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MHR: Basic science of reprod. Medicine

Year: 2010  |  Volume: 16  |  Issue: 7  |  Page No.: 452 - 462

Proteomics-based study on asthenozoospermia: differential expression of proteasome alpha complex

A. B Siva, D. B Kameshwari, V Singh, K Pavani, C. S Sundaram, N Rangaraj, M Deenadayal and S. Shivaji


With a view to understand the molecular basis of sperm motility, we have tried to establish the human sperm proteome by two-dimensional PAGE MALDI MS/MS analysis. We report identification of 75 different proteins in the human spermatozoa. Comparative proteome analysis was carried out for asthenozoospermic and normozoospermic patients to understand the molecular basis of sperm motility. Analysis revealed eight proteins (including one unidentified) with altered intensity between the groups. Differential proteins distributed into three functional groups: ‘energy and metabolism’ (triose-phosphate isomerase, glycerol kinase 2, testis specific isoform and succinyl-CoA:3-ketoacid co-enzyme A transferase 1, mitochondrial precursor); ‘movement and organization’ (tubulin beta 2C and tektin 1) and ‘protein turnover, folding and stress response’ (proteasome alpha 3 subunit and heat shock-related 70 kDa protein 2). It was interesting to note that although the proteins falling in the functional group of ‘energy and metabolism’ are higher in the asthenozoospermic patients, the other two functional groups contain proteins, which are higher in the normozoospermic samples. Validation of results carried out for proteasome alpha 3 subunit by immunoblotting and confocal microscopy, confirmed significant changes in intensity of proteasome alpha 3 subunit in asthenozoospermic samples when compared with normozoospermic controls. Significant positive correlation too was found between proteasome alpha 3 subunit levels and rapid, linear progressive motility of the spermatozoa. In our understanding, this data would contribute appreciably to the presently limited information available about the proteins implicated in human sperm motility.

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