells, such as Leydig cells, where it plays a role in cholesterol mitochondrial transport. We have previously shown that TSPO is expressed in postnatal day 3 rat gonocytes, precursors of spermatogonial stem cells. Gonocytes undergo regulated phases of proliferation and migration, followed by retinoic acid (RA)-induced differentiation. Understanding these processes is important since their disruption may lead to the formation of carcinoma in situ, a precursor of testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs). Previously, we showed that TSPO ligands do not regulate gonocyte proliferation. In the present study, we found that TSPO expression is downregulated in differentiating gonocytes. Similarly, in F9 embryonal carcinoma cells, a mouse TGCT cell line with embryonic stem cell properties, there is a significant decrease in TSPO expression during RA-induced differentiation. Silencing TSPO expression in gonocytes increased the stimulatory effect of RA on the expression of the differentiation marker Stra8, suggesting that TSPO exerts a repressive role on differentiation. Furthermore, in normal human testes, TSPO was located not only in Leydig cells, but also in discrete spermatogenic phases such as the forming acrosome of round spermatids. By contrast, seminomas, the most common type of TGCT, presented high levels of TSPO mRNA. TSPO protein was expressed in the cytoplasmic compartment of seminoma cells, identified by their nuclear expression of the transcription factors OCT4 and AP2G. Thus, TSPO appears to be tightly regulated during germ cell differentiation, and to be deregulated in seminomas, suggesting a role in germ cell development and pathology. PMID:27608010

  6. Uncoupling of pathways that promote postmitotic life span and apoptosis from replicative immortality of Caenorhabditis elegans germ cells.

    PubMed

    Ahmed, Shawn

    2006-12-01

    A dichotomy exists between germ and somatic cells in most organisms, such that somatic cell lineages proliferate for a single generation, whereas the germ cell lineage has the capacity to proliferate from one generation to the next, indefinitely. Several theories have been proposed to explain the unlimited replicative life span of germ cells, including the elimination of damaged germ cells by apoptosis or expression of high levels of gene products that prevent aging in somatic cells. These theories were tested in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans by examining the consequences of eliminating either apoptosis or the daf-16, daf-18 or sir-2.1 genes that promote longevity of postmitotic somatic cells. However, germ cells of strains deficient for these activities displayed an unlimited proliferative capacity. Thus, C. elegans germ cells retain their youthful character via alternative pathways that prevent or eliminate damage that accumulates as a consequence of cell proliferation.

  7. RNF17, a component of the mammalian germ cell nuage, is essential for spermiogenesis.

    PubMed

    Pan, Jieyan; Goodheart, Mary; Chuma, Shinichiro; Nakatsuji, Norio; Page, David C; Wang, P Jeremy

    2005-09-01

    Nuages are found in the germ cells of diverse organisms. However, nuages in postnatal male germ cells of mice are poorly studied. Previously, we cloned a germ cell-specific gene named Rnf17, which encodes a protein containing both a RING finger and tudor domains. Here, we report that RNF17 is a component of a novel nuage in male germ cells--the RNF17 granule, which is an electron-dense non-membrane bound spherical organelle with a diameter of 0.5 mum. RNF17 granules are prominent in late pachytene and diplotene spermatocytes, and in elongating spermatids. RNF17 granules are distinguishable from other known nuages, such as chromatoid bodies. RNF17 is able to form dimers or polymers both in vitro and in vivo, indicating that it may play a role in the assembly of RNF17 granules. Rnf17-deficient male mice were sterile and exhibited a complete arrest in round spermatids, demonstrating that Rnf17 encodes a novel key regulator of spermiogenesis. Rnf17-null round spermatids advanced to step 4 but failed to produce sperm. These results have shown that RNF17 is a component of a novel germ cell nuage and is required for differentiation of male germ cells.

  8. Cross talk between germ cells and gonadal somatic cells is critical for sex differentiation of the gonads in the teleost fish, medaka (Oryzias latipes).

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Minoru; Saito, Daisuke; Morinaga, Chikako; Kurokawa, Hiromi

    2008-05-01

    To evaluate the possible role of germ cells on sex differentiation of the gonads in vertebrates, the teleost fish, medaka (Oryzias latipes), was used to generate a gonad without germ cells. The germ cell-deficient medaka reveals multiple effects of germ cells on the process of sex differentiation. The previously isolated mutant medaka, hotei, with the excessive number of germ cells may support the contention that the proliferation of germ cells is related to feminization of the gonad. Futhermore, we show that two modes of proliferation for either maintenance of germ cells or commitment to gametogenesis are important components of the sex differentiation of medaka developing gonads. An intimate cross talk between germ cells and gonadal somatic cells during the sex differentiation will be discussed.

  9. Germ Cell-Specific Excision of loxP-Flanked Transgenes in Rainbow Trout Oncorhynchus mykiss.

    PubMed

    Katayama, Naoto; Kume, Sachi; Hattori-Ihara, Shoko; Sadaie, Sakiko; Hayashi, Makoto; Yoshizaki, Goro

    2016-04-01

    Cre/loxP-mediated DNA excision in germ cell lineages could contribute substantially to the study of germ cell biology in salmonids, which are emerging as a model species in this field. However, a cell type-specific Cre/loxPsystem has not been successfully developed for any salmonid species. Therefore, we examined the feasibility of Cre/loxP-mediated, germ cell-specific gene excision and transgene activation in rainbow trout. Double-transgenic (wTg) progeny were obtained by mating a transgenic male carryingcrewith a transgenic female carrying thehsc-LRLGgene;crewas driven by rainbow troutvasaregulatory regions and thehsc-LRLGgene was made up of the rainbow troutheat-shock-cognate71promoter, theDsRedgene flanked by twoloxPsites, and theEgfpgene. PCR analysis, fluorescence imaging, and histological analysis revealed that excision of theloxP-flanked sequence and activation ofEgfpoccurred only in germ cells of wTg fish. However, progeny tests revealed that the excision efficiency ofloxP-flanked sequence in germ cells was low (≤3.27%). In contrast, the other wTg fish derived from two differentcre-transgenic males frequently excised theloxP-flanked sequence in germ cells (≤89.25%). Thus, we showed for the first time successful germ cell-specific transgene manipulation via the Cre/loxPsystem in rainbow trout. We anticipate that this technology will be suitable for studies of cell function through cell targeting, cell-linage tracing, and generating cell type-specific conditional gene knockouts and separately for developing sterile rainbow trout in aquaculture.

  10. Endogenous DNA Damage and Risk of Testicular Germ Cell Tumors

    SciTech Connect

    Cook, M B; Sigurdson, A J; Jones, I M; Thomas, C B; Graubard, B I; Korde, L; Greene, M H; McGlynn, K A

    2008-01-18

    Testicular germ cell tumors (TGCT) are comprised of two histologic groups, seminomas and nonseminomas. We postulated that the possible divergent pathogeneses of these histologies may be partially explained by variable endogenous DNA damage. To assess our hypothesis, we conducted a case-case analysis of seminomas and nonseminomas using the alkaline comet assay to quantify single-strand DNA breaks and alkali-labile sites. The Familial Testicular Cancer study and the U.S. Radiologic Technologists cohort provided 112 TGCT cases (51 seminomas & 61 nonseminomas). A lymphoblastoid cell line was cultured for each patient and the alkaline comet assay was used to determine four parameters: tail DNA, tail length, comet distributed moment (CDM) and Olive tail moment (OTM). Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (95%CI) were estimated using logistic regression. Values for tail length, tail DNA, CDM and OTM were modeled as categorical variables using the 50th and 75th percentiles of the seminoma group. Tail DNA was significantly associated with nonseminoma compared to seminoma (OR{sub 50th percentile} = 3.31, 95%CI: 1.00, 10.98; OR{sub 75th percentile} = 3.71, 95%CI: 1.04, 13.20; p for trend=0.039). OTM exhibited similar, albeit statistically non-significant, risk estimates (OR{sub 50th percentile} = 2.27, 95%CI: 0.75, 6.87; OR{sub 75th percentile} = 2.40, 95%CI: 0.75, 7.71; p for trend=0.12) whereas tail length and CDM showed no association. In conclusion, the results for tail DNA and OTM indicate that endogenous DNA damage levels are higher in patients who develop nonseminoma compared with seminoma. This may partly explain the more aggressive biology and younger age-of-onset of this histologic subgroup compared with the relatively less aggressive, later-onset seminoma.

  11. Germ cell comparative Drosophila mutagenesis: sensitivity and mutation pattern in chemically treated stem cells

    SciTech Connect

    Abrahamson, S.; Houtchens, K.; Li Jia, X.; Foureman, P.

    1983-01-01

    Mutagenesis studies on Drosophila oogonial cells with methylnitrosourea, dimethylnitrosamine, and diethylnitrosamine revealed unexpectedly high rates of sex-linked recessive lethals relative to other male and female germ cell stages. Indeed, the oogonial mutation rates with chemicals are higher than with massive x-ray or neutron exposures of oogonia. Analysis of the distribution of lethals per treated female suggests most of the mutations recovered are of independent origin, with very small levels of clustering of identical mutations. In the male stem cell population (spermatogonia) on the other hand, the distribution of lethals is primarily nonrandom and highly clustered. The nature of the mutational endpoint and the different pattern of germ cell development in the two sexes are the probable causes of this difference. The oogonial sensitivity to chemical mutagens may have important bearing on strategies for assessing human hazard.

  12. Scrotal Involvement with Testicular Nonseminomatous Germ Cell Tumour

    PubMed Central

    Allen, J. A.; O'Brien, F.; Tuthill, A.; Power, D. G.

    2016-01-01

    A 37-year-old male presented with a traumatic injury to the scrotal region necessitating emergency surgery. Evacuation of a haematoma and bilateral orchidectomy were performed. A left sided nonseminomatous germ cell tumour (NSGCT), predominantly yolk sac, was identified. Microscopic margins were positive for tumour. Initial tumour markers revealed an AFP of 22,854 ng/mL, HCG of <1 mIU/mL, and LDH of 463 IU/L. Eight weeks after surgery, AFP levels remained elevated at 11,646 ng/mL. Computed tomography (CT) scanning demonstrated left inguinal adenopathy, 1.5 cm in max dimension. On review, extensive evidence of scrotal involvement was evident. His tumour was staged as stage IIIC, poor risk NSGCT. He was treated with 4 cycles of bleomycin, etoposide, and cisplatin over a 12-week period. His tumour markers normalised after 3 cycles. There was a marked improvement noted clinically. Follow-up CT scans demonstrated complete resolution of his tumour. He later underwent further surgery to remove a small amount of remaining spermatic cord. Histology revealed no malignant tissue. The patient suffered many complications including testosterone deficiency, osteopenia, infertility, and psychological distress. Discussion. A small proportion of testicular cancer may present in an atypical manner. The scrotum and testicle have markedly different embryonic origins and therefore a distinct anatomic separation. As a result the scrotum is not a typical site of spread of testicular cancer. Case reports have been described that were managed in a similar manner with good outcomes. Therefore, even with significant scrotal involvement, if timely and appropriate treatment is administered, complete resolution of the tumour may be achieved. PMID:27830100

  13. Novel somatic and germline mutations in intracranial germ cell tumors

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Linghua; Yamaguchi, Shigeru; Burstein, Matthew D.; Terashima, Keita; Chang, Kyle; Ng, Ho-Keung; Nakamura, Hideo; He, Zongxiao; Doddapaneni, Harshavardhan; Lewis, Lora; Wang, Mark; Suzuki, Tomonari; Nishikawa, Ryo; Natsume, Atsushi; Terasaka, Shunsuke; Dauser, Robert; Whitehead, William; Adekunle, Adesina; Sun, Jiayi; Qiao, Yi; Marth, Gábor; Muzny, Donna M.; Gibbs, Richard A.; Leal, Suzanne M.; Wheeler, David A.; Lau, Ching C.

    2015-01-01

    Intracranial germ cell tumors (IGCTs) are a group of rare heterogeneous brain tumors which are clinically and histologically similar to the more common gonadal GCTs. IGCTs show great variation in their geographic and gender distribution, histological composition and treatment outcomes. The incidence of IGCTs is historically 5–8 fold greater in Japan and other East Asian countries than in Western countries1 with peak incidence near the time of puberty2. About half of the tumors are located in the pineal region. The male-to-female incidence ratio is approximately 3–4:1 overall but even higher for tumors located in the pineal region3. Due to the scarcity of tumor specimens available for research, little is currently known about this rare disease. Here we report the analysis of 62 cases by next generation sequencing, SNP array and expression array. We find the KIT/RAS signaling pathway frequently mutated in over 50% of IGCTs including novel recurrent somatic mutations in KIT, its downstream mediators KRAS and NRAS, and its negative regulator CBL. Novel somatic alterations in the AKT/mTOR pathway included copy number gain of the AKT1 locus at 14q32.33 in 19% of patients, with corresponding upregulation of AKT1 expression. We identified loss-of-function mutations in BCORL1, a transcriptional corepressor and tumor suppressor. We report significant enrichment of novel and rare germline variants in JMJD1C, a histone demethylase and coactivator of the androgen receptor, among Japanese IGCT patients. This study establishes a molecular foundation for understanding the biology of IGCTs and suggests potentially promising therapeutic strategies focusing on the inhibition of KIT/RAS activation and the AKT1/mTOR pathway. PMID:24896186

  14. Time series analysis supporting the hypothesis that enhanced cosmic radiation during germ cell formation can increase breast cancer mortality in germ cell cohorts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juckett, D. A.; Rosenberg, Barnett

    Techniques from cancer epidemiology and time series analysis were used to explore the hypothesis that cosmic radiation can induce germ cell changes leading to increases in future breast cancer mortality. A birth cohort time series for female breast cancer mortality was obtained using a model-independent, age-period-cohort analysis on age-specific mortality data for 1940-1990. The birth cohort series contained several oscillatory components, which were isolated and compared to the corresponding frequency components of a cosmic ray surrogate time series - Greenland ice-core 10Be concentrations. A technique, referred to as component wave-train alignment, was used to show that the breast cancer and cosmic ray oscillations were phase-locked approx. 25 years before the time of birth. This is consistent with the time of germ cell formation, which occurs during the fetal development stage of the preceding generation. Evidence is presented that the observable oscillations in the birth cohort series were residues of oscillations of much larger amplitude in the germ cell cohort, which were attenuated by the effect of the broad maternal age distribution. It is predicted that a minimum of 50% of breast cancer risk is associated with germ cell damage by cosmic radiation (priming event), which leads to the development of individuals with a higher risk of breast cancer. It is proposed that the priming event, by preceding other steps of carcinogenesis, works in concert with risk factor exposure during life. The priming event is consistent with epigenetic changes such as imprinting.

  15. An ABC transporter controls export of a Drosophila germ cell attractant.

    PubMed

    Ricardo, Sara; Lehmann, Ruth

    2009-02-13

    Directed cell migration, which is critical for embryonic development, leukocyte trafficking, and cell metastasis, depends on chemoattraction. 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A reductase regulates the production of an attractant for Drosophila germ cells that may itself be geranylated. Chemoattractants are commonly secreted through a classical, signal peptide-dependent pathway, but a geranyl-modified attractant would require an alternative pathway. In budding yeast, pheromones produced by a-cells are farnesylated and secreted in a signal peptide-independent manner, requiring the adenosine triphosphate-binding cassette (ABC) transporter Ste6p. Here we show that Drosophila germ cell migration uses a similar pathway, demonstrating that invertebrate germ cells, like yeast cells, are attracted to lipid-modified peptides. Components of this unconventional export pathway are highly conserved, suggesting that this pathway may control the production of similarly modified chemoattractants in organisms ranging from yeast to humans.

  16. Selection of the Inducer for the Differentiation of Chicken Embryonic Stem Cells into Male Germ Cells In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yani; Wang, Yingjie; Zuo, Qisheng; Wang, Xiaoyan; Li, Dong; Tang, Beibei; Li, Bichun

    2016-01-01

    Several inducers have been used to differentiate embryonic stem cells (ESCs) into male germ cells but the induction process has been inefficient. To solve the problem of low efficiency of inducer for ESCs differentiation into male germ cells, all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA), Am80(the retinoic acid receptor agonist), and estradiol (E2) was used to induce ESCs to differentiate into male germ cells in vitro. ESCs were cultured in media containing ATRA, Am80, or E2 respectively which can differentiate ESCs into a germ cell lineage. In process of ATRA and Am80 induction Group, germ cell-like cells can be observed in 10 days; but have no in E2 induction Group. The marker genes of germ cell: Dazl, Stra8, C-kit, Cvh, integrinα6, and integrinβ1 all showed a significant up-regulation in the expression level. The ATRA-induction group showed high expression of C-kit and Cvh around 4 days, and integrinα6 and integrinβ1 were activated on day 10, respectively, while the E2-,Am80- induction group showed a high expression of C-kit as early as 4 days immunocytochemistry results shown that, integrinα6 and integrinβ1 could be detected in the ATRA-, Am80-, and E2-induction group, Positive clones in the ATRA group were greater in number than those in the other two groups. we conclued that ATRA, Am80, and E2 can promote the expression of the corresponding genes of germ cells, and had different effect on the differentiation of ESCs into male germ cells. ATRA was the most effective inducer of germ cell differentiation. PMID:27741318

  17. Cytoplasmic connection of sperm cells to the pollen vegetative cell nucleus: potential roles of the male germ unit revisited.

    PubMed

    McCue, Andrea D; Cresti, Mauro; Feijó, José A; Slotkin, R Keith

    2011-03-01

    The male germ cells of angiosperm plants are neither free-living nor flagellated and therefore are dependent on the unique structure of the pollen grain for fertilization. During angiosperm male gametogenesis, an asymmetric mitotic division produces the generative cell, which is completely enclosed within the cytoplasm of the larger pollen grain vegetative cell. Mitotic division of the generative cell generates two sperm cells that remain connected by a common extracellular matrix with potential intercellular connections. In addition, one sperm cell has a cytoplasmic projection in contact with the vegetative cell nucleus. The shared extracellular matrix of the two sperm cells and the physical association of one sperm cell to the vegetative cell nucleus forms a linkage of all the genetic material in the pollen grain, termed the male germ unit. Found in species representing both the monocot and eudicot lineages, the cytoplasmic projection is formed by vesicle formation and microtubule elongation shortly after the formation of the generative cell and tethers the male germ unit until just prior to fertilization. The cytoplasmic projection plays a structural role in linking the male germ unit, but potentially plays other important roles. Recently, it has been speculated that the cytoplasmic projection and the male germ unit may facilitate communication between the somatic vegetative cell nucleus and the germinal sperm cells, via RNA and/or protein transport. This review focuses on the nature of the sperm cell cytoplasmic projection and the potential communicative function of the male germ unit.

  18. Sam68 marks the transcriptionally active stages of spermatogenesis and modulates alternative splicing in male germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Paronetto, Maria Paola; Messina, Valeria; Barchi, Marco; Geremia, Raffaele; Richard, Stéphane; Sette, Claudio

    2011-01-01

    Sam68 plays an essential role in mouse spermatogenesis and male fertility. Herein, we report an interaction between Sam68 and the phosphorylated forms of the RNA polymerase II (RNAPII) in meiotic spermatocytes. RNase treatment decreased but did not abolish the interaction, consistently with in vitro binding of RNAPII to the Sam68 carboxyl-terminal region. Sam68 retention in the spermatocyte nucleus was dependent on the integrity of cellular RNAs, suggesting that the protein is recruited to transcriptionally active chromatin. Mouse knockout models characterized by stage-specific arrest of spermatogenesis and staining with the phosphorylated form of RNAPII documented that Sam68 expression is confined to the transcriptionally active stages of spermatogenesis. Furthermore, Sam68 associates with splicing regulators in germ cells and we report that alternative splicing of Sgce exon 8 is regulated in a Sam68-dependent manner during spermatogenesis. RNA and chromatin crosslink immunoprecipitation experiments showed that Sam68 binds in vivo to sequences surrounding the intron 7/exon 8 boundary, thereby affecting the recruitment of the phosphorylated RNAPII and of the general splicing factor U2AF65. These results suggest that Sam68 regulates alternative splicing at transcriptionally active sites in differentiating germ cells and provide new insights into the regulation of Sam68 expression during spermatogenesis. PMID:21355037

  19. Pathogenesis of germ cell neoplasia in testicular dysgenesis and disorders of sex development.

    PubMed

    Jørgensen, Anne; Lindhardt Johansen, Marie; Juul, Anders; Skakkebaek, Niels E; Main, Katharina M; Rajpert-De Meyts, Ewa

    2015-09-01

    Development of human gonads is a sex-dimorphic process which evolved to produce sex-specific types of germ cells. The process of gonadal sex differentiation is directed by the action of the somatic cells and ultimately results in germ cells differentiating to become functional gametes through spermatogenesis or oogenesis. This tightly controlled process depends on the proper sequential expression of many genes and signalling pathways. Disturbances of this process can be manifested as a large spectrum of disorders, ranging from severe disorders of sex development (DSD) to - in the genetic male - mild reproductive problems within the testicular dysgenesis syndrome (TDS), with large overlap between the syndromes. These disorders carry an increased but variable risk of germ cell neoplasia. In this review, we discuss the pathogenesis of germ cell neoplasia associated with gonadal dysgenesis, especially in individuals with 46,XY DSD. We summarise knowledge concerning development and sex differentiation of human gonads, with focus on sex-dimorphic steps of germ cell maturation, including meiosis. We also briefly outline the histopathology of germ cell neoplasia in situ (GCNIS) and gonadoblastoma (GDB), which are essentially the same precursor lesion but with different morphological structure dependent upon the masculinisation of the somatic niche. To assess the risk of germ cell neoplasia in different types of DSD, we have performed a PubMed search and provide here a synthesis of the evidence from studies published since 2006. We present a model for pathogenesis of GCNIS/GDB in TDS/DSD, with the risk of malignancy determined by the presence of the testis-inducing Y chromosome and the degree of masculinisation. The associations between phenotype and the risk of neoplasia are likely further modulated in each individual by the constellation of the gene polymorphisms and environmental factors.

  20. The effects of humanin and its analogues on male germ cell apoptosis induced by chemotherapeutic drugs.

    PubMed

    Jia, Yue; Ohanyan, Aikoui; Lue, Yan-He; Swerdloff, Ronald S; Liu, Peter Y; Cohen, Pinchas; Wang, Christina

    2015-04-01

    Human (HN) prevents stress-induced apoptosis in many cells/tissues. In this study we showed that HN ameliorated chemotherapy [cyclophosphamide (CP) and Doxorubicin (DOX)]-induced male germ cell apoptosis both ex vivo in seminiferous tubule cultures and in vivo in the testis. HN acts by several putative mechanisms via binding to: an IL-12 like trimeric membrane receptor; BAX; or insulin-like growth factor binding protein-3 (IGFBP-3, a proapoptotic factor). To understand the mechanisms of HN on male germ cell apoptosis, we studied five HN analogues including: HNG (HN-S14G, a potent agonist), HNG-F6A (no binding to IGFBP-3), HN-S7A (no self-dimerization), HN-C8P (no binding to BAX), and HN-L12A (a HN antagonist) on CP-induced male germ cell apoptosis in mice. CP-induced germ cell apoptosis was inhibited by HN, HNG, HNG-F6A, HN-S7A, and HN-C8P (less effective); but not by HN-L12A. HN-L12A, but not HN-S7A or HN-C8P, blocked the protective effect of HN against CP-induced male germ cell apoptosis. HN, HN-S7A, and HN-C8P restored CP-suppressed STAT3 phosphorylation. These results suggest that HN: (1) decreases DOX (ex vivo) and CP (in vivo) induced male germ cell apoptosis; (2) action is mediated by the membrane receptor/STAT3 with minor contribution by BAX-binding pathway; (3) self-dimerization or binding to IGFBP-3 may not be involved in HN's effect in testis. HN is an important molecule in the regulation of germ cell homeostasis after injury and agonistic analogues may be developed for treating male infertility or protection against chemotherapy side effects.

  1. The Effects of Humanin and Its Analogues on Male Germ Cell Apoptosis Induced by Chemotherapeutic Drugs

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Yue; Ohanyan, Aikoui; Lue, Yan-He; Swerdloff, Ronald S.; Liu, Peter Y.; Cohen, Pinchas; Wang, Christina

    2015-01-01

    Human (HN) prevents stress-induced apoptosis in many cells/tissues. In this study we showed that HN ameliorated chemotherapy (Cyclophosphamide, CP and Doxorubicin, DOX)-induced male germ cell apoptosis both ex vivo in seminiferous tubule cultures and in vivo in the testis. HN acts by several putative mechanisms via binding to: an IL-12 like trimeric membrane receptor; BAX; or Insulin-Like Growth Factor Binding Protein-3 (IGFBP-3, a proapoptotic factor). To understand the mechanisms of HN on male germ cell apoptosis, we studied five HN analogues including: HNG (HN-S14G, a potent agonist), HNG-F6A (no binding to IGFBP-3), HN-S7A (no self-dimerization), HN-C8P (no binding to BAX), and HN-L12A (a HN antagonist) on CP-induced male germ cell apoptosis in mice. CP-induced germ cell apoptosis was inhibited by HN, HNG, HNG-F6A, HN-S7A, and HN-C8P (less effective); but not by HN-L12A. HN-L12A, but not HN-S7A or HN-C8P, blocked the protective effect of HN against CP-induced male germ cell apoptosis. HN, HN-S7A, and HN-C8P restored CP-suppressed STAT3 phosphorylation. These results suggest that HN: 1) decreases DOX (ex vivo) and CP (in vivo) induced male germ cell apoptosis; 2) action is mediated by the membrane receptor/STAT3 with minor contribution by BAX-binding pathway; 3) self-dimerization or binding to IGFBP-3 may not be involved in HN’s effect in testis. HN is an important molecule in the regulation of germ cell homeostasis after injury and agonistic analogues may be developed for treating male infertility or protection against chemotherapy side effects. PMID:25666707

  2. A seamless trespass: germ cell migration across the seminiferous epithelium during spermatogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Claire Q.F.; Cheng, C. Yan

    2007-01-01

    During spermatogenesis, preleptotene spermatocytes traverse the blood–testis barrier (BTB) in the seminiferous epithelium, which is reminiscent of viral pathogens breaking through the tight junctions of host epithelial cells. The process also closely resembles the migration of leukocytes across endothelial tight junctions to reach inflammation sites. Cell adhesion molecules of the immunoglobulin superfamily (e.g., JAM/CAR/nectin) participate in germ cell migration by conferring transient adhesion between Sertoli and germ cells through homophilic and heterophilic interactions. The same molecules also comprise the junctional complexes at the BTB. Interestingly, JAM/CAR/nectin molecules mediate virus uptake and leukocyte transmigration in strikingly similar manners. It is likely that the strategy used by viruses and leukocytes to break through junctional barriers is used by germ cells to open up the inter–Sertoli cell junctions. In associating these diverse cellular events, we highlight the “guiding” role of JAM/CAR/nectin molecules for germ cell passage. Knowledge on viral invasion and leukocyte transmigration has also shed insights into germ cell movement during spermatogenesis. PMID:17698604

  3. Stochastic specification of primordial germ cells from mesoderm precursors in axolotl embryos

    PubMed Central

    Chatfield, Jodie; O'Reilly, Marie-Anne; Bachvarova, Rosemary F.; Ferjentsik, Zoltan; Redwood, Catherine; Walmsley, Maggie; Patient, Roger; Loose, Mathew; Johnson, Andrew D.

