To identify genes developmentally regulated in the somatic cells of the testis, serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE) has been used to generate gene expression profiles from these cells in the fetal and adult mouse. To avoid germ cell transcripts, a fetal SAGE library was generated from germ cell-free fetal Wv/Wv mice, and an adult SAGE library was generated from adult testes depleted of germ cells with busulfan. The combined SAGE libraries contained 147 570 tags identifying 12 976 unique transcripts. Of these transcripts, 3607 were present in only the fetal library and 3941 were present in only the adult library. Most of the abundant differentially expressed tags in the adult testis library were from characterized genes, whereas 3′ rapid amplification of complementary ends was required to identify most differentially expressed tags in the fetal library. These fetal tags were mostly associated with uncharacterized UniGene clusters. These data provide a comprehensive and quantitative analysis of gene expression in the somatic cells of the fetal and adult testis (including unknown transcripts) and identify genes differentially expressed in these cells during testis development. These differentially regulated genes are likely to provide insight into mechanisms regulating testis function both during development and in the adult animal.
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