Spermatogenesis is seasonal in the large hairy armadillo, Chaetophractus villosus (Dasypodidae, Xenarthra, Mammalia)

Juan P. Luaces, Luis F. Rossi, Valeria Merico, Maurizio Zuccotti, Carlo A. Redi, Alberto J. Solari, Maria S. Merani, Silvia Garagna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Very little is known about the distinct reproductive biology of armadillos. Very few studies have investigated armadillo spermatogenesis, with data available only for Euphractus sexcinctus and Dasypus novemcinctus. In the present study, we analysed male germ cell differentiation in the large hairy armadillo Chaetophractus villosus throughout the year, describing a cycle of the seminiferous epithelium made of eight different stages. Evaluation of the testis/body mass ratio, analysis of the architecture of the seminiferous epithelium and the frequency of defective seminiferous tubules allowed identification of a temporal interruption of spermatogenesis during the period between mid-May to July (mid-end autumn) in correlation with very low testosterone levels. Overall, these results suggest that spermatogenesis is seasonal in C. villosus.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)547-557
Number of pages11
JournalReproduction, Fertility and Development
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • germ cells
  • reproduction
  • seminiferous epithelium
  • Sertoli cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Endocrinology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Animal Science and Zoology


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