Localization of androgen and estrogen receptors in adult male mouse reproductive tract

Qing Zhou, Rong Nie, Gail S. Prins, Philippa T.K. Saunders, Benita S. Katzenellenbogen, Rex A. Hess

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

There is considerable variation, both within and between species, in reports of nuclear steroid receptor localizations in the male reproductive tract. In this study, androgen receptor (AR) and estrogen receptors ERα and ERβ were visualized by immunohistochemistry in adult male mice reproductive tracts, including testes, efferent ductules; initial segment, caput, corpus, and cauda epididymides; and vas deferens. Antibody specificity was demonstrated by Western blot and antibody competition. In testis, AR was expressed in Leydig cells, Sertoli cells, and most peritubular cells, but not in germ cells; Sertoli cells showed more intense staining in stages VI-VII; ERα was present in Leydig and some peritubular cells; ERβ was in Leydig, some peritubular, all Sertoli and germ cells except in spermatids and meiotic spermatocytes. In efferent ductules, AR was strongly expressed in ciliated and nonciliated epithelial cells and in stromal cells; ERα was strongly expressed in ciliated and nonciliated epithelial cells; stromal cells were negative; and ERβ was strongly expressed in ciliated and nonciliated epithelial cells and also in stromal cells. In epididymis, AR was strongly expressed in all epithelial cells (not in intraepithelial lymphocytes); ERα was strongly expressed in apical, narrow, and some basal cells of the initial segment, and in caput, principal cells of the caput, clear cells of the distal caput through cauda; stromal cells were negative in the initial segment, but more stromal cells were stained from caput to cauda; ERβ was strongly expressed in most of epithelial cells of the epididymis, but stromal cells were inconsistently stained. In vas deferens, AR was weakly expressed or absent in principal cells but moderately stained in basal cells, smooth muscle cells of stroma were stained intensely, ERα was absent in epithelial cells but present in a subepithelial smooth muscle layer, and ERβ was strongly expressed in all epithelial cells and most stromal cells. This study demonstrates that the reproductive tracts of male mice differ considerably from those of rats in expression of ARs and ERs and that caution is needed when extrapolating nuclear steroid receptor data across mammalian species.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)870-881
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of andrology
Volume23
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2002

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Androgen Receptors
Stromal Cells
Estrogen Receptors
Epithelial Cells
Sertoli Cells
Epididymis
Vas Deferens
Steroid Receptors
Cytoplasmic and Nuclear Receptors
Germ Cells
Testis
Spermatocytes
Spermatids
Antibody Specificity
Leydig Cells
Smooth Muscle Myocytes
Smooth Muscle
Western Blotting
Immunohistochemistry
Lymphocytes

Keywords

  • Efferent ductule
  • Epididymis
  • Steroid hormone receptors
  • Testis
  • Vas deferens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Endocrinology
  • Urology

Cite this

Localization of androgen and estrogen receptors in adult male mouse reproductive tract. / Zhou, Qing; Nie, Rong; Prins, Gail S.; Saunders, Philippa T.K.; Katzenellenbogen, Benita S.; Hess, Rex A.

In: Journal of andrology, Vol. 23, No. 6, 01.11.2002, p. 870-881.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Zhou, Qing ; Nie, Rong ; Prins, Gail S. ; Saunders, Philippa T.K. ; Katzenellenbogen, Benita S. ; Hess, Rex A. / Localization of androgen and estrogen receptors in adult male mouse reproductive tract. In: Journal of andrology. 2002 ; Vol. 23, No. 6. pp. 870-881.
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