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1 September 2006 Identification and Characterization of Novel and Unknown Mouse Epididymis-Specific Genes by Complementary DNA Microarray Technology
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To examine epididymal function, we attempted to identify highly expressed genes in mouse epididymis using a cDNA microarray containing PCR products amplified from a mouse epididymal cDNA library. We isolated one novel and four known genes—lymphocyte cytosolic protein 1 (Lcp1), complement subcomponents C1r/C1s, Uegf protein, and bone morphogenetic protein and zona pellucida-like domains 1 (Cuzd1), transmembrane epididymal protein 1 (Teddm1), and whey acidic protein 4-disulfide core domain 16 (Wfdc16)—with unknown functions in the epididymis. The novel gene, designated Serpina1f (serine peptidase inhibitor [SERPIN], clade A, member 1f), harbors an open reading frame of 1 233 bp encoding a putative protein of 411 amino acids, including a SERPIN domain. These five genes were predominantly expressed in the epididymis as compared to other organs. In situ hybridization analysis revealed their epididymal region-specific expression patterns. Real-time RT-PCR analysis revealed a significant increase in mRNA expression of these genes around puberty. Castration decreased their expression, except for Lcp1. Testosterone (T) restored these reduced expressions, except for Teddm1; however, this restoration was not observed with 17 beta-estradiol (E2) . Administration of T and E2 combination recovered the Serpina1f mRNA concentration; this recovery was also observed with T alone. However, the recovery of Cuzd1 and Wfdc16 mRNA concentrations was inadequate. Neonatal diethylstilbestrol treatment suppressed the Cuzd1, Wfdc16, and Serpina1f mRNA expression in the epididymis of 8-week-old mice; this was not observed with E2. These results suggest that our microarray system can provide a novel insight into the epididymal function on a molecular basis, and the five genes might play important roles in the epididymis.

Koji Yamazaki, Tetsuya Adachi, Koji Sato, Yuta Yanagisawa, Hideki Fukata, Naohiko Seki, Chisato Mori, and Masatoshi Komiyama "Identification and Characterization of Novel and Unknown Mouse Epididymis-Specific Genes by Complementary DNA Microarray Technology," Biology of Reproduction 75(3), 462-468, (1 September 2006).
Received: 29 September 2005; Accepted: 1 May 2006; Published: 1 September 2006

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