ANZAC Research Institute, Concord Hospital

Lab head: Dr Charles Allan
Location: ANZAC Research Institute, Andrology


Androgen regulation of male germ cell survival and fertility.

Primary supervisor: Charles Allan

Androgen actions are essential for testicular function and male fertility. The androgen receptor (AR) has a vital role in testicular Sertoli cells, unique somatic cells that provide the structural microenvironment and trophic support essential for the functional development of male germ cells. This project will focus on the role of Sertoli cell AR in the regulation of germ cell survival and male fertility. We have established novel transgenic mouse models that allow direct investigation of Sertoli cell AR actions during testicular development and function into adulthood. Disrupted or excessive androgen receptor expression in our models leads to increased germ cell apoptosis (decreased survival), disrupted sperm production and male infertility.
This project will use transgenic models with altered testicular function to identify and characterize androgen-regulated pathways and factors that control germ cell survival and affect fertility. We will use a range of experimental techniques, such as microscopy and stereology, quantitative PCR, immunohistochemistry, Western blotting and pharmacological approaches to identify the key biological pathways coordinating germ cell development and survival.

Discipline: Pathology
Co-supervisors: David Handelsman
Keywords: Male Fertility, Germ cell development, Androgens