Preliminary study on testicular germ cell isolation and transplantation in an endangered endemic species Brycon orbignyanus (Characiformes: Characidae)
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We aimed to develop a simplified protocol for transplantation of Brycon orbignyanus spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) into Astyanax altiparanae testes. Brycon orbignyanus testes were enzymatically digested and SSC purified by a discontinuous density gradient. Endogenous spermatogenesis was suppressed in A. altiparanae using busulfan or by incubation at 35 °C water, and SSCs from B. orbignyanus labeled with PKH26 were injected into their testes via the urogenital papilla. Twenty-two hours post-transplantation, labeled spermatogonia were observed in A. altiparanae tubular lumen. After 7 days, spermatogonia proliferated in the epithelium, and 21 days post-transplantation, sperm was observed in the lumen. Of surviving host fish, nearly 67% of those treated with busulfan and 85% of those held in warm water showed labeled cells in host germinal epithelium. The present study standardized, by a simple and accessible method, germ cell transplantation between sexually mature Characiformes fish species. This is the first report of xenogenic SSC transplantation in this fish order.
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