The role of interleukin 1α in blood–testis barrier remodeling.
THE ROLE OF INTERLEUKIN 1α IN BLOOD–TESTIS BARRIER REMODELING
Interleukin 1α is a pro-infl ammatory cytokine with an important role in innate immunity, as well as in maintaining normal tissue homeostasis. Interleukin 1α is constitutively expressed in the male gonad and plays key role in the regulation of blood–testis barrier in the seminiferous epithelium. Blood-testis barrier is formed by cell junctions between adjacent Sertoli cells and protects developing antigenic foreign germ cells against the immune system, thus preventing the production of antisperm antibodies. Still, the blood–testis barrier must be transiently opened to allow the entry of spermatocytes into the adluminal compartment of the seminiferous epithelium for further development and spermiation. Th is review summarizes current knowledge about the role of interleukin 1α in the male gonad and highlights new interesting findings that show interleukin 1α as a key cytokine involved in the remodelling of the blood-testis barrier.