2014 Volume 60 Issue 1 Pages 37-46
Spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) migrate to the niche upon introduction into the seminiferous tubules of the testis of infertile animals. However, only 5–10% of the transplanted cells colonize recipient testes. In this study, we analyzed the impact of cell cycle on spermatogonial transplantation. We used fluorescent ubiquitination-based cell cycle indicator transgenic mice to examine the influence of cell cycle on SSC activity of mouse germline stem (GS) cells, a population of cultured spermatogonia enriched for SSCs. GS cells in the G1 phase are more efficient than those in the S/G2-M phase in colonizing the seminiferous tubules of adult mice. Cells in the G1 phase not only showed higher expression levels of GFRA1, a component of the GDNF self-renewal factor receptor, but also adhered more efficiently to laminin-coated plates. Furthermore, this cell cycle-dependency was not observed when cells were transplanted into immature pup recipients, which do not have the blood-testis barrier (BTB) between Sertoli cells, suggesting that cells in the G1 phase may passage through the BTB more readily than cells in the S/G2-M phase. Thus cell cycle status is an important factor in regulating SSC migration to the niche.