is a transcription factor that binds preferentially to the octamer motif (5'-ATGTTAAT-3'). It may exert a regulatory function in meiotic events that are required for terminal differentiation of male germ cell. The isolation of cDNAs encoding Oct3 revealed the expression of two isoforms of this transcription factor termed Oct3A and Oct3B that are generated by alternative splicing. Human Oct3A and Oct3B are composed of 360 and 265 amino acids, respectively, of which the 225 amino acids at the COOH-termini are identical. The human Oct3 gene, localized to human chromosome 6 in the region of the MHC complex, spans about 7 kb and consists of five exons. The Oct3-related gene, OTF3C, is a retroposon and has been localized to human chromosome 8. Southern blotting and PCR amplification of human DNA indicated the presence of other OTF3-related genes as has been previously noted in the mouse.