Author(s): Tseden K, Topaloglu O, Meinhardt A, Dev A, Adham I,
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Abstract During mammalian spermiogenesis somatic histones are replaced at first by transition proteins, which are in turn replaced by the protamines, forming the sperm nucleoprotamines. It is believed that transition protein 2 (Tnp2) is necessary for maintaining the normal processing of protamines and, consequently, the completion of chromatin condensation. The transition protein mRNAs are stored in translationally inert messenger ribonucleoprotein particles for up to 7 days until translational activation in elongated spermatids. Substantial evidence suggests an involvement of 3'untranslated region (UTR) in the translational regulation of the Tnp2 mRNAs. In order to determine the role of Tnp2 3'UTR in translational regulation and to study whether the translational repression of Tnp2 mRNA is necessary for normal spermatid differentiation in mice, we generated transgenic mice that carry a Tnp2-hGH transgene. In this transgene, 3'UTR of Tnp2 gene was replaced by 3' 3'UTR of human growth hormone gene. In these transgenic animals, transcription and translation of Tnp2 occur simultaneously in round spermatids which is an evidence for involvement of Tnp2 3'UTR in its translation repression. Premature translation of Tnp2 mRNA caused abnormal head morphogenesis, reduced sperm motility and male infertility. These results show clearly that a strict temporal and stage-specific Tnp2 translation is necessary for the correct differentiation of round spermatids into mature spermatozoa and for male fertility. (c) 2006 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
This article was published in Mol Reprod Dev
and referenced in Reproductive System & Sexual Disorders: Current Research