The Expression of miRNAs in Human Ovaries, Oocytes, Extracellular Vesicles, and Early Embryos: A Systematic Review.
ABSTRACT: The recent discovery of microRNAs (miRNAs) in human reproductive tissues and cells indicates a possible functional role in reproductive function. However, the studies published to date in female reproductive tissues/cells and embryos are inconclusive and sometimes controversial. In order to update the knowledge of this field, the present study aimed to discuss, through a systematic review, the role of miRNAs in female human reproduction and early embryogenesis. We conducted a systematic review of the published literature in MEDLINE and EMBASE databases through June 2018 (plus a complementary search until July 2019), in accordance with the PRISMA guidelines. We have included descriptive and observational studies, in which fertile/infertile women were well-defined. The primary outcome was the miRNA expression in ovaries, oocytes, extracellular vesicles, and embryos. We identified 25,204 articles, of which 28 were selected for qualitative analysis: 18 in ovaries and extracellular vesicles, three in oocytes, and seven in embryos. The present systematic review of descriptive and observational studies demonstrates that aberrant miRNA expression in female reproductive tissues/cells and embryos is related with infertility and embryogenesis errors. The expression of specific miRNAs, particularly in extracellular vesicles, may be used in the future as biomarkers of infertility and prognostic tools of embryo development.
Project description:Ovarian aging affects female reproductive potential and is characterized by alterations in proteins, mRNAs and non-coding RNAs inside the ovarian follicle. Ovarian somatic cells and the oocyte communicate with each other secreting different molecules into the follicular fluid, by extracellular vesicles. The cargo of follicular fluid vesicles may influence female reproductive ability; accordingly, analysis of extracellular vesicle content could provide information about the quality of the female germ cell.In order to identify the most significant deregulated microRNAs in reproductive aging, we quantified the small extracellular vesicles in human follicular fluid from older and younger women and analyzed the expression of microRNAs enclosed inside the vesicles. We found twice as many small extracellular vesicles in the follicular fluid from older women and several differentially expressed microRNAs. Correlating microRNA expression profiles with vesicle number, we selected 46 deregulated microRNAs associated with aging. Bioinformatic analyses allowed us to identify six miRNAs involved in TP53 signaling pathways. Specifically, miR-16-5p, miR214-3p and miR-449a were downregulated and miR-125b, miR-155-5p and miR-372 were upregulated, influencing vesicle release, oocyte maturation and stress response. We believe that this approach allowed us to identify a battery of microRNAs strictly related to female reproductive aging.
Project description:Pregnancy success results from the interaction of multiple factors, among them are folliculogenesis and early embryonic development. Failure during these different processes can lead to difficulties in conception. Alternatives to overcome these problems are based on assisted reproductive techniques. Extracellular vesicles are cell-secreted vesicles present in different body fluids and contain bioactive materials, such as messenger RNA, microRNAs (miRNAs), and proteins. Thus, our hypothesis is that extracellular vesicles from follicular fluid from 3-6 mm ovarian follicles can modulate bovine embryo development in vitro. To test our hypothesis follicular fluid from bovine ovaries was aspirated and small-extracellular vesicles (<200 nm) were isolated for further analysis. Additionally, small-extracellular vesicles (EVs) were utilized for functional experiments investigating their role in modulating messenger RNA, microRNA as well as global DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation levels of bovine blastocysts. EVs from 3-6 mm follicles were used for RNA-seq and miRNA analysis. Functional annotation analysis of the EVs transcripts revealed messages related to chromatin remodeling and transcriptional regulation. EVs treatment during oocyte maturation and embryo development causes changes in blastocyst rates, as well as changes in the transcription levels of genes related to embryonic metabolism and development. Supplementation with EVs from 3-6 mm follicles during oocyte maturation and early embryo development (until the 4-cell stage) increased the levels of bta-miR-631 (enriched in EVs from 3-6 mm follicles) in embryos. Interestingly, the addition of EVs from 3-6 mm follicles induced changes in global DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation levels compared to embryos produced by the standard in vitro production system. Our results indicate that the supplementation of culture media with EVs isolated from the follicular fluid of 3-6 mm follicles during oocyte maturation and early embryo development can partially modify metabolic and developmental related genes as well as miRNA and global DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation, suggesting that EVs play an important role during oocyte maturation and early embryo development in vitro.