    2014-01-01

    A common feature of development in most vertebrate models is the early segregation of the germ line from the soma. For example, in Xenopus and zebrafish embryos primordial germ cells (PGCs) are specified by germ plasm that is inherited from the egg; in mice, Blimp1 expression in the epiblast mediates the commitment of cells to the germ line. How these disparate mechanisms of PGC specification evolved is unknown. Here, in order to identify the ancestral mechanism of PGC specification in vertebrates, we studied PGC specification in embryos from the axolotl (Mexican salamander), a model for the tetrapod ancestor. In the axolotl, PGCs develop within mesoderm, and classic studies have reported their induction from primitive ectoderm (animal cap). We used an axolotl animal cap system to demonstrate that signalling through FGF and BMP4 induces PGCs. The role of FGF was then confirmed in vivo. We also showed PGC induction by Brachyury, in the presence of BMP4. These conditions induced pluripotent mesodermal precursors that give rise to a variety of somatic cell types, in addition to PGCs. Irreversible restriction of the germ line did not occur until the mid-tailbud stage, days after the somatic germ layers are established. Before this, germline potential was maintained by MAP kinase signalling. We propose that this stochastic mechanism of PGC specification, from mesodermal precursors, is conserved in vertebrates. PMID:24917499

  4. Sexual dimorphism of gonadal structure and gene expression in germ cell-deficient loach, a teleost fish.

    PubMed

    Fujimoto, Takafumi; Nishimura, Toshiya; Goto-Kazeto, Rie; Kawakami, Yutaka; Yamaha, Etsuro; Arai, Katsutoshi

    2010-10-05

    Germ cell-deficient fish usually develop as phenotypic males. Thus, the presence of germ cells is generally considered to be essential for female gonadal differentiation or the maintenance of ovarian structure. However, little is known of the role of germ cells in the determination of the sexual fate of gonadal somatic cells. We have established an inducible germ cell deficiency system in the loach (Misgurnus anguillicaudatus, Cypriniformes: Cobitidae), a small freshwater fish, using knockdown of the dead end gene with a morpholino antisense oligonucleotide. Interestingly, loach lacking germ cells could develop as either phenotypic males or females, as characterized morphologically by the presence or absence of bony plates in the pectoral fins, respectively. The phenotypic males and females had testicular and ovarian structures, respectively, but lacked germ cells. Gene expression patterns in these male and female germ cell-deficient gonads were essentially the same as those in gonads of normal fish. Our observations indicate that sexually dimorphic gonads can develop in germ cell-deficient loach. In contrast to the situation in other model fish species, the gonadal somatic cells in phenotypic females autonomously differentiated into ovarian tissues and also played a role in the maintenance of gonadal structure. On the basis of our observations, we propose two possible models to explain the role of germ cells in sex determination in fish.

  5. Female mice lack adult germ-line stem cells but sustain oogenesis using stable primordial follicles.

    PubMed

    Lei, Lei; Spradling, Allan C

    2013-05-21

    Whether or not mammalian females generate new oocytes during adulthood from germ-line stem cells to sustain the ovarian follicle pool has recently generated controversy. We used a sensitive lineage-labeling system to determine whether stem cells are needed in female adult mice to compensate for follicular losses and to directly identify active germ-line stem cells. Primordial follicles generated during fetal life are highly stable, with a half-life during adulthood of 10 mo, and thus are sufficient to sustain adult oogenesis without a source of renewal. Moreover, in normal mice or following germ-cell depletion with Busulfan, only stable, single oocytes are lineage-labeled, rather than cell clusters indicative of new oocyte formation. Even one germ-line stem cell division per 2 wk would have been detected by our method, based on the kinetics of fetal follicle formation. Thus, adult female mice neither require nor contain active germ-line stem cells or produce new oocytes in vivo.

  6. Circulating tumor cells in germ cell tumors: are those biomarkers of real prognostic value? A review

    PubMed Central

    CEBOTARU, CRISTINA LIGIA; OLTEANU, ELENA DIANA; ANTONE, NICOLETA ZENOVIA; BUIGA, RARES; NAGY, VIORICA

    2016-01-01

    Analysis of circulating tumor cells from patients with different types of cancer is nowadays a fascinating new tool of research and their number is proven to be useful as a prognostic factor in metastatic breast, colon and prostate cancer patients. Studies are going beyond enumeration, exploring the circulating tumor cells to better understand the mechanisms of tumorigenesis, invasion and metastasis and their value for characterization, prognosis and tailoring of treatment. Few studies investigated the prognostic significance of circulating tumor cells in germ cell tumors. In this review, we examine the possible significance of the detection of circulating tumor cells in this setting. PMID:27152069

  7. Accidental germ-line modifications through somatic cell gene therapies: some ethical considerations.

    PubMed

    Kaplan, J M; Roy, I

    2001-01-01

    Proposed somatic cell gene-therapies (especially those involving in utero therapies) may involve a small risk of germ-line modifications; this risk has engendered serious concern, and arguments have been made that such therapies ought not be pursued if such risks exists. We argue here that while pursuing deliberate germ-line modifications in humans would be inappropriate given the current state of the art, the risk of accidental germ-line modifications from most currently proposed in utero gene therapy is no different in kind or degree from other risks regularly taken in medical procedures. Given the possible benefits of such therapies, we argue that the risk of accidental germ-line modifications is well worth taking in these cases.

  8. Ror2 Enhances Polarity and Directional Migration of Primordial Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Kissner, Michael D.; Zhou, Xin; Anderson, Kathryn V.

    2011-01-01

    The trafficking of primordial germ cells (PGCs) across multiple embryonic structures to the nascent gonads ensures the transmission of genetic information to the next generation through the gametes, yet our understanding of the mechanisms underlying PGC migration remains incomplete. Here we identify a role for the receptor tyrosine kinase-like protein Ror2 in PGC development. In a Ror2 mouse mutant we isolated in a genetic screen, PGC migration and survival are dysregulated, resulting in a diminished number of PGCs in the embryonic gonad. A similar phenotype in Wnt5a mutants suggests that Wnt5a acts as a ligand to Ror2 in PGCs, although we do not find evidence that WNT5A functions as a PGC chemoattractant. We show that cultured PGCs undergo polarization, elongation, and reorientation in response to the chemotactic factor SCF (secreted KitL), whereas Ror2 PGCs are deficient in these SCF-induced responses. In the embryo, migratory PGCs exhibit a similar elongated geometry, whereas their counterparts in Ror2 mutants are round. The protein distribution of ROR2 within PGCs is asymmetric, both in vitro and in vivo; however, this asymmetry is lost in Ror2 mutants. Together these results indicate that Ror2 acts autonomously to permit the polarized response of PGCs to KitL. We propose a model by which Wnt5a potentiates PGC chemotaxis toward secreted KitL by redistribution of Ror2 within the cell. PMID:22216013

  9. Spontaneous generation of germline characteristics in mouse fibrosarcoma cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, Zhan; Hu, Yao; Jiang, Guoying; Hou, Jun; Liu, Ruilai; Lu, Yuan; Liu, Chunfang

    2012-10-01

    Germline/embryonic-specific genes have been found to be activated in somatic tumors. In this study, we further showed that cells functioning as germline could be present in mouse fibrosarcoma cells (L929 cell line). Early germline-like cells spontaneously appeared in L929 cells and further differentiated into oocyte-like cells. These germline-like cells can, in turn, develop into blastocyst-like structures in vitro and cause teratocarcinomas in vivo, which is consistent with natural germ cells in function. Generation of germline-like cells from somatic tumors might provide a novel way to understand why somatic cancer cells have strong features of embryonic/germline development. It is thought that the germline traits of tumors are associated with the central characteristics of malignancy, such as immortalization, invasion, migration and immune evasion. Therefore, germline-like cells in tumors might provide potential targets to tumor biology, diagnosis and therapy.

  10. [Testicular cancer - a matter of geography? Epidemiology and etiopathogenesis of germ cell tumors].

    PubMed

    Mikuz, G

    2014-05-01

    More than 90 % of testicular tumors are germ cell tumors. There is no doubt that ethnicity is one of the single overriding etiological factors in the development of these tumors. White males living in western industrialized countries, particularly in northern Europe show the highest incidence rates, whereas black males in Africa show the lowest. These differences are the result of interaction of genetic factors and exogenous noxious agents. Some of these agents are chemical substances with an estrogen-like effect. Many exogenous substances have been blamed for causing testicular cancer, but clear epidemiological evidence is lacking for most cases. Some well-established risk factors prevail, such as cryptorchidism, familial association, gonadal dysgenesis (intersex) and germ cell tumor in the contralateral testis. In terms of importance, overalimentation appears to outweigh occupation. The development of germ cell tumors is assumed to have an intrauterine origin through defect gonocytes which evolve into atypical germ cells of unclassified intratubular germ cell neoplasms. The trigger event is, however, the appearance of isochromosome 12p, which makes these cells aggressive and results in overt invasive testicular cancer.

  11. Loss of Dnd1 facilitates the cultivation of genital ridge-derived rat embryonic germ cells.

    PubMed

    Northrup, Emily; Eisenblätter, Regina; Glage, Silke; Rudolph, Cornelia; Dorsch, Martina; Schlegelberger, Brigitte; Hedrich, Hans-Jürgen; Zschemisch, Nils-Holger

    2011-08-01

    Pluripotent cells referred to as embryonic germ cells (EGCs) can be derived from the embryonic precursors of the mature gametes: the primordial germ cells (PGCs). A homozygous mutation (ter) of the dead-end homolog 1 gene (Dnd1) in the rat causes gonadal teratocarcinogenesis and sterility due to neoplastic transformation and loss of germ cells. We mated heterozygous ter/+ WKY-Dnd1(ter)/Ztm rats and were able to cultivate the first genital ridge-derived EGCs of the rat embryo at day 14.5 post coitum (pc). Genotyping revealed that ten EGC lines were Dnd1 deficient, while only one wild type cell line had survived in culture. This suggests that the inactivation of the putative tumor suppressor gene Dnd1 facilitates the immortalization of late EGCs in vitro. Injection of the wild type EGCs into blastocysts resulted in the first germ-line competent chimeras. These new pluripotent rat EGCs offer an innovative approach for studies on germ cell tumor development as well as a new tool for genetic manipulations in rats.

  12. Dazl is a target RNA suppressed by mammalian NANOS2 in sexually differentiating male germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Kato, Yuzuru; Katsuki, Takeo; Kokubo, Hiroki; Masuda, Aki; Saga, Yumiko

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionally conserved Nanos RNA-binding proteins play crucial roles in germ cell development. While a mammalian Nanos family protein, NANOS2, is required for sexual differentiation of male (XY) germ cells in mice, the underlying mechanisms and the identities of its target RNAs in vivo remain elusive. Using comprehensive microarray analysis and a bacterial artificial chromosome transgenic system, here we identify Dazl, a germ cell-specific gene encoding an RNA-binding protein implicated in translation, as a crucial target of NANOS2. Importantly, removal of the Dazl 3′-untranslated region in XY germ cells stabilizes the Dazl mRNA, resulting in elevated meiotic gene expression, abnormal resumption of the cell cycle and impaired processing-body formation, reminiscent of Nanos2-knockout phenotypes. Furthermore, our data suggest that NANOS2 acts as an antagonist of the DAZL protein. We propose a dual system of NANOS2-mediated suppression of Dazl expression as a pivotal molecular mechanism promoting sexual differentiation of XY germ cells. PMID:27072294

  13. Cancer-associated variant expression and interaction of CIZ1 with cyclin A1 in differentiating male germ cells.

    PubMed

    Greaves, Erin A; Copeland, Nikki A; Coverley, Dawn; Ainscough, Justin F X

    2012-05-15

    CIZ1 is a nuclear-matrix-associated DNA replication factor unique to higher eukaryotes, for which alternatively spliced isoforms have been associated with a range of disorders. In vitro, the CIZ1 N-terminus interacts with cyclin E and cyclin A at distinct sites, enabling functional cooperation with cyclin-A-Cdk2 to promote replication initiation. C-terminal sequences anchor CIZ1 to fixed sites on the nuclear matrix, imposing spatial constraint on cyclin-dependent kinase activity. Here we demonstrate that CIZ1 is predominantly expressed as a predicted full-length product throughout mouse development, consistent with a ubiquitous role in cell and tissue renewal. CIZ1 is expressed in proliferating stem cells of the testis, but is notably downregulated following commitment to differentiation. Significantly, CIZ1 is re-expressed at high levels in non-proliferative spermatocytes before meiotic division. Sequence analysis identifies at least seven alternatively spliced variants, including a dominant cancer-associated form and a set of novel isoforms. Furthermore, we show that in these post-replicative cells, CIZ1 interacts with germ-cell-specific cyclin A1, which has been implicated in the repair of DNA double-strand breaks. Consistent with this role, antibody depletion of CIZ1 reduces the capacity for testis extract to repair digested plasmid DNA in vitro. Together, the data imply post-replicative roles for CIZ1 in germ cell differentiation that might include meiotic recombination - a process intrinsic to genome stability and diversification.

  14. Gender differences in the induction of chromosomal aberrations and gene mutations in rodent germ cells

    SciTech Connect

    Adler, Ilse-Dore; Carere, Angelo; Eichenlaub-Ritter, Ursula

    2007-05-15

    Germ cell mutagenicity testing provides experimental data to quantify genetic risk for exposed human populations. The majority of tests are performed with exposure of males, and female data are relatively rare. The reason for this paucity lies in the differences between male and female germ cell biology. Male germ cells are produced throughout reproductive life and all developmental stages can be ascertained by appropriate breeding schemes. In contrast, the female germ cell pool is limited, meiosis begins during embryogenesis and oocytes are arrested over long periods of time until maturation processes start for small numbers of oocytes during the oestrus cycle in mature females. The literature data are reviewed to point out possible gender differences of germ cells to exogenous agents such as chemicals or ionizing radiation. From the limited information, it can be concluded that male germ cells are more sensitive than female germ cells to the induction of chromosomal aberrations and gene mutations. However, exceptions are described which shed doubt on the extrapolation of experimental data from male rodents to the genetic risk of the human population. Furthermore, the female genome may be more sensitive to mutation induction during peri-conceptional stages compared to the male genome of the zygote. With few exceptions, germ cell experiments have been carried out under high acute exposure to optimize the effects and to compensate for the limited sample size in animal experiments. Human exposure to environmental agents, on the other hand, is usually chronic and involves low doses. Under these conditions, gender differences may become apparent that have not been studied so far. Additionally, data are reviewed that suggest a false impression of safety when responses are negative under high acute exposure of male rodents while a mutational response is induced by low chronic exposure. The classical (morphological) germ cell mutation tests are not performed anymore

  15. DBP-induced endoplasmic reticulum stress in male germ cells causes autophagy, which has a cytoprotective role against apoptosis in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Guowei; Liu, Kaijun; Ling, Xi; Wang, Zhi; Zou, Peng; Wang, Xiaogang; Gao, Jianfang; Yin, Li; Zhang, Xi; Liu, Jinyi; Ao, Lin; Cao, Jia

    2016-03-14

    Recently, spermatogenic cell apoptosis was shown to play a key role in the induction of testicular atrophy by dibutyl phthalate (DBP), thus causing reproductive toxicology. However, the molecular events induced by DBP in apoptotic germ cells remain unclear. In the present study, the mouse spermatocyte-derived GC-2 cell line was exposed to different doses of DBP. We found that DBP induced marked apoptosis in GC-2 cells. The levels of the major endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress markers GRP-78, ATF-6, and p-EIF2α were elevated when GC-2 cells were exposed to 25 μM DBP and increased in a dose-dependent manner at higher concentrations. Furthermore, at a concentration that resulted in significant apoptosis (100 μM), CHOP, which plays a convergent role in ER stress-mediated apoptosis and is regulated by various upstream ER stress signals, was activated and partially contributed to the DBP-induced apoptosis. However, inhibition of ER stress by 4-PBA, a chemical with chaperone-like activities, augmented the GC-2 cell apoptosis induced by DBP. Further experiments demonstrated that DBP-induced ER stress additionally had a protective role, mediated through the activation of autophagy. These results were confirmed in prepubertal rat testis germ cells; DBP treatment significantly induced testicular atrophy, accompanied by apoptosis, ER stress, and autophagy. Inhibition of ER stress and autophagy significantly aggravated the DBP-induced damage to the germ cells and testes. Taken together, our data suggest that DBP-induced ER stress in germ cells has a cytoprotective effect that is mediated through autophagy activation. These findings provide novel clues regarding the molecular events involved in DBP-induced germ cell apoptosis.

  16. Effect of 4-octylphenol on germ cell number in cultured human fetal gonads.

    PubMed

    Bendsen, E; Laursen, S; Olesen, C; Westergaard, L; Andersen, C; Byskov, A

    2001-02-01

    This study evaluates whether a hormone disruptor found in environment, 4-octylphenol, affects the rate of proliferation of germ cells from human fetal gonads during a 3 week culture period. Five testis and five ovaries were obtained from fetuses of women undergoing legal abortions between the 6th and 9th week of fetal life, representing the period where early gonadal differentiation takes place. Each gonad was divided into equal sized test and control tissue. The test tissue was exposed to a continued presence of 10 micromol/l 4-octylphenol in the culture medium. The cultures were terminated by fixation of the tissues, which where then processed for histology and serially sectioned. The mitotic index of the germ cells (i.e. number of mitosis per 100 germ cells) and the number of germ cells per area was determined. Each of the five testes cultured in 4-octylphenol exhibited a significantly reduced mitotic index and number of pre-spermatogonia compared to the control, whereas none of the five ovaries exposed to 4-octylphenol revealed any difference compared to the control. It is concluded that 4-octylphenol exerts a sex-specific effect on male germ cells.

  17. Advances in genome-wide protein expression using the wheat germ cell-free system.

    PubMed

    Endo, Yaeta; Sawasaki, Tatsuya

    2005-01-01

    In the current post-genomic era, cell-free translation platforms are gaining importance in structural as well as functional genomics. They are based on extracts prepared from Escherichia coli cells, wheat germ, or rabbit reticulocytes, and when programmed with any mRNA in the presence of energy sources and amino acids, can synthesize the respective protein in vitro. Among the cell-free systems, the wheat germ-based translation system is of special interest due to its eukaryotic nature and robustness. This chapter outlines the existing protein production platforms and their limitations, and describes the basic concept of the wheat germ-based cell-free system. It also demonstrates how the conventional wheat germ system can be improved by eliminating endogenous inhibitors, by using an expression vector specially designed for this system and polymerase chain reaction-directed protein synthesis directly from cDNAs in a bi-layer translation system. Finally, a robotic procedure for translation based on the wheat germ extract and bi-layer cell-free translation is described.

  18. Vasa identifies germ cells and critical stages of oogenesis in the Asian seabass.

    PubMed

    Xu, Hongyan; Lim, Menghuat; Dwarakanath, Manali; Hong, Yunhan

    2014-01-01

    Germ cells produce sperm and eggs for reproduction and fertility. The Asian seabass (Lates calcarifer), a protandrous marine fish, undergoes male-female sex reversal and thus offers an excellent model to study the role of germ cells in sex differentiation and sex reversal. Here we report the cloning and expression of vasa as a first germ cell marker in this organism. A 2241-bp cDNA was cloned by PCR using degenerate primers of conserved sequences and gene-specific primers. This cDNA contains a polyadenylation signal and a full open reading frame for 645 amino acid residues, which was designated as Lcvasa for the seabass vasa, as its predicted protein is homologous to Vasa proteins. The Lcvasa RNA is maternally supplied and specific to gonads in adulthood. By chromogenic and fluorescent in situ hybridization we revealed germ cell-specific Lcvasa expression in both the testis and ovary. Importantly, Lcvasa shows dynamic patterns of temporospatial expression and subcellular distribution during gametogenesis. At different stages of oogenesis, for example, Lcvasa undergoes nuclear-cytoplasmic redistribution and becomes concentrated preferentially in the Balbiani body of stage-II~III oocytes. Thus, the vasa RNA identifies both female and male germ cells in the Asian seabass, and its expression and distribution delineate critical stages of gametogenesis.

  19. Revealing Transcriptome Landscape of Mouse Spermatogonial Cells by Tiling Microarray

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Summary Spermatogenesis is a highly regulated developmental process by which spermatogonia develop into mature spermatozoa. This process involves many testis- or male germ cell-specific events through tightly regulated gene expression programs. In the past decade the advent of microarray technologies has allowed functional genomic studies of male germ cell development, resulting in the identification of genes governing various processes. A major limitation with conventional gene expression microarray is that there is a bias from gene probe design. The gene probes for expression microarrays are usually represented by a small number probes located at the 3’ end of a transcirpt. Tiling microarrays eliminate such issue by interrogating the genome in an unbiased fashion through probes tiled for the entire genome. These arrays provide a higher genomic resolution and allow identification of novel transcripts. To reveal the complexity of the genomic landscape of developing male germ cells, we applied tiling microarray to evaluate the transcriptome in spermatogonial cells. Over 50% of the mouse and rat genome are expressed during testicular development. More than 47% of transcripts are uncharacterized. The results suggested the transcription machinery in spermaotogonial cells are more complex than previously envisioned. PMID:22144238

  20. Chondrogenic differentiation of human embryonic germ cell derived cells in hydrogels.

    PubMed

    Varghese, Shyni; Theprungsirikul, Paranduangji; Ferran, Angela; Hwang, Nathaniel; Canver, Adam; Elisseeff, Jennifer

    2006-01-01

    Human embryonic germ (hEG) cells have the potential to self-renew over long periods of time and differentiate into various lineages. Cells derived from embryoid bodies of hEG cells express a broad spectrum of gene markers and have been induced towards cells of ecto-dermal and recently endo-dermal and mesenchymal lineages. LVEC cells express a number of surface marker proteins characteristic of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), indicating the potential of these cells to differentiate into mesenchymal tissues. Here we demonstrate the homogenous differentiation of LVEC cells into hyaline cartilage. Three dimensional tissue formation is achieved by encapsulating cells in synthetic hydrogels followed by incubation in chondrocyte-conditioned culture medium. Homogenous hyaline cartilage was produced, even after 63 population doublings (13 passages). The high proliferative capacity of these cells without teratoma formation, homogenous differentiation, and three-dimensional cartilage tissue formation suggests the significant potential of LVEC cells for cartilage tissue engineering applications.

  1. Prolonged expression of the c-kit receptor in germ cells of intersex fetal testes.

    PubMed

    Rajpert-De Meyts, E; Jørgensen, N; Müller, J; Skakkebaek, N E

    1996-02-01

    Stem cell factor (SCF) and its receptor Kit encoded by the c-kit proto-oncogene are crucial for the development and migration of primordial germ cells in rodents. The expression of Kit has been examined immunohistochemically in gonads obtained from five specimens of fetal tissues with intersex conditions which included 45,X/46,XY mosaicism; androgen insensitivity syndrome; and 46,XY/iso(p)Y mosaicism. Individuals with such disorders of sexual differentiation and Y-chromosome material carry a very high risk of developing testicular neoplasms. Fetal testicular germ cells of the intersex subjects expressed Kit at a later developmental age than controls, in which no Kit protein was detectable beyond the 15th week of gestation. This finding may indicate a disturbance of the chronology of germ cell development, or it may suggest a change of the regulation of c-kit expression in subjects with disorders of gonadal development.

  2. Premeiotic germ cell defect in seminiferous tubules of Atm-null testis

    SciTech Connect

    Takubo, Keiyo . E-mail: keiyot@gmail.com; Hirao, Atsushi; Ohmura, Masako; Azuma, Masaki; Arai, Fumio; Nagamatsu, Go; Suda, Toshio . E-mail: sudato@sc.itc.keio.ac.jp

    2006-12-29

    Lifelong spermatogenesis is maintained by coordinated sequential processes including self-renewal of stem cells, proliferation of spermatogonial cells, meiotic division, and spermiogenesis. It has been shown that ataxia telangiectasia-mutated (ATM) is required for meiotic division of the seminiferous tubules. Here, we show that, in addition to its role in meiosis, ATM has a pivotal role in premeiotic germ cell maintenance. ATM is activated in premeiotic spermatogonial cells and the Atm-null testis shows progressive degeneration. In Atm-null testicular cells, differing from bone marrow cells of Atm-null mice, reactive oxygen species-mediated p16{sup Ink4a} activation does not occur in Atm-null premeiotic germ cells, which suggests the involvement of different signaling pathways from bone marrow defects. Although Atm-null bone marrow undergoes p16{sup Ink4a}-mediated cellular senescence program, Atm-null premeiotic germ cells exhibited cell cycle arrest and apoptotic elimination of premeiotic germ cells, which is different from p16{sup Ink4a}-mediated senescence.

  3. A Structural Investigation into Oct4 Regulation by Orphan Nuclear Receptors, Germ Cell Nuclear Factor (GCNF) and Liver Receptor Homolog-1 (LRH-1).

