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Azoospermia factor

About: Azoospermia factor is a research topic. Over the lifetime, 492 publications have been published within this topic receiving 22958 citations.


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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The presence of not one but three spermatogenesis loci in Yq11 is proposed and that each locus is active during a different phase of male germ cell development.
Abstract: In a large collaborative screening project, 370 men with idiopathic azoospermia or severe oligozoospermia wereanalysed for deletions of 76 DNA loci in Yq11. In 12 individuals, we observed de novo microdeletions involvingseveral DNA loci, while an additional patient had an inherited deletion. They were mapped to three differentsubregions in Yq11. One subregion coincides to the AZF region defined recently in distal Yq11. The second andthird subregion were mapped proximal to it, in proximal and middle Yq11, respectively. The different deletionsobserved were not overlapping but the extension of the deleted Y DNA in each subregion was similar in eachpatient analysed. In testis tissue sections, disruption of spermatogenesis was shown to be at the same phasewhen the microdeletion occurred in the same Yq11 subregion but at a different phase when the microdeletionoccurred in a different Yq11 subregion. Therefore, we propose the presence of not one but three spermatogenesisloci in Yq11 and that each locus is active during a different phase of male germ cell development. As the mostsevere phenotype after deletion of each locus is azoospermia, we designated them as: AZFa, AZFb and AZFc.Their probable phase of function in human spermatogenesis and candidate genes involved will be discussed. INTRODUCTIONGenes for male germ cell development are present on the Ychromosome in different species groups (1–3). In men, theposition of a spermatogenesis locus was mapped in theeuchromatic part of the long Y arm (Yq11). It was called‘azoospermia factor’ (AZF), as the first six men observed withterminal deletions in Yq were azoospermic (4). Mature spermcells were not detectable in their seminal fluid. In all cases, the Ydeletions included the large heterochromatin block of the long Yarm (Yq12) and an undefined amount of the adjacent euchromatin(Yq11). Subsequently, the presence of AZF in Yq11 wasconfirmed by numerous studies at both cytogenetic (5) andmolecular level (6–8). However, the genetic complexity of AZFcould not be revealed by these analyses.This first became possible by the detection of sterile patientswith small interstitial deletions (i.e. microdeletions) in Yq11. Ina study with 13 sterile men suffering from idiopathic azoospermiatwo different microdeletions in Yq11 were observed (9). Theywere mapped to two non overlapping positions in Yq11 interval6 (10). However, further studies of Yq11 microdeletionsassociated to the phenotype of male sterility, only confirmed theposition of an AZF locus in distal Yq11 (11,12). The mostextensive study was performed by Reijo et al. (13) on 89 sterile

1,246 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The region contains a single–copy gene, DAZ (Deleted in AZoospermia), which is transcribed in the adult testis and appears to encode an RNA binding protein, and the possibility that DAZ is AZF should now be explored.
Abstract: We have detected deletions of portions of the Y chromosome long arm in 12 of 89 men with azoospermia (no sperm in semen). No Y deletions were detected in their male relatives or in 90 other fertile males. The 12 deletions overlap, defining a region likely to contain one or more genes required for spermatogenesis (the Azoospermia Factor, AZF). Deletion of the AZF region is associated with highly variable testicular defects, ranging from complete absence of germ cells to spermatogenic arrest with occasional production of condensed spermatids. We find no evidence of YRRM genes, recently proposed as AZF candidates, in the AZF region. The region contains a single–copy gene, DAZ (Deleted in AZoospermia), which is transcribed in the adult testis and appears to encode an RNA binding protein. The possibility that DAZ is AZF should now be explored.

1,133 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: It is suggested that on the distal portion of the nonfluorescent segment of the long arm of the Y, factors are located controlling spermatogenesis.
Abstract: A deletion of the Y chromosome at the distal portion of band q11 was found in 6 men with normal male habitus but with azoospermia. Five of them were found during a survey of 1170 subfertile males while the sixth was karyotyped because of slight bone abnormalities. These findings, together with a review of the literature, suggest that on the distal portion of the nonfluorescent segment of the long arm of the Y, factors are located controlling spermatogenesis.

926 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The complete nucleotide sequence of AZFc was determined by identifying and distinguishing between near-identical amplicons (massive repeat units) using an iterative mapping–sequencing process.
Abstract: Deletions of the AZFc (azoospermia factor c) region of the Y chromosome are the most common known cause of spermatogenic failure. We determined the complete nucleotide sequence of AZFc by identifying and distinguishing between near-identical amplicons (massive repeat units) using an iterative mapping-sequencing process. A complex of three palindromes, the largest spanning 3 Mb with 99.97% identity between its arms, encompasses the AZFc region. The palindromes are constructed from six distinct families of amplicons, with unit lengths of 115-678 kb, and may have resulted from tandem duplication and inversion during primate evolution. The palindromic complex contains 11 families of transcription units, all expressed in testis. Deletions of AZFc that cause infertility are remarkably uniform, spanning a 3.5-Mb segment and bounded by 229-kb direct repeats that probably served as substrates for homologous recombination.

626 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Y-chromosome deletions in leucocyte DNA similar in location to those previously reported in azoospermic individuals are detected and are therefore the cause of their severe oligozoospermia.

519 citations


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Performance
Metrics
No. of papers in the topic in previous years
YearPapers
202315
202218
202119
202020
201922
201817