Mammalian spermatogenesis is a high regulated biological process occurring in the seminiferous tubules in the testis. The processing of this program requires delicate balance between cell proliferation, differentiation, apoptosis, and expedite cell interaction. Autophagy, an evolutionarily conserved cell reprograming machinery, had been shown to function as an important regulatory mechanism in spermatogenesis and steroid production in testis. Herein, we mainly focused on our understanding of autophagy in mammalian testis. By showing autophagy in physiological and pathophysiological conditions, we try to elicit the regulatory role of autophagy in spermatogenic cells and somatic cells of testis. Moreover, this review is intended to point out factors and mechanisms, which contribute to the initiation of autophagy in testicular cells.
Part of the book: Testes and Ovaries