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J Cell Biol. 2000 May 29;149(5):1019-26.

Leydig cell loss and spermatogenic arrest in platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-A-deficient mice.

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  • 1Department of Medical Pathophysiology, University of Rome "La Sapienza", 00161 Roma, Italy.


Platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)- A-deficient male mice were found to develop progressive reduction of testicular size, Leydig cells loss, and spermatogenic arrest. In normal mice, the PDGF-A and PDGF-Ralpha expression pattern showed positive cells in the seminiferous epithelium and in interstitial mesenchymal cells, respectively. The testicular defects seen in PDGF-A-/- mice, combined with the normal developmental expression of PDGF-A and PDGF-Ralpha, indicate that through an epithelial-mesenchymal signaling, the PDGF-A gene is essential for the development of the Leydig cell lineage. These findings suggest that PDGF-A may play a role in the cascade of genes involved in male gonad differentiation. The Leydig cell loss and the spermatogenic impairment in the mutant mice are reminiscent of cases of testicular failure in man.

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