95 kd sperm proteins bind ZP3 and serve as tyrosine kinase substrates in response to zona binding

Cell. 1989 Jun 30;57(7):1123-30. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(89)90049-4.


In the mouse, the zona pellucida (ZP) glycoprotein ZP3 both binds intact sperm and induces acrosomal exocytosis. The subsequent signaling pathway(s) is still uncertain, but Gi-like proteins have been implicated. By analogy with other signal transduction mechanisms, we examined anti-phosphotyrosine antibody reactivity in mouse sperm. Antibodies reacted with three proteins of 52, 75, and 95 kd. Indirect immunofluorescence localized reactivity to the acrosomal region of the sperm head. The 52 kd and 75 kd phosphoproteins are detected only in capacitated sperm, whereas the 95 kd protein is detected in both fresh and capacitated sperm. For the 95 kd protein, the level of immunoreactivity is not related to sperm motility but is enhanced by both capacitation and sperm interaction with solubilized ZP proteins. In addition, binding of radiolabeled whole ZP or purified ZP3 to blots of separated sperm proteins identified two ZP binding proteins of 95 kd and 42 kd. 95 kd sperm proteins that bind to ZP3 also react with anti-phosphotyrosine antibodies (in a ZP concentration-dependent manner), supporting the idea that the same 95 kd sperm protein serves as a ZP3 receptor and as a tyrosine kinase substrate. These findings and our evidence on acrosome reaction triggering via sperm receptor aggregation suggest that a 95 kd protein in the sperm plasma membrane is aggregated by ZP3, which stimulates tyrosine kinase activity leading to acrosomal exocytosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acrosome / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / immunology
  • Blotting, Western
  • Egg Proteins*
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Glycoproteins / metabolism*
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Male
  • Membrane Glycoproteins*
  • Mice
  • Molecular Weight
  • Ovum / metabolism*
  • Phosphoproteins / metabolism*
  • Phosphorylation
  • Phosphotyrosine
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / metabolism*
  • Spermatozoa / physiology*
  • Tyrosine / analogs & derivatives
  • Tyrosine / immunology
  • Zona Pellucida / metabolism*
  • Zona Pellucida Glycoproteins


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Egg Proteins
  • Glycoproteins
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • Phosphoproteins
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • Zona Pellucida Glycoproteins
  • Zp3 protein, mouse
  • Phosphotyrosine
  • Tyrosine
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases