In about one third of infertile men the cause of impaired spermatogenesis is not known. Spermatogenesis appears to be mediated at least in part by the pituitary gonadotropins, which activate the cAMP-dependent signaling pathway. The end point of this pathway is the activation of nuclear transcription factors, such as cAMP-responsive element-binding protein and cAMP-responsive element modulator (CREM). These factors, upon binding to gene sequences identified as cAMP response elements, modulate the expression of germ cell-specific genes that, in turn, promote the completion of spermatogenesis. The expressions of the cAMP-responsive element-binding protein and CREM genes create different isoforms, which can be divided into two groups: activators or repressors of gene regulation. Only CREM repressors are expressed in premeiotic germ cells in mice, whereas a switch to the expression of the CREM activator τ is observed from postmeiotic germ cells onward. Completion of germ cell maturation appears to be dependent on this phenomenon. Recently, mice lacking CREM gene expression have been generated. These animals were infertile and presented a developmental arrest of germ cell maturation at the stage of early spermatid. In this report we demonstrate that CREM gene expression also occurs in human germ cells. In particular, we determined by RT-PCR that a switch from the expression of CREM repressors to CREM activators is present in postmeiotic germ cells in normospermic men. Conversely, in oligoazoospermic patients only the expression of CREM repressors was detected. These data were confirmed by in situ hybridization studies in which transcripts for CREM activators were detected in postmeiotic germ cells in testis specimens showing conserved spermatogenesis, but not in specimens showing maturation arrest at the spermatid stage, Thus, our results indicate that the lack of a switch in the expression of CREM gene isoforms may be related to impaired spermatogenesis in humans

Cyclic adenosine 3’,5’-monophosphate responsive element modulator gene expression in germ cells of mono- and oligoazoospermic men

FRANCAVILLA, Sandro;
1998

Abstract

In about one third of infertile men the cause of impaired spermatogenesis is not known. Spermatogenesis appears to be mediated at least in part by the pituitary gonadotropins, which activate the cAMP-dependent signaling pathway. The end point of this pathway is the activation of nuclear transcription factors, such as cAMP-responsive element-binding protein and cAMP-responsive element modulator (CREM). These factors, upon binding to gene sequences identified as cAMP response elements, modulate the expression of germ cell-specific genes that, in turn, promote the completion of spermatogenesis. The expressions of the cAMP-responsive element-binding protein and CREM genes create different isoforms, which can be divided into two groups: activators or repressors of gene regulation. Only CREM repressors are expressed in premeiotic germ cells in mice, whereas a switch to the expression of the CREM activator τ is observed from postmeiotic germ cells onward. Completion of germ cell maturation appears to be dependent on this phenomenon. Recently, mice lacking CREM gene expression have been generated. These animals were infertile and presented a developmental arrest of germ cell maturation at the stage of early spermatid. In this report we demonstrate that CREM gene expression also occurs in human germ cells. In particular, we determined by RT-PCR that a switch from the expression of CREM repressors to CREM activators is present in postmeiotic germ cells in normospermic men. Conversely, in oligoazoospermic patients only the expression of CREM repressors was detected. These data were confirmed by in situ hybridization studies in which transcripts for CREM activators were detected in postmeiotic germ cells in testis specimens showing conserved spermatogenesis, but not in specimens showing maturation arrest at the spermatid stage, Thus, our results indicate that the lack of a switch in the expression of CREM gene isoforms may be related to impaired spermatogenesis in humans
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11697/14924
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