Dataset Information


Interactions Between Progesterone and Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha in the Regulation of Primordial Follicle Assembly

ABSTRACT: Follicle assembly is the process by which groups or ‘nests’ of oocytes break down to form primordial follicles. The size of the primordial follicle pool is the major determinant of the reproductive lifespan of a female. Previously, progesterone (P4) has been shown to inhibit follicle assembly, while tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) has been shown to promote the apoptosis that is necessary for follicle assembly. The current study examines how TNF-alpha and progesterone interact to regulate primordial follicle assembly. Ovaries were collected from newborn rats and placed in organ culture to examine the actions of P4 and TNF-alpha. P4 was found to decrease primordial follicle assembly and increase the percentage of un-assembled oocytes both in vitro and in vivo. TNF-alpha treatment did not change the proportion of assembled follicles in cultured ovaries, but did block the ability of P4 to inhibit follicle assembly. Microarray analysis of the ovarian transcriptome revealed that progesterone treatment of the ovaries altered the expression of 513 genes with 132 only expressed after P4 treatment and 16 only expressed in control ovaries. The majority of genes were up-regulated greater than 2-fold over control, with a small subset of 16 genes down-regulated. Categories of genes affected by P4 are described including a group of extra-cellular signaling factors. The progesterone receptors expressed at the time of follicle assembly included the surface membrane progesterone receptors PGRMC1, PGRMC2 and RDA288. The nuclear genomic P4 receptor was not expressed at appreciable levels. Progesterone increased the expression of several genes (TANK, NFkappaB, Bcl2l1 and Bcl2l2) involved in a signaling pathway that promotes cell survival and inhibits apoptosis. Observations indicate that P4 acts through the surface membrane progesterone receptors to regulate primordial follicle assembly, and that TNF-alpha can over-ride the inhibitory actions of P4 on follicle assembly. A major mechanism involved in the actions of P4 is an increase in cell survival genes and inhibition of the apoptosis pathway. Observations provide insight into the hormonal regulation of primordial follicle assembly and lead to novel approaches to potentially manipulate follicle assembly and reproductive capacity. Keywords: expression analysis, progesterone, TNFa, follicle assembly, ovary Overall design: RNA samples from two control groups (pooled untreated cultured ovaries) are compared to two treated groups (pooled cultured ovaries treated with progesterone)

INSTRUMENT(S): [Rat230_2] Affymetrix Rat Genome 230 2.0 Array

ORGANISM(S): Rattus norvegicus  

SUBMITTER: Michael K Skinner  




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