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Indian J Exp Biol. 1998 May;36(5):456-63.

Integrin cell adhesion molecules on human spermatozoa.

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Institute for Research in Reproduction, Mumbai, India.


The expression of integrin cell adhesion molecules (ITG-CAMs) by human ejaculated spermatozoa (fresh, capacitated and acrosome reacted) was evaluated by immunocytochemical, immunofluorescence and cell-ELIS methods, using monoclonal antibodies against alpha-6 and beta-3 subunits. Both the subunits were expressed on the acrosome region in fresh spermatozoa and post acrosomal region after acrosome reaction induced by calcium ionophore. The spermatozoa of the fertile men showed significantly (P < 0.001) higher expression of alpha-6 and beta-3 ITG subunits than the subfertile men. The percentage of spermatozoa reacting with alpha-6 and beta-3 mAbs increased significantly after the loss of acrosome when compared with fresh spermatozoa. Moreover, 35-40% of spermatozoa with normal shape and none of the spermatozoa with pathological shape showed a positive reaction. The quantitative analysis carried out by ELISA suggests that the levels of these ITG subunits decreased significantly (P < 0.001) in the subfertile subjects when compared with the fertile and the difference was more for alpha-6 than the beta-3. Hence our result suggests that alpha-6 subunit may be used as a clinical marker to evaluate the sperm quality in men.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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