    PubMed

    Weikum, Emily R; Tuntland, Micheal L; Murphy, Michael N; Ortlund, Eric A

    2016-10-27

    Oct4 is a transcription factor required for maintaining pluripotency and self-renewal in stem cells. Prior to differentiation, Oct4 must be silenced to allow for the development of the three germ layers in the developing embryo. This fine-tuning is controlled by the nuclear receptors, liver receptor homolog-1 and germ cell nuclear factor. Liver receptor homolog-1 is responsible for driving the expression of Oct4 where germ cell nuclear factor represses its expression upon differentiation. Both receptors bind to a DR0 motif located within the Oct4 promoter. Here, we present the first structure of mouse germ cell nuclear factor DNA binding domain in complex with the Oct4 DR0. The overall structure revealed two molecules bound in a head-to-tail fashion on opposite sides of the DNA. Additionally, we solved the structure of the human liver receptor homolog-1 DNA binding domain bound to the same element. We explore the structural elements that govern Oct4 recognition by these two nuclear receptors.

  4. Ghrelin modulates testicular germ cells apoptosis and proliferation in adult normal rats

    SciTech Connect

    Kheradmand, Arash; Dezfoulian, Omid; Alirezaei, Masoud; Rasoulian, Bahram

    2012-03-09

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Spermatogenesis is closely associated with the balance between germ cells proliferation and apoptosis. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Numerous studies have documented the direct action of ghrelin in the modulation of apoptosis in different cell types. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Ghrelin may be considered as a modulator of spermatogenesis in normal adult rats. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Ghrelin may be potentially implicated for abnormal spermatogenesis in some testicular germ cell tumors. -- Abstract: Under normal condition in the most mammals, spermatogenesis is closely associated with the balance between germ cells proliferation and apoptosis. The present study was designed to determine the effects of ghrelin treatment on in vivo quality and quantity expression of apoptosis and proliferation specific indices in rat testicular germ cells. Twenty eight adult normal rats were subdivided into equal control and treatment groups. Treatment group received 3 nmol of ghrelin as subcutaneous injection for 30 consecutive days or vehicle to the control animals. The rats from each group (n = 7) were killed on days 10 and 30 and their testes were taken for immunocytochemical evaluation and caspase-3 assay. Immunohistochemical analysis indicated that the accumulations of Bax and PCNA peptides are generally more prominent in spermatocytes and spermatogonia of both groups. Likewise, the mean percentage of immunoreactive spermatocytes against Bax increased (P < 0.01) in the ghrelin-treated group on day 10, while despite of 30% increment in the Bax level of spermatocytes in the treated rats on day 30, however, it was not statistically significant. During the experimental period, only a few spermatogonia represented Bax expression and the changes of Bax immunolabling cells were negligible upon ghrelin treatment. Likewise, there were immunostaining cells against Bcl-2 in each germ cell neither in the control nor in the treated animals. In fact

  5. (/sup 35/S)autoradiographic study of sulfated GAG accumulation and turnover in embryonic mouse tooth germs

    SciTech Connect

    Lau, E.C.; Boukari, A.; Arechaga, J.; Osman, M.; Ruch, J.V.

    1983-01-01

    The accumulation of sulfated glycosaminoglycans(GAG) in embryonic mouse molars before, during, and after terminal differentiation of odontoblasts was localized by (/sup 35/S)autoradiography combined with the use of chondroitin ABC lyase. Much more sulfated GAG were accumulated in the dental papilla than in the dental epithelium. High incorporation of (/sup 35/S)sulfate occurred at the epithelio-mesenchymal junction, which is the site of dental basement membrane and predentin. Before terminal differentiation of odontoblasts, the distribution of sulfated GAG was uniform at the basement membrane. After the onset of terminal differentiation of odontoblasts, much more sulfated GAG accumulated at the tip of principal cusps than at the apical (inferior) parts of cusps, and sulfated GAG were then found to be degraded more rapidly at the epithelio-mesenchymal junction than at other parts of the tooth germ. Thus regional variation in the rate of degradation of GAG exists in the tooth germs. Trypsin-isolated dental epithelia cultured in vitro synthesized a new basement membrane that could be labeled with (/sup 3/H)glucosamine but not with /sup 35/SO4(-2). The epithelial-derived basal lamina contains little or no sulfatated GAG.

  6. The C. elegans TIA-1/TIAR homolog TIAR-1 is required to induce germ cell apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Silva-García, Carlos Giovanni; Estela Navarro, Rosa

    2013-10-01

    In Caenorhabditis elegans, physiological germ cell apoptosis eliminates more than half of the cells in the hermaphrodite gonad to support gamete quality and germline homeostasis by a still unidentified mechanism. External factors can also affect germ cell apoptosis. The BH3-only protein EGL-1 induces germ cell apoptosis when animals are exposed to pathogens or agents that produce DNA damage. DNA damage-induced apoptosis also requires the nematode p53 homolog CEP-1. Previously, we found that heat shock, oxidative, and osmotic stresses induce germ cell apoptosis through an EGL-1 and CEP-1 independent mechanism that requires the MAPKK pathway. However, we observed that starvation increases germ cell apoptosis by an unknown pathway. Searching for proteins that participate in stress-induced apoptosis, we found the RNA-binding protein TIAR-1 (a homolog of the mammalian TIA-1/TIAR family of proteins). Here, we show that TIAR-1 in C. elegans is required to induce apoptosis in the germline under several conditions. We also show that TIAR-1 acts downstream of CED-9 (a BCL2 homolog) to induce apoptosis under stress conditions, and apparently does not seem to regulate ced-4 or ced-3 mRNAs accumulation directly. TIAR-1 is expressed ubiquitously in the cytoplasm of the soma as well as the germline, where it sometimes associates with P granules. We show that animals lacking TIAR-1 expression are temperature sensitive sterile due to oogenesis and spermatogenesis defects. Our work shows that TIAR-1 is required for proper germline function and demonstrates that this protein is important to induce germ cell apoptosis under several conditions.

  7. De novo spinal teratoma after treatment of an intracranial germ cell tumor.

    PubMed

    Tohma, Y; Kaneko, T; Kita, D; Iwato, M; Hayashi, Y; Tachibana, O; Hasegawa, M; Yamashita, J

    2000-11-01

    The authors report an extremely rare case of de novo spinal teratoma after treatment for intracranial germ cell tumor. A 17-year-old male developed pain of bilateral lower extremities and urinary retention 18 months after complete remission of intracranial mixed germ cell tumor. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed a huge spinal tumor associated with spina bifida occulta. Total resection was performed, and histogenetical findings led to the diagnosis of a mature teratoma with normal p16 gene, whereas analysis of intracranial tumor showed p16 deletion. The spinal anomaly and genetic analysis strongly suggest that the spinal teratoma was a de novo tumor rather than a metastasis or dissemination of the original intracranial germ cell tumor.

  8. Heterozygosity for a Bub1 mutation causes female-specific germ cell aneuploidy in mice

    SciTech Connect

    Leland, Shawn; Nagarajan, Prabakaran; Polyzos, Aris; Thomas, Sharon; Samaan, George; Donnell, Robert; Marchetti, Francesco; Venkatachalam, Sundaresan

    2009-06-24

    Aneuploidy, the most common chromosomal abnormality at birth and the main ascertained cause of pregnancy loss in humans, originates primarily from chromosome segregation errors during oogenesis. Here we report that heterozygosity for a mutation in the mitotic checkpoint kinase gene, Bub1, induces aneuploidy in female germ cells of mice, and that the effect increases with advancing maternal age. Analysis of Bub1 heterozygous oocytes showed that aneuploidy occurred primarily during the first meiotic division and involved premature sister chromatid separation. Furthermore, aneuploidy was inherited in zygotes and resulted in the loss of embryos after implantation. The incidence of aneuploidy in zygotes was sufficient to explain the reduced litter size in matings with Bub1 heterozygous females. No effects were seen in germ cells from heterozygous males. These findings show that Bub1 dysfunction is linked to inherited aneuploidy in female germ cells and may contribute to the maternal age-related increase in aneuploidy and pregnancy loss.

  9. Efficient TALEN-mediated gene targeting of chicken primordial germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, Lorna; Carlson, Daniel F.; Nandi, Sunil; Sherman, Adrian; Fahrenkrug, Scott C.

    2017-01-01

    In this work we use TALE nucleases (TALENs) to target a reporter construct to the DDX4 (vasa) locus in chicken primordial germ cells (PGCs). Vasa is a key germ cell determinant in many animal species and is posited to control avian germ cell formation. We show that TALENs mediate homology-directed repair of the DDX4 locus on the Z sex chromosome at high (8.1%) efficiencies. Large genetic deletions of 30 kb encompassing the entire DDX4 locus were also created using a single TALEN pair. The targeted PGCs were germline competent and were used to produce DDX4 null offspring. In DDX4 knockout chickens, PGCs are initially formed but are lost during meiosis in the developing ovary, leading to adult female sterility. TALEN-mediated gene targeting in avian PGCs is therefore an efficient process. PMID:28174243

  10. Molecular biology of testicular germ cell tumors: unique features awaiting clinical application.

    PubMed

    Boublikova, Ludmila; Buchler, Tomas; Stary, Jan; Abrahamova, Jitka; Trka, Jan

    2014-03-01

    Testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs) are the most common solid tumors in young adult men characterized by distinct biologic features and clinical behavior. Both genetic predispositions and environmental factors probably play a substantial role in their etiology. TGTCs arise from a malignant transformation of primordial germ cells in a process that starts prenatally, is often associated with a certain degree of gonadal dysgenesis, and involves the acquirement of several specific aberrations, including activation of SCF-CKIT, amplification of 12p with up-regulation of stem cell genes, and subsequent genetic and epigenetic alterations. Their embryonic and germ origin determines the unique sensitivity of TGCTs to platinum-based chemotherapy. Contrary to the vast majority of other malignancies, no molecular prognostic/predictive factors nor targeted therapy is available for patients with these tumors. This review summarizes the principal molecular characteristics of TGCTs that could represent a potential basis for development of novel diagnostic and treatment approaches.

  11. New perspective on molecular markers as promising therapeutic targets in germ cell tumors

    PubMed Central

    Chieffi, Paolo

    2016-01-01

    Summary Testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs) are the most frequent solid malignant tumors in men 20–40 years of age and the most frequent cause of death from solid tumors in this age group. TGCTs comprise two major histologic groups: seminomas and non-seminomas germ cell tumors (NSGCTs). NSGCTs can be further divided into embryonal carcinoma, Teratoma, yolk sac tumor, and choriocarcinoma. Seminomas and NSGCTs present significant differences in clinical features, therapy, and prognosis, and both show characteristics of the Primordial Germ Cells (PGCs). Many discovered biomarkers including HMGA1, GPR30, Aurora-B, estrogen receptor β, and others have given further advantages to discriminate between histological subgroups and could represent useful therapeutic targets. PMID:27195201

  12. Nephroblastoma Arising from Primary Testicular Germ Cell Tumor: A Case Report and Literature Review

    PubMed Central

    Alatassi, Houda; O'Bryan, Brittany E.; Messer, Jamie C.

    2016-01-01

    Adult extrarenal nephroblastoma is a very rare tumor. Nephroblastoma arising from primary testicular germ cell tumor is exceedingly rare. To our knowledge, only three cases have been reported in the English literature. We report a case of a 19-year-old man who presented with a large right testicle. Image studies showed a large retroperitoneal mass along with liver and lung metastases. Orchiectomy demonstrated a mixed germ cell tumor composed of yolk sac tumor, embryonal carcinoma, and mature and immature teratoma with a significant portion of nephroblastoma. The patient received chemotherapy and no recurrence was noted during six months of followup. WT-1 expression was also studied due to the lack of consistency of its expression in testicular nephroblastoma in the literature. We also present a discussion and review of the literature due to its rarity, which indicate an adverse prognosis for patients with nephroblastoma components receiving standard chemotherapeutical regimes for testicular germ cell tumors. PMID:27957372

  13. Human primordial germ cell-derived progenitors give rise to neurons and glia in vivo

    SciTech Connect

    Teng, Yincheng; Chen, Bin; Tao, Minfang

    2009-12-18

    We derived a cell population from cultured human primordial germ cells from early human embryos. The derivates, termed embryoid body-derived (EBD) cells, displayed an extensive capacity for proliferation and expressed a panel of markers in all three germ layers. Interestingly, EBD cells were also positive for markers of neural stem/progenitor cells, such as nestin and glial fibrillary acidic protein. When these cells were transplanted into the brain cavities of fetal sheep and postnatal NOD-SCID mice or nerve-degenerated tibialis anterior muscles, they readily gave rise to neurons or glial cells. To our knowledge, our data are the first to demonstrate that EBD cells can undergo further neurogenesis under suitable environments in vivo. Hence, with the abilities of extensive expansion, self-renewal, and differentiation, EBD cells may provide a useful donor source for neural stem/progenitor cells to be used in cell-replacement therapies for diseases of the nervous system.

  14. Autonomy in specification of primordial germ cells and their passive translocation in the sea urchin.

    PubMed

    Yajima, Mamiko; Wessel, Gary M

    2012-10-01

    The process of germ line determination involves many conserved genes, yet is highly variable. Echinoderms are positioned at the base of Deuterostomia and are crucial to understanding these evolutionary transitions, yet the mechanism of germ line specification is not known in any member of the phyla. Here we demonstrate that small micromeres (SMics), which are formed at the fifth cell division of the sea urchin embryo, illustrate many typical features of primordial germ cell (PGC) specification. SMics autonomously express germ line genes in isolated culture, including selective Vasa protein accumulation and transcriptional activation of nanos; their descendants are passively displaced towards the animal pole by secondary mesenchyme cells and the elongating archenteron during gastrulation; Cadherin (G form) has an important role in their development and clustering phenotype; and a left/right integration into the future adult anlagen appears to be controlled by a late developmental mechanism. These results suggest that sea urchin SMics share many more characteristics typical of PGCs than previously thought, and imply a more widely conserved system of germ line development among metazoans.

  15. Production of placental alkaline phosphatase (PLAP) and PLAP-like material by epithelial germ cell and non-germ cell tumours in vitro.

    PubMed Central

    Iles, R. K.; Ind, T. E.; Chard, T.

    1994-01-01

    Placental and placental-like alkaline phosphatase (PLAP) levels in the culture media of 87 cell lines of neoplastic and 'normal' origin were measured by a conventional immunosorbent enzymatic assay (IAEA) and by a new immunoradiometric assay (IRMA). The IRMA detected immunoreactive PLAP in 37 of 80 (46%) human epithelial and germ cell cultures, while the IAEA detected PLAP in only 25 (33%). Of the 52 non-germ cell tumour cultures, the IRMA detected expression in 24 (46%) and the IAEA in only 16 (31%). In 17 cases (21%) the IRMA recorded levels double that of the IAEA, while in five cultures (6%) the reverse was true. The IRMA was much more robust than the IAEA and had considerably lower inter- and intra-assay coefficients of variation (3.75-8.5% vs 5.2-46%). Detection of PLAP(-like) expression by IAEA is dependent on neoplastic expression of enzymatically functional molecules and quantification assumes constant enzyme kinetics. PLAP-like material has a higher catalytic rate constant than PLAP and thus will give higher values on a stoichiometric basis in an IAEA. The higher detection rate and levels of PLAP-like material in neoplastic cultures when measured by the IRMA clearly demonstrate ectopic expression of non-enzymatic PLAP and PLAP-like genes. The incidence of PLAP(-like) expression by non-germ cell and possible germ cell tumours has been underestimated and its utility as a tumour marker should be re-examined using assays which measure antigen mass rather than phosphatase activity. PMID:8297725

  16. Skin-derived stem cells as a source of primordial germ cell- and oocyte-like cells

    PubMed Central

    Ge, Wei; Cheng, Shun-Feng; Dyce, Paul W; De Felici, Massimo; Shen, Wei

    2016-01-01

    The skin is a unique organ that contains a variety of stem cells for the maintenance of skin homeostasis and the repair of skin tissues following injury and disease. Skin-derived stem cells (SDSCs) constitute a heterogeneous population of stem cells generated in vitro from dermis, which can be cultured as spherical aggregates of cells in suspension culture. Under certain in vitro or in vivo conditions, SDSCs show multipotency and can generate a variety of neural, mesodermal, and endodermal cell types such as neurons, glia, fibroblasts, adipocytes, muscle cells, chondroblasts, osteoblats, and islet β-cell-like cells. SDSCs are likely derived from multipotent stem cells located in the hair follicles that are, in turn, derived from embryonic migratory neural crest or mesoderm cells. During the past decade, a wave of reports have shown that germ cells can be generated from various types of stem cells. It has been shown that SDSCs are able to produce primordial germ cell-like cells in vitro, and even oocyte-like cells (OLCs). Whether these germ cell-like cells (GCLCs) can give rise to viable progeny remains, however, unknown. In this review, we will discuss the origin and characteristics of SDSCs from which the GCLC are derived, the possible mechanisms of this differentiation process, and finally the prospective biomedical applications of the SDSC-derived GCLCs. PMID:27831564

  17. FYCO1 and autophagy control the integrity of the haploid male germ cell-specific RNP granules

    PubMed Central

    Da Ros, Matteo; Lehtiniemi, Tiina; Olotu, Opeyemi; Fischer, Daniel; Zhang, Fu-Ping; Vihinen, Helena; Jokitalo, Eija; Sironen, Anu; Toppari, Jorma; Kotaja, Noora

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Ribonucleoprotein (RNP) granules play a major role in compartmentalizing cytoplasmic RNA regulation. Haploid round spermatids that have exceptionally diverse transcriptomes are characterized by a unique germ cell-specific RNP granule, the chromatoid body (CB). The CB shares many characteristics with somatic RNP granules but also has germline-specific features. The CB appears to be a central structure in PIWI-interacting RNA (piRNA)-targeted RNA regulation. Here, we identified a novel CB component, FYCO1, which is involved in the intracellular transport of autophagic vesicles in somatic cells. We demonstrated that the CB is associated with autophagic activity. Induction of autophagy leads to the recruitment of lysosomal vesicles onto the CB in a FYCO1-dependent manner as demonstrated by the analysis of a germ cell-specific Fyco1 conditional knockout mouse model. Furthermore, in the absence of FYCO1, the integrity of the CB was affected and the CB was fragmented. Our results suggest that RNP granule homeostasis is regulated by FYCO1-mediated autophagy. PMID:27929729

  18. A mammalian germ cell-specific RNA-binding protein interacts with ubiquitously expressed proteins involved in splice site selection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elliott, David J.; Bourgeois, Cyril F.; Klink, Albrecht; Stévenin, James; Cooke, Howard J.

    2000-05-01

    RNA-binding motif (RBM) genes are found on all mammalian Y chromosomes and are implicated in spermatogenesis. Within human germ cells, RBM protein shows a similar nuclear distribution to components of the pre-mRNA splicing machinery. To address the function of RBM, we have used protein-protein interaction assays to test for possible physical interactions between these proteins. We find that RBM protein directly interacts with members of the SR family of splicing factors and, in addition, strongly interacts with itself. We have mapped the protein domains responsible for mediating these interactions and expressed the mouse RBM interaction region as a bacterial fusion protein. This fusion protein can pull-down several functionally active SR protein species from cell extracts. Depletion and add-back experiments indicate that these SR proteins are the only splicing factors bound by RBM which are required for the splicing of a panel of pre-mRNAs. Our results suggest that RBM protein is an evolutionarily conserved mammalian splicing regulator which operates as a germ cell-specific cofactor for more ubiquitously expressed pre-mRNA splicing activators.

  19. The emerging role of matrix metalloproteases of the ADAM family in male germ cell apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Urriola-Muñoz, Paulina; Lagos-Cabré, Raúl

    2011-01-01

    Constitutive germ cell apoptosis during mammalian spermatogenesis is a key process for controlling sperm output and to eliminate damaged or unwanted cells. An increase or decrease in the apoptosis rate has deleterious consequences and leads to low sperm production. Apoptosis in spermatogenesis has been widely studied, but the mechanism by which it is induced under physiological or pathological conditions has not been clarified. We have recently identified the metalloprotease ADAM17 (TACE) as a putative physiological inducer of germ cell apoptosis. The mechanisms involved in regulating the shedding of the ADAM17 extracellular domain are still far from being understood, although they are important in order to understand cell-cell communications. Here, we review the available data regarding apoptosis during mammalian spermatogenesis and the localization of ADAM proteins in the male reproductive tract. We propose an integrative working model where ADAM17, p38 MAPK, protein kinase C (PKC) and the tyrosine kinase c-Abl participate in the physiological signalling cascade inducing apoptosis in germ cells. In our model, we also propose a role for the Sertoli cell in regulating the Fas/FasL system in order to induce the extrinsic pathway of apoptosis in germ cells. This working model could be applied to further understand constitutive apoptosis in spermatogenesis and in pathological conditions (e.g., varicocele) or following environmental toxicants exposure (e.g., genotoxicity or xenoestrogens). PMID:22319668

  20. Intratubular Germ Cell Neoplasia of the Testis, Bilateral Testicular Cancer, and Aberrant Histologies.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Pranav; Dhillon, Jasreman; Sexton, Wade J

    2015-08-01

    Intratubular germ cell neoplasia (ITGCN) is a precursor lesion for testicular germ cell tumors, most of which are early stage. ITGCN is also associated with testicular cancer or ITGCN in the contralateral testis, leading to a risk of bilateral testicular malignancy. Testicular biopsy detects most cases, and orchiectomy is the treatment of choice in patients with unilateral ITGCN. Low-dose radiation therapy is recommended in patients with bilateral ITGCN or ITGCN in the solitary testis, but the long-term risks of infertility and hypogonadism need to be discussed with the patient. Rare histologies of primary testicular cancer are also discussed.

  1. Transcriptomic Variation during Spermiogenesis in Mouse Germ Cells

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xiaoli; Hao, Haisheng; Zhao, Xueming; Wang, Dong

    2016-01-01

    To explore variations in the transcription activity during spermiogenesis, round and elongated spermatids were collected from ICR/CD1 model mice using laser capture microdissection (LCM) and cauda epididymal sperm samples. The transcripts were sequenced using RNA-seq, and the reads were mapped to mm9. The majority of the reads (70%) in the round and elongated spermatids were mappable to known and predicted exons, but that in sperm was only 9%. The results of the distribution of reads suggested that alternative splicing was more complicated in sperm than in round and elongated spermatids. In the 19,127 genes, we detected the expression of 5,104 de novo genes and 91,112 alternative splicing events, and 12,105 were differentially expressed. Gene ontology (GO), InterPro domains, and KEGG revealed changes in gene transcription, mitochondrial protein translation, cellular components, and energy metabolism during spermiogenesis. The results provided considerable information about alternative splicing events, differentiallly expressed genes (DEGs), and novel transcriptions during spermiogenesis in mice. PMID:27835637

  2. Germ cell cluster organization and oogenesis in the tardigrade Dactylobiotus parthenogeneticus Bertolani, 1982 (Eutardigrada, Murrayidae).

    PubMed

    Poprawa, Izabela; Hyra, Marta; Rost-Roszkowska, Magdalena Maria

    2015-07-01

    Germ cell cluster organization and the process of oogenesis in Dactylobiotus parthenogeneticus have been described using transmission electron microscopy and light microscopy. The reproductive system of D. parthenogeneticus is composed of a single, sac-like, meroistic ovary and a single oviduct that opens into the cloaca. Two zones can be distinguished in the ovary: a small germarium that is filled with oogonia and a vitellarium that is filled with germ cell clusters. The germ cell cluster, which has the form of a modified rosette, consists of eight cells that are interconnected by stable cytoplasmic bridges. The cell that has the highest number of stable cytoplasmic bridges (four bridges) finally develops into the oocyte, while the remaining cells become trophocytes. Vitellogenesis of a mixed type occurs in D. parthenogeneticus. One part of the yolk material is produced inside the oocyte (autosynthesis), while the second part is synthesized in the trophocytes and transported to the oocyte through the cytoplasmic bridges. The eggs are covered with two envelopes: a thin vitelline envelope and a three-layered chorion. The surface of the chorion forms small conical processes, the shape of which is characteristic for the species that was examined. In our paper, we present the first report on the rosette type of germ cell clusters in Parachela.

  3. Irinotecan metabolite SN38 results in germ cell loss in the testis but not in the ovary of prepubertal mice

    PubMed Central

    Lopes, Federica; Smith, Rowena; Nash, Sophie; Mitchell, Rod T.; Spears, Norah

    2016-01-01

    STUDY QUESTION Does the Irinotecan metabolite 7-ethyl-10-hydroxycamptothecan (SN38) damage the gonads of male and female prepubertal mice? SUMMARY ANSWER The Irinotecan metabolite SN38 reduces germ cell numbers within the seminiferous tubules of mouse testes at concentrations that are relevant to cancer patients, while in contrast it has little if any effect on the female germ cell population. WHAT IS KNOWN ALREADY Little is known about the role of the chemotherapeutic agent Irinotecan on female fertility, with only one article to date reporting menopausal symptoms in perimenopausal women treated with Irinotecan, while no data are available either on adult male fertility or on the impact of Irinotecan on the subsequent fertility of prepubertal cancer patients, female or male. STUDY DESIGN SIZE, DURATION Male and female gonads were obtained from postnatal day 5 C57BL/6 mice and exposed in vitro to a range of concentrations of the Irinotecan metabolite SN38: 0.002, 0.01, 0.05, 0.1 or 1 µg ml–1 for the testis and 0.1, 1, 2.5 or 5 µg ml–1 for the ovary, with treated gonads compared to control gonads not exposed to SN38. SN38 was dissolved in 0.5% dimethyl sulfoxide, with controls exposed to the same concentration of diluent. The number of testis fragments used for each analysis ranged between 3 and 9 per treatment group, while the number of ovaries used for each analysis ranged between 4 and 12 per treatment group. PARTICIPANTS/MATERIALS, SETTING, METHODS Neonatal mouse gonads were developed in vitro, with tissue analysed at the end of the 4–6 day culture period, following immunofluorescence or hematoxylin and eosin staining. Statistical analyses were performed using one-way ANOVA followed by Bonferroni post-hoc test for normally distributed data and Kruskal-Wallis test followed by Dunns post-test for non-parametric data. MAIN RESULTS AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE Abnormal testis morphology was observed when tissues were exposed to SN38, with a smaller seminiferous

  4. Mouse differentiating spermatogonia can generate germinal stem cells in vivo.

    PubMed

    Barroca, Vilma; Lassalle, Bruno; Coureuil, Mathieu; Louis, Jean Paul; Le Page, Florence; Testart, Jacques; Allemand, Isabelle; Riou, Lydia; Fouchet, Pierre

    2009-02-01

    In adults, stem cells are responsible for the maintenance of many actively renewing tissues, such as haematopoietic, skin, gut and germinal tissues. These stem cells can self-renew or be committed to becoming progenitors. Stem-cell commitment is thought to be irreversible but in male and female Drosophila melanogaster, it was shown recently that differentiating germ cells can revert to functional stem cells that can restore germinal lineage. Whether progenitors are also able to generate stem cells in mammals remains unknown. Here we show that purified mouse spermatogonial progenitors committed to differentiation can generate functional germinal stem cells that can repopulate germ-cell-depleted testes when transplanted into adult mice. We found that GDNF, a key regulator of the stem-cell niche, and FGF2 are able to reprogram in vitro spermatogonial progenitors for reverse differentiation. This study supports the emerging concept that the stem-cell identity is not restricted in adults to a definite pool of cells that self-renew, but that stemness could be acquired by differentiating progenitors after tissue injury and throughout life.

