In Sertoli cells of testis, androgen receptor-regulated gene transcription plays an indispensable role in maintaining spermatogenesis. Androgen receptor activity is modulated by a number of coregulators which are associated with the androgen receptor. Non-POU-domain-containing, octamer binding protein (NONO), a member of the DBHS-containing proteins, complexes with androgen receptor and functions as a coactivator for the receptor. Paraspeckle protein 1 alpha isoform (PSPC1, previously known as PSP1) and Splicing factor, proline- and glutamine-rich (SFPQ, previously known as PSF), other members of the DBHS-containing proteins, are also found in androgen receptor complexes, suggesting that these DBHS-containing proteins may cooperatively regulate androgen receptor-mediated gene transcription. We demonstrated that PSPC1, NONO, and SFPQ are coexpressed in Sertoli cell line TTE3 and interact reciprocally. The effect of the DBHS-containing proteins on the transcriptional activity was assessed using the construct containing androgen-responsive elements followed by a luciferase gene. The results showed that all the DBHS-containing proteins activate androgen receptor-mediated transcription, and PSPC1 is the most effective coactivator among them. Furthermore, we confirmed the presence of PSPC1, NONO, and SFPQ proteins in Sertoli cells of adult mouse testis sections. These observations suggest that PSPC1, NONO, and SFPQ form complexes with each other in Sertoli cells and may regulate androgen receptor-mediated transcriptional activity.
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