[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Luteolysis is characterized by a reduction in progesterone (P4) production and tissue degeneration in the corpus luteum (CL). One of major events during luteolysis is luteal cell death. Galectin-3, a ubiquitously expressed protein involved in many cellular processes, serves as an anti-apoptotic and/or pro-apoptotic factor in various cell types. Although galectin-3 is detected in the bovine CL, its role remains unclear. The expression of galectin-3 in the bovine CL was higher at the regressed stage than at the other luteal stages. Galectin-3 was localized on luteal steroidogenic cells (LSCs). When cultured LSCs were exposed to prostaglandin F2alpha (PGF) for 48 h, the expression and secretion of galectin-3 increased. When the cultured LSCs were treated with galectin-3 for 24 h, cleaved caspase-3 expression was increased and the cell viability was decreased, whereas P4 production did not change. Beta 1 integrin, a target protein of galectin-3, was expressed in bovine CL and possessed glycans which galectin-3 binds. Furthermore, galectin-3 bound to glycans of luteal beta 1 integrin. The decreased cell viability of cultured LSCs by galectin-3 was suppressed by beta1 integrin antibody. The overall findings suggest that the secreted galectin-3 stimulated by PGF plays a role in structural luteolysis by binding to beta 1 integrin.
Biology of Reproduction 05/2014; · 4.03 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Following bidirectional communication, the conceptus and the uterine epithelium must establish the proper cell-cell interaction, resulting in the progression of implantation processes. To clarify the mechanism of conceptus attachment to the uterine endometrium, we studied if vascular cell adhesion molecule (VCAM-1) was expressed in bovine conceptuses or endometrium during the peri-attachment period. Uterine VCAM-1 expression was minimal in day 17 (day 0 = day of estrus) cyclic and pregnant animals, but increased between days 20 and 22 of pregnancy. In the intercaruncular regions, VCAM-1 protein was localized in the luminal and glandular epithelia whereas in the caruncular regions, VCAM-1 protein was detected in the stroma and endothelia of the uterine endometrium. In cultured endometrial epithelial cells (EECs), VCAM-1 expression was up-regulated when treated with uterine flushings or growth factor, and further increased when EECs were cocultured with bovine trophoblast CT-1 cells. VCAM-1 expression in CT-1 cells was also up-regulated with the use of uterine flushings, and further increased when these cells were cocultured with EECs. Expression of VCAM-1 receptor, integrin alpha 4 (ITGA4) mRNA, increased significantly in day 22 conceptuses. In day 22 pregnant uteri, VCAM-1 protein was found in both EECs and conceptuses, but ITGA4 was localized only in trophoblasts. These observations indicate that in the bovine species, cell-cell interactions between conceptuses and uterine epithelial cells are required for sufficient VCAM-1 and ITGA4 expressions, and suggest that uterine VCAM-1 and conceptus ITGA4 play a role in the establishment of conceptus adhesion to the uterine endometrium.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Bovine primary uterine endometrial epithelial cells (EECs) are not ideal for long-term studies, because primary EECs lose hormone responsiveness quickly, and/or they tend to have a short life span. The aims of this study were to establish immortalized bovine EECs and to characterize these cells following long-term cultures. Immortalized bovine EECs were established by transfecting retroviral vectors encoding human papillomavirus (HPV) E6 and E7, and human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) genes. Established bovine immortalized EECs (imEECs) showed the same morphology as primary EECs, and could be grown without any apparent changes for over 60 passages. In addition, imEECs have maintained the features as EECs, exhibiting oxytocin (OT) and interferon tau (IFNT) responsiveness. Therefore, these imEECs, even after numbers of passages, could be used as an in vitro model to investigate cellular and molecular mechanisms, by which the uterine epithelium responds to IFNT stimulation, the event required for the maternal recognition of pregnancy in the bovine species.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To determine whether hypoxia has an effect on luteinization, we examined the influence of hypoxia on a model of bovine luteinizing and non-luteinizing granulosa cell culture. The granulosa cells were obtained from small antral follicles (≤6 mm in diameter). To induce luteinization, the cells were treated for 24 h with insulin (2 µg/ml), forskolin (10 µM) or insulin in combination with forskolin at 20% O2. After 24 h, progesterone (P4) production was higher in the treated cells, which we defined as luteinizing granulosa cells, than in non-treated cells, which we defined as non-luteinizing granulosa cells. P4 production by non-luteinizing granulosa cells was not affected by hypoxia (24 h at 10% and 5% O2), while P4 production by granulosa cells treated with insulin in combination with forskolin was significantly increased under hypoxia (24 h at 10% and 5% O2). Because hypoxia affected P4 production by the luteinizing granulosa cells but not by the non-luteinizing granulosa cells, hypoxia seems to promote P4 production during, rather than before, luteinization. In the cells treated with insulin in combination with forskolin, mRNA and protein expression of steroidogenic acute regulatory protein (StAR) and protein expression of 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3β-HSD) increased under 10% O2, while mRNA and protein expressions of key protein and enzymes in P4 biosynthesis did not increase under 5% O2.
