Entity

Time filter

Source Type


Yao C.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Sun M.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Yuan Q.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Niu M.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | And 9 more authors.
Oncotarget | Year: 2016

Sertoli cells play critical roles in regulating spermatogenesis and they can be reprogrammed to the cells of other lineages, highlighting that they have significant applications in reproductive and regenerative medicine. The fate determinations of Sertoli cells are regulated precisely by epigenetic factors. However, the expression, roles, and targets of microRNA (miRNA) in human Sertoli cells remain unknown. Here we have for the first time revealed that 174 miRNAs were distinctly expressed in human Sertoli cells between Sertoli-cell-only syndrome (SCOS) patients and obstructive azoospermia (OA) patients with normal spermatogenesis using miRNA microarrays and real time PCR, suggesting that these miRNAs may be associated with the pathogenesis of SCOS. MiR-133b is upregulated in Sertoli cells of SCOS patients compared to OA patients. Proliferation assays with miRNA mimics and inhibitors showed that miR-133b enhanced the proliferation of human Sertoli cells. Moreover, we demonstrated that GLI3 was a direct target of miR-133b and the expression of Cyclin B1 and Cyclin D1 was enhanced by miR-133b mimics but decreased by its inhibitors. Gene silencing of GLI3 using RNA inference stimulated the growth of human Sertoli cells. Collectively, miR-133b promoted the proliferation of human Sertoli cells by targeting GLI3. This study thus sheds novel insights into epigenetic regulation of human Sertoli cells and the etiology of azoospermia and offers new targets for treating male infertility.


Chen Z.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Sun M.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Yuan Q.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Niu M.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | And 9 more authors.
Oncotarget | Year: 2016

To generate functional human hepatocytes from stem cells and/or extrahepatic tissues could provide an important source of cells for treating liver diseases. Spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) have an unlimited plasticity since they can dedifferentiate and transdifferentiate to other cell lineages. However, generation of mature and functional hepatocytes from human SSCs has not yet been achieved. Here we have for the first time reported direct transdifferentiation of human SSCs to mature and functional hepatocytes by three-step induction using the defined condition medium. Human SSCs were first transdifferentiated to hepatic stem cells, as evidenced by their morphology and biopotential nature of co-expressing hepatocyte and cholangiocyte markers but not hallmarks for embryonic stem cells. Hepatic stem cells were further induced to differentiate into mature hepatocytes identified by their morphological traits and strong expression of CK8, CK18, ALB, AAT, TF, TAT, and cytochrome enzymes rather than CK7 or CK19. Significantly, mature hepatocytes derived from human SSCs assumed functional attributes of human hepatocytes, because they could produce albumin, remove ammonia, and uptake and release indocyanine green. Moreover, expression of β-CATENIN, HNF4A, FOXA1 and GATA4 was upregulated during the transdifferentiation of human SSCs to mature hepatocytes. Collectively, human SSCs could directly transdifferentiate to mature and functional hepatocytes. This study could offer an invaluable source of human hepatocytes for curing liver disorders and drug toxicology screening and provide novel insights into mechanisms underlying human liver regeneration.


Hai Y.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Hou J.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Liu Y.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Yang H.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | And 4 more authors.
Seminars in Cell and Developmental Biology | Year: 2014

Spermatogenesis is a complex process by which spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) self-renew and differentiate into spermatozoa under the elaborate coordination of testicular microenvironment, namely, niche. Sertoli cells, which locate around male germ cells, are the most critical component of the niche. Significant progress has recently been made by peers and us on uncovering the effects of Sertoli cells on regulating fate determinations of SSCs. Here we addressed the roles and regulation of Sertoli cells in normal and abnormal spermatogenesis. Specifically, we summarized the biological characteristics of Sertoli cells, and we emphasized the roles of Sertoli cells in mediating the self-renewal, differentiation, apoptosis, de-differentiation, and trans-differentiation of SSCs. The association between abnormal function of Sertoli cells and impaired spermatogenesis was discussed. Finally, we highlighted several issues to be addressed for further investigation on the effects and mechanisms of Sertoli cells in spermatogenesis. Since Sertoli cells are the key supportive cells for SSCs and they are very receptive to modification, a better understanding of the roles and regulation of Sertoli cells in SSC biology and spermatogenesis would make it feasible to identify novel targets for gene therapy of male infertility as well as seek more efficient and safer strategies for male contraception. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.


Yao C.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Liu Y.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Sun M.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Niu M.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | And 8 more authors.
Reproduction | Year: 2015

Spermatogenesis is composed of three distinctive phases, which include self-renewal of spermatogonia via mitosis, spermatocytes undergoing meiosis I/II and post-meiotic development of haploid spermatids via spermiogenesis. Spermatogenesis also involves condensation of chromatin in the spermatid head before transformation of spermatids to spermatozoa. Epigenetic regulation refers to changes of heritably cellular and physiological traits not caused by modifications in the DNA sequences of the chromatin such as mutations. Major advances have been made in the epigenetic regulation of spermatogenesis. In this review, we address the roles and mechanisms of epigenetic regulators, with a focus on the role of microRNAs and DNA methylation during mitosis, meiosis and spermiogenesis.We also highlight issues that deserve attention for further investigation on the epigenetic regulation of spermatogenesis. More importantly, a thorough understanding of the epigenetic regulation in spermatogenesis will provide insightful information into the etiology of some unexplained infertility, offering new approaches for the treatment of male infertility.


Guo Y.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Liu L.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Sun M.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Hai Y.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | And 4 more authors.
Experimental Biology and Medicine | Year: 2015

Spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) can differentiate into spermatids, reflecting that they could be used in reproductive medicine for treating male infertility. SSCs are able to become embryonic stem-like cells with the potentials of differentiating into numerous cell types of the three germ layers and they can transdifferentiate to mature and functional cells of other lineages, highlighting significant applications of human SSCs for treating human diseases. However, human SSCs are very rare and a long-term culture system of human SSCs has not yet established. This aim of study was to isolate, identify and culture human SSCs for a long period. We isolated GPR125-positive spermatogonia with high purity and viability from adult human testicular tissues utilizing the two-step enzymatic digestion and magnetic-activated cell sorting with antibody against GPR125. These freshly isolated cells expressed a number of markers for SSCs, including GPR125, PLZF, GFRA1, RET, THY1, UCHL1 and MAGEA4, but not the hallmarks for spermatocytes and spermatozoa, e.g. SYCP1, SYCP3, PRM1, and TNP1. The isolated human SSCs could be cultured for two months with a significant increase of cell number with the defined medium containing growth factors and hydrogel. Notably, the expression of numerous SSC markers was maintained during the cultivation of human SSCs. Furthermore, SMAD3 and AKT phosphorylation was enhanced during the culture of human SSCs. Collectively, these results suggest that human SSCs can be cultivated for a long period and expanded whilst retaining an undifferentiated status via the activation of SMAD3 and AKT pathways. This study could provide sufficient cells of SSCs for their basic research and clinic applications in reproductive and regenerative medicine. © 2015, © 2015 by the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine.

Discover hidden collaborations