Project 3

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3. Determination of the molecular events involved in the regulation of spermatogonial stem cells

It is thought that oocytes are formed before birth and reserved for the entire reproductive life in the ovaries of the most mammals. In contrast, the testes maintain the spermatogonial stem cells (the immature cells that have the potential to become fully differentiated spermatozoa), providing the basis of spermatogenesis by continuously proliferating and differentiating throughout the male life.

To elucidate the molecular mechanisms contributing the spermatogonials stem cell regulation, we are focusing on the paracrine/autocrine Wnt signaling and the Sox transcription factor family. This project may be of clinical relevance to treatment of male infertility.