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Trends Endocrinol Metab. 2004 Sep;15(7):345-50.

Lactate and energy metabolism in male germ cells.

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Inserm 407, Faculté de Médecine Lyon-Sud, 165 Chemin du Grand Revoyet, BP-12, F-69921 Oullins Cedex, France.


Various alterations in germ cell proliferation/differentiation, survival and energy metabolism are potentially involved in hypospermatogenesis leading to male infertility. Several reviews have been devoted to the different processes whose alteration might underlie hypospermatogenesis, except for energy metabolism in the testis. Energy metabolism in the testis exhibits some specificity in that lactate is the central energy metabolite used by germ cells. This metabolite is produced by somatic Sertoli cells, transported and used by germ cells in the context of an active cooperation under the control of the endocrine system and local cytokines. In this review, we present and discuss relevant published data on energy metabolism in male germ cells with a specific emphasis on lactate.

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