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Article

Deletion of Hnrnpk Gene Causes Infertility in Male Mice by Disrupting Spermatogenesis

by 1,2,†, 1,†, 1,†, 1, 1, 1, 1,2, 1,2, 1,2,* and 1,2,*
1
College of Life Science, Xinyang Normal University, Xinyang 464000, China
2
Institute for Conservation and Utilization of Agro-Bioresources in Dabie Mountain, Xinyang Normal University, Xinyang 464000, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editors: Alice Luddi, Paola Piomboni and Rosanna Chianese
Cells 2022, 11(8), 1277; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells11081277
Received: 25 February 2022 / Revised: 3 April 2022 / Accepted: 7 April 2022 / Published: 9 April 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Male Reproductive Health and Infertility: A Look Towards the Future)
HnRNPK is a heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein (hnRNP) that has been firmly implicated in transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation. However, the molecular mechanisms by which hnRNPK orchestrates transcriptional or post-transcriptional regulation are not well understood due to early embryonic lethality in homozygous knockout mice, especially in a tissue-specific context. Strikingly, in this study, we demonstrated that hnRNPK is strongly expressed in the mouse testis and mainly localizes to the nucleus in spermatogonia, spermatocytes, and round spermatids, suggesting an important role for hnRNPK in spermatogenesis. Using a male germ cell-specific hnRNPK-depleted mouse model, we found that it is critical for testicular development and male fertility. The initiation of meiosis of following spermatogenesis was not affected in Hnrnpk cKO mice, while most germ cells were arrested at the pachytene stage of the meiosis and no mature sperm were detected in epididymides. The further RNA-seq analysis of Hnrnpk cKO mice testis revealed that the deletion of hnRNPK disturbed the expression of genes involved in male reproductive development, among which the meiosis genes were significantly affected, and Hnrnpk cKO spermatocytes failed to complete the meiotic prophase. Together, these results identify hnRNPK as an essential regulator of spermatogenesis and male fertility. View Full-Text
Keywords: hnRNPK; meiosis; transcriptional regulation; spermatocytes; spermatogenesis hnRNPK; meiosis; transcriptional regulation; spermatocytes; spermatogenesis
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MDPI and ACS Style

Xu, H.; Guo, J.; Wu, W.; Han, Q.; Huang, Y.; Wang, Y.; Li, C.; Cheng, X.; Zhang, P.; Xu, Y. Deletion of Hnrnpk Gene Causes Infertility in Male Mice by Disrupting Spermatogenesis. Cells 2022, 11, 1277. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells11081277

AMA Style

Xu H, Guo J, Wu W, Han Q, Huang Y, Wang Y, Li C, Cheng X, Zhang P, Xu Y. Deletion of Hnrnpk Gene Causes Infertility in Male Mice by Disrupting Spermatogenesis. Cells. 2022; 11(8):1277. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells11081277

Chicago/Turabian Style

Xu, Haixia, Jiahua Guo, Wei Wu, Qiu Han, Yueru Huang, Yaling Wang, Cencen Li, Xiaofang Cheng, Pengpeng Zhang, and Yongjie Xu. 2022. "Deletion of Hnrnpk Gene Causes Infertility in Male Mice by Disrupting Spermatogenesis" Cells 11, no. 8: 1277. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells11081277

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