Vgll3 and the Hippo pathway are regulated in Sertoli cells upon entry and during puberty in Atlantic salmon testis

Sci Rep. 2018 Jan 30;8(1):1912. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-20308-1.


Vgll3 is linked to age at maturity in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar). However, the molecular mechanisms involving Vgll3 in controlling timing of puberty as well as relevant tissue and cell types are currently unknown. Vgll3 and the associated Hippo pathway has been linked to reduced proliferation activity in different tissues. Analysis of gene expression reveals for the first time that vgll3 and several members of the Hippo pathway were down-regulated in salmon testis during onset of puberty and remained repressed in maturing testis. In the gonads, we found expression in Sertoli and granulosa cells in males and females, respectively. We hypothesize that vgll3 negatively regulates Sertoli cell proliferation in testis and therefore acts as an inhibitor of pubertal testis growth. Gonadal expression of vgll3 is located to somatic cells that are in direct contact with germ cells in both sexes, however our results indicate sex-biased regulation of vgll3 during puberty.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Proliferation / physiology
  • Female
  • Gene Expression / physiology
  • Germ Cells / metabolism
  • Granulosa Cells / metabolism
  • Male
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism*
  • Salmo salar / metabolism*
  • Sertoli Cells / metabolism*
  • Sex Differentiation / physiology
  • Sexual Maturation / physiology
  • Testis / metabolism*
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism*


  • Transcription Factors
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases