Identification of increased amounts of eppin protein complex components in sperm cells of diabetic and obese individuals by difference gel electrophoresis

Uwe Paasch*, Falk Heidenreich, Theresia Pursche, Eberhard Kuhlisch, Karina Kettner, Sonja Grunewald, Jürgen Kratzsch, Gunnar Dittmar, Hans Jürgen Glander, Bernard Hoflack, Thomas M. Kriegel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Metabolic disorders like diabetes mellitus and obesity may compromise the fertility of men and women. To unveil disease-associated proteomic changes potentially affecting male fertility, the proteomes of sperm cells from type-1 diabetic, type-2 diabetic, non-diabetic obese and clinically healthy individuals were comparatively analyzed by difference gel electrophoresis. The adaptation of a general protein extraction procedure to the solubilization of proteins from sperm cells allowed for the resolution of 3187 fluorescent spots in the difference gel electrophoresis image of the master gel, which contained the entirety of solubilized sperm proteins. Comparison of the pathological and reference proteomes by applying an average abundance ratio setting of 1.6 and a p ≤ 0.05 criterion resulted in the identification of 79 fluorescent spots containing proteins that were present at significantly changed levels in the sperm cells. Biometric evaluation of the fluorescence data followed by mass spectrometric protein identification revealed altered levels of 12, 71, and 13 protein species in the proteomes of the type-1 diabetic, type-2 diabetic, and non-diabetic obese patients, respectively, with considerably enhanced amounts of the same set of one molecular form of semenogelin-1, one form of clusterin, and two forms of lactotransferrin in each group of pathologic samples. Remarkably, β-galactosidase-1-like protein was the only protein that was detected at decreased levels in all three pathologic situations. The former three proteins are part of the eppin (epididymal proteinase inhibitor) protein complex, which is thought to fulfill fertilization-related functions, such as ejaculate sperm protection, motility regulation and gain of competence for acrosome reaction, whereas the putative role of the latter protein to function as a glycosyl hydrolase during sperm maturation remains to be explored at the protein/ enzyme level. The strikingly similar differences detected in the three groups of pathological sperm proteomes reflect a disease-associated enhanced formation of predominantly proteolytically modified forms of three eppin protein complex components, possibly as a response to enduring hyperglycemia and enhanced oxidative stress.

Original languageEnglish
JournalMolecular and Cellular Proteomics
Volume10
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes

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