Cell and Tissue Research

, Volume 379, Issue 1, pp 73–74 | Cite as

The cell–cell junctions of mammalian testes—a summary

  • Lisa M. DomkeEmail author
The molecular and ultrastructural characteristics of the epithelial cells in the seminiferous tubules as well as the peritubular wall cells of mammalian testes have been subject of controversial debates and publications for several decades. Using biochemical as well as light and electron microscopical methods, in particular immunolocalization techniques, we have studied sexually mature testes from several mammalian species (man, bull, boar, guinea pig, rat, and mouse). The analyses included direct interspecies comparison of the tubular and peritubular structures with epithelial tissues of the adjacent excurrent duct system, including the epididymis, and in addition other comparative epithelial and muscular tissue controls (Domke 2018). The results of the subject studies have been published in a series of three articles “The cell-cell junctions of mammalian testes”:
  1. I.

    The adhering junctions of the seminiferous epithelium represent special differentiation structures (Domke et al. 2014).


Seminiferous tubules Lamellar smooth muscle cells Cell junctions 



  1. Domke LM, Rickelt S, Dörflinger Y, Kuhn C, Winter-Simanowski S, Zimbelmann R, Rosin-Arbesfeld R, Heid H, Franke WW (2014) The cell-cell junctions of mammalian testes: I. The adhering junctions of the seminiferous epithelium represent special differentiation structures. Cell Tissue Res 357:645–665CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Domke LM (2018) Molecular and ultrastructural characteristics of adhering junctions and cytoskeletons in cells of the seminiferous tubules and the peritubular walls of mammalian testes. PhD Thesis. Combined Faculties for the Natural Sciences and for Mathematics, Ruperto-Carola University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, GermanyGoogle Scholar
  3. Domke LM, Franke WW (2019) The cell-cell junctions of mammalian testes: II. The lamellar smooth muscle monolayer cells of the peritubular wall are laterally connected by vertical adherens junctions-a novel architectonic cell-cell junction system. Cell Tissue Res 375:451–482CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Franke WW, Domke LM, Dörflinger Y, Zimbelmann R (2020) The cell–cell junctions of mammalian testes. III. Absence of an endothelial cell layer covering the peritubular wall of the seminiferous tubules–an immunocytochemical correction of a 50-year-old error in the literature. Cell Tissue Res.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Helmholtz Group for Cell BiologyGerman Cancer Research Center (DKFZ)HeidelbergGermany

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