  5. Sex determination. foxl3 is a germ cell-intrinsic factor involved in sperm-egg fate decision in medaka.

    PubMed

    Nishimura, Toshiya; Sato, Tetsuya; Yamamoto, Yasuhiro; Watakabe, Ikuko; Ohkawa, Yasuyuki; Suyama, Mikita; Kobayashi, Satoru; Tanaka, Minoru

    2015-07-17

    Sex determination is an essential step in the commitment of a germ cell to a sperm or egg. However, the intrinsic factors that determine the sexual fate of vertebrate germ cells are unknown. Here, we show that foxl3, which is expressed in germ cells but not somatic cells in the gonad, is involved in sperm-egg fate decision in medaka fish. Adult XX medaka with disrupted foxl3 developed functional sperm in the expanded germinal epithelium of a histologically functional ovary. In chimeric medaka, mutant germ cells initiated spermatogenesis in female wild-type gonad. These results indicate that a germ cell-intrinsic cue for the sperm-egg fate decision is present in medaka and that spermatogenesis can proceed in a female gonadal environment.

  6. Inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdk1 mediates prolonged prophase I arrest in female germ cells and is essential for female reproductive lifespan

    PubMed Central

    Adhikari, Deepak; Busayavalasa, Kiran; Zhang, Jingjing; Hu, Mengwen; Risal, Sanjiv; Bayazit, Mustafa Bilal; Singh, Meenakshi; Diril, M Kasim; Kaldis, Philipp; Liu, Kui

    2016-01-01

    A unique feature of female germ cell development in mammals is their remarkably long arrest at the prophase of meiosis I, which lasts up to 50 years in humans. Both dormant and growing oocytes are arrested at prophase I and completely lack the ability to resume meiosis. Here, we show that the prolonged meiotic arrest of female germ cells is largely achieved via the inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdk1 (cyclin-dependent kinase 1). In two mouse models where we have introduced mutant Cdk1T14AY15F which cannot be inhibited by phosphorylation (Cdk1AF) in small meiotically incompetent oocytes, the prophase I arrest is interrupted, leading to a premature loss of female germ cells. We show that in growing oocytes, Cdk1AF leads to premature resumption of meiosis with condensed chromosomes and germinal vesicle breakdown followed by oocyte death, whereas in dormant oocytes, Cdk1AF leads to oocyte death directly, and both situations damage the ovarian reserve that maintains the female reproductive lifespan, which should be around 1 year in mice. Furthermore, interruption of the inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdk1 results in DNA damage, which is accompanied by induction of the Chk2 (checkpoint kinase 2)-p53/p63-dependent cell death pathway, which eventually causes global oocyte death. Together, our data demonstrate that the phosphorylation-mediated suppression of Cdk1 activity is one of the crucial factors that maintain the lengthy prophase arrest in mammalian female germ cells, which is essential for preserving the germ cell pool and reproductive lifespan in female mammals. PMID:27767095

  7. [Should the contralateral testis be systematically biopsied after orchidectomy for unilateral germ cell tumour of the testis?].

    PubMed

    Iborra, François; Mottet, Nicolas

    2005-04-01

    Intratubular neoplasia (ITN) of the testis is a precursor of germ cell tumour, apart from spermatocytic seminoma. It is often detected in testicular tissue adjacent to germ cell tumours, but is less common in the contralateral testis. Early diagnosis of ITN by testicular biopsy would allow earlier, conservative management. However, this approach remains highly controversial except in very specific indications.

  8. Ectopic Expression of Testis Germ Cell Proteins in Cancer and Its Potential Role in Genomic Instability

    PubMed Central

    Nielsen, Aaraby Yoheswaran; Gjerstorff, Morten Frier

    2016-01-01

    Genomic instability is a hallmark of human cancer and an enabling factor for the genetic alterations that drive cancer development. The processes involved in genomic instability resemble those of meiosis, where genetic material is interchanged between homologous chromosomes. In most types of human cancer, epigenetic changes, including hypomethylation of gene promoters, lead to the ectopic expression of a large number of proteins normally restricted to the germ cells of the testis. Due to the similarities between meiosis and genomic instability, it has been proposed that activation of meiotic programs may drive genomic instability in cancer cells. Some germ cell proteins with ectopic expression in cancer cells indeed seem to promote genomic instability, while others reduce polyploidy and maintain mitotic fidelity. Furthermore, oncogenic germ cell proteins may indirectly contribute to genomic instability through induction of replication stress, similar to classic oncogenes. Thus, current evidence suggests that testis germ cell proteins are implicated in cancer development by regulating genomic instability during tumorigenesis, and these proteins therefore represent promising targets for novel therapeutic strategies. PMID:27275820

  9. Chub mackerel gonads support colonization, survival, and proliferation of intraperitoneally transplanted xenogenic germ cells.

    PubMed

    Yazawa, Ryosuke; Takeuchi, Yutaka; Higuchi, Kentaro; Yatabe, Takashi; Kabeya, Naoki; Yoshizaki, Goro

    2010-05-01

    The production of xenogenic gametes from large-bodied, commercially important marine fish species in closely related smaller host fish species with short generation times may enable rapid and simple seed production of the target species. As a first step toward this goal, we assessed the suitability of chub mackerel, Scomber japonicus, as a small-bodied recipient species for xenogenic spermatogonial transplantation. Histological observation of the early gonadal development of chub mackerel larvae and transplantation of fluorescent-labeled spermatogonia from Nibe croaker, Nibea mitsukurii, revealed that 5.3-mm chub mackerel larvae were suitable recipients for successful transplantation. Intraperitoneally transplanted xenogenic spermatogonia efficiently colonized the gonads of these recipient larvae, and donor-derived Nibe croaker germ cells proliferated rapidly soon after colonization. Moreover, gonadal soma-derived growth factor (gsdf) mRNA, a gonadal somatic cell marker, was expressed in recipient-derived cells surrounding the incorporated donor-derived germ cells, suggesting that donor-derived germ cells had settled at an appropriate location in the recipient gonad. Our data show that xenogenic spermatogonial transplantation was successful in chub mackerel and that the somatic microenvironment of the chub mackerel gonad can support the colonization, survival, and proliferation of intraperitoneally transplanted xenogenic germ cells derived from a donor species of a different taxonomic family.

  10. AZT, rodent somatic and germ cell mutagenicity and reproductive toxicity tests

    SciTech Connect

    Shelby, M.D.; Russell, L.B.; Generoso, W.

    1995-11-01

    AZT (3`-axido-3`-deoxythymidine, Zidovudine) is the most widely used therapeutic agent in the treatment of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). Use of AZT has not been limited to HIV-seropositive individuals or to those with symptoms of AIDS. It has also been used as a chemoprophylactic agent in people accidentally exposed to HIV-contaminated body fluids, and to HIV-seropositive pregnant women to prevent infection of the fetus. Because of these latter uses, it is particularly important to determine whether long-term health effects might be associated with AZT exposure. Tests have been conducted to determine the in vivo genetic toxicity of AZT in mice. Dominant-lethal and morphological-specific-locus tests were conducted in males using 2 daily initraperitoneal injections of 750 mg/kg. The dominant-lethal test was negative for all germ cell stages from differentiating spermatogonia to mature sperm. Likewise, no evidence of the induction of specific locus mutations was observed in either spermatogonial stem cells or poststem-cell stages. Further, tests for effects on male and female reproduction and in utero development indicate a lack of effects. These results, along with preliminary clinical reports that birth outcomes are normal in newborns exposed to AZT in utero, are encouraging with regard to the risks to offspring of parents exposed to AZT, either prior to or during pregnancy. However, positive results in mouse bone marrow micronucleus tests and one report on the induction of chromosomal aberrations in the lymphocytes of AIDS patients on AZT therapy indicate that further studies are needed on the potential of AZT to adversely affect the long-term health of exposed individuals.

  11. Manipulation of Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells for Knockout Mouse Production

    PubMed Central

    Limaye, Advait; Hall, Bradford; Kulkarni, Ashok B

    2009-01-01

    The establishment of mouse embryonic stem (ES) cell liness has allowed for the generation of the knockout mouse. ES cells that are genetically altered in culture can then be manipulated to derive a whole mouse containing the desired mutation. To successfully generate a knockout mouse, however, the ES cells must be carefully cultivated in a pluripotent state throughout the gene targeting experiment. This unit describes detailed step-by-step protocols, reagents, equipment, and strategies needed for the successful generation of gene knockout embryonic stem cells using homologous recombination technologies. PMID:19731225

  12. Loss of Gata4 in Sertoli cells impairs the spermatogonial stem cell niche and causes germ cell exhaustion by attenuating chemokine signaling

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Su-Ren; Tang, Ji-Xin; Cheng, Jin-Mei; Li, Jian; Jin, Cheng; Li, Xiao-Yu; Deng, Shou-Long; Zhang, Yan; Wang, Xiu-Xia; Liu, Yi-Xun

    2015-01-01

    Sertoli cells, the primary somatic cell in the seminiferous epithelium, provide the spermatogonial stem cell (SSC) microenvironment (niche) through physical support and the expression of paracrine factors. However, the regulatory mechanisms within the SSC niche, which is primarily controlled by Sertoli cells, remain largely unknown. GATA4 is a Sertoli cell marker, involved in genital ridge initiation, sex determination and differentiation during the embryonic stage. Here, we showed that neonatal mice with a targeted disruption of Gata4 in Sertoli cells (Gata4flox/flox; Amh-Cre; hereafter termed Gata4 cKO) displayed a loss of the establishment and maintenance of the SSC pool and apoptosis of both gonocyte-derived differentiating spermatogonia and meiotic spermatocytes. Thus, progressive germ cell depletion and a Sertoli-cell-only syndrome were observed as early as the first wave of murine spermatogenesis. Transplantation of germ cells from postnatal day 5 (P5) Gata4 cKO mice into KitW/W-v recipient seminiferous tubules restored spermatogenesis. In addition, microarray analyses of P5 Gata4 cKO mouse testes showed alterations in chemokine signaling factors, including Cxcl12, Ccl3, Cxcr4 (CXCL12 receptor), Ccr1 (CCL3 receptor), Ccl9, Xcl1 and Ccrl2. Deletion of Gata4 in Sertoli cells markedly attenuated Sertoli cell chemotaxis, which guides SSCs or prospermatogonia to the stem cell niche. Finally, we showed that GATA4 transcriptionally regulated Cxcl12 and Ccl9, and the addition of CXCL12 and CCL9 to an in vitro testis tissue culture system increased the number of PLZF+ undifferentiated spermatogonia within Gata4 cKO testes. Together, these results reveal a novel role for GATA4 in controlling the SSC niche via the transcriptional regulation of chemokine signaling shortly after birth. PMID:26473289

  13. Loss of Gata4 in Sertoli cells impairs the spermatogonial stem cell niche and causes germ cell exhaustion by attenuating chemokine signaling.

    PubMed

    Chen, Su-Ren; Tang, Ji-Xin; Cheng, Jin-Mei; Li, Jian; Jin, Cheng; Li, Xiao-Yu; Deng, Shou-Long; Zhang, Yan; Wang, Xiu-Xia; Liu, Yi-Xun

    2015-11-10

    Sertoli cells, the primary somatic cell in the seminiferous epithelium, provide the spermatogonial stem cell (SSC) microenvironment (niche) through physical support and the expression of paracrine factors. However, the regulatory mechanisms within the SSC niche, which is primarily controlled by Sertoli cells, remain largely unknown. GATA4 is a Sertoli cell marker, involved in genital ridge initiation, sex determination and differentiation during the embryonic stage. Here, we showed that neonatal mice with a targeted disruption of Gata4 in Sertoli cells (Gata4(flox/flox); Amh-Cre; hereafter termed Gata4 cKO) displayed a loss of the establishment and maintenance of the SSC pool and apoptosis of both gonocyte-derived differentiating spermatogonia and meiotic spermatocytes. Thus, progressive germ cell depletion and a Sertoli-cell-only syndrome were observed as early as the first wave of murine spermatogenesis. Transplantation of germ cells from postnatal day 5 (P5) Gata4 cKO mice into Kit(W/W-v) recipient seminiferous tubules restored spermatogenesis. In addition, microarray analyses of P5 Gata4 cKO mouse testes showed alterations in chemokine signaling factors, including Cxcl12, Ccl3, Cxcr4 (CXCL12 receptor), Ccr1 (CCL3 receptor), Ccl9, Xcl1 and Ccrl2. Deletion of Gata4 in Sertoli cells markedly attenuated Sertoli cell chemotaxis, which guides SSCs or prospermatogonia to the stem cell niche. Finally, we showed that GATA4 transcriptionally regulated Cxcl12 and Ccl9, and the addition of CXCL12 and CCL9 to an in vitro testis tissue culture system increased the number of PLZF+ undifferentiated spermatogonia within Gata4 cKO testes. Together, these results reveal a novel role for GATA4 in controlling the SSC niche via the transcriptional regulation of chemokine signaling shortly after birth.

  14. Complete Meiosis from Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Germ Cells In Vitro.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Quan; Wang, Mei; Yuan, Yan; Wang, Xuepeng; Fu, Rui; Wan, Haifeng; Xie, Mingming; Liu, Mingxi; Guo, Xuejiang; Zheng, Ying; Feng, Guihai; Shi, Qinghua; Zhao, Xiao-Yang; Sha, Jiahao; Zhou, Qi

    2016-03-03

    In vitro generation of functional gametes is a promising approach for treating infertility, although faithful replication of meiosis has proven to be a substantial obstacle to deriving haploid gamete cells in culture. Here we report complete in vitro meiosis from embryonic stem cell (ESC)-derived primordial germ cells (PGCLCs). Co-culture of PGCLCs with neonatal testicular somatic cells and sequential exposure to morphogens and sex hormones reproduced key hallmarks of meiosis, including erasure of genetic imprinting, chromosomal synapsis and recombination, and correct nuclear DNA and chromosomal content in the resulting haploid cells. Intracytoplasmic injection of the resulting spermatid-like cells into oocytes produced viable and fertile offspring, showing that this robust stepwise approach can functionally recapitulate male gametogenesis in vitro. These findings provide a platform for investigating meiotic mechanisms and the potential generation of human haploid spermatids in vitro.

  15. Exposure to endocrine disruptor induces transgenerational epigenetic deregulation of microRNAs in primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Brieño-Enríquez, Miguel A; García-López, Jesús; Cárdenas, David B; Guibert, Sylvain; Cleroux, Elouan; Děd, Lukas; Hourcade, Juan de Dios; Pěknicová, Jana; Weber, Michael; Del Mazo, Jesús

    2015-01-01

    In mammals, germ cell differentiation is initiated in the Primordial Germ Cells (PGCs) during fetal development. Prenatal exposure to environmental toxicants such as endocrine disruptors may alter PGC differentiation, development of the male germline and induce transgenerational epigenetic disorders. The anti-androgenic compound vinclozolin represents a paradigmatic example of molecule causing transgenerational effects on germ cells. We performed prenatal exposure to vinclozolin in mice and analyzed the phenotypic and molecular changes in three successive generations. A reduction in the number of embryonic PGCs and increased rate of apoptotic cells along with decrease of fertility rate in adult males were observed in F1 to F3 generations. Blimp1 is a crucial regulator of PGC differentiation. We show that prenatal exposure to vinclozolin deregulates specific microRNAs in PGCs, such as miR-23b and miR-21, inducing disequilibrium in the Lin28/let-7/Blimp1 pathway in three successive generations of males. As determined by global maps of cytosine methylation, we found no evidence for prominent changes in DNA methylation in PGCs or mature sperm. Our data suggest that embryonic exposure to environmental endocrine disruptors induces transgenerational epigenetic deregulation of expression of microRNAs affecting key regulatory pathways of germ cells differentiation.

  16. Intensive chemotherapy as salvage treatment for solid tumors: focus on germ cell cancer

    PubMed Central

    Selle, F.; Gligorov, J.; Richard, S.; Khalil, A.; Alexandre, I.; Avenin, D.; Provent, S.; Soares, D.G.; Lotz, J.P.

    2014-01-01

    Germ cell tumors present contrasting biological and molecular features compared to many solid tumors, which may partially explain their unusual sensitivity to chemotherapy. Reduced DNA repair capacity and enhanced induction of apoptosis appear to be key factors in the sensitivity of germ cell tumors to cisplatin. Despite substantial cure rates, some patients relapse and subsequently die of their disease. Intensive doses of chemotherapy are used to counter mechanisms of drug resistance. So far, high-dose chemotherapy with hematopoietic stem cell support for solid tumors is used only in the setting of testicular germ cell tumors. In that indication, high-dose chemotherapy is given as the first or late salvage treatment for patients with either relapsed or progressive tumors after initial conventional salvage chemotherapy. High-dose chemotherapy is usually given as two or three sequential cycles using carboplatin and etoposide with or without ifosfamide. The administration of intensive therapy carries significant side effects and can only be efficiently and safely conducted in specialized referral centers to assure optimum patient care outcomes. In breast and ovarian cancer, most studies have demonstrated improvement in progression-free survival (PFS), but overall survival remained unchanged. Therefore, most of these approaches have been dropped. In germ cell tumors, clinical trials are currently investigating novel therapeutic combinations and active treatments. In particular, the integration of targeted therapies constitutes an important area of research for patients with a poor prognosis. PMID:25493378

  17. Radiofrequency radiation (900 MHz)-induced DNA damage and cell cycle arrest in testicular germ cells in swiss albino mice.

    PubMed

    Pandey, Neelam; Giri, Sarbani; Das, Samrat; Upadhaya, Puja

    2016-10-13

    Even though there are contradictory reports regarding the cellular and molecular changes induced by mobile phone emitted radiofrequency radiation (RFR), the possibility of any biological effect cannot be ruled out. In view of a widespread and extensive use of mobile phones, this study evaluates alterations in male germ cell transformation kinetics following RFR exposure and after recovery. Swiss albino mice were exposed to RFR (900 MHz) for 4 h and 8 h duration per day for 35 days. One group of animals was terminated after the exposure period, while others were kept for an additional 35 days post-exposure. RFR exposure caused depolarization of mitochondrial membranes resulting in destabilized cellular redox homeostasis. Statistically significant increases in the damage index in germ cells and sperm head defects were noted in RFR-exposed animals. Flow cytometric estimation of germ cell subtypes in mice testis revealed 2.5-fold increases in spermatogonial populations with significant decreases in spermatids. Almost fourfold reduction in spermatogonia to spermatid turnover (1C:2C) and three times reduction in primary spermatocyte to spermatid turnover (1C:4C) was found indicating arrest in the premeiotic stage of spermatogenesis, which resulted in loss of post-meiotic germ cells apparent from testis histology and low sperm count in RFR-exposed animals. Histological alterations such as sloughing of immature germ cells into the seminiferous tubule lumen, epithelium depletion and maturation arrest were also observed. However, all these changes showed recovery to varied degrees following the post-exposure period indicating that the adverse effects of RFR on mice germ cells are detrimental but reversible. To conclude, RFR exposure-induced oxidative stress causes DNA damage in germ cells, which alters cell cycle progression leading to low sperm count in mice.

  18. Compartmentalization and regulation of iron metabolism proteins protect male germ cells from iron overload.

    PubMed

    Leichtmann-Bardoogo, Yael; Cohen, Lyora A; Weiss, Avital; Marohn, Britta; Schubert, Stephanie; Meinhardt, Andreas; Meyron-Holtz, Esther G

    2012-06-15

    The universal importance of iron, its high toxicity, and complex chemistry present a challenge to biological systems in general and to protected compartments in particular. The high mitotic rate and avid mitochondriogenesis of developing male germ cells imply high iron requirements. Yet access to germ cells is tightly regulated by the blood-testis barrier that protects the meiotic and postmeiotic germ cells. To elucidate how iron is supplied to developing male germ cells, we analyzed iron deposition and iron transport proteins in testes of mice with iron overload and with genetic ablation of the iron regulators Hfe and iron regulatory protein 2. Iron accumulated mainly around seminiferous tubules, and only small amounts localized within the seminiferous tubules. The localization and regulation of proteins involved in iron import, storage, and export such as transferrin, transferrin receptor, the divalent metal transporter-1, cytosolic ferritin, and ferroportin strongly support a model of a largely autonomous iron cycle within seminiferous tubules. We show evidence that ferritin secretion from Sertoli cells may play an important role in iron acquisition of primary spermatocytes. During spermatogenic development iron is carried along from primary spermatocytes to spermatids, and from spermatids iron is recycled to the apical compartment of Sertoli cells, which traffic it back to a new generation of spermatocytes. Losses are replenished by the peripheral circulation. Such an internal iron cycle essentially detaches the iron homeostasis within the seminiferous tubule from the periphery and protects developing germ cells from iron fluctuations. This model explains how compartmentalization can optimize cellular and systemic nutrient homeostasis.

  19. [Study on pluripotency and cultivation of ES-like cells derived from male germ stem cells of bovine fetuses].

    PubMed

    Dong, Wu-Zi; Shen, Wen-Zheng; Hua, Jin-Lian; Dou, Zhong-Ying

    2007-07-01

    Male germ stem cells (mGSCs), which is in testis after sex differentiation, derive from primordial germ cells. In this study, bovine mGSCs were isolated from testis of 20 weeks fetuses. Number of CD9 positive cells of the cells through two-steps adhering plates velocity different was 95.8% by flow cytometer. The carina-type cells clones and the plane-type cells clones appeared in co-cultured system. One cells lines had been successively maintained for 4 passages, and the cells clusters showed AKP positive staining. The cells clusters showed nest-shape in third passage showed SSEA1 and Oct-4 positive staining. These cells can also spontaneously differentiate into c-kit positive staining germ cells, and the cells were directional induced to formaactin positive staining cardiac-like cells cluster and NF positive staining neuron-like cells. The conclusion showed that male germ stem cells from 20 weeks bovine fetuses could be in vitro formed like embryonic stem cells.

  20. Apoptosis Process in Mouse Leydig Cells during Postnatal Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salles Faria, Maria José; Simões, Zilá Paulino; Luz; Orive Lunardi, Laurelucia; Hartfelder, Klaus

    2003-02-01

    The development of Leydig cells in mammals has been widely described as a biphasic pattern with two temporally mature Leydig cell populations, fetal stage followed by the adult generation beginning at puberty. In the present study, mouse Leydig cells were examined for apoptosis during postnatal testis development using electron microscopy and in situ DNA fragmentation by terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase staining (TdT). Both the morphological study and the DNA fragmentation analysis showed that cellular death by apoptosis did not occur in Leydig cells during the neonatal, prepubertal, puberty, and adult periods. From these results, we suggest that the remaining fetal Leydig cells in the neonatal testis are associated with the involution or degeneration processes. In contrast, in the prepubertal and puberty stages, fragmentation of apoptotic DNA was detected in germ cells present in some seminiferous tubules.

  1. Mouse Ovarian Very Small Embryonic-Like Stem Cells Resist Chemotherapy and Retain Ability to Initiate Oocyte-Specific Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Sriraman, Kalpana; Anand, Sandhya; Bhutda, Smita

    2015-01-01

    This study was undertaken to investigate stem cells in adult mouse ovary, the effect of chemotherapy on them and their potential to differentiate into germ cells. Very small embryonic-like stem cells (VSELs) that were SCA-1+/Lin−/CD45−, positive for nuclear octamer-binding transforming factor 4 (OCT-4), Nanog, and cell surface stage-specific embryonic antigen 1, were identified in adult mouse ovary. Chemotherapy resulted in complete loss of follicular reserve and cytoplasmic OCT-4 positive progenitors (ovarian germ stem cells) but VSELs survived. In ovarian surface epithelial (OSE) cell cultures from chemoablated ovary, proliferating germ cell clusters and mouse vasa homolog/growth differentiation factor 9-positive oocyte-like structure were observed by day 6, probably arising as a result of differentiation of the surviving VSELs. Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) exerted a direct stimulatory action on the OSE and induced stem cells proliferation and differentiation into premeiotic germ cell clusters during intact chemoablated ovaries culture. The FSH analog pregnant mare serum gonadotropin treatment to chemoablated mice increased the percentage of surviving VSELs in ovary. The results of this study provide evidence for the presence of potential VSELs in mouse ovaries and show that they survive chemotherapy, are modulated by FSH, and retain the ability to undergo oocyte-specific differentiation. These results show relevance to women who undergo premature ovarian failure because of oncotherapy. PMID:25779995

  2. Temporal germ cell development strategy during continuous spermatogenesis within the montane lizard, Sceloporus bicanthalis (Squamata; Phrynosomatidae).

