The gene for proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin-like 4 (PCSK4, previously known as PC4) is primarily transcribed in testicular spermatogenic cells. Its inactivation in mouse causes severe male subfertility. To better understand the reproductive function of PCSK4, we examined its subcellular localization in the testicular epithelium via immunohistochemistry, and on intact sperm via indirect immunofluorescence and immunoelectron microscopy. PCSK4 was detected in the acrosomal granules of round spermatids, in the acrosomal ridges of elongated spermatids, and on the sperm plasma membrane overlying the acrosome. We also investigated PCSK4 relevance for sperm acquisition of fertilizing ability by comparing wild-type and PCSK4-null sperm for their abilities in capacitation, acrosome reaction, and egg binding in vitro. PCSK4-null sperm underwent capacitation at a faster rate; they were induced to acrosome react by lower concentrations of zona pellucida; and their egg-binding ability was only half that of wild-type sperm. These sperm physiologic anomalies likely contribute to the severe subfertility of PCSK4-deficient male mice.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.