Suppression of spermatogenesis before grafting increases survival and supports resurgence of spermatogenesis in adult mouse testis

Suppression of spermatogenesis before testis grafting allows spermatogenesis recovery, whereas control tissue degenerates. Testis tissue xenografting could be an important tool for study and preservation of fertility in adult azoospermia.


Lucía Arregui, Ph.D., Rahul Rathi, Ph.D., Mark Modelski, B.S., Wenxian Zeng, Ph.D., Eduardo R.S. Roldan, Ph.D., Ina Dobrinski, Ph.D.

Vol 97, Issue 6 , Pages 1422-1429



To test whether absence of complete spermatogenesis in mature testicular tissue before grafting will increase graft survival.


Prospective experimental study.




Donor testes were obtained from adult untreated mice, adult mice rendered cryptorchid, and adult mice treated with a GnRH antagonist (acyline).


Donor testes were ectopically grafted to nude mice and recovered at three time points.

Main Outcome Measure(s):

Most advanced germ cell type and presence of spermatogonia were assessed. Donor testes and grafts were analyzed by histology and by immunocytochemistry for ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase-L1 to mark germ cells.


Suppression of spermatogenesis by inducing cryptorchidism or acyline treatment resulted in improved survival of grafted tissue compared with controls and recovery of complete spermatogenesis, whereas control testis grafts mostly degenerated and did not restore complete spermatogenesis.


These results indicate that complete spermatogenesis at the time of grafting has a negative effect on graft survival. Grafting of adult testis tissue from donors with suppressed spermatogenesis leads to spermatogenic recovery and may provide a tool to study and preserve fertility and for conservation of genetic resources in individuals that lack complete germ cell differentiation.

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