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Dickkopf-like protein 1 precursor (Cancer/testis antigen 34) (CT34) (Protein soggy-1) (SGY-1) [SGY1] [UNQ735/PRO1429]


The acrosomal protein Dickkopf-like 1 (DKKL1) is not essential for fertility.

To determine the role of Dkkl1 on mouse development, viability, and fertility. Prospective experimental study. Government research institution. Mice of C57BL/6 and 129X1/SvJ strains, as well as transgenic mice of mixed C57BL/6 and 129X1/SvJ strains were used for the studies. Mice were constructed that lacked a functional Dkkl1 gene. Deletion of the gene was confirmed by DNA, RNA, and protein analyses; in vivo fertility was examined by continuous mating scheme. Previous studies have shown that Dkkl1, a gene unique to mammals, is expressed predominantly, if not exclusively, in developing spermatocytes, and the DKKL1 protein accumulates in the acrosome of mature sperm. Subsequent studies (reported in the accompanying article) demonstrate that Dkkl1 also is expressed in the trophectoderm/placental lineage. Taken together, these results strongly suggested that DKKL1 protein is required for terminal differentiation either of trophoblast giant cells or of sperm, both of which are directly involved in fertility. To challenge this hypothesis, conditional targeted mutagenesis was used to ablate the Dkkl1 gene in mice. Surprisingly, Dkkl1 nullizygous embryos developed into viable, fertile adults, despite the fact that they failed to produce any portion of the DKKL1 protein. DKKL1 is a mammalian-specific acrosomal protein that is not essential either for development or fertility.

MeSH Terms

  • Acrosome
  • Aging
  • Animals
  • Embryo, Mammalian
  • Embryonic Development
  • Female
  • Fertility
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Litter Size
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Mutagenesis, Site-Directed
  • Mutation
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Protein Processing, Post-Translational
  • RNA, Messenger
  • RNA-Binding Proteins