Project description:Ovary pre-conditioned medium and ovary co-culture increased the efficiency of green doubled haploid plant production in bread wheat anther culture. The positive effect of this medium led to a 6- and 11-fold increase in the numbers of embryos and green plants, respectively, having a greater effect on a medium-low responding cultivar. Ovary genotype and developmental stage significantly affected microspore embryogenesis. By the use of Caramba ovaries it was possible to reach a 2-fold increase in the number of embryos and green plants, and to decrease the rate of albinism. Mature ovaries from flowers containing microspores at a late binucleate stage raised the number of embryos and green plants by 25-46% as compared to immature ovaries (excised from flowers with microspores at a mid-late uninucleate stage). The highest numbers of embryos and green plants were produced when using mature Caramba ovaries. Ovaries from Galeón, Tigre, and Kilopondio cultivars successfully induced microspore embryogenesis at the same rate as Caramba ovaries. Moreover, Tigre ovaries raised the percentage of spontaneous chromosome doubling up to 71%. Attempts were made to identify molecular mechanisms associated to the inductive effect of the ovaries on microspore embryogenesis. The genes TAA1b, FLA26, and WALI6 associated to wheat microspore embryogenesis, the CGL1 gene involved in glycan biosynthesis or degradation, and the FER gene involved in the ovary signaling process were expressed and/or induced at different rates during ovary culture. The expression pattern of FLA26 and FER could be related to the differences between genotypes and developmental stages in the inductive effect of the ovary. Our results open opportunities for new approaches to increase bread wheat doubled haploid production by anther culture, and to identify the functional components of the ovary inductive effect on microspore embryogenesis.
Project description:Endometriosis is an estrogen-dependent inflammatory disease that affects up to 10% of women of reproductive age and accounts for up to 50% of female infertility cases. It has been highly associated with poorer outcomes of assisted reproductive technology (ART), including decreased oocyte retrieval, lower implantation, and pregnancy rates. A better understanding of the pathogenesis of endometriosis-associated infertility is crucial for improving infertility treatment outcomes. Current theories regarding how endometriosis reduces fertility include anatomical distortion, ovulatory dysfunction, and niche inflammation-associated peritoneal or implantation defects. This review will survey the latest evidence on the role of inflammatory niche in the peritoneal cavity, ovaries, and uterus of endometriosis patients. Nonhormone treatment strategies that target these inflammation processes are also included. Furthermore, mesenchymal stem cell-based therapies are highlighted for potential endometriosis treatment because of their immunomodulatory effects and tropism toward inflamed lesion foci. Potential applications of stem cell therapy in treatment of endometriosis-associated infertility in particular for safety and efficacy are discussed.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The success of early reproductive events depends on an appropriate communication between gametes/embryos and the oviduct. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) contained in oviductal secretions have been suggested as new players in mediating this crucial cross-talk by transferring their cargo (proteins, mRNA and small ncRNA) from cell to cell. However, little is known about the oviductal EVs (oEVS) composition and their implications in the reproductive success. The aim of the study was to determine the oEVs content at protein, mRNA and small RNA level and to examine whether the oEVs content is under the hormonal influence of the estrous cycle. RESULTS:We identified the presence of oEVs, exosomes and microvesicles, in the bovine oviductal fluid at different stages of the estrous cycle (postovulatory-stage, early luteal phase, late luteal phase and pre-ovulatory stage) and demonstrated that their composition is under hormonal regulation. RNA-sequencing identified 903 differentially expressed transcripts (FDR?