A sperm cytoskeletal protein that signals oocyte meiotic maturation and ovulation

M. A. Miller, V. Q. Nguyen, M. H. Lee, M. Kosinski, T. Schedl, R. M. Caprioli, D. Greenstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

263 Scopus citations

Abstract

Caenorhabditis elegans oocytes, like those of most animals, arrest during meiotic prophase. Sperm promote the resumption of meiosis (maturation) and contraction of smooth muscle-like gonadal sheath cells, which are required for ovulation. We show that the major sperm cytoskeletal protein (MSP) is a bipartite signal for oocyte maturation and sheath contraction. MSP also functions in sperm locomotion, playing a role analogous to actin. Thus, during evolution, MSP has acquired extracellular signaling and intracellular cytoskeletal functions for reproduction. Proteins with MSP-like domains are found in plants, fungi, and other animals, suggesting that related signaling functions may exist in other phyla.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2144-2147
Number of pages4
JournalScience
Volume291
Issue number5511
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 16 2001
Externally publishedYes

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