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Recommended video: Testis histology [18:29]
Histology of the testis.

Spermatogonia are small, round stem and progenitor cells of the testes that give rise to spermatozoa through the process of spermatogenesis. They are diploid cells and possess 23 pairs of chromosomes.

Spermatogonia are located specifically in the basal compartment of the epithelial wall of the seminiferous tubules of the testes. They measure about 12 μm in diameter and lie in close association with sustentocyte (Sertoli cell) surfaces, which support the development and maturation of spermatozoa.

There are two main subpopulations of spermatogonia: type A and type B. These can be distinguished based on histological features and function.

  • Type A spermatogonia function as stem cells and typically bear dark, ovoid nuclei with condensed chromatin. These cells produce new type A and type B spermatogonia.
  • Type B spermatogonia, on the other hand, give rise to progenitor cells with pale-staining, spherical nuclei which are responsible for the production of spermatozoa.
Terminology English: Spermatogonia

Definition Diploid germ (stem) cell that produces spermatozoa
Function Maintenance the germ (stem) cell pool
Production of spermatozoa

Learn more about spermatogonia of the testes in the following study unit:

Spermatogonia: want to learn more about it?

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