Small glutamine rich tetratricopeptide repeat containing protein alpha is present in human ovaries but may not be differentially expressed in relation to polycystic ovary syndrome

Small glutamine-rich tetratricopeptide repeat–containing protein alpha is expressed in human ovarian tissues and has the potential to modulate androgen receptor signaling, but expression levels may not be abnormal in polycystic ovary syndrome.


Miriam S. Butler, Ph.D., Xing Yang, M.D., Ph.D., Carmela Ricciardelli, Ph.D., Xiaoyan Liang, M.D., Robert J. Norman, M.D., Wayne D. Tilley, Ph.D., Theresa E. Hickey, Ph.D.

Volume 99, Issue 7, Pages 2076-2083.e1, June 2013



To evaluate the expression and 39 function of SGTA, an androgen receptor (AR) molecular chaperone, in human ovarian tissues.


Examine the effect of SGTA on AR subcellular localization in granulosa tumour cells (KGN) and SGTA expression in ovarian tissues.


University-based research laboratory.


Archived tissues from pre-menopausal women and granulosa cells from infertile women receiving assisted reproduction.

Main Outcome Measure(s):

AR subcellular localisation and SGTA protein or mRNA levels.


SGTA and AR proteins were expressed in the cytoplasm of KGN cells and exposure to androgen stimulated AR nuclear localisation. SGTA protein knockdown increased AR nuclear localisation at low (0-0.1nM) but not high (1-10nM) concentrations of androgen hormone. In ovarian tissues, SGTA was localised to the cytoplasm of granulosa cells at all stages of folliculogenesis and in thecal cells of antral follicles. SGTA protein levels were similar when comparing primordial and primary follicles within core biopsies (n=40) from women with and without PCOS. Likewise, SGTA mRNA levels were not significantly different in granulosa cells from preovulatory follicles following hyperstimulation of women with and without PCOS.


SGTA is present in human ovaries and has the potential to modulate AR signalling but may not be differentially expressed in PCOS.

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