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J Interferon Cytokine Res. 2002 Feb;22(2):199-206.

The proapoptotic 9-2 isozyme of 2-5 (A) synthetase cannot substitute for the sperm functions of the proapoptotic protein, Bax.

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  • 1The Lerner Research Institute, Department of Molecular Biology, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, OH 44195, USA.


The 9-2 isozyme of 2-5 (A) synthetase has cellular proapoptotic functions that are mediated not by enzyme activity but by the Bcl-2 homology domain 3 present in its unique carboxyl-terminal region. Another proapoptotic cellular protein is Bax, whose absence in the Bax(-/-) mice causes male sterility due to abnormal sperm differentiation. In this study, we examined whether transgenic 9-2 expression can substitute for the in vivo reproductive function of Bax. To achieve this goal, a sperm-specific promoter was used to drive the expression of 9-2 in the sperm of transgenic mice. By selective cross-breeding, the transgene was transferred to Bax(-/-) mice to generate the experimental mouse line (Bax(-/-), 9-2(+/+)). The male experimental mice were sterile, and their testes maintained the structural abnormality found in Bax(-/-) mice. Thus, the male reproduction functions of Bax could not be replaced by the 9-2 isozyme of 2-5 (A) synthetase.

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