[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recently, bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) 4 has been shown to inhibit FSH secretion in ewe. The detection of BMP4 mRNA and BMP receptors in the pituitary suggests that BMP4 can exert paracrine actions on FSH production. This work aimed at determining whether BMP4 and/or BMP receptor mRNA as well as activin/inhibin subunit mRNA fluctuates during the estrous cycle when FSHβ mRNA and FSH release changed. The estrous cycles of ewes were synchronized with progestagen sponges. Ewes were killed in late follicular stage (n=5), before the secondary FSH surge (n=4), and in luteal phase (n=4). Using quantitative reverse transcription-PCR, we showed that the levels of mRNA for BMP4, BMP receptor, the inhibitor of differentiation 2 (Id2), a target gene of BMP4, and noggin did not change significantly across the estrous cycle. In contrast, the level of activin βB mRNA and the percentage of immunoreactive cells for activin βB-subunit were higher before the secondary surge of FSH compared to other groups. In ewe pituitary cell cultures, activin, GnRH, or estradiol-17β (E(2)) did not significantly affect the levels of BMP4, BMP receptor, and Id2 mRNA. E(2), but not GnRH, increased the level of activin βB mRNA. Moreover, the in vitro FSH release was not modified by noggin, a BMP antagonist. In contrast, SB431542, an inhibitor of activin pathway, inhibited FSH release. Collectively, our data showed that pituitary BMP4 would not play a crucial role in the regulation of FSH production during the estrous cycle, whereas local activin B would be a major stimulus of FSH synthesis necessary for the secondary FSH surge.
Journal of Endocrinology 10/2010; 207(1):55-65. DOI:10.1677/JOE-10-0035 · 3.72 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A prolific allele named FecL(L) is known to segregate in the meat breed of the French Lacaune sheep on the basis of ovulation rate record. To gain more knowledge about the physiological effects of FecL(L), ewes homozygous for FecL(L) (L/L) were compared to wild-type ewes (+/+) for ovarian phenotype and reproductive endocrine profiles. At the ovarian level, the increased ovulation rate in L/L ewes was associated with an increased number of antral follicles of greater than 3 mm and with preovulatory follicles being, on average, 1 mm smaller. Intrafollicular estradiol and testosterone concentrations were not significantly different between the two genotypes. In contrast, L/L large follicles (>or=6 mm) had lower intrafollicular progesterone concentration. At the molecular level, expressions of ovarian markers, such as CYP19A1, CYP11A1, CYP17A1, LHR, and INHA, were not significantly different between the two genotypes. In contrast, FSHR and STAR mRNA levels increased in granulosa cells from L/L ewes. Plasma concentrations of estradiol, luteinizing hormone (LH), follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), and progesterone measured across a synchronized estrous cycle revealed a significant increase in estradiol levels during the follicular phase, a precocious LH surge, and an increase in progesterone level during the luteal phase of L/L ewes compared to +/+ ewes. Circulating concentrations of FSH were not different between the two genotypes. The precocious LH surge was associated with an increase in frequency of LH pulsatility during the follicular phase. At the pituitary level, mRNA levels for LHB, FSHB, GNRHR, and ESR1 were not significantly different between the two genotypes. In contrast, ESR2 mRNA expression was decreased in L/L ewes compared to +/+ ewes. Based on ovarian phenotype and endocrine profiles, these findings suggest that the mutation in the FecL gene affects ovarian function in a different way compared to other known prolific mutations affecting the bone morphogenetic protein signaling system in the ovine species.
Biology of Reproduction 05/2010; 82(5):815-24. DOI:10.1095/biolreprod.109.082065 · 3.32 Impact Factor