Segregation of Naturally Occurring Mitochondrial DNA Variants in a Mini-Pig Model.
ABSTRACT: The maternally inherited mitochondrial genome (mtDNA) is present in multimeric form within cells and harbors sequence variants (heteroplasmy). While a single mtDNA variant at high load can cause disease, naturally occurring variants likely persist at low levels across generations of healthy populations. To determine how naturally occurring variants are segregated and transmitted, we generated a mini-pig model, which originates from the same maternal ancestor. Following next-generation sequencing, we identified a series of low-level mtDNA variants in blood samples from the female founder and her daughters. Four variants, ranging from 3% to 20%, were selected for validation by high-resolution melting analysis in 12 tissues from 31 animals across three generations. All four variants were maintained in the offspring, but variant load fluctuated significantly across the generations in several tissues, with sex-specific differences in heart and liver. Moreover, variant load was persistently reduced in high-respiratory organs (heart, brain, diaphragm, and muscle), which correlated significantly with higher mtDNA copy number. However, oocytes showed increased heterogeneity in variant load, which correlated with increased mtDNA copy number during in vitro maturation. Altogether, these outcomes show that naturally occurring mtDNA variants segregate and are maintained in a tissue-specific manner across generations. This segregation likely involves the maintenance of selective mtDNA variants during organogenesis, which can be differentially regulated in oocytes and preimplantation embryos during maturation.
Project description:Understanding mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) evolution and inheritance has broad implications for animal speciation and human disease models. However, few natural models exist that can simultaneously represent mtDNA transmission bias, mutation, and copy number variation. Certain isolates of the nematode Caenorhabditis briggsae harbor large, naturally-occurring mtDNA deletions of several hundred basepairs affecting the NADH dehydrogenase subunit 5 (nduo-5) gene that can be functionally detrimental. These deletion variants can behave as selfish DNA elements under genetic drift conditions, but whether all of these large deletion variants are transmitted in the same preferential manner remains unclear. In addition, the degree to which transgenerational mtDNA evolution profiles are shared between isolates that differ in their propensity to accumulate the nduo-5 deletion is also unclear. We address these knowledge gaps by experimentally bottlenecking two isolates of C. briggsae with different nduo-5 deletion frequencies for up to 50 generations and performing total DNA sequencing to identify mtDNA variation. We observed multiple mutation profile differences and similarities between C. briggsae isolates, a potentially species-specific pattern of copy number dysregulation, and some evidence for genetic hitchhiking in the deletion-bearing isolate. Our results further support C. briggsae as a practical model for characterizing naturally-occurring mtgenome variation and contribute to the understanding of how mtgenome variation persists in animal populations and how it presents in mitochondrial disease states.
Project description:The maternally inherited mitochondrial genome encodes key proteins of the electron transfer chain, which produces the vast majority of cellular ATP. Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) present in the mature oocyte acts as a template for all mtDNA that is replicated during development to meet the specific energy requirements of each tissue. Individuals that share a maternal lineage cluster into groupings known as mtDNA haplotypes. MtDNA haplotypes confer advantages and disadvantages to an organism and this affects its phenotype. In livestock, certain mtDNA haplotypes are associated with improved milk and meat quality, whilst, other species, mtDNA haplotypes have shown increased longevity, growth and susceptibility to diseases. In this work, we have set out to determine whether mtDNA haplotypes influence reproductive capacity. This has been undertaken using a pig model.To determine the genetic diversity of domestic pigs in Australia, we have sequenced the D-loop region of 368 pigs, and identified five mtDNA haplotypes (A to E). To assess reproductive capacity, we compared oocyte maturation, fertilization and development to blastocyst, and found that there were significant differences for maturation and fertilization amongst the haplotypes. We then determined that haplotypes C, D and E produced significantly larger litters. When we assessed the conversion of developmentally competent oocytes and their subsequent developmental stages to offspring, we found that haplotypes A and B had the lowest reproductive efficiencies. Amongst the mtDNA haplotypes, the number of mtDNA variants harbored at >25 % correlated with oocyte quality. MtDNA copy number for developmentally competent oocytes positively correlated with the level of the 16383delC variant. This variant is located in the conserved sequence box II, which is a regulatory region for mtDNA transcription and replication.We have identified five mtDNA haplotypes in Australian domestic pigs indicating that genetic diversity is restricted. We have also shown that there are differences in reproductive capacity amongst the mtDNA haplotypes. We conclude that mtDNA haplotypes affect pig reproductive capacity and can be used as a marker to complement current selection methods to identify productive pigs.
