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Postnatal differentiation of the ductus deferens, tail of the epididymis, and distal body of the epididymis in goats occurs independently of rete testis fluid



Postnatal differentiation of the ductus deferens, tail of the epididymis, and distal body of the epididymis in goats occurs independently of rete testis fluid



Anatomical Record 254(4): 508-520, April 1



Observations from extratesticular rete-ligated, mature goats indicated that epithelial morphology in the tail of the epididymis can be maintained without any input from testicular fluid (Goyal et al., Acta Anat., 1994;150: 127-135). Hence, the objective of this study was to determine whether the tail of the epididymis and/or other regions of the male excurrent ducts can differentiate prior to the appearance of lumen in the seminiferous tubules, which is an indicator for the onset of seminiferous tubular fluid secretion. Based on age and scrotal circumference (SC), 20 male goats were divided into four groups of five animals each: 1-4 weeks (SC, 6.5-7.5 cm), 7-10 weeks (SC, 8.5-11.0 cm), 12-15 weeks (SC, 11.0-14.0 cm), and 15-25 weeks (SC, 16.0-19.0 cm). Tissues were collected from the testis, six regions of the epididymis (proximal, middle and distal head; proximal and distal body; and tail), and the ductus deferens, and were processed for light and electron microscopic examination. Changes in epithelial height and cytological features associated with absorption (microvilli, pinocytotic and coated vesicles) and protein secretion (RER, Golgi body) were used as markers for differentiation. Differentiation of all of these features was comparable to that observed in the 15-25-week-old animals in the ductus deferens by gtoreq1 week, in the tail of the epididymis by gtoreq7 weeks, in the distal body of the epididymis by gtoreq12 weeks, and in the proximal body of the epididymis and all three regions of the head of the epididymis by gtoreq15 weeks. Seminiferous tubules developed lumens between 12 and 15 weeks. In conclusion, epithelial differentiation in the ductus deferens, tail of the epididymis, and distal body of the epididymis follows a time-dependent, spatial, ascending order and is achieved before lumen formation in the seminiferous tubules. Conversely, epithelial differentiation in all three regions of the head and the proximal body of the epididymis occurs simultaneously and after lumen formation in the seminiferous tubules.

Accession: 011174442

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PMID: 10203258

DOI: 10.1002/(sici)1097-0185(19990401)254:4<508::aid-ar6>3.0.co;2-a

Download PDF Full Text: Postnatal differentiation of the ductus deferens, tail of the epididymis, and distal body of the epididymis in goats occurs independently of rete testis fluid



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