Novel human testis-specific cDNA: Molecular cloning, expression and immunobiological effects of the recombinant protein

Authors

  • Ramasamy Santhanam,

    1. Division of Research, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Medical College of Ohio, Toledo, Ohio
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  • Rajesh K. Naz

    Corresponding author
    1. Division of Research, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Medical College of Ohio, Toledo, Ohio
    • Division of Research, Health Education Building, Rm. 211, Medical, College of Ohio, 3055 Arlington Avenue, Toledo, Ohio 43614-5806.
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Abstract

A differential display-polymerase chain reaction was employed to obtain a testis-specific cDNA fragment. On screening the human testis-λgt10-cDNA library with testis-specific cDNA fragment, a novel cDNA encoding for a sperm antigen, designated TSA-1, was obtained. It has a novel open reading frame (ORF) of 471 base pairs encoding for 156 amino acids. The computer generated translated protein has a calculated molecular mass of 17.4 kDa and contains a potential N-glycosylation site at amino acids 122–124. The hydrophilicity analysis of the amino acid sequence suggested that this protein is a membrane-anchored peptide. Extensive analysis for tissue-specificity by Northern blots and RT-PCR-Southern blot procedures using various human tissues indicated that TSA-1 was specifically expressed only in the human testis. Based on the results of in vitro transcription and translation experiments, the TSA-1 (ORF) was subcloned into pGEX-6P-3 vector and expressed using the glutathione S-transferase gene fusion system. Antibodies (Ab) against the purified recombinant protein specifically recognized the ∼17 kDa recombinant TSA-1, and a ∼24 kDa band in human sperm extract in the Western blot procedure. The recombinant TSA-1 Ab recognized the acrosomal, equatorial, mid-piece, and tail regions of human sperm cell in indirect immunofluorescence, bound to live human sperm in the immunobeads binding technique (IBT) and caused a significant concentration-dependent inhibition of human sperm acrosome reaction. These findings indicate that the novel sperm-specific recombinant TSA-1 has a role in sperm function and may have applications in the development of a contraceptive vaccine, and in the specific diagnosis and treatment of male infertility. Mol. Reprod. Dev. 60: 1–12, 2001. © 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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