β-Defensin 22 is a major component of the mouse sperm glycocalyx

Ashley I. Yudin, Theodore L Tollner, Cathy A. Treece, Robert Kays, Gary N. Cherr, James W. Overstreet, Charles L Bevins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Scopus citations

Abstract

Surface components of sperm isolated from the cauda epididymides were stabilized by whole sperm fixation for immunization of rabbits. The resulting immunoglobulins (Igs) recognized a single protein of 130 kDa (non-reduced) or 54-57 kDa (reduced) on western blots of cauda sperm. Igs recognized the same 54-57 kDa protein band on whole tissue blots of the corpus and cauda epididymidis and vas deferens. No immunoreactive bands were detected on blots of the prostate, seminal vesicles, testes, caput epididymis, or any of various non-reproductive tissues. Removal of sperm from the vas deferens prior to blotting eliminated the detection of the sperm antigen. Antibodies raised to synthetic peptides, identical in amino acid sequence to two unique spans of DEFB22, recognized the same 130/54-57 kDa antigen on western blots of both caudal sperm and the purified antigen isolated with the anti-sperm Ig. From indirect immunofluorescence, both the anti-sperm and anti-peptide Igs appeared to localize to the entire sperm surface, a pattern confirmed at the ultrastructural level. Real-time PCR identified the corpus epididymides as the major site of expression of DEFB22, with negligible expression in the testes, caput epididymides, and vas deferens. Immunostaining of epididymal sections showed DEFB22 being released into the lumen at the distal caput/proximal corpus, with sperm becoming intensely coated with DEFB22 as they reached the distal corpus. Most uterine sperm recovered from mice 4 h following copulation exhibited DEFB22 coating the entire sperm surface. By contrast, some sperm recovered from the oviduct and cumulus extracellular matrix showed loss of DEFB22 from the sperm head.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)753-765
Number of pages13
JournalReproduction
Volume136
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Embryology
  • Endocrinology
  • Cell Biology

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    Yudin, A. I., Tollner, T. L., Treece, C. A., Kays, R., Cherr, G. N., Overstreet, J. W., & Bevins, C. L. (2008). β-Defensin 22 is a major component of the mouse sperm glycocalyx. Reproduction, 136(6), 753-765. https://doi.org/10.1530/REP-08-0164