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Cloning and sequence analysis of rat fertilin alpha and beta--developmental expression, processing and immunolocalization.

Authors: McLaughlin, EA  Frayne, J  Barker, HL  Jury, JA  Jones, R  Ford, WC  Hall, L 
Citation: McLaughlin EA, etal., Mol Hum Reprod 1997 Sep;3(9):801-9.
Pubmed: (View Article at PubMed) PMID:9358007

Fertilin alpha and beta are members of the MDC (metalloproteinase-like, disintegrin-like, cysteine-rich) protein family and are expressed on the sperm surface where they have been proposed to play a role in mammalian fertilization. Inhibition of sperm-oocyte binding and sperm-oocyte fusion make fertilin an attractive target for the development of an immunocontraceptive vaccine. Full-length cDNAs encoding alpha and beta fertilin subunits were isolated from a rat testis cDNA library and sequenced. Using reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), the developmental expression of fertilin alpha and beta was determined in pre-pubertal and mature rat testes. Fertilin alpha mRNA was present at all stages of development, suggesting that it is not exclusively expressed in post-meiotic germ cells. In contrast, fertilin beta mRNA was first identified in day 19 testes, coincident with the presence of pachytene spermatocytes. Polyclonal antisera raised against a 28-residue peptide (corresponding to part of the disintegrin domain) and two recombinant fusion proteins identified a 90 kDa protein in testicular sperm extracts and a 60 kDa protein in caput and cauda epididymidal sperm extracts, the predicted sizes for rat fertilin beta precursor and mature protein respectively. Indirect immunofluorescence using the anti-peptide antisera stained the acrosomal cap of permeabilized testicular, caput and caudal spermatozoa and elongating spermatids in testicular sections.

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CRRD Object Information
CRRD ID: 68863
Created: 2001-10-10
Species: All species
Last Modified: 2001-10-10
Status: ACTIVE



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