[Frontiers in Bioscience 1, d266-269, September 1, 1996]
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CREM: A TRANSCRIPTIONAL MASTER SWITCH DURING THE SPERMATOGENESIS DIFFERENTIATION PROGRAM

François Nantel and Paolo Sassone-Corsi

Institut de Génétique et de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, 1 rue Laurent Fries, BP 163, ILLKIRCH Cedex, C.U. de Strasbourg, France

Received 08/17/96; Accepted 08/21/96; On-line 09/01/96

2. INTRODUCTION

Spermatogenesis is a complex differentiation process during which diploid germ cells differentiate into haploid spermatozoa. This process involves multiple biochemical and structural changes and requires the activation of a large array of genes. Spermatogenesis is under the tight control of the hypothalamic-pituitary axis and requires the coordinate action of multiple hormones (1). These hormonal signals are converted into long-term changes in gene expression. The cyclic AMP (cAMP) signaling pathway plays a critical role in this differentiation cascade and recent research has identified transcription factor CREM (cyclic AMP responsive element modulator) as a master switch in cAMP-dependent gene transcription in the testis.

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