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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Role of diacylglycerols and calcium in the marsupial acrosome reaction.

Acrosomal loss was induced in marsupial spermatozoa by an intermediate of the phosphoinositide pathway. The diacylglycerol, 1,2-dioctanoyl-sn-glycerol (DiC8; 100 mumol l-1) induced acrosomal loss in 70% of brushtail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) spermatozoa and in 80% of tammar wallaby (Macropus eugenii) spermatozoa. The DiC8-induced acrosomal loss was not enhanced by co-incubation with calcium ionophore A23187 and occurred in Ca(2+)-free medium and in the presence of the calcium chelator EGTA (3 mmol l-1). There was no evidence of uptake of 45Ca2+ during the DiC8-induced acrosomal loss. Inhibitors of protein kinase C [1-(5-isoquinolinyl-sulfonyl)-2-methylpiperazine] and phospholipase A2 [dexamethasone] did not effect DiC8-induced acrosomal loss in wallaby spermatozoa. The phorbol ester, phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate, at a concentration of 10 mumol l-1 had no effect on possum spermatozoa and induced acrosomal loss in only 6% of wallaby spermatozoa. It appears that the DiC8-induced acrosome reaction is not mediated by activation of the phosphoinositide pathway and that extracellular calcium is not required for the membrane fusion event. As acrosomal loss was seen only at relatively high concentrations of diacylglycerol (> 50 mumol l-1) and there is no evidence of involvement of other phosphoinositide intermediates or analogues, it is likely that its role is as a direct membrane fusogen.[1]


  1. Role of diacylglycerols and calcium in the marsupial acrosome reaction. Mate, K.E., Rodger, J.C. J. Reprod. Fertil. (1993) [Pubmed]
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