Regulation of male germline transmission patterns by the Trp53-Cdkn1a pathway

Mito Kanatsu-Shinohara, Honda Naoki, Takashi Tanaka, Misako Tatehana, Takako Kikkawa, Noriko Osumi, Takashi Shinohara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A small number of offspring are born from the numerous sperm generated from spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs). However, little is known regarding the rules and molecular mechanisms that govern germline transmission patterns. Here we report that the Trp53 tumor suppressor gene limits germline genetic diversity via Cdkn1a. Trp53-deficient SSCs outcompeted wild-type (WT) SSCs and produced significantly more progeny after co-transplantation into infertile mice. Lentivirus-mediated transgenerational lineage analysis showed that offspring bearing the same virus integration were repeatedly born in a non-random pattern from WT SSCs. However, SSCs lacking Trp53 or Cdkn1a sired transgenic offspring in random patterns with increased genetic diversity. Apoptosis of KIT+ differentiating germ cells was reduced in Trp53- or Cdkn1a-deficient mice. Reduced CDKN1A expression in Trp53-deficient spermatogonia suggested that Cdkn1a limits genetic diversity by supporting apoptosis of syncytial spermatogonial clones. Therefore, the TRP53-CDKN1A pathway regulates tumorigenesis and the germline transmission pattern.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1924-1941
Number of pages18
JournalStem Cell Reports
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Sept 13


  • apoptosis
  • Cdkn1a
  • spermatogenesis
  • Trp53


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