Prolyl endopeptidase (PREP) is a serine protease which has been implicated in many biological processes, such as the maturation and degradation of peptide hormones and neuropeptides, learning and memory, cell proliferation and differentiation, and glucose metabolism. A small number of reports have also suggested PREP participation in both male and female reproduction-associated processes. In the present work, we examined PREP distribution in male germ cells and studied the effects of its knockdown (Prepgt/gt) on testis and sperm in adult mice. The protein is expressed and localized in elongating spermatids and luminal spermatozoa of wild type (wt) mice, as well as Sertoli, Leydig, and peritubular cells. PREP is also expressed in the head and midpiece of epididymal spermatozoa, whereas the remaining tail region shows a weaker signal. Furthermore, testis weight, histology of seminiferous tubules, and epididymal sperm parameters were assessed in wt and Prepgt/gt mice: wild type testes have larger average tubule and lumen diameter; in addition, lumenal composition of seminiferous tubules is dissimilar between wt and Prepgt/gt, as the percentage of spermiated tubules is much higher in wt. Finally, total sperm count, sperm motility, and normal morphology are also higher in wt than in Prepgt/gt. These results show for the first time that the expression of PREP could be necessary for a correct reproductive function, and suggest that the enzyme may play a role in mouse spermatogenesis and sperm physiology.
|Titolo:||Prolyl Endopeptidase (PREP) is Associated With Male Reproductive Functions and Gamete Physiology in Mice|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2016|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|