Project description:Objective:The aim of present study is to determine the effects of supplementation of oocyte maturation medium with sodium selenite (SS) on oocyte mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number and reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels. Materials and Methods:In this experimental study, germinal vesicle (GV), metaphase I (MI), and metaphase II (MII) stage oocytes were recovered from 6-8 week old female mice after superovulation. Some of the GV oocytes were cultured and matured in the presence and absence of SS. Then in vivo and in vitro matured (IVM) oocytes were subjected to mitochondria staining by MitoTracker green, ROS analysis, and mtDNA copy number determination using absolute real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Results:The maturation rate of GV oocytes to the MII stage significantly increased in the SS supplemented group (79.25%) compared to the control group (72.46%, P<0.05). The intensity of mitochondrial staining was not different among the studied groups, whereas the mitochondria distribution in the cytoplasm of the IVM oocytes showed some aggregation pattern. The in vivo obtained MII oocytes had lower ROS levels and higher mtDNA copy numbers than IVM-MII oocytes (P<0.05). The SS supplemented group had significantly lower ROS levels and higher mtDNA copy numbers than the non-treated group (P<0.05). Conclusion:SS increased oocyte mtDNA copy number by decreasing oxidative stress. SS had an association with better oocyte developmental competence.
Project description:Mitochondria are responsible for the production of ATP, which drives cellular metabolic and biosynthetic processes. This is the first study to quantify the mtDNA copy number across all stages of oogenesis in a large monovulatory species, it includes assessment of the activity of mitochondria in germinal vesicle (GV) and metaphase II (MII) oocytes through JC1 staining. Primordial to early antral follicles (n = 249) were isolated from the sheep ovarian cortex following digestion at 37°C for 1 h and all oocytes were disaggregated from their somatic cells. Germinal vesicle oocytes (n = 133) were aspirated from 3- to 5-mm diameter antral follicles, and mature MII oocytes (n = 71) were generated following in vitro maturation (IVM). The mtDNA copy number in each oocyte was quantified using real-time PCR and showed a progressive, but variable increase in the amount of mtDNA in oocytes from primordial follicles (605 ± 205, n = 8) to mature MII oocytes (744 633 ± 115 799, n = 13; P < 0.05). Mitochondrial activity (P > 0.05) was not altered during meiotic progression from GV to MII during IVM. The observed increase in the mtDNA copy number across oogenesis reflects the changing ATP demands needed to orchestrate cytoskeletal and cytoplasmic reorganization during oocyte growth and maturation and the need to fuel the resumption of meiosis in mature oocytes following the pre-ovulatory gonadotrophin surge.
Project description:ATP is critical for oocyte maturation, fertilization, and subsequent embryo development. Both mitochondrial membrane potential and copy number expand during oocyte maturation. In order to differentiate the roles of mitochondrial metabolic activity and mtDNA copy number during oocyte maturation, we used two inhibitors, FCCP (carbonyl cyanide p-(tri-fluromethoxy)phenyl-hydrazone) and ddC (2'3-dideoxycytidine), to deplete the mitochondrial membrane potential (??m) and mitochondrial copy number, respectively. FCCP (2000 nM) reduced ATP production by affecting mitochondrial ??m, decreased the mRNA expression of Bmp15 (bone morphogenetic protein 15), and shortened the poly(A) tails of Bmp15, Gdf9 (growth differentiation factor 9), and Cyclin B1 transcripts. FCCP (200 and 2000 nM) also affected p34(cdc2) kinase activity. By contrast, ddC did not alter ATP production. Instead, ddC significantly decreased mtDNA copy number (P < 0.05). FCCP (200 and 2000 nM) also decreased extrusion of the first polar body, whereas ddC at all concentrations did not affect the ability of immature oocytes to reach metaphase II. Both FCCP (200 and 2000 nM) and ddC (200 and 2000 µM) reduced parthenogenetic blastocyst formation compared with untreated oocytes. However, these inhibitors did not affect total cell number and apoptosis. These findings suggest that mitochondrial metabolic activity is critical for oocyte maturation and that both mitochondrial metabolic activity and replication contribute to the developmental competence of porcine oocytes.
Project description:In mammals, observations of rapid shifts in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) variants between generations have led to the creation of the bottleneck theory for the transmission of mtDNA. The bottleneck could be attributed to a marked decline of mtDNA content in germ cells giving rise to the next generation, to a small effective number of mtDNA segregation units resulting from homoplasmic nucleoids rather than the single mtDNA molecule serving as the units of segregation, or to the selective transmission of a subgroup of the mtDNA population to the progeny. We have previously determined mtDNA copy number in single germ cells and shown that the bottleneck occurs without the reduction in germline mtDNA content. Recently one study suggested that the bottleneck is driven by a remarkable decline of mtDNA copies in early primordial germ cells (PGCs), while another study reported that the mtDNA genetic bottleneck results from replication of a subpopulation of the mtDNA genome during postnatal oocyte maturation and not during embryonic oogenesis, despite a detected a reduction in mtDNA content in early PGCs. To clarify these contradictory results, we examined the mtDNA copy number in PGCs isolated from transgenic mice expressing fluorescent proteins specifically in PGCs as in the aforementioned two other studies. We provide clear evidence to confirm that no remarkable reduction in mtDNA content occurs in PGCs and reinforce that the bottleneck is generated without reduction of mtDNA content in germ cells.