    PubMed

    Gribbins, Kevin; Anzalone, Marla; Collier, Matthew; Granados-González, Gisela; Villagrán-Santa Cruz, Maricela; Hernández-Gallegos, Oswaldo

    2011-10-01

    Sceloporus bicanthalis is a viviparous lizard that lives at higher elevations in Mexico. Adult male S. bicanthalis were collected (n = 36) from the Nevado de Toluca, Mexico (elevation is 4200 m) during August to December, 2007 and January to July, 2008. Testes were extracted, fixed in Trumps, and dehydrated in a graded series of ethanol. Tissues were embedded, sectioned (2 μm), stained, and examined via a light microscope to determine the spermatogenic developmental strategy of S. bicanthalis. In all months examined, the testes were spermiogenically active; based on this, plus the presence of sperm in the lumina of seminiferous tubules, we inferred that S. bicanthalis had year-round or continuous spermatogenesis, unlike most reptiles that occupy a temperate or montane habitat. It was recently reported that seasonally breeding reptiles had a temporal germ cell development strategy similar to amphibians, where germ cells progress through spermatogenesis as a single population, which leads to a single spermiation event. This was much different than spatial development within the testis of other derived amniotes. We hypothesized that germ cell development was temporal in S. bicanthalis. Therefore, we wanted to determine whether reptiles that practice continuous spermatogenesis have a mammalian-like spatial germ cell development, which is different than the typical temperate reptile exhibiting a temporal development. In the present study, S. bicanthalis had a temporal development strategy, despite its continuous spermatogenic cycle, making them similar to tropical anoles.

  3. Arginine methylation of SmB is required for Drosophila germ cell development.

    PubMed

    Anne, Joël

    2010-09-01

    Sm proteins constitute the common core of spliceosomal small nuclear ribonucleoproteins. Although Sm proteins are known to be methylated at specific arginine residues within the C-terminal arginine-glycine dipeptide (RG) repeats, the biological relevance of these modifications remains unknown. In this study, a tissue-specific function of arginine methylation of the SmB protein was identified in Drosophila. Analysis of the distribution of SmB during oogenesis revealed that this protein accumulates at the posterior pole of the oocyte, a cytoplasmic region containing the polar granules, which are necessary for the formation of primordial germ cells. The pole plasm localisation of SmB requires the methylation of arginine residues in its RG repeats by the Capsuléen-Valois methylosome complex. Functional studies showed that the methylation of these arginine residues is essential for distinct processes of the germline life cycle, including germ cell formation, migration and differentiation. In particular, the methylation of a subset of these arginine residues appears essential for the anchoring of the polar granules at the posterior cortex of the oocyte, whereas the methylation of another subset controls germ cell migration during embryogenesis. These results demonstrate a crucial role of arginine methylation in directing the subcellular localisation of SmB and that this modification contributes specifically to the establishment and development of germ cells.

  4. Second primary germ cell tumors in patients with seminoma of the testis.

    PubMed

    Cockburn, A G; Vugrin, D; Batata, M; Hajdu, S; Whitmore, W F

    1983-08-01

    In a review of our experience with seminoma 9 cases of bilateral primary testis germ cell tumors were encountered, including 2 simultaneous and 7 successive. Of the 9 cases 6 were bilateral seminomas and 7 were stage I, contributing to the good survival experience. Treatment policy is specified and discussed.

  5. [Role of GAGA Factor in Drosophila Primordial Germ Cell Migration and Gonad Development].

    PubMed

    Dorogova, N V; Khrushcheva, A S; Fedorova, E V; Ogienko, A A; Baricheva, E M

    2016-01-01

    The GAGA protein of drosophila is a factor involved in epigenetic transcription regulation of a large gene group controlling developmental processes. In this paper, the role of GAGA factor in germ cell migration is demonstrated as well as its effect on the gonad development in drosophila embryogenesis. Mutations in the Trl gene, encoding GAGA factor, prematurely induces the active migration program and relocation of the primordial cells inward the embryo before the beginning of gastrulation. The germ cells that prematurely separated from the main group migrate ectopically, lose orientation, and stay out of gonad development. Expression pattern of the Trl gene suggests its activity in epithelial cells of the embryonic blastoderm, part of which contact primordial cells. Thus, GAGA factor influences migration of these cells in an indirect manner via their somatic environment.

  6. Radiolethal and genetic vulnerabilities of germ cells in the female mammal: Effects of tritium and other radiations compared

    SciTech Connect

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

    1989-01-01

    Our focus is on the nature of the lethality target in very sensitive cells. In the mouse, several types of radiations have now been used, including /sup 3/H-Tdr incorporated into oocyte DNA, gamma rays delivered at various dose rates, 250 kVp x rays, neutrons of various energies, and three kinds of accelerated heavy ions (Si/sup 14 +/, Ar/sup 18 +/, Fe/sup 26 +/). We have shown that the lethality target in mouse immature oocytes is non-nuclear; it is equal in cross-sectional area to the entire oocyte and is separated from the nucleus by about 4 ..mu..m. A substantial body of data now points to the plasma membrane as the lethality target in these particular cells. We have quantified both chromosome aberrations and dominant lethal mutations in oocytes from females exposed 8 to 12 weeks earlier. Results from these and other studies show that: (1) for immature oocyte killing in mice, chronically administered /sup 3/HOH is of near maximum biological effectiveness, similar to the most effective neutrons and heavy ions (likely true also for female germ-cell killing in some prenatal primates), (2) tritium incorporated into DNA as /sup 3/H-Tdr is about 100 times less effective in mouse immature oocyte killing than is tritium administered as /sup 3/HOH, and (3) for mutagenicity in the mouse, immature oocytes appear to have approximately the same sensitivity as mature oocytes and show dose and LET responses similar to those obtained from genetic studies of other cells. The possible implications of these findings for women exposed to tritium are considered.

  7. Mutator phenotype of MUTYH-null mouse embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Hirano, Seiki; Tominaga, Yohei; Ichinoe, Akimasa; Ushijima, Yasuhiro; Tsuchimoto, Daisuke; Honda-Ohnishi, Yoko; Ohtsubo, Toshio; Sakumi, Kunihiko; Nakabeppu, Yusaku

    2003-10-03

    To evaluate the antimutagenic role of a mammalian mutY homolog, namely the Mutyh gene, which encodes adenine DNA glycosylase excising adenine misincorporated opposite 8-oxoguanine in the template DNA, we generated MUTYH-null mouse embryonic stem (ES) cells. In the MUTYH-null cells carrying no adenine DNA glycosylase activity, the spontaneous mutation rate increased 2-fold in comparison with wild type cells. The expression of wild type mMUTYH or mutant mMUTYH protein with amino acid substitutions at the proliferating cell nuclear antigen binding motif restored the increased spontaneous mutation rates of the MUTYH-null ES cells to the wild type level. The expression of a mutant mMUTYH protein with an amino acid substitution (G365D) that corresponds to a germ-line mutation (G382D) found in patients with multiple colorectal adenomas could not suppress the elevated spontaneous mutation rate of the MUTYH-null ES cells. Although the recombinant mMUTYH(G365D) purified from Escherichia coli cells had a substantial level of adenine DNA glycosylase activity as did wild type MUTYH, no adenine DNA glycosylase activity was detected in the MUTYH-null ES cells expressing the mMUTYH(G365D) mutant protein. The germ-line mutation (G382D) of the human MUTYH gene is therefore likely to be responsible for the occurrence of a mutator phenotype in these patients.

  8. Production of human CD59-transgenic pigs by embryonic germ cell nuclear transfer

    SciTech Connect

    Ahn, Kwang Sung; Won, Ji Young; Park, Jin-Ki; Sorrell, Alice M.; Heo, Soon Young; Kang, Jee Hyun; Woo, Jae-Seok; Choi, Bong-Hwan; Chang, Won-Kyong; Shim, Hosup

    2010-10-01

    Research highlights: {yields} Human CD59 (hCD59) gene was introduced into porcine embryonic germ (EG) cells. {yields} hCD59-transgenic EG cells were resistant to hyperacute rejection in cytolytic assay. {yields} hCD59-transgenic pigs were produced by EG cell nuclear transfer. -- Abstract: This study was performed to produce transgenic pigs expressing the human complement regulatory protein CD59 (hCD59) using the nuclear transfer (NT) of embryonic germ (EG) cells, which are undifferentiated stem cells derived from primordial germ cells. Because EG cells can be cultured indefinitely in an undifferentiated state, they may provide an inexhaustible source of nuclear donor cells for NT to produce transgenic pigs. A total of 1980 NT embryos derived from hCD59-transgenic EG cells were transferred to ten recipients, resulting in the birth of fifteen piglets from three pregnancies. Among these offspring, ten were alive without overt health problems. Based on PCR analysis, all fifteen piglets were confirmed as hCD59 transgenic. The expression of the hCD59 transgene in the ten living piglets was verified by RT-PCR. Western analysis showed the expression of the hCD59 protein in four of the ten RT-PCR-positive piglets. These results demonstrate that hCD59-transgenic pigs could effectively be produced by EG cell NT and that such transgenic pigs may be used as organ donors in pig-to-human xenotransplantation.

  9. MEETING REPORT ASSESSING HUMAN GERM-CELL MUTAGENESIS IN THE POST-GENOME ERA: A CELEBRATION OF THE LEGACY OF WILLIAM LAWSON (BILL) RUSSELL

    EPA Science Inventory

    Although numerous germ-cell mutagens have been identified in animal model systems, to date, no human germ-cell mutagens have been confirmed. Because the genomic integrity of our germ cells is essential for the continuation of the human species, a resolution of this enduring conu...

  10. Prolonged cell-free protein synthesis in a batch system using wheat germ extract.

    PubMed

    Kawarasaki, Y; Nakano, H; Yamane, T

    1994-10-01

    Reaction conditions of cell-free protein synthesis using wheat germ extract were examined to prolong the period of protein synthesis in a batch reaction. By optimizing conditions for ATP regeneration system involved in the cell-free system, protein synthesis continued about 4 hours, so that about 17 micrograms dihydrofolate reductase protein was obtained in 1 ml of a reaction mixture. It suggests that maintaining ATP concentration is the primary requirement for long-life cell-free protein synthesis.

  11. Expression, sorting, and segregation of Golgi proteins during germ cell differentiation in the testis

    PubMed Central

    Au, Catherine E.; Hermo, Louis; Byrne, Elliot; Smirle, Jeffrey; Fazel, Ali; Simon, Paul H. G.; Kearney, Robert E.; Cameron, Pamela H.; Smith, Charles E.; Vali, Hojatollah; Fernandez-Rodriguez, Julia; Ma, Kewei; Nilsson, Tommy; Bergeron, John J. M.

    2015-01-01

    The molecular basis of changes in structure, cellular location, and function of the Golgi apparatus during male germ cell differentiation is unknown. To deduce cognate Golgi proteins, we isolated germ cell Golgi fractions, and 1318 proteins were characterized, with 20 localized in situ. The most abundant protein, GL54D of unknown function, is characterized as a germ cell–specific Golgi-localized type II integral membrane glycoprotein. TM9SF3, also of unknown function, was revealed to be a universal Golgi marker for both somatic and germ cells. During acrosome formation, several Golgi proteins (GBF1, GPP34, GRASP55) localize to both the acrosome and Golgi, while GL54D, TM9SF3, and the Golgi trafficking protein TMED7/p27 are segregated from the acrosome. After acrosome formation, GL54D, TM9SF3, TMED4/p25, and TMED7/p27 continue to mark Golgi identity as it migrates away from the acrosome, while the others (GBF1, GPP34, GRASP55) remain in the acrosome and are progressively lost in later steps of differentiation. Cytoplasmic HSP70.2 and the endoplasmic reticulum luminal protein-folding enzyme PDILT are also Golgi recruited but only during acrosome formation. This resource identifies abundant Golgi proteins that are expressed differentially during mitosis, meiosis, and postacrosome Golgi migration, including the last step of differentiation. PMID:25808494

  12. Differentiation of presumptive primordial germ cell (pPGC)-like cells in explants into PGCs in experimental tadpoles

    SciTech Connect

    Ikenishi, K.; Okuda, T.; Nakazato, S.

    1984-05-01

    A single blastomere containing the ''germ plasm'' of 32-cell stage Xenopus embryos was cultured with (/sup 3/H)thymidine until the control embryos developed to the neurula stage. The explants, showing a spherical mass in which the nuclei of all cells were labeled, were implanted into the prospective place of presumptive primordial germ cells (pPGCs) in the endodermal cell mass of unlabeled host embryos of the neurula stage. Labeled PGCs as well as unlabeled, host PGCs were found in the genital ridges of experimental tadpoles. This indicates that the precursor of germ cells, corresponding to pPGCs in normal embryos of the neurula stage, in the explants migrated to genital ridges just at the right moment to become PGCs, and suggests that the developmental process progressed normally, even in the explants, as far as the differentiation of pPGCs is concerned.

  13. Germ cell dynamics in the testis of the postnatal common marmoset monkey (Callithrix jacchus).

    PubMed

    Albert, S; Ehmcke, J; Wistuba, J; Eildermann, K; Behr, R; Schlatt, S; Gromoll, J

    2010-11-01

    The seminiferous epithelium in the nonhuman primate Callithrix jacchus is similarly organized to man. This monkey has therefore been used as a preclinical model for spermatogenesis and testicular stem cell physiology. However, little is known about the developmental dynamics of germ cells in the postnatal primate testis. In this study, we analyzed testes of newborn, 8-week-old, and adult marmosets employing immunohistochemistry using pluripotent stem cell and germ cell markers DDX4 (VASA), POU5F1 (OCT3/4), and TFAP2C (AP-2γ). Stereological and morphometric techniques were applied for quantitative analysis of germ cell populations and testicular histological changes. Quantitative RT-PCR (qRT-PCR) of testicular mRNA was applied using 16 marker genes establishing the corresponding profiles during postnatal testicular development. Testis size increased during the first 8 weeks of life with the main driver being longitudinal outgrowth of seminiferous cords. The number of DDX4-positive cells per testis doubled between birth and 8 weeks of age whereas TFAP2C- and POU5F1-positive cells remained unchanged. This increase in DDX4-expressing cells indicates dynamic growth of the differentiated A-spermatogonial population. The presence of cells expressing POU5F1 and TFAP2C after 8 weeks reveals the persistence of less differentiated germ cells. The mRNA and protein profiles determined by qRT-PCR and western blot in newborn, 8-week-old, and adult marmosets corroborated the immunohistochemical findings. In conclusion, we demonstrated the presence of distinct spermatogonial subpopulations in the primate testis exhibiting different dynamics during early testicular development. Our study demonstrates the suitability of the marmoset testis as a model for human testicular development.

  14. Human testicular (non)seminomatous germ cell tumours: the clinical implications of recent pathobiological insights.

    PubMed

    Looijenga, Leendert H J

    2009-06-01

    Human germ cell tumours (GCTs) comprise several types of neoplasias with different pathogeneses and clinical behaviours. A classification into five subtypes has been proposed. Here, the so-called type II testicular GCTs (TGCTs), ie the seminomas and non-seminomas, will be reviewed with emphasis on pathogenesis and clinical implications. Various risk factors have been identified that define subpopulations of men who are amenable to early diagnosis. TGCTs are omnipotent, able to generate all differentiation lineages, both embryonic and extra-embryonic, as well as the germ cell lineage itself. The precursor lesion, composed of primordial germ cells/gonocytes, is referred to as carcinoma in situ of the testis (CIS) and gonadoblastoma of the dysgenetic gonad. These pre-malignant cells retain embryonic characteristics, which probably explains the unique responsiveness of the derived tumours to DNA-damaging agents. Development of CIS and gonadoblastoma is crucially dependent on the micro-environment created by Sertoli cells in the testis, and granulosa cells in the dysgenetic gonad. OCT3/4 has high sensitivity and specificity for CIS/gonadoblastoma, seminoma, and embryonal carcinoma, and is useful for the detection of CIS cells in semen, thus a promising tool for non-invasive screening. Overdiagnosis of CIS due to germ cell maturation delay can be avoided using immunohistochemical detection of stem cell factor (SCF). Immunohistochemistry is helpful in making the distinction between seminoma and embryonal carcinoma, especially SOX17 and SOX2. The different non-seminomatous histological elements can be recognized using various markers, such as AFP and hCG, while others need confirmation. The value of micro-satellite instability as well as BRAF mutations in predicting treatment resistance needs validation in prospective trials. The availability of representative cell lines, both for seminoma and for embryonal carcinoma, allows mechanistic studies into the initiation and

  15. An EAR-Dependent Regulatory Module Promotes Male Germ Cell Division and Sperm Fertility in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Borg, Michael; Rutley, Nicholas; Kagale, Sateesh; Hamamura, Yuki; Gherghinoiu, Mihai; Kumar, Sanjeev; Sari, Ugur; Esparza-Franco, Manuel A; Sakamoto, Wataru; Rozwadowski, Kevin; Higashiyama, Tetsuya; Twell, David

    2014-05-01

    The production of the sperm cells in angiosperms requires coordination of cell division and cell differentiation. In Arabidopsis thaliana, the germline-specific MYB protein DUO1 integrates these processes, but the regulatory hierarchy in which DUO1 functions is unknown. Here, we identify an essential role for two germline-specific DUO1 target genes, DAZ1 and DAZ2, which encode EAR motif-containing C2H2-type zinc finger proteins. We show that DAZ1/DAZ2 are required for germ cell division and for the proper accumulation of mitotic cyclins. Importantly, DAZ1/DAZ2 are sufficient to promote G2- to M-phase transition and germ cell division in the absence of DUO1. DAZ1/DAZ2 are also required for DUO1-dependent cell differentiation and are essential for gamete fusion at fertilization. We demonstrate that the two EAR motifs in DAZ1/DAZ2 mediate their function in the male germline and are required for transcriptional repression and for physical interaction with the corepressor TOPLESS. Our findings uncover an essential module in a regulatory hierarchy that drives mitotic transition in male germ cells and implicates gene repression pathways in sperm cell formation and fertility.

  16. Benzo(a)pyrene Is Mutagenic in Mouse Spermatogonial Stem Cells and Dividing Spermatogonia

    PubMed Central

    O’Brien, Jason M.; Beal, Marc A.; Yauk, Carole L.; Marchetti, Francesco

    2016-01-01

    Although many environmental agents are established male germ cell mutagens, few are known to induce mutations in spermatogonial stem cells. Stem cell mutations are of great concern because they result in a permanent increase in the number of mutations carried in sperm. We investigated mutation induction during mouse spermatogenesis following exposure to benzo(a)pyrene (BaP). MutaMouse males were given 0, 12.5, 25, 50, or 100 mg/kg bw/day BaP for 28 days by oral gavage. Germ cells were collected from the cauda epididymis and seminiferous tubules 3 days after exposure and from cauda epididymis 42 and 70 days after exposure. This design enabled targeted investigation of effects on post-spermatogonia, dividing spermatogonia, and spermatogonial stem cells, respectively. BaP increased lacZ mutant frequency (MF) in cauda sperm after exposure of dividing spermatogonia (4.2-fold at highest dose, P < .01) and spermatogonial stem cells (2.1-fold at highest dose, P < .01). No significant increases in MF were detected in cauda sperm or seminiferous tubule cells collected 3 days post-exposure. Dose-response modelling suggested that the mutational response in male germ cells to BaP is sub-linear at low doses. Our results demonstrate that oral exposure to BaP causes spermatogonial stem cell mutations, that different phases of spermatogenesis exhibit varying sensitivities to BaP, with dividing spermatogonia representing a window of peak sensitivity, and that sampling spermatogenic cells from the seminiferous tubules at earlier time-points may underestimate germ cell mutagenicity. This information is critical to optimize the use of the international test guideline for transgenic rodent mutation assays for detecting germ cell mutagens. PMID:27208087

  17. MAPK15 upregulation promotes cell proliferation and prevents DNA damage in male germ cell tumors

    PubMed Central

    Ilardi, Gennaro; Acunzo, Mario; Nigita, Giovanni; Sasdelli, Federica; Celetti, Angela; Strambi, Angela; Staibano, Stefania; Croce, Carlo Maria; Chiariello, Mario

    2016-01-01

    Germ cell tumors (GCT) are the most common malignancies in males between 15 and 35 years of age. Despite the high cure rate, achieved through chemotherapy and/or surgery, the molecular basis of GCT etiology is still largely obscure. Here, we show a positive correlation between MAPK15 (ERK8; ERK7) expression and specific GCT subtypes, with the highest levels found in the aggressive embryonal carcinomas (EC). Indeed, in corresponding cellular models for EC, MAPK15 enhanced tumorigenicity in vivo and promoted cell proliferation in vitro, supporting a role for this kinase in human GCT. At molecular level, we demonstrated that endogenous MAPK15 is necessary to sustain cell cycle progression of EC cells, by limiting p53 activation and preventing the triggering of p53-dependent mechanisms resulting in cell cycle arrest. To understand MAPK15-dependent mechanisms impinging on p53 activation, we demonstrate that this kinase efficiently protects cells from DNA damage. Moreover, we show that the ability of MAPK15 to control the autophagic process is necessary for basal management of DNA damage and for tumor formation controlled by the kinase. In conclusion, our findings suggest that MAPK15 overexpression may contribute to the malignant transformation of germ cells by controlling a “stress support” autophagic pathway, able to prevent DNA damage and the consequent activation of the p53 tumor suppressor. Moreover, in light of these results, MAPK15-specific inhibitors might represent new tools to enhance the therapeutic index of cytotoxic therapy in GCT treatment, and to increase the sensitivity to DNA-damaging drugs in other chemotherapy-resistant human tumors. PMID:26988910

  18. Dose-dependent induction of recessive mutations with N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea in primordial germ cells of male mice.

    PubMed

    Shibuya, T; Horiya, N; Matsuda, H; Sakamoto, K; Hara, T

    1996-10-25

    Using a specific locus test, we previously found that N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea (ENU) induces recessive mutations at a relatively high rate in male mouse primordial germ cells (PGC) at 8.5, 10.5 and 13.5 days of development (G8.5, G10.5 and G13.5). A large difference was observed on the induced mutation rate between 30 and 50 mg/kg ENU in 10.5-day PGC. We therefore carried out specific locus tests to ascertain whether ENU induces recessive mutations in a dose-dependent manner in G8.5 and G10.5 PGC. We also gave multiple doses of 25 mg/kg ENU using an 18-h interval, the approximate doubling time of PGC at these developmental stages, to test for an additive effect on the induced mutations rate. A dose-dependent induction of recessive mutations by ENU was observed in both G8.5 and G10.5 PGC, and multiple dosing of 25 mg/kg ENU showed an additive effect. Comparing these results to data on spermatogonial stem cells, we conclude the capacity to repair ENU-induced premutagenic damages is less effective in male mouse PGC at these developmental stages than in spermatogonial stem cells.

  19. Hypoxia Inducible Factor 1 Alpha Is Expressed in Germ Cells throughout the Murine Life Cycle.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Natsumi; Davy, Philip M C; Gardner, Lauren H; Mathews, Juanita; Yamazaki, Yuki; Allsopp, Richard C

    2016-01-01

    Pluripotent stem cells of the early embryo, and germ line cells, are essential to ensure uncompromised development to adulthood as well as species propagation, respectively. Recently, the transcription factor hypoxia inducible factor 1 alpha (Hif1α) has been shown to have important roles in embryonic stem cells; in particular, regulation of conversion to glycolytic metabolism and, as we have shown, maintenance of functional levels of telomerase. In the present study, we sought to assess whether Hif1α was also expressed in the primitive cells of the murine embryo. We observed expression of Hif1α in pre-implantation embryos, specifically the 2-cell stage, morula, and blastocyst. Robust Hif1α expression was also observed in male and female primordial germ cells. We subsequently assessed whether Hif1α was expressed in adult male and female germ cells. In the testis, Hif1α was robustly expressed in spermatogonial cells, in both juvenile (6-week old) and adult (3-month old) males. In the ovaries, Hif1α was expressed in mature oocytes from adult females, as assessed both in situ and in individual oocytes flushed from super-ovulated females. Analysis of Hif1α transcript levels indicates a mechanism of regulation during early development that involves stockpiling of Hif1α protein in mature oocytes, presumably to provide protection from hypoxic stress until the gene is re-activated at the blastocyst stage. Together, these observations show that Hif1α is expressed throughout the life-cycle, including both the male and female germ line, and point to an important role for Hif1α in early progenitor cells.

  20. Hypoxia Inducible Factor 1 Alpha Is Expressed in Germ Cells throughout the Murine Life Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Gardner, Lauren H.; Mathews, Juanita; Yamazaki, Yuki; Allsopp, Richard C.

    2016-01-01

    Pluripotent stem cells of the early embryo, and germ line cells, are essential to ensure uncompromised development to adulthood as well as species propagation, respectively. Recently, the transcription factor hypoxia inducible factor 1 alpha (Hif1α) has been shown to have important roles in embryonic stem cells; in particular, regulation of conversion to glycolytic metabolism and, as we have shown, maintenance of functional levels of telomerase. In the present study, we sought to assess whether Hif1α was also expressed in the primitive cells of the murine embryo. We observed expression of Hif1α in pre-implantation embryos, specifically the 2-cell stage, morula, and blastocyst. Robust Hif1α expression was also observed in male and female primordial germ cells. We subsequently assessed whether Hif1α was expressed in adult male and female germ cells. In the testis, Hif1α was robustly expressed in spermatogonial cells, in both juvenile (6-week old) and adult (3-month old) males. In the ovaries, Hif1α was expressed in mature oocytes from adult females, as assessed both in situ and in individual oocytes flushed from super-ovulated females. Analysis of Hif1α transcript levels indicates a mechanism of regulation during early development that involves stockpiling of Hif1α protein in mature oocytes, presumably to provide protection from hypoxic stress until the gene is re-activated at the blastocyst stage. Together, these observations show that Hif1α is expressed throughout the life-cycle, including both the male and female germ line, and point to an important role for Hif1α in early progenitor cells. PMID:27148974

  1. Modifications of wheat germ cell-free system for functional proteomics of plant membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Nozawa, Akira; Tozawa, Yuzuru

    2014-01-01

    Functional proteomics of plant membrane proteins is an important approach to understand the comprehensive architecture of each metabolic pathway in plants. One bottleneck in the characterization of membrane proteins is the difficulty in producing sufficient quantities of functional protein for analysis. Here, we describe three methods for membrane protein production utilizing a wheat germ cell-free protein expression system. Owing to the open nature of cell-free synthesis reaction, protein synthesis can be modified with components necessary to produce functional protein. In this way we have developed modifications to a wheat germ cell-free system for the production of functional membrane proteins. Supplementation of liposomes or detergents allows the synthesis of functional integral membrane proteins. Furthermore, supplementation of myristic acid enables synthesis of N-myristylated peripheral membrane proteins. These modified cell-free synthesis methods facilitate the preparation and subsequent functional analyses of a wide variety of membrane proteins.