<?0.001) in oEVs across the estrous cycle. Moreover, small RNA-Seq identified the presence of different types of ncRNAs (miRNAs, rRNA fragments, tRNA fragments, snRNA, snoRNA, and other ncRNAs), which were partially also under hormonal influence. Major differences were found between post-ovulatory and the rest of the stages analyzed for mRNAs. Interesting miRNAs identified in oEVs and showing differential abundance among stages, miR-34c and miR-449a, have been associated with defective cilia in the oviduct and infertility. Furthermore, functional annotation of the differentially abundant mRNAs identified functions related to exosome/vesicles, cilia expression, embryo development and many transcripts encoding ribosomal proteins. Moreover, the analysis of oEVs protein content also revealed changes across the estrous cycle. Mass spectrometry identified 336 clusters of proteins in oEVs, of which 170 were differentially abundant across the estrous cycle (p-value<?0.05, ratio?<?0.5 or ratio?>?2). Our data revealed proteins related to early embryo development and gamete-oviduct interactions as well as numerous ribosomal proteins. CONCLUSIONS:Our study provides with the first molecular signature of oEVs across the bovine estrous cycle, revealing marked differences between post- and pre-ovulatory stages. Our findings contribute to a better understanding of the potential role of oEVs as modulators of gamete/embryo-maternal interactions and their implications for the reproductive success.
Project description:Caridean shrimps are a highly diverse group and many species form symbiotic relationships with different marine invertebrates. Periclimenesrathbunae is a brightly colored shrimp that lives predominantly in association with sea anemones. Information about the reproductive ecology of the species is scarce. Therefore, we collected 70 ovigerous females inhabiting the sun sea anemone Stichodactylahelianthus in coral reefs from the southern Caribbean coast of Costa Rica. Females produced on average 289 ± 120 embryos. The volume of recently-produced embryos was on average 0.038 mm(3), and embryo volume increased by 192% during the incubation period. The average embryo mortality during embryogenesis was 24%. The reproductive output was 0.24 ± 0.094, considerably higher than in many other pontoniine shrimps. Females carrying embryos close to hatching showed fully developed ovaries, suggesting consecutive spawning. We assume that the sheltered habitat, living on sea anemones, allows Periclimenesrathbunae to allocate more energy in embryo production than most other free-living caridean shrimps. This is the first record of Periclimenesrathbunae for Costa Rica.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Molecular signaling in in vitro fertilization procedures seems to play a crucial role for embryonic development. In a prospective blinded cohort study, we investigated the role of microRNAs (miRNA) and extracellular vesicles (EV) as potential carriers of miRNAs in embryonic culture media. METHODS: Embryonic culture media from 56 female partners undergoing infertility treatment. miRNA microarray and RT-qPCR assays in combination with bioinformatics were used for the screening, validation and analysis of identified miRNAs. Nanoparticle tracking analysis was applied to measure EV in culture media. RESULTS: The overall miRNA repertoire in culture media was astonishingly complex: 621 miRNAs were present in embryonic culture media. Samples with positive outcome had an overall decreased miRNA repertoire, with the largest effects for miR-29c-3p. RT-qPCR measurements were largely consistent with the microarray results. Comparison to human spermatozoa profiles highlighted that a large part of spermatozoa miRNAs (101 miRNAs) are also present in culture media following embryonic transfer. As potential carrier molecules that could be of relevance for the decreased miRNA repertoire in samples with positive outcome we investigated EV in a small proof-of-concept study. While the size distribution was similar between both cohorts, the total number of EV in pure culture media was zero, in culture media of patients with positive outcome 3.8 billion per ml and in culture media of samples with negative outcome 7.35 billion per ml, correlating well with the results for the miRNAs. CONCLUSIONS: Embryonic culture media of pre-implantation embryos contains a stable population of highly specific to ubiquitous miRNAs that are correlated to embryogenesis and spermatogenesis processes. These miRNAs are potentially harbored by EV. Overall design: We profiled the miRNA repertoire of 56 embryonic culture media after embryos were transferred. In 39 cases the embryo transfer did not lead to a pregnancy while in 17 cases it lead to positive pregnancy.