Project description:Heteroplasmy-the presence of multiple mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplotypes in an individual-can lead to numerous mitochondrial diseases. The presentation of such diseases depends on the frequency of the heteroplasmic variant in tissues, which, in turn, depends on the dynamics of mtDNA transmissions during germline and somatic development. Thus, understanding and predicting these dynamics between generations and within individuals is medically relevant. Here, we study patterns of heteroplasmy in 2 tissues from each of 345 humans in 96 multigenerational families, each with, at least, 2 siblings (a total of 249 mother-child transmissions). This experimental design has allowed us to estimate the timing of mtDNA mutations, drift, and selection with unprecedented precision. Our results are remarkably concordant between 2 complementary population-genetic approaches. We find evidence for a severe germline bottleneck (7-10 mtDNA segregating units) that occurs independently in different oocyte lineages from the same mother, while somatic bottlenecks are less severe. We demonstrate that divergence between mother and offspring increases with the mother's age at childbirth, likely due to continued drift of heteroplasmy frequencies in oocytes under meiotic arrest. We show that this period is also accompanied by mutation accumulation leading to more de novo mutations in children born to older mothers. We show that heteroplasmic variants at intermediate frequencies can segregate for many generations in the human population, despite the strong germline bottleneck. We show that selection acts during germline development to keep the frequency of putatively deleterious variants from rising. Our findings have important applications for clinical genetics and genetic counseling.
Project description:<h4>Purpose</h4>The oxygen consumption rates (OCRs) in mice and cattle have been reported to change during preimplantation embryogenesis. On the other hand, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number has been shown to be unchanged in mice and changed in cattle and pigs. The interactions between mitochondrial functions and mtDNA copy numbers in human embryos during preimplantation development remain obscure.<h4>Methods</h4>Sixteen oocytes and 100 embryos were used to assess mtDNA copy numbers and OCR. Three oocytes and 12 embryos were used to determine cytochrome c oxidase activity. All specimens were obtained between July 2004 and November 2014, and donated from couples after they had given informed consent. Mature oocytes and embryos at 2-14-cell, morula, and blastocyst stages were used to assess their OCR in the presence or absence of mitotoxins. The mtDNA copy number was determined using the samples after analysis of OCR. The relationships between developmental stages and OCR, and developmental stages and mtDNA copy number were analyzed. Furthermore, cytochrome c oxidase activity was determined in oocytes and 4-cell to blastocyst stage embryos.<h4>Results</h4>The structure of inner mitochondrial membranes and their respiratory function developed with embryonic growth and the mtDNA copy numbers decreased transiently compared with those of oocytes. The undifferentiated state of inner cell mass cells appears to be associated with a low OCR. On the other hand, the mtDNA copy numbers increased and aerobic metabolism of mitochondria increased in trophectoderm cells.<h4>Conclusions</h4>The mitochondrial respiratory function of human embryos developed along with embryonic growth although the copy numbers of mtDNA decreased transiently before blastulation. OCRs increased toward the morula stage ahead of an increase of mtDNA at the time of blastulation. Data regarding changes in mitochondrial function and mtDNA copy number during preimplantation development of human embryos will be useful for the development of ideal culture media.
Project description:We measured the proportion of mutant mtDNA (mutation load) in 82 primary oocytes from a woman who harbored the A3243G mtDNA mutation. The frequency distribution of mutation load indicates that random drift is the principal mechanism that determines the level of mutant mtDNA within individual oocytes.
Project description:As a common injury almost all cells face, DNA damage in oocytes-especially double-strand breaks (DSBs), which occur naturally during the first meiosis phase (meiosis I) due to synaptic complex separation-affects the fertilization ability of oocytes, instead of causing cancer (as in somatic cells). The mechanism of oocytes to effectively repair DSB damage has not yet been clearly studied, especially considering medically induced DSBs superimposed on naturally occurring DSBs in meiosis I. It was found that maturation rates decreased or increased, respectively corresponding with overexpression or interference of <i>p21</i> in bovine oocytes. At the same time, the maturation rate of bovine oocytes decreased with a gradual increase in Zeocin dose, and the <i>p21</i> expression in those immature oocytes changed significantly with the gradual increase in Zeocin dose (same as increased DSB intensity). Same as <i>p21</i>, the variation trend of <i>ATM</i> expression was consistent with the gradual increase in Zeocin dose. Furthermore, the oocytes demonstrated tolerance to DSBs during meiosis I, while the maturation rates decreased when the damage exceeded a certain threshold; according to which, it may be that <i>ATM</i> regulates the p53-p21 pathway to affect the completion of meiosis. In addition, nonhomologous recombination and cumulus cells are potentially involved in the process by which oocytes respond to DSB damage.