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|Web of Science®
|Temporal deposition and spatial distribution of cytoskeletal proteins in the sperm head of an Australian rodent
|Reproduction Fertility and Development, 2009; 21(3):428-439
|C S I R O Publishing
|William G. Breed, Dina Idriss, Christopher M. Leigh and Richard J. Oko
|The Australian murine rodent, the plains mouse (Pseudomys australis), possesses a highly complex sperm head, in which there are, in addition to an apical hook, two ventral processes that extend from its upper concave surface. The present study set out to determine the temporal deposition and distribution of the proteins within these structures during late spermiogenesis by light and electron microscopy using various antibodies to bull and laboratory rat sperm-head cytoskeletal proteins. The findings show that there are two phases of protein deposition. In the first phase, perinuclear theca proteins are deposited at the base of the ventral processes around the acrosomal extensions of the developing spermatids. In the second phase, as the ventral processes expand, actin and then perforatorial proteins are laid down during which time the processes become progressively more bilaterally flattened. These various proteins are moulded together to give rise to the two very large cytoskeletal structures that extend from the upper concave surface of the sperm head. They may be involved in binding the spermatozoon to the outer surface of the zona pellucida and/or in aiding the spermatozoon in zona penetration at the time of fertilisation.
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