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Mol Reprod Dev. 2001 Jan;58(1):116-25.

Tpx-1 is a component of the outer dense fibers and acrosome of rat spermatozoa.

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Monash Institute of Reproduction and Development, Monash Medical Centre, Clayton, Australia.


Previously we reported the cloning of a member of the cysteine-rich secretory protein family, tpx-1, from a testis expression library using an outer dense fiber (ODF)-specific antiserum. Using immunohistochemical and immunoelectron microscopic techniques and Western blotting of purified sperm tail components, we have determined that tpx-1 exists as 25 and 27 kDa proteins in two components of rat spermatid: the ODFs and the acrosome. Tpx-1 mRNA is first expressed in the late pachytene spermatocytes, but the production of these tpx-1 proteins is translationally delayed for 4-5 days before being incorporated into the developing sperm acrosome, surrounding the elongating and condensing spermatid nucleus. Concurrent with sperm head formation, tpx-1 protein was incorporated into the developing sperm tail, and specifically the ODFs. The tpx-1 protein was seen within structures resembling granulated bodies in the cytoplasmic lobe of elongating spermatids and was incorporated subsequently into the growing tail in a manner consistent with ODF development. In addition, tpx-1 protein was localized at the ultrastructural level of the connecting piece of the neck and longitudinal columns of the fibrous sheath, suggesting common protein components in these cytoskeletal structures. As such, tpx-1 may have functional significance in the processes of sperm head development and tail function.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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