In-depth proteomic analysis of whole testis tissue from the adult rhesus macaque.

PMID 24610633


The rhesus macaque is similar to humans both anatomically and physiologically as a primate, and has therefore been used extensively in medical and biological research, including reproductive physiology. Despite sequencing of the macaque genome, limited postgenomic studies have been performed to date. In studies aimed at characterizing spermatogenesis, we successfully identified 9078 macaque testis proteins corresponding to 8662 genes, using advanced MS and an optimized proteomics platform, indicative of complex protein compositions during macaque spermatogenesis. Immunohistochemistry analysis further revealed the presence of proteins from different types of testicular cells, including Sertoli cells, Leydig cells, and various stages of germ cells. Our data provide expression evidence at protein level of 3010 protein-coding genes in 8662 identified testis genes for the first time. We further identified 421 homologous genes from the proteome already known to be essential for male infertility in mouse. Comparative analysis of the proteome showed high similarity with the published human testis proteome, implying that macaque and human may use similar proteins to regulate spermatogenesis. Our in-depth analysis of macaque spermatogenesis provides a rich resource for further studies, and supports the utility of macaque as a suitable model for the study of human reproduction.