The testes of fetal, prepuberal and adult XX—XY chimaeras were examined using in situ hybridisation to identify the beta-globin transgenic marker contained in one component of each chimaera. This enabled the proportion of XX and XY cells contributing to the major cell lineages of the testis to be estimated from sectioned and air-dried material. A few XX Sertoli cells were found in all three age groups, but the XX contribution was always much lower than in other somatic cell types. Significantly, in fetal XX—XY testes, Sertoli cells were the only cell type to show a bias in favour of the XY component. This strengthens the view that Tdy acts solely in the lineage that gives rise to Sertoli cells. However, the finding of some fetal XX Sertoli cells means that one of the steps in the Tdy-initiated process of Sertoli cell determination is capable of locally recruiting XX cells.

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