The Use of Specific cDNA Probes to Assay Sertoli Cell Functions

  • Michael D. Griswold
  • Michael Collard
  • Suzanne Hugly
  • Jodi Huggenvik
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 205)


Spermatogenesis is the complex process whereby relatively undifferentiated germinal cells undergo biochemical and morphological modifications to form spermatozoa. Sertoli cells are the somatic epithelial components of the seminiferous tubules which play fundamental and mandatory roles in this process (for review, see Fawcett, 1975). The close physical association of Sertoli cells with each germinal cell and the organization of this association into a cyclic pattern have been described in detail (Clermont and Perey 1957; Clermont, 1972). The characterization of Sertoli cells as the “nurse” cells of the testis was based originally on the morphological cellular relationships within the testis. This concept of Sertoli cells functioning in a “support” or “regulatory” role has been confirmed by both biochemical and endocrine studies. Current evidence suggests that the Sertoli cells are the testicular target cells for the action of testosterone and FSH, which are the hormones most directly involved in the regulation of spermatogenesis (for review, see Fritz, 1978). Therefore, it is possible to envision a scenario whereby the regulation of spermatogenesis is a result of the biochemical properties of Sertoli cells.


Sertoli Cell Seminiferous Tubule Germinal Cell Retinyl Acetate Androgen Binding Protein 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael D. Griswold
    • 1
  • Michael Collard
    • 1
  • Suzanne Hugly
    • 1
  • Jodi Huggenvik
    • 1
  1. 1.Biochemistry/Biophysics ProgramWashington State UniversityPullmanUSA

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