Journal of Reproduction and Development 03/2014; · 1.76 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present study aimed to assess the effect of polymorphisms in the tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) promoter (A/A, A/G and G/G) and exons (T/T, T/C and C/C) on immune function and reproductive performance in dairy cows. The occurrence of the first postpartum ovulation within 3 weeks in the cows with the TNF-α promoter A/G and G/G genotypes was higher than in the A/A group. Among the different TNF-α exon genotypes, the occurrence of early first postpartum ovulation was higher in the T/C and C/C genotype groups than in the T/T group. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the TNF-α gene did not affect the rate of artificial insemination (AI) or duration from parturition to next conception (days open). The apoptosis rate of polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs) did not differ among the TNF-α promoter genotypes, but the PMN transmigration rate was significantly higher for the A/A and A/G genotypes than for the G/G genotype. Interleukin 8 (IL-8) mRNA expression in PMNs and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) before culture was significantly higher for the A/A genotype compared with the G/G genotype. There were no significant differences between the genotypes in the mRNA expression of TNF-α, IL-6, IL-1β, and toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) in PMNs and PBMCs before and 4 h after culture. IL-8 and IL-1β production by PBMCs cultured for 4 h was significantly higher for the animals with the A/A genotype than for those with the G/G genotype. On the other hand, no significant difference was observed in IL-8 and IL-1β production by PMNs among different TNF-α genotypes. Taken together, these results suggest that SNP in the TNF-α gene affects immune function and reproductive performance in dairy cows.
Journal of Reproduction and Development 02/2014; · 1.76 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Regression of the corpus luteum (CL) is characterized by a decay in progesterone (P4) production (functional luteolysis) and disappearance of luteal tissues (structural luteolysis). In mares, structural luteolysis is thought to be caused by apoptosis of luteal cells, but functional luteolysis is poorly understood. 20α-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (20α-HSD) catabolizes P4 into its biologically inactive form, 20α-hydroxyprogesterone (20α-OHP). In mares, aldo-keto reductase (AKR) 1C23, which is a member of the AKR superfamily, has 20α-HSD activity. To clarify whether AKR1C23 is associated with functional luteolysis in mares, we investigated the expression of AKR1C23 in the CL in different luteal phases. The luteal P4 concentration and levels of 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3β-HSD) mRNA were higher in the mid luteal phase than in the late and regressed luteal phases (P<0.05), but the level of 3β-HSD protein was higher in the late luteal phase than in the regressed luteal phase (P<0.05). The luteal 20α-OHP concentration and the level of AKR1C23 mRNA were higher in the late luteal phase than in the early and mid luteal phases (P<0.05), and the level of AKR1C23 protein was also highest in the late luteal phase. Taken together, these findings suggest that metabolism of P4 by AKR1C23 is one of the processes contributing to functional luteolysis in mares.
