Spermatogonial Stem Cells (SSCs) are the only stem cells in the body capable to transmit the genetic information from species along generations. This feature is due to the potential of these cells to either self-renew or differentiate to give rise to millions of spermatozoa. Recent studies using SSCs have generated promising methods in the aquaculture, such as the SSC transplantation. This technique consists in the isolation of donor SSCs and their transplantation into a recipient testis, where these cells can develop and produce sperm with donor genetic characteristics. In the current project, we propose a SSC bank which in association with transplantation techniques constitutes a powerful tool to preserve endangered and valuable species. Therefore, the aim of this project is to characterize the molecular markers of SSCs using zebrafish (Danio rerio) as a laboratory model; and to apply this knowledge for a native and high economic interest species, such as jundiá (Rhamdia quelen). Then, SSCs from jundiá will be selected based on these molecular markers, and submitted to cryopreservation techniques afterwards. To test the viability of the cryopreserved cells, SSCs will be thawed and transplanted into recipient testes. In addition, we aimed to generate vasa::gfp jundiás in order to improve the the visualization of the donor-derived spermatogenesis in the recipient testes. This project will provide the basis to create a SSC bank for several teleost species in order to preserve the genotype of endangered and high economic interest species.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: