In Utero Programming of Testicular Cancer

J Dev Biol. 2021 Aug 29;9(3):35. doi: 10.3390/jdb9030035.


It is well established that the intrauterine biological environment plays important roles in fetal development. In this review, we re-visit the hypothesis that testicular germ cell cancer (TGCC), especially in adolescents and young adults, has been programmed in utero. The origin for extreme in utero environments is mostly maternal driven and may be due to nutritional, physical and psychological stressful conditions that alter the optimal molecular and biophysical in utero environments. Moreover, precursors for TGCC may originate as early as during fertilization or implantation of the blastocyst. Further investigations of human developmental biology, both in vivo and in vitro, are needed in order to establish better understanding of in utero programming of future wellbeing or diseases.

Keywords: developmental biology; early life factors; fetal development; nutrition programming; peri-conception; testicular germ cell cancer (TGCC).

Publication types

  • Review