Journal of Reproduction and Development 02/2014; · 1.76 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In mammals, the corpus luteum (CL) is an essential endocrine gland for the establishment and maintenance of pregnancy. If pregnancy is not established, the CL regresses and disappears rapidly from the ovary. A possible explanation for the rapid disappearance of the CL is that luteal cells are transported from the ovary via lymphatic vessels. Here, we report the presence of cells positive for 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3β-HSD), an enzyme involved in progesterone synthesis, in the lumen of lymphatic vessels at the regressing luteal stage and in the lymphatic fluid collected from the ovarian pedicle ipsilateral to the regressing CL. The 3β-HSD positive cells were alive and contained lipid droplets. The 3β-HSD positive cells in the lymphatic fluid were most abundant at days 22-24 after ovulation. These findings show that live steroidogenic cells are in the lymphatic vessels drained from the CL. The outflow of steroidogenic cells starts at the regressing luteal stage and continues after next ovulation. The overall findings suggest that the complete disappearance of the CL during luteolysis is involved in the outflow of luteal cells from the CL via ovarian lymphatic vessels.
PLoS ONE 01/2014; 9(2):e88953. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study was to investigate the interaction between ovarian steroids, interleukins and prostaglandins (PG) in equine epithelial and stromal cells in vitro. In Experiment 1, cells were exposed to IL-1 α (10 ng/mL), IL-1 β (10 ng/mL) or IL-6 (10 ng/mL) for 24 h and cell proliferation was determined using MTT. In Experiment 2, cells were exposed to progesterone (P4; 10(-7) M); 17- β estradiol (E2; 10(-9) M) or P4+E2 for 24 h and later medium was replaced with a fresh one treated with IL-1 α , IL-1 β or IL-6 (10 ng/mL, each) for 24 h. The oxytocin (OT; 10(-7) M) was used as a positive control. In Experiment 3, cells were exposed to P4 (10(-7) M), E2 (10(-9) M) or P4+E2 for 24 h and the IL receptor mRNAs transcription was determined using Real-time PCR. Prostaglandins concentration was determined using the direct enzyme immunoassay (EIA) method. Our findings reveal a functional linking between ovarian steroids and IL-stimulated PG secretion by equine endometrial cells. This interaction could be one of the mechanisms responsible for endometrial local orchestrating events during the estrous cycle and early pregnancy.
Mediators of Inflammation 01/2014; 2014:208103. · 3.88 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Progesterone (P4) derivatives which are commonly used to block the cyclicity of domestic cats disturb the endocrine balance in the endometrium. The aims of this study were (i) to examine whether lipopolysaccharide (LPS) is responsible for enhancement of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα) secretion by the feline endometrial epithelial and stromal cells in vitro, (ii) to know whether immunolocalization of TNFα/TNFR1 and TNFR2 differs in cats at estrus or diestrus, receiving medroxyprogesterone acetate and suffering from pyometra, and (iii) to determine if TNFα-challenged prostaglandin secretion is stopped by prostaglandin synthases inhibitors. A total of 37 domestic adult cats in estrus or diestrus, receiving octane medroxyprogesterone or having clinical symptoms of pyometra, were enrolled in this study. The results obtained showed a distinct increase in LPS-challenged TNFα secretion in endometrial epithelial, but not stromal cells. TNFα augmented PG secretion was blocked by phospholipase A2 (PLA2) and cyclooxygeanase-2 (COX-2), but not by mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) inhibitor. TNFα/TNFR1 and 2 protein expressions were limited mostly to the surface and glandular epithelium. TNFα/TNFRs protein was upregulated in the inflammatory uterus and hence may be involved in development of pathologic changes in the endometrial glands in cats receiving exogenous P4 as a hormonal contraceptive.
