Expression and chromosomal organization of mouse meiotic genes

Hiba Waldman Ben-Asher, Iris Shahar, Assaf Yitzchak, Ramit Mehr, Jeremy Don

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Microarray technology which enables large scale analysis of gene expression and thus comparison between transcriptomes of different cell types, cells undergoing different treatments or cells at different developmental stages has also been used to study the transcriptome involved with spermatogenesis. Many new germ cell-specific genes were determined, and the resulting genes were classified according to different criteria. However, the biological significance of these classifications and their clustering according to developmental transcriptional patterns during spermatogenesis have not yet been addressed. In this study we utilized mouse testicular transcriptome analysis at five distinct post-natal ages (Days 7, 10, 12, 14, and 17), representing distinct meiotic stages, in an attempt to better understand the biological significance of genes clustered into similar expression patterns during this process. Among 790 sequences that showed an expression level change of twofold or more in any of the five key stages that were monitored, relative to the geometric average of all stages, about 40% peaked and about 30% were specifically suppressed at post-natal day 14 (representing the early pachytene stage of spermatocytes), reflecting tight transcriptional regulation at this stage. We also found that each of the six main transcription clusters that were determined was characterized by statistically significant representation of genes related to specific biological processes. Finally, our results indicated that genes important for meiosis are not randomly distributed along the mouse genome but rather preferentially located on specific chromosomes, suggesting for the first time that chromosomal location might be a regulating factor of meiotic gene expression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-248
Number of pages8
JournalMolecular Reproduction and Development
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2010


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