Male Reproductive System Lab Learning Objectives Describe the histological organization of the testis and the process of spermatogenesis in the germinal epithelium of the seminiferous tubule. Contrast spermatogenesis from spermiogenesis. Draw a sperm cell and label its major parts. Explain the importance of each portion of the duct system and accessory glands of the male reproductive tract. Explain the structural and functional significance of the blood-testis barrier.
Spermatogenesis is the process by which haploid spermatozoa develop from germ cells in the seminiferous tubules of the testis. This process starts with the mitotic division of the stem cells located close to the basement membrane of the tubules. These cells are called spermatogonial stem cells. The mitotic division of these produces two types of cells.
In simple terms, reproduction is the process by which organisms create descendants. This miracle is a characteristic that all living things have in common and sets them apart from nonliving things. But even though the reproductive system is essential to keeping a species alive, it is not essential to keeping an individual alive. In human reproduction, two kinds of sex cells or gametes are involved.
Unique for its role in human reproduction, a gamete is a specialized sex cell carrying 23 chromosomes—one half the number in body cells. At fertilization, the chromosomes in one male gamete, called a sperm or spermatozoon , combine with the chromosomes in one female gamete, called an oocyte. The paired testes are a crucial component in this process, as they produce both sperm and androgens, the hormones that support male reproductive physiology. In humans, the most important male androgen is testosterone. Several accessory organs and ducts aid the process of sperm maturation and transport the sperm and other seminal components to the penis, which delivers sperm to the female reproductive tract.