Mediators of Inflammation 01/2014; 2014:689280. · 3.88 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Bovine interferon (bIFN) τ plays a crucial role in maternal-fetal recognition and was expressed using a Bombyx mori (Bm) nuclear polyhedrosis virus (silkworm baculovirus) gene expression system. The biological effects of Bm-recombinant bIFNτ (rbIFNτ) on prostaglandin (PG) F2α synthesis were investigated in cultured bovine endometrial epithelial cells with oxytocin (OT, 100 nM) and on the in vitro development of bovine embryos. Bm-rbIFNτ and OT were shown to suppress PGF2α production in a dose-dependent manner. When in vitro produced morula stage embryos were cultured for 72 hr in modified CR1aa medium supplemented with or without rbIFNτ, Bm-rbIFNτ (10 ng/ml) significantly promoted development to the expanded blastocyst stage. In conclusion, Bm-rbIFNτ was suggested to have the same bioactivity as native IFNτ.
Journal of Veterinary Medical Science 11/2013; · 0.88 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Isolated stromal cells from the ampullary and isthmic parts of bovine oviductal tissues were cultured in monolayer and spheroid (cell aggregate) systems. Prostaglandin F2α (PGF) plays a crucial role in oviductal contraction and is produced by oviductal epithelial cells in cattle. Since stromal cells of many organs produce PGF, PGF production by bovine oviductal stromal cells was investigated. After PGF synthesis was confirmed, the utility of isolation and culture methods for oviductal stromal cells was evaluated by PGF production in the present study. The homogeneity of the cells was >99%. PGF production of the cells was increased by tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF). The stromal cells aggregated and formed a spheroid, and PGF production was higher in the spheroid culture than in the monolayer culture. The isolation and culture methods described here will facilitate studies of the physiological function of bovine oviductal stromal cells.
Journal of Reproduction and Development 10/2013; · 1.76 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although prostaglandin (PG) F2α analogues are routinely used for oestrus synchronisation in cattle, their effects on the function of the bovine corpus luteum (CL), and on ovarian arterial contractility, may not reflect the physiological effects of endogenous PGF2α. In the first of two related experiments, the effects of different analogues of PGF2α (aPGF2α) on the secretory function and apoptosis of cultured bovine cells of the CL were assessed. Enzymatically-isolated bovine luteal cells (from between days 8 and 12 of the oestrous cycle), were stimulated for 24h with naturally-occurring PGF2α or aPGF2α (dinoprost, cloprostenol or luprostiol). Secretion of progesterone (P4) was determined and cellular [Ca(2+)]i mobilisation, as well as cell viability and apoptosis were measured. Naturally-occurring PGF2α and dinoprost stimulated P4 secretion (P<0.05), whereas cloprostenol and luprostiol did not influence P4 synthesis. The greatest cytotoxic and pro-apoptotic effects were observed in the luprostiol-treated cells, at 37.3% and 202%, respectively (P<0.001). The greatest effect on [Ca(2+)]i mobilisation in luteal cells was observed post-luprostiol treatment (200%; P<0.001). In a second experiment, the influence of naturally-occurring PGF2α and aPGF2α on ovarian arterial contraction in vitro, were examined. No differences in the effects of dinoprost or naturally-occurring PGF2α were found across the studied parameters. The effects of cloprostenol and luprostiol on luteal cell death, in addition to their effects on ovarian arterial contractility, were much greater than those produced by treatment with naturally-occurring PGF2α.
