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The role of cyclooxygenases (COX) in the male reproductive organ remains unclear. However, there are some reports suggesting that COX-2 might have an effect on the spermatogenesis or steroidogenesis. In this study, we examined whether COX-2 was induced in impaired testes, and also investigated the possible role of COX in the testes using experimental cryptorchidism model mice. Five-week-old male mice underwent an operation to induce unilateral cryptorchidism via an abdominal incision and suturing of the left testes to the lateral abdominal wall, and they were then divided into three groups: (1) experimental cryptorchidism plus SC560 (selective COX-1 inhibitor) administration; (2) experimental cryptorchidism plus NS398 (selective COX-2 inhibitor) administration; (3) and experimental cryptorchidism alone. The expression levels of COX-1 and COX-2 were determined by immunohistological staining and the quantitative reverse transcriptional polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). The influence of COX inhibitors on the testes was assessed by measuring the concentration of serum testosterone and evaluating the seminiferous tubules according to the Johnsen score (JS). TdT-mediated dUTP-biotin nick end-labeling (TUNEL) staining was also performed to detect apoptosis in the testes. Immunohistological staining and RT-PCR revealed that the expression of COX-2 was increased in the experimental cryptorchid testes (Groups 1-3). The concentration of serum testosterone was significantly lower in Group 2 at five weeks after surgery than in the other groups. The Johnsen score of the cryptorchid testes in Group 2 was significantly lower than those in other groups at five weeks after surgery. TUNEL staining revealed that the number of apoptotic cells was significantly increased in Group 2 compared with the other groups. However, the COX-1 inhibitor did not appear to affect spermatogenesis in the experimental cryptorchid testes. These results suggest that the COX-2 inhibitor provoked testicular damage in experimental cryptorchidism by inducing germ cell apoptosis. The expression of COX-2 might be induced to protect germ cells from heat stress caused by experimental cryptorchidism.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Journal of andrology
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The epithelium lining the seminiferous tubules composed of primary male germ cells (SPERMATOGONIA) and supporting SERTOLI CELLS. As SPERMATOGENESIS proceeds, the developing germ cells migrate toward the lumen. The adluminal compartment, the inner two thirds of the tubules, contains SPERMATOCYTES and the more advanced germ cells.
The process of germ cell development in the male from the primordial germ cells, through SPERMATOGONIA; SPERMATOCYTES; SPERMATIDS; to the mature haploid SPERMATOZOA.
The process of germ cell development from the primordial GERM CELLS to the mature haploid GAMETES: ova in the female (OOGENESIS) or sperm in the male (SPERMATOGENESIS).
The male gonad containing two functional parts: the SEMINIFEROUS TUBULES for the production and transport of male germ cells (SPERMATOGENESIS) and the interstitial compartment containing LEYDIG CELLS that produce ANDROGENS.
The convoluted tubules in the TESTIS where sperm are produced (SPERMATOGENESIS) and conveyed to the RETE TESTIS. Spermatogenic tubules are composed of developing germ cells and the supporting SERTOLI CELLS.
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