Heparin α-glucosaminide N-acetyl transferase deficiency in the testis on epididymis of mice - ANAT 396 Undergraduate Research Project Application Form

Supervisor's Name: Dr. Carlos Morales

Supervisor's Email: carlos.morales [at] mcgill.ca

Supervisor's Phone: (514) 398-6398

Supervisor's Website:

Supervisor's department: Anatomy and Cell Biology

Course number: ANAT 396 (Anatomy and Cell Biology)

Term: Fall 2015

Project start date: Friday, September 4, 2015

Project end date: Monday, December 7, 2015

Project title: Heparin α-glucosaminide N-acetyl transferase deficiency in the testis on epididymis of mice

Project description (50-100 words suggested): Heparan sulfate is a proteoglycan present in the extracellular matrix. It is degraded in lysosomes in a step-wise manner. Several enzymes are related in this process but the absence of one produces a lysosomal storage disease called mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS). The deficiency of heparin α-glucosaminide N-acetyl transferase (HGSNAT), results in MPS type 3, also known as Sanfilippo syndrome. This disorder leads to an accumulation of undegraded heparan sulfate in lysosomes that produces a toxicity to cells. Sanfilippo syndrome is a progressive disorder that affects the brain, spinal cord and male reproductive organs. In the seminiferous tubules of mouse testis, Sanfilippo syndrome affects the morphology of Sertoli cells. The objective of this research is to evaluate by morphometry the seminiferous tubule and epididymis areas of wild-type and Hgsnat knock-out mice. This study will define if the toxicity of proteoglycans affects the structure and function of the male reproductive tract.

Prerequisite: 1 term completed at McGill + CGPA of 3.0 or higher; or permission of instructor.

Grading scheme (The final report must be worth at least 50% of final grade): 50% Final Lab Report and 50% Participation/Lab Performance

Project status: This project is taken; however students may contact the professor to discuss other possible '396' projects this term.

Ethics, safety, and training: Supervisors are responsible for the ethics and safety compliance of undergraduate students. This project involves NEITHER animal subjects, nor human subjects, nor biohazardous substances, nor radioactive materials, nor handling chemicals, nor using lasers.