Human theca arises from ovarian stroma and is comprised of three discrete subtypes.

TitleHuman theca arises from ovarian stroma and is comprised of three discrete subtypes.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2023
AuthorsGuahmich NLustgarten, Man L, Wang J, Arazi L, Kallinos E, Topper-Kroog A, Grullon G, Zhang K, Stewart J, Schatz-Siemers N, Jones SH, Bodine R, Zaninovic N, Schattman G, Rosenwaks Z, James D
JournalCommun Biol
Date Published2023 Jan 04
KeywordsCell Differentiation, Female, Granulosa Cells, Humans, Ovarian Follicle, Ovary, Theca Cells

Theca cells serve multiple essential functions during the growth and maturation of ovarian follicles, providing structural, metabolic, and steroidogenic support. While the function of theca during folliculogenesis is well established, their cellular origins and the differentiation hierarchy that generates distinct theca sub-types, remain unknown. Here, we performed single cell multi-omics analysis of primary cell populations purified from human antral stage follicles (1-3 mm) to define the differentiation trajectory of theca/stroma cells. We then corroborated the temporal emergence and growth kinetics of defined theca/stroma subpopulations using human ovarian tissue samples and xenografts of cryopreserved/thawed ovarian cortex, respectively. We identified three lineage specific derivatives termed structural, androgenic, and perifollicular theca cells, as well as their putative lineage-negative progenitor. These findings provide a framework for understanding the differentiation process that occurs in each primordial follicle and identifies specific cellular/molecular phenotypes that may be relevant to either diagnosis or treatment of ovarian pathologies.

Alternate JournalCommun Biol
PubMed ID36599970
PubMed Central IDPMC9812973
Grant ListUL1 TR002384 / TR / NCATS NIH HHS / United States
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