Endocrinology and Immunophysiology

Endocrinology and Immunophysiology Research Group

Research Group Head

microscope2By investigating the unique mechanisms of immunoregulation in the testis and the effects of inflammation and infection on male reproductive function, Associate Professor Hedger and his team wish to better understand the relationship between the male reproductive tract and the immune system. This will provide them with clues about autoimmune infertility, inflammation, and infections of the male reproductive tract, and may eventually hold the key to the development of male contraceptives and immunotherapeutics for transplant patients.

Research Projects

Research Group

Selected publications

  • Okuma Y, Saito K, O’Connor AE, Phillips DJ, de Kretser DM and Hedger MP (2005) Reciprocal regulation of activin A and inhibin B by interleukin-1 (IL-1) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in rat Sertoli cells in vitro. Journal of Endocrinology 185:99-110.

  • Hedger MP, Hales DB (2006) Immunophysiology of the male reproductive tract. In: “Knobil and Neill’s Physiology of Reproduction, 3rd ed.” Volume 1. Neill J (ed). Academic Press, New York pp 1195-1286.

  • Foulds LM, Boysen RI, Crane M, Yang Y, Muir JA, Smith AI, de Kretser DM, Hearn MTW, Hedger MP (2008) Molecular identification of lyso-glycerophosphocholines as endogenous immunosuppressives in bovine and rat gonadal fluids. Biology of Reproduction 79:525-536.

  • Hedger MP, Winnall WR, Phillips DJ, de Kretser DM (2011) Regulation and functions of activin and follistatin in inflammation and immunity. Vitamins and Hormones 85:255-297.

  • Winnall WR, Muir JA, Hedger MP (2011) Differential responses of epithelial Sertoli cells of the rat testis to Toll-like receptor 2 and 4 ligands: implications for studies of testicular inflammation using bacterial lipopolysaccharides. Innate Immunity 17:123-136.