Document Detail

Hepatocyte growth factor-modulated rat Leydig cell functions.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17609297     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) regulates many cellular functions acting through c-Met, its specific tyrosine kinase receptor. We previously reported that in prepuberal rats HGF is secreted by the peritubular myoid cells during the entire postnatal testicular development and by the Sertoli cells only at puberty. We have also demonstrated that germ cells at different stages of development express c-Met and that HGF modulates germ cell proliferation and apoptosis. In the present article, we extend our study to the interstitial compartment of the testis and demonstrate that the c-Met protein is present on Leydig cells. The receptor is functionally active as demonstrated by the detected effects of HGF. We report in this article that HGF significantly increases the amount of testosterone secreted by the Leydig cells and decreases the number of Leydig cells undergoing apoptosis. The antiapoptotic effect of HGF is mediated by caspase-3 activity because the amount of the active fragment of the enzyme is decreased in Leydig cells cultured in the presence of HGF. However, treatment with the growth factor does not modify the expression levels of caspase-3 mRNA. These data indicate that HGF regulates the functional activities of Leydig cells. Interestingly, the steroidogenetic activity of the cells is increased by HGF in cultured explants of testicular tissues as well as the antiapoptotic effect of HGF. Therefore, our data indicate that HGF has a crucial role in the regulation of male fertility.
Jessica Del Bravo; Angela Catizone; Giulia Ricci; Michela Galdieri
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2007-07-03
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of andrology     Volume:  28     ISSN:  0196-3635     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Androl.     Publication Date:    2007 Nov-Dec
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-10-22     Completed Date:  2008-04-01     Revised Date:  2009-11-19    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8106453     Medline TA:  J Androl     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  866-74     Citation Subset:  IM    
Dip. Istologia ed Embriologia Medica, Via A. Scarpa 14, Rome, Italy.
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MeSH Terms
Apoptosis / drug effects
Cell Culture Techniques
Culture Media
Hepatocyte Growth Factor / pharmacology*
In Situ Nick-End Labeling
Leydig Cells / drug effects,  physiology*
Organ Culture Techniques
Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-met / drug effects,  genetics
RNA / genetics,  isolation & purification
Rats, Wistar
Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
Testis / drug effects,  physiology
Testosterone / metabolism
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Culture Media; 58-22-0/Testosterone; 63231-63-0/RNA; 67256-21-7/Hepatocyte Growth Factor; EC Proteins c-met

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