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Asian-Australas J Anim Sci > Accepted Articles
DOI: https://doi.org/10.5713/ajas.19.0587    [Accepted] Published online November 12, 2019.
The expression and localization of V-ATPase and cytokeratin 5 during postnatal development of the pig epididymis
Yun-Jae Park1  , Ji-Hyuk Kim1  , Hack-Youn Kim1  , Hee-Bok Park1  , Juhui Choe1  , Gye-Woong Kim1  , Sun-Young Baek2  , Hak-Jae Chung2  , Yoo-Jin Park3  , Bongki Kim1,* 
1Department of Animal Resources Science, Kongju National University, Yesan 32439, Korea
2Division of Swine Science, National Institute of Animal Science, Rural Development Administration, Cheonan 31172, Korea
3Department of Animal Science and Technology, Chung-Ang University, Anseong 17546, Korea
Correspondence:  Bongki Kim, Tel: +82-41-330-1246, Fax: +82-41-330-1249, Email: bkkim@kongju.ac.kr
Received: 16 July 2019   • Revised: 29 September 2019   • Accepted: 30 October 2019
We examined the localization and expression of H+ pumping vacuolar ATPase (V-ATPase) and cytokeratin 5 (KRT5) in the epididymis of pigs, expressed in clear and basal cells, respectively, during postnatal development.
Epididymides were obtained from pigs at 1, 7, 21, 60, 120, and 180 days of age; we observed the localization and expression patterns of V-ATPase and KRT5 in the different regions of these organs, namely, the caput, corpus, and cauda. The differentiation of epididymal epithelial cells was determined by immunofluorescence labeling using cell-type-specific markers and observed using confocal microscopy.
At postnatal day 5 (PND5), the localization of clear cells commenced migration from the cauda toward the caput. Although at PND120, goblet-shaped clear cells were detected along the entire length of the epididymis, those labeled for V-ATPase had disappeared from the corpus to cauda, and were maintained only in the caput epididymis in adult pigs. In contrast, whereas basal cells labeled for KRT5 were only present in the vas deferens at birth, they were detected in all regions of the epididymis at PND60. These cells were localized at the base of the epithelium; however, no basal cells characterized by luminally extending cell projections were observed in any of the adult epididymides examined.
The differentiation of clear and basal cells progressively initiates in a retrograde manner from the cauda to the caput epididymis. The cell-type-specific distribution and localization of the epithelial cells play important roles in establishing a unique luminal environment for sperm maturation and storage in the pig epididymis.
Keywords: Clear Cell; Basal Cell; Immunofluorescence; Epithelium; Luminal Environment

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