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

Trypsin-like enzymes during fertilization in the shrimp Rhynchocinetes typus.

The spermatozoon of Rhynchocinetes typus is atypical because it is nonmotile and lacks head and tail. The body has a rigid spike. Neither an acrosome-like structure nor changes during gamete interaction which could be interpreted as an acrosome reaction have been observed in this species. Nevertheless, the spermatozoon exerts a lytic effect on the extracellular envelope of the egg, and in this way it penetrates through egg-coats, forming a channel. In this research we found that crude spermatozoa extracts analyzed by gelatin SDS-PAGE developed one band of protease activity that was completely inhibited by SBTI (soybean trypsin inhibitor) and pAB (p-aminobenzamidine). In sperm extracts an enzymatic activity was determined, using BAEE (N-benzoil-L-arginine ethyl ester), but not ATEE, as substrate. This activity was inhibited by SBTI and pAB. We observed that in vitro fertilization was inhibited by spermatozoon incubation with the trypsin inhibitors SBTI, PMSF (phenylmethanesulphonyl fluoride), and pAB. Additionally, we observed that when whole isolated egg-coats were incubated with sperm extract and then analyzed by SDS--PAGE, one band of the egg-coats disappeared. These results have been interpreted as sperm trypsinlike enzyme participation in R. typus sperm passage through the egg-coats.[1]


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