  2. Ceramides and sphingomyelins with high proportions of very long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids in mammalian germ cells.

    PubMed

    Furland, Natalia E; Zanetti, Samanta R; Oresti, Gerardo M; Maldonado, Eduardo N; Aveldaño, Marta I

    2007-06-22

    Very long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (VLCPUFA) have previously been shown to be components of sphingomyelin (SM) of mammalian testis and spermatozoa. Here we examined the fatty acids of testicular ceramide (Cer) in comparison with those of SM in some mammals with a special focus on the rat testis. In bull, cat, dog, rabbit, mouse, and rat, VLCPUFA were found in both testicular lipids, Cer having a higher percentage of VLCPUFA than SM. Rat testis had the highest percentage of VLCPUFA in both lipids, the major ones being 28:4n-6 and 30:5n-6. VLCPUFA-containing SM and Cer occurred in cells located in the seminiferous tubules, where germ cells had a higher percentage of these species than Sertoli cells. Seminiferous tubule fractionation showed that SM and Cer of mitochondria and lysosomes had mostly saturates and negligible VLCPUFA, the latter being important in the SM and Cer of microsomes and other membrane fractions. VLCPUFA were absent from the SM and Cer of rat prepuberal testis, increased with the onset of spermatogenesis to account for nearly 15 and 40% of the total fatty acids of testicular SM and Cer, respectively, remained at those levels throughout the adult life of fertile rats and tended to decrease at advanced ages. Four conditions that lead to selective death of germ cells in vivo, namely experimental cryptorchidism, post-ischemic reperfusion, focalized x-ray irradiation and treatments with the antineoplasic drug doxorubicin, caused the VLCPUFA to disappear from the testicular SM and Cer of adult fertile rats, showing that these lipids are specific traits of spermatogenic cells.

  3. Establishment and in vitro culture of porcine spermatogonial germ cells in low temperature culture conditions.

    PubMed

    Lee, Won-Young; Park, Hyun-Jung; Lee, Ran; Lee, Kyung-Hoon; Kim, Yong-Hee; Ryu, Buom-Yong; Kim, Nam-Hyung; Kim, Jin-Hoi; Kim, Jae-Hwan; Moon, Sung-Hwan; Park, Jin-Ki; Chung, Hak-Jae; Kim, Dong-Hoon; Song, Hyuk

    2013-11-01

    The objective of this study was to establish a porcine spermatogonial germ cell (pSGC) line and develop an in vitro culture system. Isolated total testicular cells (TTCs) from 5-day-old porcine testes were primary cultured at 31, 34, and 37°C. Although the time of colony appearance was delayed at 31°C, strong alkaline phosphatase staining, expressions of pluripotency marker genes such as OCT4, NANOG, and THY1, and the gene expressions of the undifferentiated germ cell markers PLZF and protein gene product 9.5 (PGP9.5) were identified compared to 34 and 37°C. Cell cycle analysis for both pSGC and feeder cells at the three temperatures revealed that more pSGCs were in the G2/M phase at 31°C than 37°C at the subculture stage. In vitro, pSGCs could stably maintain undifferentiated germ cell and stem cell characteristics for over 60days during culture at 31°C. Xenotransplantation of pSGCs to immune deficient mice demonstrated a successful colonization and localization on the seminiferous tubule basement membrane in the recipient testes. In conclusion, pSGCs from neonatal porcine were successfully established and cultured for long periods under a low temperature culture environment in vitro.

  4. Porcine tooth germ cell conditioned medium can induce odontogenic differentiation of human dental pulp stem cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yin-Xiong; Ma, Zhao-Feng; Huo, Na; Tang, Liang; Han, Chun; Duan, Yin-Zhong; Jin, Yan

    2011-05-01

    It is suggested that the differentiation of tooth-derived stem cells is modulated by the local microenvironment in which they reside. Previous studies have indicated that tooth germ cell-conditioned medium (TGC-CM) holds the potential to induce dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) to differentiate into the odontogenic lineage. Nevertheless, human TGC-CM (hTGC-CM) is not feasible in practical application, so we conjectured that xenogenic TGC-CM might exert a similar influence on human dental stem cells. In this study, we chose swine as the xenogenic origin and compared the effect of porcine tooth germ cell-conditioned medium (pTGC-CM) with its human counterpart on human DPSCs. Morphological appearance, colony-forming assay, in vitro multipotential ability, protein and gene expression of the odontogenic phenotype and the in vivo differentiation capacity of DPSCs were evaluated. The results showed that pTGC-CM exerted a similar effect to hTGC-CM in inducing human DPSCs to present odontogenic changes, which were indicated by remarkable morphological changes, higher multipotential capability and the expression of some odontogenic markers in gene and protein levels. Besides, the in vivo results showed that pTGC-CM-treated DPSCs, similar to hTGC-CM-treated DPSCs, could form a more regular dentine-pulp complex. Our data provided the first evidence that pTGC-CM is able to exert almost the same effect on DPSCs with hTGC-CM. The observations suggest that the application of xenogenic TGC-CM may facilitate generating bioengineered teeth from tooth-derived stem cells in future.

  5. European consensus on diagnosis and treatment of germ cell cancer: a report of the European Germ Cell Cancer Consensus Group (EGCCCG).

    PubMed

    Schmoll, H J; Souchon, R; Krege, S; Albers, P; Beyer, J; Kollmannsberger, C; Fossa, S D; Skakkebaek, N E; de Wit, R; Fizazi, K; Droz, J P; Pizzocaro, G; Daugaard, G; de Mulder, P H M; Horwich, A; Oliver, T; Huddart, R; Rosti, G; Paz Ares, L; Pont, O; Hartmann, J T; Aass, N; Algaba, F; Bamberg, M; Bodrogi, I; Bokemeyer, C; Classen, J; Clemm, S; Culine, S; de Wit, M; Derigs, H G; Dieckmann, K P; Flasshove, M; Garcia del Muro, X; Gerl, A; Germa-Lluch, J R; Hartmann, M; Heidenreich, A; Hoeltl, W; Joffe, J; Jones, W; Kaiser, G; Klepp, O; Kliesch, S; Kisbenedek, L; Koehrmann, K U; Kuczyk, M; Laguna, M P; Leiva, O; Loy, V; Mason, M D; Mead, G M; Mueller, R P; Nicolai, N; Oosterhof, G O N; Pottek, T; Rick, O; Schmidberger, H; Sedlmayer, F; Siegert, W; Studer, U; Tjulandin, S; von der Maase, H; Walz, P; Weinknecht, S; Weissbach, L; Winter, E; Wittekind, C

    2004-09-01

    Germ cell tumour is the most frequent malignant tumour type in young men with a 100% rise in the incidence every 20 years. Despite this, the high sensitivity of germ cell tumours to platinum-based chemotherapy, together with radiation and surgical measures, leads to the high cure rate of > or = 99% in early stages and 90%, 75-80% and 50% in advanced disease with 'good', 'intermediate' and 'poor' prognostic criteria (IGCCCG classification), respectively. The high cure rate in patients with limited metastatic disease allows the reduction of overall treatment load, and therefore less acute and long-term toxicity, e.g. organ sparing surgery for specific cases, reduced dose and treatment volume of irradiation or substitution of node dissection by surveillance or adjuvant chemotherapy according to the presence or absence of vascular invasion. Thus, different treatment options according to prognostic factors including histology, stage and patient factors and possibilities of the treating centre as well may be used to define the treatment strategy which is definitively chosen for an individual patient. However, this strategy of reduction of treatment load as well as the treatment itself require very high expertise of the treating physician with careful management and follow-up and thorough cooperation by the patient as well to maintain the high rate for cure. Treatment decisions must be based on the available evidence which has been the basis for this consensus guideline delivering a clear proposal for diagnostic and treatment measures in each stage of gonadal and extragonadal germ cell tumour and individual clinical situations. Since this guideline is based on the highest evidence level available today, a deviation from these proposals should be a rare and justified exception.

  6. Impact of Non-Pulmonary Visceral Metastases in the Prognosis and Practice of Metastatic Testicular Germ Cell Tumors

    PubMed Central

    Rossi, Lorena; Martignano, Filippo; Gallà, Valentina; Maugeri, Antonio; Schepisi, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    Non-pulmonary visceral metastases, in bones, brain and liver, represent nearly the 10% of metastatic sites of advanced germ cell tumors and are associated with poor prognosis. This review article summarizes major evidences on the impact of different visceral sites on the prognosis, treatment and clinical outcome of patients with germ cell tumors. The clinic-biological mechanisms by which these metastatic sites are associated with poor clinical outcome remain unclear. The multimodality treatment showed a potential better survival, in particular in patients with relapsed disease. Patients with advanced germ cell tumors with visceral metastases should be referred to centers with high expertise in the clinical management of such disease. PMID:27471579

  7. Wheat Germ Cell-Free System-Based Production of Malaria Proteins for Discovery of Novel Vaccine Candidates▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Tsuboi, Takafumi; Takeo, Satoru; Iriko, Hideyuki; Jin, Ling; Tsuchimochi, Masateru; Matsuda, Shusaku; Han, Eun-Taek; Otsuki, Hitoshi; Kaneko, Osamu; Sattabongkot, Jetsumon; Udomsangpetch, Rachanee; Sawasaki, Tatsuya; Torii, Motomi; Endo, Yaeta

    2008-01-01

    One of the major bottlenecks in malaria research has been the difficulty in recombinant protein expression. Here, we report the application of the wheat germ cell-free system for the successful production of malaria proteins. For proof of principle, the Pfs25, PfCSP, and PfAMA1 proteins were chosen. These genes contain very high A/T sequences and are also difficult to express as recombinant proteins. In our wheat germ cell-free system, native and codon-optimized versions of the Pfs25 genes produced equal amounts of proteins. PfCSP and PfAMA1 genes without any codon optimization were also expressed. The products were soluble, with yields between 50 and 200 μg/ml of the translation mixture, indicating that the cell-free system can be used to produce malaria proteins without any prior optimization of their biased codon usage. Biochemical and immunocytochemical analyses of antibodies raised in mice against each protein revealed that every antibody retained its high specificity to the parasite protein in question. The development of parasites in mosquitoes fed patient blood carrying Plasmodium falciparum gametocytes and supplemented with our mouse anti-Pfs25 sera was strongly inhibited, indicating that both Pfs25-3D7/WG and Pfs25-TBV/WG retained their immunogenicity. Lastly, we carried out a parallel expression assay of proteins of blood-stage P. falciparum. The PCR products of 124 P. falciparum genes chosen from the available database were used directly in a small-scale format of transcription and translation reactions. Autoradiogram testing revealed the production of 93 proteins. The application of this new cell-free system-based protocol for the discovery of malaria vaccine candidates will be discussed. PMID:18268027

  8. Giant adrenal germ cell tumour in a 59-year-old woman

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Lei; Fang, Lu; Liu, Zhiqi; Yu, Dexin; Wang, Daming; Wang, Yi; Xie, Dongdong; Min, Jie; Ding, Demao; Zhang, Tao; Zou, Ci; Zhang, Zhiqiang

    2016-01-01

    Adrenal germ cell tumour is very rare. We report a case of a 59-year-old woman who presented with right flank discomfort. The laboratory examinations were normal and the chest computed tomography (CT) showed right pleural effusion. The abdominal CT scan revealed a large mass on the right adrenal gland. The patient underwent an adrenalectomy. Histopathologic examination and immunohistochemical findings were consistent with mixed germ cell tumour. Three months later following the operation, the patient was admitted to our hospital again with chest tightness and shortness of breath. The chest CT showed right pleural effusion recurrence and enlargement of mediastinal lymph nodes and right hilar lymph nodes. The patient had right supraclavicular lymphadenectasis on physical examination. Fine needle aspiration cytology from the supraclavicular lymph nodes showed groups of malignant tumour cells. The patient died within 6 months postoperatively. In this case, the lymph node pathway played an important role in the metastatic procedure. PMID:27790306

  9. Female germ cell renewal during the annual reproductive cycle in Ostariophysians fish.

    PubMed

    Wildner, Daniel Dantas; Grier, Harry; Quagio-Grassiotto, Irani

    2013-03-01

    The objective was to characterize female germ cell renewal during the annual reproductive cycle in two species of ostariophysian fish with distinct reproductive strategies: a siluriform, Pimelodus maculatus, in which oocyte development is group synchronous and the annual reproductive period is short; and a characiform, Serrasalmus maculatus, with asynchronous oocyte development and a prolonged reproductive period. These reproductive strategies result in fish determinate and indeterminate fecundity, respectively. Annual reproductive phases were determined by biometric and histologic analysis of gonads and interpreted according to new proposals for phase classification and stages of oocyte development (with special attention to germinal epithelium activity). Histologically, there were two types of oogonia in the germinal epithelium: single oogonia and those in mitotic proliferation. Oogonial proliferation and their entry into meiosis resulted in formation of cell nests (clusters of cells in the ovarian lamellae). Morphometric analysis was used to estimate germ cell renewal. Based on numbers of single oogonia in the lamellar epithelium, and nests with proliferating oogonia or early prophase oocytes throughout the annual reproductive cycle, oogonial proliferation and entrance into meiosis were more intense during the regenerating phase and developing phase, but decreased sharply (P < 0.05) during the spawning-capable phase. Oogonial proliferation gradually recovered during the regressing phase. We concluded that, independent of species or features of the reproductive cycle, germ cell renewal occurred during the regenerating phase, ensuring availability of eggs for the spawning event.

  10. Molecular Characteristics of Malignant Ovarian Germ Cell Tumors and Comparison With Testicular Counterparts: Implications for Pathogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Kraggerud, Sigrid Marie; Hoei-Hansen, Christina E.; Alagaratnam, Sharmini; Skotheim, Rolf I.; Abeler, Vera M.

    2013-01-01

    This review focuses on the molecular characteristics and development of rare malignant ovarian germ cell tumors (mOGCTs). We provide an overview of the genomic aberrations assessed by ploidy, cytogenetic banding, and comparative genomic hybridization. We summarize and discuss the transcriptome profiles of mRNA and microRNA (miRNA), and biomarkers (DNA methylation, gene mutation, individual protein expression) for each mOGCT histological subtype. Parallels between the origin of mOGCT and their male counterpart testicular GCT (TGCT) are discussed from the perspective of germ cell development, endocrinological influences, and pathogenesis, as is the GCT origin in patients with disorders of sex development. Integrated molecular profiles of the 3 main histological subtypes, dysgerminoma (DG), yolk sac tumor (YST), and immature teratoma (IT), are presented. DGs show genomic aberrations comparable to TGCT. In contrast, the genome profiles of YST and IT are different both from each other and from DG/TGCT. Differences between DG and YST are underlined by their miRNA/mRNA expression patterns, suggesting preferential involvement of the WNT/β-catenin and TGF-β/bone morphogenetic protein signaling pathways among YSTs. Characteristic protein expression patterns are observed in DG, YST and IT. We propose that mOGCT develop through different developmental pathways, including one that is likely shared with TGCT and involves insufficient sexual differentiation of the germ cell niche. The molecular features of the mOGCTs underline their similarity to pluripotent precursor cells (primordial germ cells, PGCs) and other stem cells. This similarity combined with the process of ovary development, explain why mOGCTs present so early in life, and with greater histological complexity, than most somatic solid tumors. PMID:23575763

  11. PUF-8 negatively regulates RAS/MAPK signalling to promote differentiation of C. elegans germ cells

    PubMed Central

    Vaid, Samir; Ariz, Mohd; Chaturbedi, Amaresh; Kumar, Ganga Anil; Subramaniam, Kuppuswamy

    2013-01-01

    Signals that promote germ cell self-renewal by preventing premature meiotic entry are well understood. However, signals that control mitotic proliferation to promote meiotic differentiation have not been well characterized. In Caenorhabditis elegans, GLP-1 Notch signalling promotes the proliferative fate by preventing premature meiotic entry. The germline niche cell, which is the source of the ligand for GLP-1, spatially restricts GLP-1 signalling and thus enables the germ cells that have moved away from the niche to enter meiosis. Here, we show that the suppression of RAS/MAP kinase signalling in the mitotic and meiotic-entry regions is essential for the regulation of the mitosis-meiosis switch by niche signalling. We provide evidence that the conserved PUF family RNA-binding protein PUF-8 and the RAS GAP protein GAP-3 function redundantly to suppress the LET-60 RAS in the mitotic and meiotic entry regions. Germ cells missing both PUF-8 and GAP-3 proliferate in an uncontrolled fashion and fail to undergo meiotic development. MPK-1, the MAP kinase downstream of the LET-60 RAS, is prematurely activated in these cells; downregulation of MPK-1 activation eliminates tumours and restores differentiation. Our results further reveal that PUF-8 negatively regulates LET-60 expression at a post-transcriptional step. LET-60 is misexpressed in the puf-8(-) mutant germlines and PUF-8 physically interacts with the let-60 3′ UTR. Furthermore, PUF-8 suppresses let-60 3′ UTR-mediated expression in the germ cells that are transitioning from the mitotic to meiotic fate. These results reveal that PUF-8-mediated inhibition of the RAS/MAPK pathway is essential for mitotic-to-meiotic fate transition. PMID:23487310

  12. CX43 expression, phosphorylation, and distribution in the normal and autoimmune orchitic testis with a look at gap junctions joining germ cell to germ cell.

    PubMed

    Pelletier, R-Marc; Akpovi, Casimir D; Chen, Li; Day, Robert; Vitale, María L

    2011-01-01

    Spermatogenesis requires connexin 43 (Cx43).This study examines normal gene transcription, translation, and phosphorylation of Cx43 to define its role on germ cell growth and Sertoli cell's differentiation, and identifies abnormalities arising from spontaneous autoimmune orchitis (AIO) in mink, a seasonal breeder and a natural model for autoimmunity. Northern blot analysis detected 2.8- and a 3.7-kb Cx43 mRNA bands in seminiferous tubule-enriched fractions. Cx43 mRNA increased in seminiferous tubule-enriched fractions throughout development and then seasonally with the completion of spermatogenesis. Cx43 protein levels increased transiently during the colonization of the tubules by the early-stage spermatocytes. Cx43 phosphorylated (PCx43) and nonphosphorylated (NPCx43) in Ser368 decreased during the periods of completion of meiosis and Sertoli cell differentiation, while Cx43 mRNA remained elevated throughout. PCx43 labeled chiefly the plasma membrane except by stage VII when vesicles were also labeled in Sertoli cells. Vesicles and lysosomes in Sertoli cells and the Golgi apparatus in the round spermatids were NPCx43 positive. A decrease in Cx43 gene expression was matched by a Cx43 protein increase in the early, not the late, phase of AIO. Total Cx43 and PCx43 decreased with the advance of orchitis. The study makes a novel finding of gap junctions connecting germ cells. The data indicate that Cx43 protein expression and phosphorylation in Ser368 are stage-specific events that may locally influence the acquisition of meiotic competence and the Sertoli cell differentiation in normal testis. AIO modifies Cx43 levels, suggesting changes in Cx43-mediated intercommunication and spermatogenic activity in response to cytokines imbalances in Sertoli cells.

  13. DMRT1 Is Required for Mouse Spermatogonial Stem Cell Maintenance and Replenishment

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Teng; Oatley, Jon; Bardwell, Vivian J.; Zarkower, David

    2016-01-01

    Male mammals produce sperm for most of postnatal life and therefore require a robust germ line stem cell system, with precise balance between self-renewal and differentiation. Prior work established doublesex- and mab-3-related transcription factor 1 (Dmrt1) as a conserved transcriptional regulator of male sexual differentiation. Here we investigate the role of Dmrt1 in mouse spermatogonial stem cell (SSC) homeostasis. We find that Dmrt1 maintains SSCs during steady state spermatogenesis, where it regulates expression of Plzf, another transcription factor required for SSC maintenance. We also find that Dmrt1 is required for recovery of spermatogenesis after germ cell depletion. Committed progenitor cells expressing Ngn3 normally do not contribute to SSCs marked by the Id4-Gfp transgene, but do so when spermatogonia are chemically depleted using busulfan. Removal of Dmrt1 from Ngn3-positive germ cells blocks the replenishment of Id4-GFP-positive SSCs and recovery of spermatogenesis after busulfan treatment. Our data therefore reveal that Dmrt1 supports SSC maintenance in two ways: allowing SSCs to remain in the stem cell pool under normal conditions; and enabling progenitor cells to help restore the stem cell pool after germ cell depletion. PMID:27583450

  14. DMRT1 Is Required for Mouse Spermatogonial Stem Cell Maintenance and Replenishment.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Teng; Oatley, Jon; Bardwell, Vivian J; Zarkower, David

    2016-09-01

    Male mammals produce sperm for most of postnatal life and therefore require a robust germ line stem cell system, with precise balance between self-renewal and differentiation. Prior work established doublesex- and mab-3-related transcription factor 1 (Dmrt1) as a conserved transcriptional regulator of male sexual differentiation. Here we investigate the role of Dmrt1 in mouse spermatogonial stem cell (SSC) homeostasis. We find that Dmrt1 maintains SSCs during steady state spermatogenesis, where it regulates expression of Plzf, another transcription factor required for SSC maintenance. We also find that Dmrt1 is required for recovery of spermatogenesis after germ cell depletion. Committed progenitor cells expressing Ngn3 normally do not contribute to SSCs marked by the Id4-Gfp transgene, but do so when spermatogonia are chemically depleted using busulfan. Removal of Dmrt1 from Ngn3-positive germ cells blocks the replenishment of Id4-GFP-positive SSCs and recovery of spermatogenesis after busulfan treatment. Our data therefore reveal that Dmrt1 supports SSC maintenance in two ways: allowing SSCs to remain in the stem cell pool under normal conditions; and enabling progenitor cells to help restore the stem cell pool after germ cell depletion.

  15. MicroRNAs: From Female Fertility, Germ Cells, and Stem Cells to Cancer in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Virant-Klun, Irma; Ståhlberg, Anders; Kubista, Mikael; Skutella, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    MicroRNAs are a family of naturally occurring small noncoding RNA molecules that play an important regulatory role in gene expression. They are suggested to regulate a large proportion of protein encoding genes by mediating the translational suppression and posttranscriptional control of gene expression. Recent findings show that microRNAs are emerging as important regulators of cellular differentiation and dedifferentiation, and are deeply involved in developmental processes including human preimplantation development. They keep a balance between pluripotency and differentiation in the embryo and embryonic stem cells. Moreover, it became evident that dysregulation of microRNA expression may play a fundamental role in progression and dissemination of different cancers including ovarian cancer. The interest is still increased by the discovery of exosomes, that is, cell-derived vesicles, which can carry different proteins but also microRNAs between different cells and are involved in cell-to-cell communication. MicroRNAs, together with exosomes, have a great potential to be used for prognosis, therapy, and biomarkers of different diseases including infertility. The aim of this review paper is to summarize the existent knowledge on microRNAs related to female fertility and cancer: from primordial germ cells and ovarian function, germinal stem cells, oocytes, and embryos to embryonic stem cells. PMID:26664407

  16. MicroRNAs: From Female Fertility, Germ Cells, and Stem Cells to Cancer in Humans.

    PubMed

    Virant-Klun, Irma; Ståhlberg, Anders; Kubista, Mikael; Skutella, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    MicroRNAs are a family of naturally occurring small noncoding RNA molecules that play an important regulatory role in gene expression. They are suggested to regulate a large proportion of protein encoding genes by mediating the translational suppression and posttranscriptional control of gene expression. Recent findings show that microRNAs are emerging as important regulators of cellular differentiation and dedifferentiation, and are deeply involved in developmental processes including human preimplantation development. They keep a balance between pluripotency and differentiation in the embryo and embryonic stem cells. Moreover, it became evident that dysregulation of microRNA expression may play a fundamental role in progression and dissemination of different cancers including ovarian cancer. The interest is still increased by the discovery of exosomes, that is, cell-derived vesicles, which can carry different proteins but also microRNAs between different cells and are involved in cell-to-cell communication. MicroRNAs, together with exosomes, have a great potential to be used for prognosis, therapy, and biomarkers of different diseases including infertility. The aim of this review paper is to summarize the existent knowledge on microRNAs related to female fertility and cancer: from primordial germ cells and ovarian function, germinal stem cells, oocytes, and embryos to embryonic stem cells.

  17. Divergent RNA-Binding Proteins, DAZL and VASA, Induce Meiotic Progression in Human Germ Cells Derived In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Medrano, Jose v.; Ramathal, Cyril; Nguyen, Ha N.; Simon, Carlos; Pera, Renee A. Reijo

    2013-01-01

    Our understanding of human germ cell development is limited in large part due to inaccessibility of early human development to molecular genetic analysis. Pluripotent human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) have been shown to differentiate to cells of all three embryonic germ layers, as well as germ cells in vitro, and thus may provide a model for the study of the genetics and epigenetics of human germline. Here, we examined whether intrinsic germ cell translational, rather than transcriptional, factors might drive germline formation and/or differentiation from human pluripotent stem cells in vitro. We observed that, with overexpression of VASA (DDX4) and/or DAZL (Deleted in Azoospermia Like), both hESCs and iPSCs differentiated to primordial germ cells, and maturation and progression through meiosis was enhanced. These results demonstrate that evolutionarily unrelated and divergent RNA-binding proteins can promote meiotic progression of human-derived germ cells in vitro. These studies describe an in vitro model for exploring specifics of human meiosis, a process that is remarkably susceptible to errors that lead to different infertility-related diseases. PMID:22162380

  18. Toward a More Precise and Informative Nomenclature Describing Fetal and Neonatal Male Germ Cells in Rodents1

    PubMed Central

    McCarrey, John R.

