Send to

Choose Destination
Cell Stem Cell. 2009 Aug 7;5(2):191-203. doi: 10.1016/j.stem.2009.05.024.

Dedifferentiating spermatogonia outcompete somatic stem cells for niche occupancy in the Drosophila testis.

Author information

Department of Cell Biology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA.


Differentiating cells can dedifferentiate to replace stem cells in aged or damaged tissues, but the underlying mechanisms are unknown. In the Drosophila testis, a cluster of stromal cells called the hub creates a niche by locally activating Janus kinase-signal transducer and activator of transcription (Jak-STAT) signaling in adjacent germline and somatic stem cells. Here, we establish a system to study spermatogonial dedifferentiation. Ectopically expressing the differentiation factor bag-of-marbles (Bam) removes germline stem cells from the niche. However, withdrawing ectopic Bam causes interconnected spermatogonia to fragment, move into the niche, exchange positions with resident somatic stem cells, and establish contact with the hub. Concomitantly, actin-based protrusions appear on subsets of spermatogonia, suggesting acquired motility. Furthermore, global downregulation of Jak-STAT signaling inhibits dedifferentiation, indicating that normal levels of pathway activation are required to promote movement of spermatogonia into the niche during dedifferentiation, where they outcompete somatic stem cells for niche occupancy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center