The gene encoding vitamin K-dependent anticoagulant protein C is expressed in human male reproductive tissues.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Protein C is a vitamin K-dependent protein circulating in plasma as a zymogen to an anticoagulant serine protease. After its activation, protein C cleaves and inactivates coagulation factors Va and VIIIa. Human protein C is synthesized in liver and undergoes extensive post-translational modification during its synthesis. Recently, the protein C inhibitor was demonstrated to be synthesized in several organs of the human male reproductive tract. Moreover, vitamin K-dependent protein S, which functions as a co-factor to activated protein C, was found to be synthesized in the Leydig cells of human testis. The aim of this study was to elucidate whether the protein C gene is also expressed in the male reproductive system. Specific immunostaining of protein C was found in Leydig cells of human testis, in the excretory epithelium of epididymis, and in some epithelial glands of the prostate, whereas no immunostaining was detected in seminal vesicles. Northern blotting and non-radioactive in situ hybridization demonstrated protein C mRNA in Leydig cells, in the excretory epithelium of epididymis, and in some of the epithelial glands of the prostate. The mRNA was distributed perinuclearly and the localization was in accordance with the specific immunostaining for protein C. The epithelium of epididymis was also found to contain both protein S mRNA and immunoreactivity. The demonstration of both protein C and protein S immunoreactivities, as well as their mRNAs, in male reproductive tissues suggests as yet unknown local functions for these proteins.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • He, X; Shen, L; Bjartell, A; Malm, J; Lilja, H; Dahlbäck, B

Published Date

  • June 1995

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 43 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 563 - 570

PubMed ID

  • 7769227

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0022-1554

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1177/43.6.7769227


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States