    2013-01-01

    ABSTRACT The germ cell lineages are among the best characterized of all cell lineages in mammals. This characterization includes precise nomenclature that distinguishes among numerous, often subtle, changes in function or morphology as development and differentiation of germ cells proceed to form the gametes. In male rodents, there are at least 41 distinct cell types that occur during progression through the male germ cell lineage that gives rise to spermatozoa. However, there is one period during male germ cell development—that which occurs immediately following the primordial germ cell stage and prior to the spermatogonial stage—for which the system of precise and informative cell type terminology is not adequate. Often, male germ cells during this period are referred to simply as “gonocytes.” However, this term is inadequate for multiple reasons, and it is suggested here that nomenclature originally proposed in the 1970s by Hilscher et al., which employs the terms M-, T1-, and T2-prospermatogonia, is preferable. In this Minireview, the history, proper utilization, and advantages of this terminology relative to that of the term gonocytes are described. PMID:23843236

  19. Parent-of-origin effects of A1CF and AGO2 on testicular germ-cell tumors, testicular abnormalities, and fertilization bias

    PubMed Central

    Carouge, Delphine; Blanc, Valerie; Knoblaugh, Sue E.; Hunter, Robert J.; Davidson, Nicholas O.; Nadeau, Joseph H.

    2016-01-01

    Testicular tumors, the most common cancer in young men, arise from abnormalities in germ cells during fetal development. Unconventional inheritance for testicular germ cell tumor (TGCT) risk both in humans and mice implicates epigenetic mechanisms. Apolipoprotein B mRNA-editing enzyme complex 1 (APOBEC1) cytidine deaminase and Deadend-1, which are involved in C-to-U RNA editing and microRNA-dependent mRNA silencing, respectively, are potent epigenetic modifiers of TGCT susceptibility in the genetically predisposed 129/Sv inbred mouse strain. Here, we show that partial loss of either APOBEC1 complementation factor (A1CF), the RNA-binding cofactor of APOBEC1 in RNA editing, or Argonaute 2 (AGO2), a key factor in the biogenesis of certain noncoding RNAs, modulates risk for TGCTs and testicular abnormalities in both parent-of-origin and conventional genetic manners. In addition, non-Mendelian inheritance was found among progeny of A1cf and Ago2 mutant intercrosses but not in backcrosses and without fetal loss. Together these findings suggest nonrandom union of gametes rather than meiotic drive or preferential lethality. Finally, this survey also suggested that A1CF contributes to long-term reproductive performance. These results directly implicate the RNA-binding proteins A1CF and AGO2 in the epigenetic control of germ-cell fate, urogenital development, and gamete functions. PMID:27582469

  20. Critical period of nonpromoter DNA methylation acquisition during prenatal male germ cell development.

    PubMed

    Niles, Kirsten M; Chan, Donovan; La Salle, Sophie; Oakes, Christopher C; Trasler, Jacquetta M

    2011-01-01

    The prenatal period of germ cell development is a key time of epigenetic programming in the male, a window of development that has been shown to be influenced by maternal factors such as dietary methyl donor supply. DNA methylation occurring outside of promoter regions differs significantly between sperm and somatic tissues and has recently been linked with the regulation of gene expression during development as well as successful germline development. We examined DNA methylation at nonpromoter, intergenic sequences in purified prenatal and postnatal germ cells isolated from wildtype mice and mice deficient in the DNA methyltransferase cofactor DNMT3L. Erasure of the parental DNA methylation pattern occurred by 13.5 days post coitum (dpc) with the exception of approximately 8% of loci demonstrating incomplete erasure. For most loci, DNA methylation acquisition occurred between embryonic day 13.5 to 16.5 indicating that the key phase of epigenetic pattern establishment for intergenic sequences in male germ cells occurs prior to birth. In DNMT3L-deficient germ cells at 16.5 dpc, average DNA methylation levels were low, about 30% of wildtype levels; however, by postnatal day 6, about half of the DNMT3L deficiency-specific hypomethylated loci had acquired normal methylation levels. Those loci normally methylated earliest in the prenatal period were the least affected in the DNMT3L-deficient mice, suggesting that some loci may be more susceptible than others to perturbations occurring prenatally. These results indicate that the critical period of DNA methylation programming of nonpromoter, intergenic sequences occurs in male germline progenitor cells in the prenatal period, a time when external perturbations of epigenetic patterns could result in diminished fertility.

  1. Prenatal exposure to chromium induces early reproductive senescence by increasing germ cell apoptosis and advancing germ cell cyst breakdown in the F1 offspring.

    PubMed

    Sivakumar, Kirthiram K; Stanley, Jone A; Arosh, Joe A; Pepling, Melissa E; Burghardt, Robert C; Banu, Sakhila K

    2014-04-01

    Hexavalent chromium (CrVI), one of the more toxic heavy metals, is widely used in more than 50 industries such as chrome plating, welding, wood processing and tanneries. As one of the world's leading producers of chromium compounds, the U.S. is facing growing challenges in protecting human health against multiple adverse effects of CrVI. CrVI is rapidly converted to CrIII intracellularly, and can induce apoptosis through different mechanisms. Our previous studies demonstrated postnatal exposure to CrVI results in a delay or arrest in follicle development and puberty. Pregnant rats were treated with 25 ppm potassium dichromate (CrVI) from gestational day (GD) 9.5 to 14.5 through drinking water, placentae were removed on GD 20, and total Cr was estimated in the placentae; ovaries were removed from the F1 offspring on postnatal day (PND)-1 and various analyses were performed. Our results show that gestational exposure to CrVI resulted in (i) increased Cr concentration in the placenta, (ii) increased germ cell apoptosis by up-regulating p53/p27-Bax-caspase-3 proteins and by increasing p53-SOD-2 co-localization; (iii) accelerated germ cell cyst (GCC) breakdown; (iv) advanced primordial follicle assembly and primary follicle transition and (v) down regulation of p-AKT, p-ERK and XIAP. As a result of the above events, CrVI induced early reproductive senescence and decrease in litter size in F1 female progeny.

  2. Critical Function of PRDM2 in the Neoplastic Growth of Testicular Germ Cell Tumors

    PubMed Central

    Di Zazzo, Erika; Porcile, Carola; Bartollino, Silvia; Moncharmont, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    Testicular germ cell tumors (TGCTs) derive from primordial germ cells. Their maturation is blocked at different stages, reflecting histological tumor subtypes. A common genetic alteration in TGCT is a deletion of the chromosome 1 short arm, where the PRDM2 gene, belonging to the Positive Regulatory domain gene (PRDM) family, is located. Expression of PRDM2 gene is shifted in different human tumors, where the expression of the two principal protein forms coded by PRDM2 gene, RIZ1 and RIZ2, is frequently unbalanced. Therefore, PRDM2 is actually considered a candidate tumor suppressor gene in different types of cancer. Although recent studies have demonstrated that PRDM gene family members have a pivotal role during the early stages of testicular development, no information are actually available on the involvement of these genes in TGCTs. In this article we show by qRT-PCR analysis that PRDM2 expression level is modulated by proliferation and differentiation agents such as estradiol, whose exposure during fetal life is probably an important risk factor for TGCTs development in adulthood. Furthermore in normal and cancer germ cell lines, PRDM2 binds estradiol receptor α (ERα) and influences proliferation, survival and apoptosis, as previously reported using MCF-7 breast cancer cell line, suggesting a potential tumor-suppressor role in TGCT formation. PMID:27983647

  3. It's All in Your Mind: Determining Germ Cell Fate by Neuronal IRE-1 in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Levi-Ferber, Mor; Salzberg, Yehuda; Safra, Modi; Haviv-Chesner, Anat; Bülow, Hannes E.; Henis-Korenblit, Sivan

    2014-01-01

    The C. elegans germline is pluripotent and mitotic, similar to self-renewing mammalian tissues. Apoptosis is triggered as part of the normal oogenesis program, and is increased in response to various stresses. Here, we examined the effect of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress on apoptosis in the C. elegans germline. We demonstrate that pharmacological or genetic induction of ER stress enhances germline apoptosis. This process is mediated by the ER stress response sensor IRE-1, but is independent of its canonical downstream target XBP-1. We further demonstrate that ire-1-dependent apoptosis in the germline requires both CEP-1/p53 and the same canonical apoptotic genes as DNA damage-induced germline apoptosis. Strikingly, we find that activation of ire-1, specifically in the ASI neurons, but not in germ cells, is sufficient to induce apoptosis in the germline. This implies that ER stress related germline apoptosis can be determined at the organism level, and is a result of active IRE-1 signaling in neurons. Altogether, our findings uncover ire-1 as a novel cell non-autonomous regulator of germ cell apoptosis, linking ER homeostasis in sensory neurons and germ cell fate. PMID:25340700

  4. Primary Spinal Germ Cell Tumors: A Case Analysis and Review of Treatment Paradigms

    PubMed Central

    Loya, Joshua J.; Jung, Henry; Temmins, Caroline; Cho, Nam; Singh, Harminder

    2013-01-01

    Objective. Primary intramedullary spinal germ cell tumors are exceedingly rare. As such, there are no established treatment paradigms. We describe our management for spinal germ cell tumors and a review of the literature. Clinical Presentation. We describe the case of a 45-year-old man with progressive lower extremity weakness and sensory deficits. He was found to have enhancing intramedullary mass lesions in the thoracic spinal cord, and pathology was consistent with an intramedullary germ cell tumor. A video presentation of the case and surgical approach is provided. Conclusion. As spinal cord germinomas are highly sensitive to radiation and chemotherapy, a patient can be spared radical surgery. Diverse treatment approaches exist across institutions. We advocate biopsy followed by local radiation, with or without adjuvant chemotherapy, as the optimal treatment for these tumors. Histological findings have prognostic value if syncytiotrophoblastic giant cells (STGCs) are found, which are associated with a higher rate of recurrence. The recurrence rate in STGC-positive spinal germinomas is 33% (2/6), whereas it is only 8% in STGC-negative tumors (2/24). We advocate limited volume radiotherapy combined with systemic chemotherapy in patients with high risk of recurrence. To reduce endocrine and neurocognitive side effects, cranio-spinal radiation should be used as a last resort in patients with recurrence. PMID:24312128

  5. Proteome analysis of chicken embryonic gonads: identification of major proteins from cultured gonadal primordial germ cells.

    PubMed

    Han, Beom Ku; Kim, Jin Nam; Shin, Ji Hye; Kim, Jin-Kyoo; Jo, Do Hyun; Kim, Heebal; Han, Jae Yong

    2005-12-01

    The domestic chicken (Gallus gallus) is an important model for research in developmental biology because its embryonic development occurs in ovo. To examine the mechanism of embryonic germ cell development, we constructed proteome map of gonadal primordial germ cells (gPGCs) from chicken embryonic gonads. Embryonic gonads were collected from 500 embryos at 6 days of incubation, and the gPGCs were cultured in vitro until colony formed. After 7-10 days in culture, gPGC colonies were separated from gonadal stroma cells (GSCs). Soluble extracts of cultured gPGCs were then fractionated by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (pH 4-7). A number of protein spots, including those that displayed significant expression levels, were then identified by use of matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time of flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry and LC-MS/MS. Of the 89 gPGC spots examined, 50 yielded mass spectra that matched avian proteins found in on-line databases. Proteome map of this type will serve as an important reference for germ cell biology and transgenic research.

  6. Testicular histology and germ cell cytology during spermatogenesis in the Mississippi map turtle, Graptemys pseudogeographica kohnii, from Northeast Arkansas.

    PubMed

    Lancaster, Kelsey; Trauth, Stanley E; Gribbins, Kevin M

    2014-01-01

    The testicular histology and cytology of spermatogenesis in Graptemys pseudogeographica kohnii were examined using specimens collected between July 1996 and May 2004 from counties in northeastern Arkansas. A histological examination of the testes and germ cell cytology indicates a postnuptial testicular cycle of spermatogenesis and a major fall spermiation event. The majority of the germ cell populations in May and June specimens are represented by resting spermatogonia, type A spermatogonia, type B spermatogonia, pre-leptotene spermatocytes, and numerous Sertoli cell nuclei near the basement membrane. The start of proliferation is evident as spermatogonia in metaphase are present near the basal lamina and many of these germ cells have entered meiosis in June seminiferous tubules. Major spermatogenic events occur in the June and July specimens and result in an increased height of the seminiferous epithelium and increased diameter of the seminiferous tubules. The germ cell population during this time is represented by spermatogonia (type A, B, and resting), hypertrophic cells, large populations of early primary spermatocytes, and early round spermatids. By September, the major germ cell population has progressed past meiosis with abundant round and early elongating spermatids dominating the seminiferous epithelium. October seminiferous epithelia are marked by a decreas in height and mature spermatozoa fill the luminal space. Round and elongating spermatids constitute the largest portion of the germ cell population. Following the spermiation event, the testes enter a period of quiescence that lasts till the next spermatogenic cycle, which begins in the subsequent spring. Based on the cytological development of the seminiferous tubules revealed by our study, Graptemys pseudogeographica kohnii demonstrates a temporal germ cell development strategy similar to other temperate reptiles. A single major generation of germ cells progresses through spermatogenesis each year

  7. Testicular histology and germ cell cytology during spermatogenesis in the Mississippi map turtle, Graptemys pseudogeographica kohnii, from Northeast Arkansas

    PubMed Central

    Lancaster, Kelsey; Trauth, Stanley E; Gribbins, Kevin M

    2014-01-01

    The testicular histology and cytology of spermatogenesis in Graptemys pseudogeographica kohnii were examined using specimens collected between July 1996 and May 2004 from counties in northeastern Arkansas. A histological examination of the testes and germ cell cytology indicates a postnuptial testicular cycle of spermatogenesis and a major fall spermiation event. The majority of the germ cell populations in May and June specimens are represented by resting spermatogonia, type A spermatogonia, type B spermatogonia, pre-leptotene spermatocytes, and numerous Sertoli cell nuclei near the basement membrane. The start of proliferation is evident as spermatogonia in metaphase are present near the basal lamina and many of these germ cells have entered meiosis in June seminiferous tubules. Major spermatogenic events occur in the June and July specimens and result in an increased height of the seminiferous epithelium and increased diameter of the seminiferous tubules. The germ cell population during this time is represented by spermatogonia (type A, B, and resting), hypertrophic cells, large populations of early primary spermatocytes, and early round spermatids. By September, the major germ cell population has progressed past meiosis with abundant round and early elongating spermatids dominating the seminiferous epithelium. October seminiferous epithelia are marked by a decreas in height and mature spermatozoa fill the luminal space. Round and elongating spermatids constitute the largest portion of the germ cell population. Following the spermiation event, the testes enter a period of quiescence that lasts till the next spermatogenic cycle, which begins in the subsequent spring. Based on the cytological development of the seminiferous tubules revealed by our study, Graptemys pseudogeographica kohnii demonstrates a temporal germ cell development strategy similar to other temperate reptiles. A single major generation of germ cells progresses through spermatogenesis each year

  8. A suprasellar germ cell tumor in a 16-month-old Wagyu heifer calf.

    PubMed

    Brooks, Aimee N; Brooks, Kelly N; Oglesbee, Michael J

    2012-05-01

    A 16-month-old Wagyu heifer calf presented for depression, inappetence, and polyuria/polydipsia. Physical examination revealed that the heifer calf was mentally dull, subjectively small for her age, bradycardic, and hypothermic and had bilateral nasal discharge. Laboratory tests revealed marked serum and cerebrospinal fluid hypernatremia and hyperchloremia with increased cerebrospinal fluid protein. The heifer calf was treated with Ringer solution intravenously for dehydration and electrolyte abnormalities, and with 1 dose each of thiamine and penicillin. Clinical deterioration prompted the owner to elect humane euthanasia. Necropsy revealed a mass lesion in the suprasellar region. Histopathology was consistent with a suprasellar germ cell tumor; the mass stained positive on immunohistochemistry for cytokeratin, vimentin, and c-kit. Suprasellar germ cell tumors have previously been reported in human beings and dogs.

  9. Germ Cell Origins of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Risk: The Transgenerational Impact of Parental Stress Experience.

    PubMed

    Rodgers, Ali B; Bale, Tracy L

    2015-09-01

    Altered stress reactivity is a predominant feature of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and may reflect disease vulnerability, increasing the probability that an individual will develop PTSD following trauma exposure. Environmental factors, particularly prior stress history, contribute to the developmental programming of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal stress axis. Critically, the consequences of stress experiences are transgenerational, with parental stress exposure impacting stress reactivity and PTSD risk in subsequent generations. Potential molecular mechanisms underlying this transmission have been explored in rodent models that specifically examine the paternal lineage, identifying epigenetic signatures in male germ cells as possible substrates of transgenerational programming. Here, we review the role of these germ cell epigenetic marks, including posttranslational histone modifications, DNA methylation, and populations of small noncoding RNAs, in the development of offspring stress axis sensitivity and disease risk.

  10. Teratocarcinoma in a non seminomatous, mixed germ cell tumour of the testis-a rare entity.

    PubMed

    Malavalli, Gayathri; Karra, Shilpa; Muniyappa, Bharathi

    2013-07-01

    Mixed Germ Cell Tumours (MGCTs) of the testis are the second most common testicular tumours. In the 10 years retrospective study which was done on testicular neoplasms at our institute, this reported case accounted for 0.4%. We are presenting the case of a 30 year old male with a painless testicular swelling. Abdominal ultrasonography disclosed it as a seminoma and the FNAC report was Mixed Germ Cell tumour of the testis. Histopathology concurred the cytological diagnosis and it additionally revealed the concomitant presence of a Yolk Sac Tumour (YST) and a Teratocarcinoma in a Non-Seminomatous Tumour of the testis. This case attains uniqueness with the very rare presence of the yolk sac tumour with the teratocarcinoma component in Non-Seminomatous Testicular Tumours. The reason behind the reporting of the case was its poor therapeutic response.

  11. Histological process and dynamics of germ cell degeneration in pejerrey Odontesthes bonariensis larvae and juveniles during exposure to warm water.

    PubMed

    Ito, Lauro Satoru; Yamashita, Michiaki; Strüssmann, Carlos Augusto

    2003-06-01

    Elevated temperature causes degeneration and disappearance of the germ cells in the males of scrotal mammals. It was recently shown that heat-induced germ cell degeneration occurs also in fish but, unlike in mammals, it occurs not only in males but also in females. The purpose of this study was to clarify the histological process and dynamics of heat-induced germ cell disappearance in pejerrey Odontesthes bonariensis larvae and juveniles. Monosex and mixed-sex fish produced by thermal manipulation of sex (temperature-dependent sex determination) were subjected to 29 degrees C for periods between 1 and 12 weeks, and used to analyze, by histological methods, the changes in gonadal size and the number of normal and degenerating germ cells. Groups exposed to 29 degrees C for 8-12 weeks were subsequently transferred to 24 degrees C to verify if any gonadal damage would be permanent. Germ cell degeneration, histologically characterized by nuclear pyknosis or eosinophilia and cytoplasmic eosinophilia, was observed with increasing frequency at higher temperatures (29>24> 17 degrees C) and more in males than in females. Clear degenerative changes in the germinal epithelium usually began within one week of exposure to 29 degrees C and appeared clearer in females than in males. Complete loss of germ cells was observed only in individuals exposed for periods of 8-12 weeks to 29 degrees C but no treatment produced 100% sterile fish. Germ cells that remained in the gonads after exposure to 29 degrees C retained the capacity to rapidly recolonize germ cell-depleted areas, suggesting that the associated somatic cells in the gonads are little or not affected by this temperature.

  12. How do male germ cells handle DNA damage?

    SciTech Connect

    Olsen, Ann-Karin; Lindeman, Birgitte; Wiger, Richard; Duale, Nur; Brunborg, Gunnar . E-mail: gunnar.brunborg@fhi.no

    2005-09-01

    Male reproductive health has received considerable attention in recent years. In addition to declining sperm quality, fertility problems and increased incidence of testicular cancer, there is accumulating evidence that genetic damage, in the form of unrepaired DNA lesions or de novo mutations, may be transmitted via sperm to the offspring. Such genetic damage may arise from environmental exposure or via endogenously formed reactive species, in stem cells or during spermatogenesis. Damaged testicular cells not removed by apoptosis rely on DNA repair for their genomic integrity to be preserved. To identify factors with potentially harmful effects on testicular cells and to characterise associated risk, a thorough understanding of repair mechanisms in these cells is of particular importance. Based on results from our own and other laboratories, we discuss the current knowledge of different pathways of excision repair in rodent and human testicular cells. It has become evident that, in human spermatogenic cells, some repair functions are indeed non-functional.

  13. Upregulation of the BRCA1 gene in human germ cells and in preimplantation embryos.

    PubMed

    Giscard d'Estaing, Sandrine; Perrin, Delphine; Lenoir, Gilbert M; Guérin, Jean François; Dante, Robert

    2005-09-01

    The quantification of BRCA1 messenger RNA molecules by a quantitative competitive one-step reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction method indicates that BRCA1 is upregulated both in human male and female germ cells and in preimplantation embryos. Because BRCA1 is involved in several pathways that participate in preserving intact chromosome and genome integrity, these data suggest that BRCA1 dysfunction might alter human embryogenesis or fertility.

  14. Germ-cell testicular cancer in offspring of Finnish immigrants to Sweden.

    PubMed

    Montgomery, Scott M; Granath, Fredrik; Ehlin, Anna; Sparén, Pär; Ekbom, Anders

    2005-01-01

    Variation in testicular cancer incidence can be used to assist in identification of risks. Finland has a significantly lower germ-cell testicular cancer risk than Sweden. Finns who immigrate to Sweden maintain their lower risk irrespective of age at immigration. We investigated difference in risk between Finland and Sweden by examining germ-cell testicular cancer incidence in males born in Sweden to Finnish immigrant parents. Swedish general population registers were used to identify 11,662 males born in Sweden where both Finnish parents immigrated to Sweden from Finland from 1969 or afterward. All of these offspring were at least 15 years old by final follow-up in 2001. Some six offspring (all diagnosed between ages 20 and 24 years) had a diagnosis of germ-cell testicular cancer. Comparison with the Swedish population rate produced standardized incidence ratios [SIR (95% confidence interval)] of 0.85 (0.31-1.84) for all the men and 1.75 (0.64-3.81) for the 20- to 24-year age group. SIRs calculated using the Finnish population rates produced an overall SIR (95% confidence interval) of 1.11 (0.41-2.41) and 2.95 (1.08-6.42) for the 20- to 24-year age group. Although the substantially reduced risk of testicular cancer previously observed in Finnish immigrant to Sweden was not found, this study had insufficient statistical power to conclude that environmental exposures explain the difference in germ-cell testicular cancer risk between Finland and Sweden.

  15. A novel somatic MAPK1 mutation in primary ovarian mixed germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Zou, Yang; Deng, Wei; Wang, Feng; Yu, Xiao-Hong; Liu, Fa-Ying; Yang, Bi-Cheng; Huang, Mei-Zhen; Guo, Jiu-Bai; Xie, Qiu-Hua; He, Ming; Huang, Ou-Ping

    2016-02-01

    A recent exome-sequencing study revealed prevalent mitogen-activated protein kinase 1 (MAPK1) p.E322K mutation in cervical carcinoma. It remains largely unknown whether ovarian carcinomas also harbor MAPK1 mutations. As paralogous gene mutations co‑occur frequently in human malignancies, we analyzed here a total of 263 ovarian carcinomas for the presence of MAPK1 and paralogous MAPK3 mutations by DNA sequencing. A previously unreported MAPK1 p.D321N somatic mutation was identified in 2 out of 18 (11.1%) ovarian mixed germ cell tumors, while no other MAPK1 or MAPK3 mutation was detected in our samples. Of note, OCC‑115, the MAPK1‑mutated sample with bilateral cancerous ovaries affected, harbored MAPK1 mutation in the right ovary while retained the left ovary intact, implicating that the genetic alterations underlying ovarian mixed germ cell tumor may be different, even in patients with similar genetic backgrounds and tumor microenvironments. The results of evolutionary conservation and protein structure modeling analysis implicated that MAPK1 p.D321N mutation may be pathogenic. Additionally, mutations in protein phosphatase 2 regulatory subunit α (PPP2R1A), ring finger protein 43 (RNF43), DNA directed polymerase ε (POLE1), ribonuclease type III (DICER1), CCCTC‑binding factor (CTCF), ribosomal protein L22 (RPL22), DNA methyltransferase 3α (DNMT3A), transformation/transcription domain‑associated protein (TRRAP), isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH)1 and IDH2 were not detected in ovarian mixed germ cell tumors, implicating these genetic alterations may be not associated with MAPK1 mutation in the development of this malignancy. The present study identified a previously unreported MAPK1 mutation in ovarian mixed germ cell tumors for the first time, and this mutation may be actively involved in the tumorigenesis of this disease.

  16. In vitro production of haploid sperm cells from male germ cells of foetal cattle.

    PubMed

    Dong, Wu-Zi; Hua, Jin-Lian; Shen, Wen-Zheng; Dou, Zhong-Ying

    2010-04-01

    The purpose of this study was to isolate the foetal cattle male germ cells (mGCs) and then induce them into sperm cells. The mGCs were purified and enriched by a two-step plating method based on the different adherence velocities of mGCs and somatic cells. The percentage of the vasa and the c-kit positive cells were 95.34+/-2.25% and 53.3+/-1.03% by using flow cytometry analysis (FCA), respectively. In feeder-free culture system, the half-suspending cells appeared and formed a 16-cell rosary in medium after the mGCs were cultured for 6-8 days. On immunocytochemical staining during the second passage, some single cells adhering to the plate appeared to be both Oct-4 and alpha6-integrin positive. During the third passage, the mGCs were induced for 48 h by retinol acid (RA) on Sertoli cell-feeder layer, followed by 5-7 days culture in an RA-free medium. Some elongated sperm-like cells appeared in the medium at this stage. We found that the most effective concentration of RA for the inducement was 10(-7)moll(-1) (P<0.01). The haploid cells in suspension were identified by FCA. The elongated sperm-like cells showed proacrosome-like structure and the flagellum with fibre construct under electron microscopy. The mRNA of outer dense fibre-3 (ODF-3) and transcription protein-1 (TP-1) could be detected in the suspended cells by using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). About 23.1% bovine oocytes could be activated to perform cleavage by intracytoplasmic injection with the sperm-like cells, but embryos did not further develop. Our investigation further demonstrated that foetal cattle mGCs could be induced in vitro into haploid sperm in the short term.

  17. Assessing Human Germ-Cell Mutagenesis in the Postgenome Era: A Celebration of the Legacy of William Lawson (Bill) Russell

    PubMed Central

    Wyrobek, Andrew J.; Mulvihill, John J.; Wassom, John S.; Malling, Heinrich V.; Shelby, Michael D.; Lewis, Susan E.; Witt, Kristine L.; Preston, R. Julian; Perreault, Sally D.; Allen, James W.; DeMarini, David M.; Woychik, Richard P.; Bishop, Jack B.