Project description:The concept that oogenesis continues into reproductive life has been well established in nonmammalian species. Recent studies of mice and women indicate that oocyte formation is also not, as traditionally believed, restricted to the fetal or perinatal periods. Analogous to de novo oocyte formation in flies and fish, newly formed oocytes in adult mammalian ovaries arise from germline stem cells (GSCs) or, more specifically, oogonial stem cells (OSCs). Studies of mice have confirmed that isolated OSCs, once delivered back into adult ovaries, are capable of generating fully functional eggs that fertilize to produce healthy embryos and offspring. Parallel studies of OSCs recently purified from ovaries of reproductive-age women indicate that these cells closely resemble their mouse ovary-derived counterparts, although the fertilization competency of oocytes generated by human OSCs awaits clarification. Despite the ability of OSCs to produce new oocytes during adulthood, oogenesis will still ultimately cease with age, contributing to ovarian failure. The causal mechanisms behind these events in mammals are unknown, but studies of flies have revealed that GSC niche dysfunction plays a critical role in age-related oogenic failure. Such insights derived from evaluation of nonmammalian species, in which postnatal oogenesis has been studied in depth, may aid in development of new strategies to alleviate ovarian failure and infertility in mammals.
Project description:Chlordecone (CD) is an insecticide that was used in the French West Indies for several years to control the banana root borer pest. Given its nonsignificant degradation, it persists in the environment. CD is a carcinogenic compound with reproductive and developmental toxicity and is a recognized endocrine-disrupting chemical. In this study, we examined the effects of CD on female reproductive system of mice with the focus on epigenetic features in ovary. Our data show that gestational exposure to low dose of CD affects meiotic double-strand breaks repair in female embryos. In adult mice derived from CD-treated pregnant females, we observed delayed puberty, decreased number of primordial and increased number of atretic follicles. Gene expression analysis revealed that Rcbtb2 and Rbpms genes were not expressed in embryonic gonads. Estrogen signaling- and oocyte maturation-associated genes were downregulated in adult ovaries. The morphological changes were associated with altered epigenetic features: increased H2Aub and increased H3K27me3 and decreased H4ac and H3K4me3 in embryonic oocytes. The DNA damage-associated, ?H2AX marks were detected in the follicles of treated but not control adult ovaries. We also found reduced H3K4me3 and H4ac in fully grown oocytes of the treated ovaries. The ChIP-seq analysis of H3K4me3 in adult ovaries showed that target genes of ZFP57 and TRIM28, which regulate pluripotency and imprinting, were significantly enriched in altered regions. Our study clearly demonstrates that gestational exposure to a low dose of CD impairs the function of female reproductive system and the changes are associated with altered epigenetic features.
Project description:MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of endogenous small non-coding RNAs that regulate various biological processes including sexual dimorphism. The oriental fruit fly Bactrocera dorsalis is one of the most destructive agricultural insect pests in many Asian countries. However, no miRNAs have been identified from the separate sex and gonads to elucidate sex gonad differentiation in B. dorsalis. In this study, we constructed four small RNA libraries from whole body of females, males (except ovaries and testes) and ovaries, testes of B. dorsalis for deep sequencing. The data analysis revealed 183 known and 120 novel miRNAs from these libraries. 18 female-biased and 16 male-biased miRNAs that may be involved in sexual differentiation were found by comparing the miRNA expression profiles in the four libraries. Using a bioinformatic approach, we predicted doublesex (dsx) as a target gene of the female-biased miR-989-3p which is considered as the key switch gene in the sex determination of tephritid insects. This study reveals the first miRNA profile related to the sex differentiation and gives a first insight into sex differences in miRNA expression of B. dorsalis which could facilitate studies of the reproductive organ specific roles of miRNAs.