Several lines of evidence support a key role of estradiol-17β (E2) in male fertility. We have used a non-mammalian vertebrate model, the frog Rana esculenta, to investigate the regulation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1 and 2 (ERK1/2) activity in the testis during the annual sexual cycle and to study whether E2 exerts a role in spermatogenesis through the regulation of ERK1/2 activity. ERK1/2 proteins are present in the cytoplasm and nucleus of the primary and secondary spermatogonia (SPG), and in the nucleus of primary spermatocytes. The annual E2 profile shows a progressive increase during active spermatogenesis with a peak in the month of June. In parallel, ERK1/2 are highly phosphorylated during the period of active spermatogenesis (from April to July) compared with the regressive period (September/October) and winter stasis (from November to March). E2 treatment induces the proliferation of primary SPG, possibly via the activation of ERK1/2, and this effect is counteracted by the anti-estrogen ICI 182-780.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Journal of Endocrinology|
|Publication status||Published - 2000|
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