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Expression of IGF receptors and its ligands in bovine oocytes and preimplantation embryos

Wang, L.M., Feng, H.L., Ma, Y.Zh., Cang, M., Li, H.J., Yan, Zh., Zhou, P., Wen, J.X., Bou, Shorgan, Liu, D.J.
Animal reproduction science 2009 v.114 no.1-3 pp. 99-108
insulin-like growth factor I, messenger RNA, protein synthesis, cattle, reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, biochemical pathways, blastocyst, cell proliferation, gene expression, physiological response, insulin-like growth factor II, receptors, embryogenesis, insulin-like growth factor binding proteins, oocytes, in vitro studies
The objectives of this study were to assess the mRNA expression and protein location of IGF receptors and its ligands in bovine oocytes and different stages of preimplantation embryos, and then evaluate the effect of different concentrations of IGF-II when added to either the maturation or culture medium on in vitro embryo development. For the assessment of mRNA expression by RT-PCR three replicates each of 100 oocytes, and 60 embryos at each of the 2-cell, 8-cell, morula and blastocyst stages of development were used. Immunocytochemical techniques were used to study the location of IGFs and their receptors for COC, oocytes, and embryos at the same stages of development (n =25). The effect of supplementing maturation medium with IGF-II was examined using groups of 20 oocytes exposed to 0 (control), 10, 20, 50 or 100ng IGF-II/ml medium. Each treatment was replicated five times. To study the effect of IGF-II added to culture medium, groups of 10 zygotes were cultured in the presence of 0 (control), 50, 100 or 150ng IGF-II/ml medium and the treatments replicated four times. The results showed that IGF-I mRNA could not be detected but IGF-II, IGF-IR and IGF-IIR mRNA existed in bovine preimplantation embryos. Proteins for IGF-II, IGF-IR and IGF-IIR were detected on the cell plasma membrane of cumulus cells of COC, immature and mature oocytes, and 2-cell stage embryos. They were observed in blastomere cytoplasm of 8-cell and morula stage embryos. In blastocysts, the IGF proteins were distributed in the trophectoderm but not in the inner cell mass. Adding 20ng/ml IGF-II to maturation medium resulted in higher rates of post-fertilization development than control at 8-cell (58.2% versus 44.5%; p <0.05) and blastocyst (37.0% versus 25.0%; p <0.05) stages of development; and the number of viable cells per blastocyst were significantly higher (126±6 versus 103±5; p <0.05). When IGF-II was added to the culture medium, no significant treatment differences were observed at 8-cell embryo stage but the development rate of zygotes cultured in the presence of 100ng IGF-II/ml medium to blastocysts was significantly higher than that of control (30.0% versus 19.2%; p <0.05). It was concluded that supplementation of in vitro maturation or culture media with IGF-II affects the development of bovine embryos and could be used to improve in vitro embryo production.