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Immunohistochemical expression of inhibin-alpha subunit in the developing rat gonads

, : Immunohistochemical expression of inhibin-alpha subunit in the developing rat gonads. Zoological Science (Tokyo) 10(3): 449-454

In order to investigate the roles of inhibin for rat gonadal differentiation, the expression of inhibin-alpha subunit in the developing rat gonads was determined. Sprague-Dawley rat gonads from the gestational day (GD) 13 through the postnatal day (PD) 21 were fixed in Methacarn solution and immunohistochemically stained with a polyclonal antibody against (Tyr-30) porcine inhibin alpha-chain (1-30)NH-2 subunit raised in the goat. During fetal period, inhibin-alpha subunit was detected only in male gonads: slight or moderate staining was observed in Sertoli/supporting cells on GDs 14 and 15, and moderate or marked staining in Leydig cells from GD 17 to 20. Reactivity was negative in female gonads and in the Mullerian and Wolffian ducts in both sexes during fetal period. After birth, inhibin-alpha subunit was moderately expressed in Sertoli cells and slightly in Leydig cells on PD 21 for males, and markedly in the granulosa cells for females. These results indicate that the expression of inhibin-alpha subunit is stage- and cell-specific during the gonadal development and the inhibin may participate in rat testicular differentiation.


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