    2007-01-01

    Birth defects, de novo genetic diseases, and chromosomal abnormality syndromes occur in ~5% of all live births, and affected children suffer from a broad range of lifelong health consequences. Despite the social and medical impact of these defects, and the 8 decades of research in animal systems that have identified numerous germ-cell mutagens, no human germ-cell mutagen has been confirmed to date. There is now a growing consensus that the inability to detect human germ-cell mutagens is due to technological limitations in the detection of random mutations rather than biological differences between animal and human susceptibility. A multidisciplinary workshop responding to this challenge convened at The Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine. The purpose of the workshop was to assess the applicability of an emerging repertoire of genomic technologies to studies of human germ-cell mutagenesis. Workshop participants recommended large-scale human germ-cell mutation studies be conducted using samples from donors with high-dose exposures, such as cancer survivors. Within this high-risk cohort, parents and children could be evaluated for heritable changes in (a) DNA sequence and chromosomal structure, (b) repeat sequences and minisatellites, and (c) global gene expression profiles and pathways. Participants also advocated the establishment of a bio-bank of human tissue samples from donors with well-characterized exposure, including medical and reproductive histories. This mutational resource could support large-scale, multiple-endpoint studies. Additional studies could involve the examination of transgenerational effects associated with changes in imprinting and methylation patterns, nucleotide repeats, and mitochondrial DNA mutations. The further development of animal models and the integration of these with human studies are necessary to provide molecular insights into the mechanisms of germ-cell mutations and to identify prevention strategies. Furthermore, scientific

  18. The crucial role of Activin A on the formation of primordial germ cell-like cells from skin-derived stem cells in vitro.

    PubMed

    Sun, Rui; Sun, Yuan-Chao; Ge, Wei; Tan, Hui; Cheng, Shun-Feng; Yin, Shen; Sun, Xiao-Feng; Li, Lan; Dyce, Paul; Li, Julang; Yang, Xiao; Shi, Qing-Hua; Shen, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are founder cells of the germ cell lineage, and can be differentiated from stem cells in an induced system in vitro. However, the induction conditions need to be optimized in order to improve the differentiation efficiency. Activin A (ActA) is a member of the TGF-β super family and plays an important role in oogenesis and folliculogenesis. In the present study, we found that ActA promoted PGC-like cells (PGCLCs) formation from mouse skin-derived stem cells (SDSCs) in both embryoid body-like structure (EBLS) differentiation and the co-culture stage in a dose dependent manner. ActA treatment (100 ng/ml) during EBLS differentiation stage and further co-cultured for 6 days without ActA significantly increased PGCLCs from 53.2% to 82.8%, and as well as EBLS differentiation without ActA followed by co-cultured with 100 ng/ml ActA for 4 to 12 days with the percentage of PGCLCs increasing markedly in vitro. Moreover, mice treated with ActA at 100 ng/kg body weight from embryonic day (E) 5.5-12.5 led to more PGCs formation. However, the stimulating effects of ActA were interrupted by Smad3 RNAi, and in an in vitro cultured Smad3(-/-) mouse skin cells scenario. SMAD3 is thus likely a key effecter molecule in the ActA signaling pathway. In addition, we found that the expression of some epiblast cell markers, Fgf5, Dnmt3a, Dnmt3b and Wnt3, was increased in EBLSs cultured for 4 days or PGCLCs co-cultured for 12 days with ActA treatment. Interestingly, at 16 days of differentiation, the percentage of PGCLCs was decreased in the presence of ActA, but the expression of meiosis-relative genes, such as Stra8, Dmc1, Sycp3 and Sycp1, was increased. In conclusion, our data here demonstrated that ActA can promote PGCLC formation from SDSCs in vitro, at early stages of differentiation, and affect meiotic initiation of PGCLCs in later stages.

  19. A mutation of cdc-25.1 causes defects in germ cells but not in somatic tissues in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jiyoung; Lee, Ah-Reum; Kawasaki, Ichiro; Strome, Susan; Shim, Yhong-Hee

    2009-07-31

    By screening C. elegans mutants for severe defects in germline proliferation, we isolated a new loss-of-function allele of cdc-25.1, bn115. bn115 and another previously identified loss-of-function allele nr2036 do not exhibit noticeable cell division defects in the somatic tissues but have reduced numbers of germ cells and are sterile, indicating that cdc-25.1 functions predominantly in the germ line during postembryonic development, and that cdc-25.1 activity is probably not required in somatic lineages during larval development. We analyzed cell division of germ cells and somatic tissues in bn115 homozygotes with germline-specific anti-PGL-1 immunofluorescence and GFP transgenes that express in intestinal cells, in distal tip cells, and in gonadal sheath cells, respectively. We also analyzed the expression pattern of cdc-25.1 with conventional and quantitative RT-PCR. In the presence of three other family members of cdc-25 in C. elegans defects are observed only in the germ line but not in the somatic tissues in cdc-25.1 single mutants, and cdc-25.1 is expressed predominantly, if not exclusively, in the germ line during postembryonic stages. Our findings indicate that the function of cdc-25.1 is unique in the germ line but likely redundant with other members in the soma.

  20. Continuous spermatogenesis and the germ cell development strategy within the testis of the Jamaican Gray Anole, Anolis lineatopus.

    PubMed

    Gribbins, K M; Rheubert, J L; Poldemann, E H; Collier, M H; Wilson, B; Wolf, K

    2009-09-01

    Testicular tissues from Anolis lineatopus were examined histologically to determine testicular structure, germ cell morphologies, and the germ cell development strategy employed during spermatogenesis. Anoles (N=36) were collected from southern Jamaica from October 2004 to September 2005. Testes were extracted and fixed in Trump's fixative, dehydrated, embedded in Spurr's plastic, sectioned, and stained with basic fuchsin/toluidine blue. The testes of Jamaican Anoles were composed of seminiferous tubules lined with seminiferous epithelia, similar to birds and mammals, and were spermatogenically active during every month of the year. However, spermatogenic activity fluctuated based on morphometric data for February, May and June, and September-December. Sequential increases for these months and decreases in between months in tubular diameters and epithelial heights were due to fluctuations in number of elongating spermatids and spermiation events. Cellular associations were not observed during spermatogenesis in A. lineatopus, and three or more spermatids coincided with mitotic and meiotic cells within the seminiferous epithelium. Although the germ cell generations were layered within the seminiferous epithelium, similar to birds and mammals, the actual temporal development of germ cells and bursts of sperm release more closely resembled that reported recently for other reptilian taxa. All of these reptiles were temperate species that showed considerable seasonality in terms of testis morphology and spermatogenesis. The Jamaican Gray Anole has continuous spermatogenesis yet maintains this temporal germ cell development pattern. Thus, a lack of seasonal spermatogenesis in this anole seems to have no influence on the germ cell development strategy employed during sperm development.

  1. Extremely low frequency magnetic fields induce spermatogenic germ cell apoptosis: possible mechanism.

    PubMed

    Lee, Sang-Kon; Park, Sungman; Gimm, Yoon-Myoung; Kim, Yoon-Won

    2014-01-01

    The energy generated by an extremely low frequency electromagnetic field (ELF-EMF) is too weak to directly induce genotoxicity. However, it is reported that an extremely low frequency magnetic field (ELF-MF) is related to DNA strand breakage and apoptosis. The testes that conduct spermatogenesis through a dynamic cellular process involving meiosis and mitosis seem vulnerable to external stress such as heat, MF exposure, and chemical or physical agents. Nevertheless the results regarding adverse effects of ELF-EMF on human or animal reproductive functions are inconclusive. According to the guideline of the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP; 2010) for limiting exposure to time-varying MF (1 Hz to 100 kHz), overall conclusion of epidemiologic studies has not consistently shown an association between human adverse reproductive outcomes and maternal or paternal exposure to low frequency fields. In animal studies there is no compelling evidence of causal relationship between prenatal development and ELF-MF exposure. However there is increasing evidence that EL-EMF exposure is involved with germ cell apoptosis in testes. Biophysical mechanism by which ELF-MF induces germ cell apoptosis has not been established. This review proposes the possible mechanism of germ cell apoptosis in testes induced by ELF-MF.

  2. Extremely Low Frequency Magnetic Fields Induce Spermatogenic Germ Cell Apoptosis: Possible Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Sang-Kon; Park, Sungman; Gimm, Yoon-Myoung; Kim, Yoon-Won

    2014-01-01

    The energy generated by an extremely low frequency electromagnetic field (ELF-EMF) is too weak to directly induce genotoxicity. However, it is reported that an extremely low frequency magnetic field (ELF-MF) is related to DNA strand breakage and apoptosis. The testes that conduct spermatogenesis through a dynamic cellular process involving meiosis and mitosis seem vulnerable to external stress such as heat, MF exposure, and chemical or physical agents. Nevertheless the results regarding adverse effects of ELF-EMF on human or animal reproductive functions are inconclusive. According to the guideline of the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP; 2010) for limiting exposure to time-varying MF (1 Hz to 100 kHz), overall conclusion of epidemiologic studies has not consistently shown an association between human adverse reproductive outcomes and maternal or paternal exposure to low frequency fields. In animal studies there is no compelling evidence of causal relationship between prenatal development and ELF-MF exposure. However there is increasing evidence that EL-EMF exposure is involved with germ cell apoptosis in testes. Biophysical mechanism by which ELF-MF induces germ cell apoptosis has not been established. This review proposes the possible mechanism of germ cell apoptosis in testes induced by ELF-MF. PMID:25025060

  3. SNP-based prediction of the human germ cell methylation landscape.

    PubMed

    Xie, Hehuang; Wang, Min; Bischof, Jared; Bonaldo, Maria de Fatima; Soares, Marcelo Bento

    2009-05-01

    Base substitution occurs at a high rate at CpG dinucleotides due to the frequent methylation of CpG and the deamination of methylated cytosine to thymine. If these substitutions occur in germ cells, they constitute a heritable mutation that may eventually rise to polymorphic frequencies, hence resulting in a SNP that is methylation associated. In this study, we sought to identify clusters of methylation associated SNPs as a basis for prediction of methylation landscapes of germ cell genomes. Genomic regions enriched with methylation associated SNPs, namely "methylation associated SNP clusters", were identified with an agglomerative hierarchical clustering algorithm. Repetitive elements, segmental duplications, and syntenic tandem DNA repeats were enriched in methylation associated SNP clusters. The frequency of methylation associated SNPs in Alu Y/S elements exhibited a gradient pattern suggestive of linear spreading, being higher in proximity to methylation associated SNP clusters and lower closer to CpG islands. Interestingly, methylation associated SNP clusters were over-represented near the transcriptional initiation sites of immune response genes. We propose a de novo DNA methylation model during germ cell development whereby a pattern is established by long-range chromatic interactions through syntenic repeats combined with regional methylation spreading from methylation associated SNP clusters.

  4. Life cycle of the mammalian germ cell: implication for spontaneous mutation frequencies.

    PubMed

    Lewis, S E

    1999-04-01

    A brief history of the developmental life cycle of the mammalian germ cell, from fertilization to gametogenesis in the mature gonad, is presented. The differences between gametogenesis in the mature gonad of males and females are also described with regard to properties that may affect their susceptibilities to mutation. It is emphasized that any historical control background rate of necessity will include mutations that occur in germinal tissue at all stages of development and differentiation, although it is not always possible to determine at what stage of germline development a spontaneous mutation has occurred. Studies of induced mutations suggest that the impact on the molecular level and the distribution of mutations among the F1 and F2 progeny may be partly determined by the stage and sex of germ cells in which spontaneous mutations occur. In summary, historical control rates should only be considered the sum total of mutations that occur during the entire life of the individual and cannot represent the control values of any individual germ cell stage. Nonetheless, it is certainly important and valid to use historical control data for calculating human risk, because the primary use of the estimation of mutant frequencies is to access the potential impact of agents in increasing the genetic load in the human population.

  5. Adnexal germ cell carcinoma with bone metastases in pregnant women: case report and review.

    PubMed

    Tenorio-Guadalupe, María Del Rosario; Arsentales-Montalva, Valeria; Yonz-Buendía, Yessabell Sonia; Fiestas-Saldarriaga, Fabián; Pimentel-Álvarez, Patricia

    2016-08-24

    Germ cell carcinoma during pregnancy is rare. However, its detection has increased due to the use of ultrasound fetal monitoring in the antenatal care program. In this article, we present the case of a Germ cell carcinoma during pregnancy is rare. However, its detection has increased due to the use of ultrasound fetal monitoring in the antenatal care program. In this article, we present the case of a pregnant 27-year-old diagnosed with an adnexal germ cell carcinoma at six weeks of gestation, whose initial approach was local resection (suboptimal cytoreduction). Four weeks after surgery, the patient presented with grade IV peripheral neuropathy in the lower limbs; magnetic resonance imaging scan indicated an infiltrative lesion at D5. The local medical board decided on chemotherapy starting on the 19th week of gestation. The rest of the pregnancy period was uneventful and the patient had a cesarean section at 34 weeks of gestation and a live newborn with no complications. Unfortunately, four days after caesarean section, the patient died of a septic shock with respiratory focus.

  6. Effects of losartan on experimental varicocele-induced testicular germ cell apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Bolat, D; Oltulu, F; Uysal, A; Kose, T; Gunlusoy, B; Yigitturk, G; Turk, N S; Turan, T

    2016-09-01

    To investigate the potential protective effects of losartan on varicocele-induced germ cell apoptosis, 24 adult male Sprague Dawley rats were divided into three groups: a sham operation was performed in SHAM group, and experimental left varicocele was created in VAR and VAR + LOS groups. Additionally, in VAR + LOS group, losartan was administered for 30 days starting on the day of surgery. At the end of 30 days, all animals were sacrificed and left orchiectomy was performed. Testicular injury and spermatogenesis were evaluated according to Johnsen scoring system. To assess the nitrosative stress, immunohistochemical staining for endothelial nitric oxide synthase was used and evaluated by H-score and apoptotic index (AI) of germ cells was analysed by TUNEL method. A significant decrease in the mean Johnsen score (JS) was observed in VAR group compared with SHAM (p < .001). The mean H-score and AI were significantly higher in VAR group compared with SHAM (p < .001). After losartan administration, mean JS was significantly increased (p < .001) and mean H-score and AI were significantly decreased compared with VAR group (p < .001 and .01, respectively). Findings of this suggest that losartan acts as a potent protective agent against varicocele-induced germ cell apoptosis.

  7. Granulosa cells and retinoic acid co-treatment enrich potential germ cells from manually selected Oct4-EGFP expressing human embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Hsin-Fu; Jan, Pey-Shynan; Kuo, Hung-Chih; Wu, Fang-Chun; Lan, Chen-Wei; Huang, Mei-Chi; Chien, Chung-Liang; Ho, Hong-Nerng

    2014-09-01

    Differentiation of human embryonic stem (HES) cells to germ cells may become clinically useful in overcoming diseases related to germ-cell development. Niches were used to differentiate HES cell lines, NTU1 and H9 Oct4-enhanced green fluorescence protein (EGFP), including laminin, granulosa cell co-culture or conditioned medium, ovarian stromal cell co-culture or conditioned medium, retinoic acid, stem cell factor (SCF) and BMP4-BMP7-BMP8b treatment. Flow cytometry showed that granulosa cell co-culture (P < 0.001) or conditioned medium (P = 0.007) treatment for 14 days significantly increased the percentages of differentiated H9 Oct4-EGFP cells expressing early germ cell marker stage-specific embryonic antigen 1(SSEA1); sorted SSEA1[+] cells did not express higher levels of germ cell gene VASA and GDF9. Manually collected H9 Oct4-EGFP[+] cells expressed significantly higher levels of VASA (P = 0.005) and GDF9 (P = 0.001). H9 Oct4-EGFP[+] cells developed to ovarian follicle-like structures after culture for 28 days but with low efficiency. Unlike SCF and BMP4, retinoic acid co-treatment enhanced VASA, GDF9 and SCP3 expression. A protocol is recommended to enrich differentiated HES cells with germ-cell potential by culture with granulosa cells, conditioned medium or retinoic acid, manual selection of Oct4-EGFP[+] cells, and analysis of VASA, GDF9 expression, or both.

  8. Germ cell differentiation and proliferation in the developing testis of the South American plains viscacha, Lagostomus maximus (Mammalia, Rodentia).

    PubMed

    Gonzalez, C R; Muscarsel Isla, M L; Fraunhoffer, N A; Leopardo, N P; Vitullo, A D

    2012-08-01

    Cell proliferation and cell death are essential processes in the physiology of the developing testis that strongly influence the normal adult spermatogenesis. We analysed in this study the morphometry, the expression of the proliferation cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), cell pluripotency marker OCT-4, germ cell marker VASA and apoptosis in the developing testes of Lagostomus maximus, a rodent in which female germ line develops through abolished apoptosis and unrestricted proliferation. Morphometry revealed an increment in the size of the seminiferous cords with increasing developmental age, arising from a significant increase of PCNA-positive germ cells and a stable proportion of PCNA-positive Sertoli cells. VASA showed a widespread cytoplasmic distribution in a great proportion of proliferating gonocytes that increased significantly at late development. In the somatic compartment, Leydig cells increased at mid-development, whereas peritubular cells showed a stable rate of proliferation. In contrast to other mammals, OCT-4 positive gonocytes increased throughout development reaching 90% of germ cells in late-developing testis, associated with a conspicuous increase in circulating FSH from mid- to late-gestation. TUNEL analysis was remarkable negative, and only a few positive cells were detected in the somatic compartment. These results show that the South American plains viscacha displays a distinctive pattern of testis development characterized by a sustained proliferation of germ cells throughout development, with no signs of apoptosis cell demise, in a peculiar endocrine in utero ambiance that seems to promote the increase of spermatogonial number as a primary direct effect of FSH.

  9. Neural stem cell transplantation in mouse brain.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jean-Pyo; McKercher, Scott; Muller, Franz-Josef; Snyder, Evan Y

    2008-01-01

    Neural stem cells (NSCs) are the most primordial, least committed cells of the nervous system, and transplantation of these multipotent cells holds the promise of regenerative therapy for many central nervous system (CNS) diseases. This unit describes methods for NSC transplantation into neonatal mouse pups, embryonic mouse brain, and adult mouse brain. A description of options for detection of labeled donor cells in engrafted mouse brain is provided along with an example protocol for detecting lacZ-expressing cells in situ. Also included is a protocol for preparing NSCs for transplantation.

  10. The wheat-germ cell-free expression system.

    PubMed

    Takai, Kazuyuki; Sawasaki, Tatsuya; Endo, Yaeta

    2010-04-01

    We have made a dramatic improvement of the wheat cell-free protein synthesis system. The first key improvement is the method for preparation of the cell-free extract that is free of inhibitory factors of translation reaction. Additional improvements include a method for preparation of transcription-ready templates by PCR, an expression vector for the cell-free system, and the "bilayer" mode reaction method that is much more efficient than the batch mode method and at the same time easy to be performed by human hands and by liquid handling machines. We review here the history of the development and describe the protocols for the most handy "bilayer" method and a more efficient but complicated methods. Information on many examples and variations of the wheat cell-free protein synthesis methods already published elsewhere is then provided so that the readers can understand the power and potential applications of the methods.

  11. Re-irradiation of Recurrent Pineal Germ Cell Tumors with Radiosurgery: Report of Two Cases and Review of Literature

    PubMed Central

    Opimo, Anthony B; Olch, Arthur J; All, Sean; Waxer, Jonathan F; Clark, Desirae; Cheng, Justine; Chlebik, Alisha; Erdreich-Epstein, Anat; Krieger, Mark D; Tamrazi, Benita; Dhall, Girish; Finlay, Jonathan L; Chang, Eric L

    2016-01-01

    Primary intracranial germ cell tumors are rare, representing less than 5% of all central nervous system tumors. Overall, the majority of germ cell tumors are germinomas and approximately one-third are non-germinomatous germ cell tumors (NGGCT), which include teratoma, embryonal carcinoma, yolk sac tumor (endodermal sinus tumor), choriocarcinoma, or mixed malignant germ cell tumor. Germ cell tumors may secrete detectable levels of proteins into the blood and/or cerebrospinal fluid, and these proteins can be used for diagnostic purposes or to monitor tumor recurrence. Germinomas have long been known to be highly curable with radiation therapy alone. However, many late effects of whole brain or craniospinal irradiation have been well documented. Strategies have been developed to reduce the dose and volume of radiation therapy, often in combination with chemotherapy. In contrast, patients with NGGCT have a poorer prognosis, with about 60% cured with multimodality chemoradiation. There are no standard approaches for relapsed germ cell tumors. Options may be limited by prior treatment. Radiation therapy has been utilized alone or in combination with chemotherapy or high-dose chemotherapy and transplant. We discuss two cases and review options for frameless radiosurgery or fractionated radiotherapy. PMID:27239400

  12. Reproductive Toxicity of Endosulfan: Implication From Germ Cell Apoptosis Modulated by Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Genotoxic Response Genes in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Du, Hua; Wang, Meimei; Wang, Lei; Dai, Hui; Wang, Min; Hong, Wei; Nie, Xinxin; Wu, Lijun; Xu, An

    2015-01-01

    Endosulfan as a new member of persistent organic pollutants has been shown to induce reproductive dysfunction in various animal models. However, the action mechanism of endosulfan-produced reproductive toxicity remains largely unknown. This study was focused on investigating the reproductive toxicity induced by α-endosulfan and clarifying the role of mitochondria and genotoxic response genes in germ cell apoptosis of Caenorhabditis elegans. Our data showed that endosulfan induced a dose-dependent decrease of life span, fecundity, and hatchability, whereas the germ cell apoptosis was dose-dependently increased. The mitochondria membrane potential was disrupted by endosulfan, leading to a significant increase of germ cell apoptosis in mev-1(kn-1) mutant. However, the apoptotic effects of endosulfan were blocked in mutants of cep-1(w40), egl-1(n487), and hus-1(op241), indicating conserved genotoxic response genes played an essential role in endosulfan-induced germ cell apoptosis. Furthermore, exposure to endosulfan induced the accumulation of HUS-1::GFP foci and the germ cell cycle arrest. These findings provided clear evidence that endosulfan caused significant adverse effects on the reproduction system of C. elegans and increased germ cell apoptosis, which was regulated by mitochondrial dysfunction and DNA damage response genes. This study may help to understand the signal transduction pathways involved in endosulfan-induced reproductive toxicity. PMID:25666835

  13. Glucose responsive insulin production from human embryonic germ (EG) cell derivatives

    SciTech Connect

    Clark, Gregory O.; Yochem, Robert L.; Axelman, Joyce; Sheets, Timothy P.; Kaczorowski, David J.; Shamblott, Michael J. . E-mail: mshambl1@jhmi.edu

    2007-05-11

    Type 1 diabetes mellitus subjects millions to a daily burden of disease management, life threatening hypoglycemia and long-term complications such as retinopathy, nephropathy, heart disease, and stroke. Cell transplantation therapies providing a glucose-regulated supply of insulin have been implemented clinically, but are limited by safety, efficacy and supply considerations. Stem cells promise a plentiful and flexible source of cells for transplantation therapies. Here, we show that cells derived from human embryonic germ (EG) cells express markers of definitive endoderm, pancreatic and {beta}-cell development, glucose sensing, and production of mature insulin. These cells integrate functions necessary for glucose responsive regulation of preproinsulin mRNA and expression of insulin C-peptide in vitro. Following transplantation into mice, cells become insulin and C-peptide immunoreactive and produce plasma C-peptide in response to glucose. These findings suggest that EG cell derivatives may eventually serve as a source of insulin producing cells for the treatment of diabetes.

  14. Germline development in amniotes: A paradigm shift in primordial germ cell specification

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    In the field of germline development in amniote vertebrates, primordial germ cell (PGC) specification in birds and reptiles remains controversial. Avians are believed to adopt a predetermination or maternal specification mode of PGC formation, contrary to an inductive mode employed by mammals and, supposedly, reptiles. Here, we revisit and review some key aspects of PGC development that channelled the current subdivision, and challenge the position of birds and reptiles as well as the ‘binary’ evolutionary model of PGC development in vertebrates. We propose an alternative view on PGC specification where germ plasm plays a role in laying the foundation for the formation of PGC precursors (pPGC), but not necessarily of PGCs. Moreover, inductive mechanisms may be necessary for the transition from pPGCs to PGCs. Within this framework, the implementation of data from birds and reptiles could provide new insights on the evolution of PGC specification in amniotes. PMID:27273724

  15. Metabolomic Response of Human Embryonic Stem Cell Derived Germ-like Cells after Exposure to Steroid Hormones

    EPA Science Inventory

    To assess the potential risks of human exposure to endocrine active compounds (EACs), the mechanisms of toxicity must first be identified and characterized. Currently, there are no robust in vitro models for identifying the mechanisms of toxicity in germ cells resulting from EAC ...

  16. Genomic imprinting is a parental effect established in mammalian germ cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiajun

    2013-01-01

    Genomic imprinting is an epigenetic phenomenon in which either the paternal or the maternal allele of imprinted genes is expressed in somatic cells. It is unique to eutherian mammals, marsupials, and flowering plants. It is absolutely required for normal mammalian development. Dysregulation of genomic imprinting can cause a variety of human diseases. About 150 imprinted genes have been identified so far in mammals and many of them are clustered such that they are coregulated by a cis-acting imprinting control region, called the ICR. One hallmark of the ICR is that it contains a germ line-derived differentially methylated region that is methylated on the paternal chromosome or on the maternal chromosome. The DNA methylation imprint is reset in the germ line and differential methylation at an ICR is restored upon fertilization. The DNA methylation imprint is resistant to a genome-wide demethylation process in early embryos and is stably maintained in postimplantation embryos. Maintenance of the DNA methylation imprint is dependent on two distinct maternal effect genes (Zfp57 and PGC7/Stella). In germ cells, around midgestation, the DNA methylation imprint is erased and undergoes another round of the DNA methylation imprint cycle that includes erasure, resetting, restoration, and maintenance of differential DNA methylation.

  17. Germ cell dynamics during the annual reproductive cycle of Dendropsophus min