The Veterinary Journal 09/2013; · 2.42 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mammalian endometrium changes morphologically and functionally throughout the estrous cycle. In some species, endometrial cells also undergo periodic proliferation and degeneration. However, the remodeling of bovine endometrium throughout the estrous cycle remains unclear. In the present study, we examined how the remodeling of bovine endometrium varied through the estrous cycle by measuring the relative rates of cell proliferation and apoptosis. Cells positive for both KI-67 (a proliferation marker) and cleaved caspase-3 (CCP3: an apoptotic cell marker) were immunohistochemically evaluated throughout the estrous cycle in the luminal and glandular epithelia, and the stroma of bovine endometrium. Percentages of KI-67-positive cells tended to be higher at the early luteal and follicular stages than at the mid and late luteal stages in all cell types. Similarly, percentages of CCP3-positive cells were higher at the early luteal stage than at the mid and late luteal stages in the luminal epithelium and stroma. Furthermore, CCP3 expression levels by Western blot analysis agreed with these immunohistological observations. On the other hand, DNA fragmentation was detected in the bovine endometrium without significant differences during the estrous cycle by the terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL) method. Together, these results show that cell proliferation and apoptosis undergo cyclic patterns in the bovine endometrium, and suggest that the bovine endometrium is remodeled in each estrous cycle.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Summer heat stress (HS) negatively affects reproductive functions including prostaglandin (PG) F2α secretion in the endometrium, and decreases fertility in cattle. Here, we examined the effects of elevated temperatures on PG synthesis in oviductal epithelial cells. The epithelial cells obtained from the ampulla and the isthmus of the oviduct were incubated at various temperatures (38.5°C, 39.5°C, 40.0°C and 40.5°C) for 24h. In the ampulla, the concentration of PGE2 was higher at 40.5°C than at 38.5°C, while PGF2α production was not affected by temperature in this range. Expressions of microsomal PGE synthase 1 (mPGES1) mRNA, cytosolic PGES (cPGES) mRNA, and heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) mRNA and protein were higher at 40.5°C than at 38.5°C in the ampullary epithelial cells. The seasonal changes of PGES and HSP90 mRNA expression in oviductal tissues were also investigated. The expression of cPGES and HSP90 mRNA was higher in the ampullary tissues in summer than in winter. In summary, elevated temperatures stimulated PGE2 production in the ampullary oviduct by increasing the expressions of PGESs and HSP90 which can activate cPGES. The overall results suggest that HS upsets the PG secretions and reduces oviductal smooth muscle motility, which in turn could decrease gamete/embryo transport through the oviduct.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cortisol (Cr), the most important glucocorticoid (GC), is well known to suppress uterine prostaglandin F2α (PGF) production. However, the details of the regulatory mechanisms controlling the cyclic changes in endometrial PGF production remain unclear. Here we investigated the expression of the GC receptor (GC-Rα), the actions of cortisol throughout the estrous cycle and the regulatory mechanism of GC-Rα in the bovine endometrium. The levels of GC-Rα protein were greater at the mid-luteal stage (Days 8-12) than at the other stages. Cr more strongly suppressed PGF production at the mid-luteal stage than at the follicular stage. GC-Rα expression was increased by progesterone (P4) but decreased by estradiol-17β (E2) in cultured endometrial stromal cells. The overall results suggest that ovarian steroid hormones control the cyclic changes in endometrial PGF production by regulating GC-Rα expression in bovine endometrial stromal cells.
Journal of Reproduction and Development 04/2013; · 1.76 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Luteoprotective mechanisms of luteinizing hormone (LH) involved in the maintenance of bovine corpus luteum (CL) function have not been completely clarified. Since antioxidant enzymes are well documented as antiapoptotic factors in the CL of many mammals, we hypothesized that the luteoprotective action of LH is mediated by stimulating the local production and action of antioxidant enzymes. To test the above hypothesis, in the present study, we examined the mechanisms involved in the luteoprotective actions of LH. Cultured bovine luteal cells obtained from the CL at the mid-luteal stage (days 8-12 of the estrous cycle) were treated with LH (10 ng/ml), onapristone (OP; an specific progesterone receptor antagonist, 100 μM) and diethyldithiocarbamate [DETC; an inhibitor of superoxide dismutase (SOD), 100 μM] for 24 h. LH in combination with or without OP significantly increased the mRNA and protein expressions of manganese SOD (Mn-SOD) and catalase (CATA) and SOD activity. While LH alone significantly increased the mRNA and protein expressions of SOD containing copper and zinc (Cu,Zn-SOD), OP in combination with or without LH significantly decreased the mRNA and protein expressions of Cu,Zn-SOD. In addition, Cu,Zn-SOD, Mn-SOD and CATA mRNA expressions were higher at the mid luteal phase than the other luteal phases. LH in combination with DETC significantly decreased LH-increased cell viability. The overall results suggest that LH increases cell viability by LH-increased antioxidant enzymes, resulting in maintenance of CL function during the luteal phase in cattle.
Journal of Reproduction and Development 02/2013; · 1.76 Impact Factor