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Biomolecules 2017, 7(3), 46; doi:10.3390/biom7030046

Functional Amyloids in Reproduction

1
Department of Cell Biology and Biochemistry, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock, TX 79430, USA
2
Department of Cell Physiology and Molecular Biophysics, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock, TX 79430, USA
3
Department of Chemistry, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX 79409, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Margaret Sunde, Matthew Chapman, Daniel Otzen and Sarah Perrett
Received: 6 June 2017 / Revised: 20 June 2017 / Accepted: 23 June 2017 / Published: 29 June 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Functional Amyloids)
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Abstract

Amyloids are traditionally considered pathological protein aggregates that play causative roles in neurodegenerative disease, diabetes and prionopathies. However, increasing evidence indicates that in many biological systems nonpathological amyloids are formed for functional purposes. In this review, we will specifically describe amyloids that carry out biological roles in sexual reproduction including the processes of gametogenesis, germline specification, sperm maturation and fertilization. Several of these functional amyloids are evolutionarily conserved across several taxa, including human, emphasizing the critical role amyloids perform in reproduction. Evidence will also be presented suggesting that, if altered, some functional amyloids may become pathological. View Full-Text
Keywords: amyloid; reproduction; spermatogenesis; fertilization; epididymis; zona pellucida; semen; cystatins; germline specification amyloid; reproduction; spermatogenesis; fertilization; epididymis; zona pellucida; semen; cystatins; germline specification
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Hewetson, A.; Do, H.Q.; Myers, C.; Muthusubramanian, A.; Sutton, R.B.; Wylie, B.J.; Cornwall, G.A. Functional Amyloids in Reproduction. Biomolecules 2017, 7, 46.

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