Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Int J Androl. 1994 Aug;17(4):174-80.

Expression and localization of N- and E-cadherin in the human testis and epididymis.

Author information

  • 1Department of Growth and Reproduction, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark.


Cellular interactions in the testis and epididymis are an important prerequisite for spermatogenesis and sperm maturation, and involve a well-developed complex of intercellular junctions. Cadherins are cell surface proteins which mediate intercellular Ca(2+)-dependent adhesion and are believed to be fundamentally important for maintaining multicellular structures. In the present study we report the expression of a 135 kDa N-cadherin polypeptide in the human seminiferous epithelium by immunoblotting. The presence of N-cadherin was demonstrated by immunohistochemistry on the surface of spermatogonia and primary spermatocytes, and possibly also around some early spermatids, whereas late spermatids were always negative. Endothelial cells also stained for N-cadherin, whereas peritubular cells and Leydig cells did not. No expression of E-cadherin could be demonstrated in the human testis. In the human epididymis E-cadherin, but not N-cadherin, was expressed and localized to the surface of the principal epithelial cells as shown by immunohistochemistry. These observations indicate that cadherins play an important role in the organization of the seminiferous and epididymal epithelium.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk