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CDC42 Negatively Regulates Testis-Specific SEPT12 Polymerization

Department of Biological Science and Technology, National Chiao Tung University, Hsinchu 300, Taiwan
Gynecologic Cancer Center, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Cathay General Hospital, Taipei 106, Taiwan
School of Medicine, Fu Jen Catholic University, New Taipei City 242, Taiwan
Department of Chemistry, Fu Jen Catholic University, New Taipei City 242, Taiwan
Department of Environmental Engineering, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan 701, Taiwan
Bone and Joint Research Center, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Taoyuan 333, Taiwan
Graduate Institute of Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Science, Fu Jen Catholic University, New Taipei City 242, Taiwan
Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan 701, Taiwan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2018, 19(9), 2627;
Received: 9 August 2018 / Revised: 31 August 2018 / Accepted: 3 September 2018 / Published: 5 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Small GTPases)
PDF [2419 KB, uploaded 5 September 2018]


Septin (SEPT) genes encode well-preserved polymerizing GTP-binding cytoskeletal proteins. The cellular functions of SEPTs consist of mitosis, cytoskeletal remodeling, cell polarity, and vesicle trafficking through interactions with various types of cytoskeletons. We discovered that mutated SEPTIN12 in different codons resulted in teratozoospermia or oligozoospermia. In mouse models with a defective Septin12 allele, sperm morphology was abnormal, sperm count decreased, and sperms were immotile. However, the regulators of SEPT12 are completely unknown. Some studies have indicated that CDC42 negatively regulates the polymerization of SEPT2/6/7 complexes in mammalian cell lines. In this study, we investigated whether CDC42 modulates SEPT12 polymerization and is involved in the terminal differentiation of male germ cells. First, through scanning electron microscopy analysis, we determined that the loss of Septin12 caused defective sperm heads. This indicated that Septin12 is critical for the formation of sperm heads. Second, CDC42 and SEPT12 were similarly localized in the perinuclear regions of the manchette at the head of elongating spermatids, neck region of elongated spermatids, and midpiece of mature spermatozoa. Third, wild-type CDC42 and CDC42Q61L (a constitutive-acting-mutant) substantially repressed SEPT12 polymerization, but CDC42T17N (a dominant-negative-acting mutant) did not, as evident through ectopic expression analysis. We concluded that CDC42 negatively regulates SEPT12 polymerization and is involved in terminal structure formation of sperm heads. View Full-Text
Keywords: SEPT; SEPT12; CDC42; sperm SEPT; SEPT12; CDC42; sperm

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Huang, C.-Y.; Wang, Y.-Y.; Chen, Y.-L.; Chen, M.-F.; Chiang, H.-S.; Kuo, P.-L.; Lin, Y.-H. CDC42 Negatively Regulates Testis-Specific SEPT12 Polymerization. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2018, 19, 2627.

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