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Insights on Platelet-Derived Growth Factor Receptor α-Positive Interstitial Cells in the Male Reproductive Tract.

Male infertility is a significant factor in approximately half of all infertility cases and is marked by a decreased sperm count and motility. A decreased sperm count is caused by not only a decreased production of sperm but also decreased numbers successfully passing through the male reproductive tract. Smooth muscle movement may play an important role in sperm transport in the male reproductive tract; thus, understanding the mechanism of this movement is necessary to elucidate the cause of sperm transport disorder. Recent studies have highlighted the presence of platelet-derived growth factor receptor α (PDGFRα)-positive interstitial cells (PICs) in various smooth muscle organs. Although research is ongoing, PICs in the male reproductive tract may be involved in the regulation of smooth muscle movement, as they are in other smooth muscle organs. This review summarizes the findings to date on PICs in male reproductive organs. Further exploration of the structural, functional, and molecular characteristics of PICs could provide valuable insights into the pathogenesis of male infertility and potentially lead to new therapeutic approaches.

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