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Characterization of the relaxin binding and signaling in Sertoli cells

Grant number: 09/02683-2
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): September 01, 2009
Effective date (End): February 28, 2011
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Pharmacology
Principal Investigator:Maria de Fátima Magalhães Lazari
Grantee:Aline Rosa do Nascimento
Home Institution: Escola Paulista de Medicina (EPM). Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP). Campus São Paulo. São Paulo , SP, Brazil


Relaxin is a member of the super family of hormones structurally related to insulin, which interacts with the G-protein coupled receptor RXFP1 and plays an important role in female reproduction. In the last few years the importance of relaxin for the male reproductive function has also been suggested, since animals with a knockout of the relaxin gene are infertile. Previous studies from our laboratory have mapped the presence of relaxin and relaxin receptors in Sertoli cells. The aim of the present study is: 1) to characterize the relaxin binding and signaling in Sertoli cells, and the possible activation of the cAMP production and its regulation by Gi, PI3K, PKCs, and the activation of other pathways such as Akt and MAPKs; 2) to analyze the role of relaxin to regulate the expression and function of proteins that participate in the dynamics of intercellular adherens junctions in the germinative epithelium of the testis, such as E-cadherin. This study may contribute to clarify the mechanisms involved in the control of spermatogenesis and to identify new potential targets for the therapeutics of human fertility.